28/09/2016: Labour Party Conference Daily Politics

28/09/2016: Labour Party Conference

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Welcome to the final day of Labour Party Conference


It will be closed by a keynote speech by Jeremy Corbyn.


Will it help heal the deep divisions in the party?


Or will it set off a new storm over immigration?


Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.


Jeremy Corbyn says a Labour government won't seek


to reduce immigration, will the extra money he's promising


for areas affected by immigration be enough to ease public concern?


STUDIO: A divisive leadership battle ended as Labour's week


the focus from splits and divisions onto policy?


We'll look at the announcements that have been made.


Labour and their leader are struggling in the polls,


for a failure to get their message across?


I have this book of jokes about Jeremy Corbyn, can I read one to


you? STUDIO: And we took a whole


book of Corbyn jokes out but did anyone find


them funny? All that in our first


of two programmes from the Labour party conference


today from the wonderful


city of Liverpool. And joining me to take stock


on the final day of conference What is or overall impression of the


conference? It has been a weird mishmash of things going on, in


opposition parties conferences, it feels like sometimes half the action


is away from here, down the road, at the momentum jamboree, and half was


here. We spent a whole week talking about unity and still struggling for


evidence of that. A weird mishmash? The way it is set up by the media,


like a pub brawl, really it is more like people setting at separate


tables. It sounds a bit contrarian, but the obvious reference point is


the 1980s, massive divisions in the Labour Party but there were far


greater ideological differences back then, mainstream figures call for


nationalisation of the monopolies, these days, there is quite a lot of


unity on the issues, conferences education and not selection,


spending rather than cuts, public health services, there is not the


great division, a lot of it is about tone and posture, often, and I


think, when you go through the issues, if you ask what the main


differences are with the other side, people often don't know what to say.


Perhaps a series to divide on immigration? It is not necessarily


called left or right, the most pro-immigration wings of the Labour


Party were the Blairite right and the Labour left, traditionally, now


you have the likes of Chuka Umunna, pro-immigration but now he has


reversed his position. That is compensated. A little bit of


interference on the sound, for our viewers, I hope that you can still


here as well. Robert be a relief for them not to be able to hear my


babblings! LAUGHTER Isn't the problem that we face


today, the conference began with leadership problems. -- probably a


relief. Given what we think Jeremy Corbyn will be saying about


immigration, the Libyan argument? The interesting thing about this


conference, is that you see all sorts of divisions opening up that


we have been ignoring. Division between socially conservative


labour, which is your Labour heartland vote, northern cities,


Welsh valleys, coalfield communities, former industrial


areas, post-industrial areas, they have been hostile to immigration.


Immigration comes up time and time again, they do not have consent for


the levels of immigration we have. And liberal left part of Labour,


North London, they feel very differently about it. That is a very


difficult choice for Progressive parties but much harder for Labour,


because there is a lot of Labour voters, Ukip inclined, who will hate


what he has to say today. If he wants to heal the party, why is he


not making any concessions on immigration? For the reasons Gabby


has said, it is a difficult one for him to tread, the Labour coalition


is fragmenting over lots of issues, in the big cities, as you say,


London, Manchester, Birmingham, younger voters, Labour inclined,


quite well disposed to immigration, if they hear anti-immigration


rhetoric, they will go elsewhere or not vote. Older working-class


voters, particularly in small towns, feel immigration is a threat, it


causes in security, and so on. If they see something that is seen as


pro-immigration, they will go elsewhere. The line he has to pursue


is to emphasise that he understands people's concerns, but I grew up,


not many immigrants, but lots of concerns. What people often feel is


consulted, they feel politicians do not take their concerns seriously.


What he has to say is, I know you have concerns, I understand them, I


don't think you are racist or bigoted for having on, that is why,


front and central, migrant impact fund which gives resources to areas


with high levels of immigration. It is interesting, it was abolished...


Gordon Brown introduced it, 150 million... 50 million? That is what


he said, he did not spend that much. I know that it was very small. How


much did Tower Hamlets get? ?60,000. Well, it needs to be properly


resourced, immigrants taking more than they give back, allocating


resources, that is the kind of argument people make. The problem is


that Labour politicians have been saying since 2010 and before that


they understand your concerns... Ed Miliband tried the same approach.


People want action. Ed Miliband tried the same approach, we


understand your pain, we feel your pain, we will stop undercutting


wages, but people either don't believe that it works, all, it is


not just about undercutting wages, there is something deeper and more


emotional about community is changing, which is not addressed by


money. We shall see, it looks like it is going to be one of the main


affairs today, particularly because home affairs will be part of the


focus. Back to Joe in London, we have been looking at divisions, but


there has also been plenty of policy announcements. -- Jo.


Unusually for a party conference, there have been plenty of policy


announcements this week, so we thought we'd pull together


Jeremy Corbyn and his team have been doling out policy sweeties this


conference like they are going out of fashion, which of course they


was John McDonnell's pledge for a minimum wage of


with a plan to ban tax avoiding firms from winning


a future Labour government will make up any shortfall in European funding


for the regions went down well with activists.


after his pledge to accept party support for Trident renewal was said


to have been removed from his speech while on the auto cue.


saying that the nuclear weapon system would be renewed


as long as it remained party policy.


on Andy McDonald's proposals to give local communities more control


over their bus services and return them to the public


One of the most controversial announcements


was that of a complete ban on fracking,


made by Barry Gardiner despite criticism from the GMB union.


announcement comes from Jeremy Corbyn himself,


who will commit the party to not cutting the numbers of migrants.


Apologies again for the sound in Liverpool, we have change the


microphone, hopefully there will be an improvement.


I've been joined by the shadow secretary of state for


international trade, energy, climate change


The policy will have to change to reflect the Brexit vote, it was


said, how has it changed? What we have to do, we have to make sure


that people understand that there is controls on immigration. So that


people who are coming to this country feel that the ones that are


coming in are benefiting them... It would be making sure that the people


who come here have the skills and are able to contribute to our


economy in a way that everybody is going to benefit from. And that they


are not going to be people who are either displacing people from work


here, but the key thing is, I don't think people are in the opening


piece you referred to numbers, I don't think... People are concerned


that there should be controlled immigration, so that they can see


the benefits... Let me ask you about control, what control would Labour


have on immigration from the EU? You are asking me to second-guess what


we are going to now have in terms of the relationship with the EU. We are


going to be out of the EU, what controls would Labour have? We don't


know about the relationship that we will have with the youth. This is


something they have got to come clean on. Jeremy Corbyn, Jeremy


Corbyn... I'm trying to give you an answer... Jeremy Corbyn has told us,


he said, " we are not out to control immigration in terms of numbers, in


terms of numbers, there would be no controlled immigration.


To say there is no control is absolutely wrong, let me clearly


answer the question that you put. What people need to be able to see


is that there are controls over the people who are coming into this


country, in a new relationship. This government has not set out whether


it would prioritise the passport team of goods and services into a


single market, the financial services and other services that we


need all the free movement of people. -- passporting of goods. If


it doesn't come clean with the British public about what the red


line in the negotiation is, then... I'm not asking you about government


policy, I will be doing that with the government next week, I am


asking about Labour Party policy. You are asking me to tell the


future, I cannot because I do not know what the government will


negotiate. You could have a policy urging them to negotiate for


something, that is your job as opposition. Last night the office


brief Jeremy Corbyn's office said that he was not concerned about


numbers, if you are not concerned about numbers, what controls would


you have on EU immigration? Quality, quality control. We already have a


system for judging, we have Tier one, Tier two, T four. Not for EU


immigration. I'm talking about a system for judging. We already have


a system for judging in the immigration control system. For


non-EU. But you are now asking me to say what it would be for the EU, we


don't know what the future relationship with the EU is. If


there is an election next year, which party thinks there is, you


would have to do the negotiations, you would have to have a policy on


immigration, where you would negotiate. I'm trying to work out


what that policy is. So far, no answer has come. I have given new


two answers, you just don't like the answers, make a distinction there.


Let me ask you again, how would you control immigration? I'll tell you,


what we would do, if we were government next year, we would


negotiate a Brexit on the basis that there are certain principles that


you remain true to, one of those is to say that immigration must benefit


the people in this country. Quality controls, like we already have


outside of the EU, in terms of Tier one, Tier two, Tier four. He would


then be able to put those controls in place, and that would be part of


the Brexit negotiation. What I'm saying to you is I cannot predict


what the government is going to do, and I don't know what colleagues in


the rest of Europe are going to be prepared to grant us. That is why I


say you have to do this from the point of principle. Just to be clear


on this, you would have a whole series of controls, on EU migration?


What I am saying is that I would have quality controls on all


migration into this country. Because what we want, and what the British


people want, is they want to know that if people are coming into the


UK, it is going to benefit their lives and not just the people who


are coming. Of course we will always take refugees, that is entirely


sensible. When we are talking about economic immigration, the economy


must work in the favour of the British people and the British


public, if they see that political parties are prepared to put those


controls in place, then I believe, and they are working to their


benefit, then I believe it is not the numbers that matter, it is


actually the quality and the economic benefit they are bringing.


When he says he's not about numbers, that is consistent with having


substantial controls. All right. Of course, of course, because it is


quality controlled, quality controlled. With no regard on the


numbers? It is about making sure that the people who are coming here


are benefiting our society, if more people were coming here than there


was employment for, that would automatically be a quality control,


but it would also limit numbers. These ask serious questions, you are


trying to trap me into a semantic phrase will stop I am trying to


figure out what is your policy. Which I have given you. -- I am


trying to figure out what is your policy? I have given you the answer,


they are clear. The viewers will decide if they are clear. Andy


Burnham has said he would not like to be included in the next Shadow


Cabinet because he will be running for mayor of Manchester, he said


Labour voters feel taken for granted and abandoned because of the failure


of the political class to curb immigration. Do you agree?


I think Andy is making an important point, that people feel abandoned,


that the forces of globalisation which mean that multinational


companies move labour across the globe, exploit tax regimes and make


sure they get the benefit instead of the benefit accruing to local


people. Local people had seen jobs go, all the certainties of place.


They used to know that generations of people worked in the same towns.


We have to show people that there are new jobs. That globalisation is


something that can be controlled. My own view is that we are more likely


to be able to control that by working and cooperating with others


around the globe then simply by being in isolation on our own. You


were part of the group that said Labour


the energy infrastructure, energy infrastructure for the future and


not the past. Looking at president Barack Obama, they ratify the


climate change agreement, the disagreement. Last week the governor


of the Bank of England, Mark Carney was talking about how there is five


times more energy, oil and gas reserves, identified then we can


use. Why is it right to input shale gas


from America, when we have plenty of by doing that now, by investing now,


in that technology, and remember here, this is a technology that,


George Osborne, when he was Chancellor, gave 75% tax allowances,


capital allowances, too. The only way they can make it profitable is


on the backs of taxpayers. The average life of a shale gas...? The


average life of a shale gas field is about three years.


We will need gas for quite a while. I insert viewing you -- am I


interviewing you? Oil is running out in the North Sea, you want to ban


fracking, so the only alternative is that in the years ahead we will


import more and more gas. Make a distinction, Andrew, between gas and


shale gas. What we do at the moment is, we have more gas that we produce


in this country. We export 33.8% of the gas that we produce, and we only


import... We had 5% lower imports of gas than we had the year before.


That is because we are losing less. North Sea gas is running out, isn't


it? You make these statements, but you don't listen to the answers. The


answer I am giving is that actually our production of gas in this


country over the past five years has increased. Year-on-year. Let me


clarify, because it means everything I've read must have been wrong.


North Sea gas is not running out? Eventually, of course, every field


will run out, but not in the time frame that we have now, in the next


15 years. If you look at the Cambridge Econometrics report, it


shows there will be a 26% reduction in gas demand in this country by


2030. That's why it makes no sense at all to lock us into a fossil fuel


shale gas technology subsidised by 75% by the British taxpayer. If we


are producing so much gas, why are we importing ?15 billion per year of


gas? Because we are exporting more. That is why. You're laughing. Do you


want to check the figures, Andrew? I will. Because we are exporting 33.8%


of the gas that we produce. We are importing... ?15 billion. 1.1


billion cubic metres less than we are exporting. In actual fact, the


whole point is that we do need gas, we'd need natural gas -- we need


natural gas that will take us through the gaps in renewables to


take us through to 2030. We need gas to do that and I support it. What we


don't need is to be locking ourselves into a new gas


infrastructure, namely shale gas, which is subsidised three quarters


by the taxpayer and which will demand a return over a 35 year


period which takes us beyond that time when gas will be diminishing in


the system. You've made that very clear. Thank you very much. Good.


Now, back to Jo in London. I've been joined in the studio


by the Chief Secretary Giving your remain position during


the EU referendum campaign, can we presume you are in support of free


movement as Jeremy Corbyn has outlined it? We voted to leave the


European Union, you are right. I was on the other side of the argument.


The British people have made a decision and we have to respect


that. One of the key elements that drove a lot of people to vote to


leave the EU were concerns about migration. In terms of negotiating


our new relationship with the EU, that needs to reflect that. It needs


to reflect the concerns the British people have about how free movement


of labour operates. You thought those people were wrong during the


campaign. You are in principle and personally in agreement with Jeremy


Corbyn, who doesn't want a limit on the numbers of migrants coming into


the UK? That's what you campaigned on - freedom of movement in the EU.


I don't agree that we can ignore the voice of the British people. The


British people have made a decision. We fought the referendum on the


basis of the reforms negotiated that I'm no longer available to us. It is


important in terms of the new relationship with the EU that we


don't just ignore what the British people have said, that the new


relationship has to reflect what the British people have said. You've


said during the referendum is that Britain would be worse off if it


limited migration. Are you now saying you were wrong? I am saying


that in terms of the negotiation, we got -- we have got to reflect the


concerns of the British people in terms of free movement of labour,


and we need to ensure we have a strong access to those European


markets for goods and services, and that we don't put in place


unnecessary barriers to trade. You don't believe now that Britain would


be worse off if it limits migration? The position that I and others


argued during the referendum campaign was leaving the EU would


make is worse off than we would otherwise be. When you talk than the


Treasury talked about the impact and benefits of immigration, they said,


you said, that Britain is better off economically broadly as a result of


immigration. So you were wrong? We have to have a migration policy that


reflects the fact... You said that. I'm trying to say that your personal


position was the same as Jeremy Corbyn's. We need to respect the


result but also ensure it works in the best interests of the UK


economy. We need to make sure we have the right people with the right


skills and so on. You agree with Barry Gardiner, who once quality


controls on all migration, including the EU? In a different position from


the one we were in before the referendum. What we're hearing from


Jeremy Corbyn, as far as I can see, and admittedly that briefing we


received yesterday of what Barry Gardiner was just saying don't


appear to be consistent, but we will see what Jeremy says. He says the


quality counts. The numbers do matter. You've failed completely to


control those numbers. The numbers, in the end, didn't matter, did they?


There were steps we took to reduce those numbers. We have a target to


bring those numbers down. Actually, there were aspects of the EU


negotiation which were about trying to restrict access to benefits,


which the public understandably had a lot of concern about. The idea


that Jeremy Corbyn is saying that we should do nothing to address the


issue of migration, and whether that is the message he puts out this


afternoon, we will watch with interest. It may demonstrate he is


out of touch with where the British people are. The and for where you


were before the referendum result. Before we leave immigration, the


migrant impact fund was scrapped by you. Was that the right decision? We


came to office at a period of time where there were difficult decisions


to make about the public finances. Because of the impact on communities


that you were representing, who felt you were -- they were being ignored


by politicians, and yet you got rid of the fun. We inherited the most


awful mess and had to sort it out. We had to make difficult decisions


when it came to public finances. It became the priority. I'm not sure it


was the migration impact fund that was the priority issue at the


referendum... Really? It was going to help communities deal with an


increase in immigration. The work concerns about immigration before it


was in existence and they remain after it has gone. We shouldn't


place too much emphasis necessarily on that. We have to ensure that we


have an economy that works for everybody and that those areas are


left behind, whether that is done through a particular fund or through


other means, I think... Lets take the phrase, a country that works for


everyone and not the privileged few. Labour have won the battle of ideas,


never mind the Battle of rhetoric, in terms of public announcements.


Workers on board, a proper living wage, and Theresa May defining


herself by the words that I've just said. We are all socialist now,


aren't we? Yellow might know. You have copied every single one of


those policies. Jackie -- no. We have reformed public services and


welfare in the teeth of labour opposition. We have cut taxes,


focused particularly on the lower paid. We have increased the personal


allowance for income tax. Not necessarily opposed by Labour but


not something they did in office. What about workers on boards - that


was a Labour policy that you have taken on board. A proper living wage


of ?10 or more - argue in agreement with that? It was the Tories that


brought in the living wage. It was an extension of the minimum wage


brought in by Labour. You have stolen the idea. We brought it in


when John McDonnell was still a backbencher. We can hardly say that


was John McDonnell's idea. Do you agree with the aspiration of ?10 an


hour? We believe in a national living wage full stop at ?10 an


hour? You have to balance the benefits are low paid workers with


the risks to employment. George Osborne make that decision


unilaterally. He ignored the low pay commission so that politics could


set the standard. He based it on the work that Sir George Bain had done,


who was the first chair of the low pay commission, who recommended a


link of 60% of mean income. If you like, we can all plot numbers out of


the air. If we had said ?10, they could say it 11. John McDonnell said


it was based on what could actually -- what people could actually live


on, rather than a median amount. I think he has. He made this


announcement this time last year, as far as I can see. Do you agree with


it? It was the Conservative Government that brought in the


national living wage. In terms of the judgment, following expert


advice, it was 60% of median income. Would you like to see it go to ?10


an hour by 2020? We have to make a judgment about the


rate at which jobs will be lost, when we do not have access to the


Labour market, we have an extremely good record of getting people


working over the last six years. It is a question of finding the right


balance. In one of your previous answers you said that you had


addressed the public finances, actually, where is the evidence for


that, given that George Osborne dropped his fiscal rule to reach a


surplus, before losing his job, and even the IMF have come out to say,


fiscal consolidation has not worked, and world is moving against


austerity and we will be against the policy. If you look at what has


happened to the public finances, the job is not done. It is not completed


in the first term of office and it is still a work in progress. We have


not completed the job of eliminating the deficit, I'm the first to admit


that, but we have demonstrated that we have brought it down, very


significantly, from where it was, at a record level, the point I was


making, roaring a divide between what we heard from the Labour Party


throughout the last Parliament, don't worry too much... About


austerity, which is what you are doing. I would not categorise it...


You have dropped that Kieran will, to reach a surplus and eliminate the


deficit. The circumstances have changed. Because of the Brexit vote,


we are not going to go chasing after that. -- that key promise. It is


still important that we live within our means, and get the deficit down.


David, thank you very much joining us.


Reverting back to Barry Gardner's interview, we were talking about the


amount of gas that Britain imports or exports, I was surprised when he


said that we exported a lot of gas, overall, we seem to be very strong


in that regard. On the latest government figures that I have here,


official figures, they say that the UK has been a net importer of gas


since 2004, a net importer of gas, with net imports of gas in 2015


accounting for just over 40% of the total supply of gas. Maybe we are


talking about two different things, that is what I was basing my


questions on. Let's just pick up


on the issue of immigration, Jeremy Corbyn's office said that


as Labour government would not seek to control the numbers


coming in to the country. Shadow Home Secretary Andy Burnham


has been speaking about this two conference in the last few minutes.


Let Labour stand for a fairer Brexit, not a hard Brexit, true to


Britain's past, protecting the economy but crucially also providing


the change that people voted for. Conference, this party was must


fully face up to this fact. Millions of lifelong Labour supporters voted


to leave the EU, let's be honest, they voted for change on


immigration. We have not yet even begun to show them that we


understand why. Let's get some reaction from


the Labour MP, Stephen Kinnock. Last night it was being briefed out


from the office of Jeremy Corbyn that the Labour leader was not


concerned about numbers when it comes to immigration. Were you happy


about that? I don't think that is the right way to go, I say that if


we want to build a society that have let our values of compassion,


cohesive communities, of what people working together in harmony, then we


have got to talk about controlling the inflow of Labour from other


countries. I believe we should be talking about a sector by sector


approach, defining the numbers we need in each of the areas,


agriculture, home care services, the retail sector. Setting a number that


is appropriate, and when we reach that number, we say, that is it,


that is all we need. We must make it clear to people that we respect


their desire for having control of the borders and the way that the


labour market works, so that we can build the sort of society that we


actually want to build. Are you aware of any controlled that Jeremy


Corbyn would be in favour of, on, for example, EU migration, after


Brexit? I have not studied the detail of what he is proposing, it


is not something that has been discussed in the Parliamentary


Labour Party so far, I can't comment too much in detail, but certainly,


the message coming through seems to be about an open door, with no


controls at all. I really hope that Jeremy Hall rethink that, and


reconsider that. We have got to have a clear message around making


immigration work for all of our people. The integration side of it,


with the migration impact fund, we welcome that, what let's remember,


many of the people who have deep concerns about immigration, there is


not much immigration in their communities. This is an issue of


control, not integration. Barry Gardner, who I also spoke with about


immigration, not just gas, he outlined... He said there would be a


range of quality controls on immigration. Including immigration


from the European Union. -- Barry Gardiner. Do you know anything about


that? That is a bit of a risk, it seems to conflict with the message


coming from Jeremy and the speech, the briefing about the speech we


have received, there is a risk that looks like we are making it up on


the hoof. I hope that we will be able to have a hell stick and


constructive debate within the PLP, and I will be arguing firmly for


saying that 23rd of June result was a political earthquake, we cannot


pretend that there is not a clear message there are, about the need


for control, but we also can say that this does not necessarily mean


a hard Brexit. We are in the process of negotiating, we as a Labour Party


must set clear tests for the government on what we think a clear


Brexit looks like, marrying together democratic imperative around control


over free movement with the economic imperative of not wrecking the


economy through the Brexit process. Theresa May is supposed to be a


tough and effective command negotiator, let's set those tests,


hold her feet to the fire. -- -- Theresa May is supposed be a tough


and effective negotiator, let's set those tests, hold her feet to the


fire. Why do you say that? That is what I have read in the newspaper. I


regard was talking about quality controls for all immigration, tests


and so on, is it not likely as part of the immigration that we will have


two be more liberal towards EU migration, if we are wanting things


from them, then to immigration from the rest of the world? -- have to.


What is required here, is a proper bottom-up process, where a


government and employers and trade unions have conversations, sector by


sector, about what is required, what are the skills required, what is


required for the NHS, what is required in the agricultural


industry, and we set a number on that basis. And we can say on the


doorstep, we have a handle on this, we are on top of this, and we have


set the number as this much, when it gets to that much, we will close the


door. That is the way that it works in Australia. I was very surprised


to see Theresa May come out against a points-based system. If you are


going to have quality controlled and criteria, whether we call it


points-based or quality control, I don't mind, but you have got to have


those filters in place, so that we can reassure the British people so


that we can move the conversation onto what kind of public services we


need, what kind of investment we need, class sizes to full? We cannot


see all of that through the prism of immigration, but that is what is


happening at the moment. -- too full. If we impose work permits on


EU members, they would undoubtably impose work permits on British


citizens going there are, is that really a constructive way forward,


to have work permit? I think that there is more of an appetite than


there has ever been in countries like Germany, France, the Nordics,


the Netherlands, to have a root and branch review of the way that free


movement works. Theresa May has the opportunity now to use that


leveraged, to go to Berling, to go to Paris, and work together on this,


the Brexit referendum gives us an opportunity to think in a new way


about how freedom of movement works. -- use that leverage. Let's look for


a pan-European settlement, if you can strike that bargain, you can


then have a very different conversation about access to the


single market of goods services and capital. A migration fund is being


proposed, Lord Browne had won, only lasted for a couple of years. It was


only tens of millions, very small fund. Would a much larger fund work?


-- Gordon Brown. How wrong would it be before it had an impact? It is a


very compelling proposal, and it is something that we need, I would look


to increase it is substantially, perhaps up to 500 million, but I


would pay for it with a levy on visas, and if we move into a work


permit -based system, charging for them, so you are not dipping into


the taxpayer pocket. Levy on non-EU visas was how Gordon Brown financed


the one in 2008, and the revenue it produced, quite a big levy, but it


produced only peanuts. 30, 40 million. And they only spent 23


billion thousand eight ninths, if you put a levy on European Union


visas... What are they going to do? I think that is going to be up to


the negotiations. -- then he spent 23 billion, in 2008 /9. It is in


fierce challenge of revenue. The levy still exists, we just don't


want to fund it. Levy got scrapped by the Tories. That is able to


economy. It is about rather than integration, but the integration


fund will work well where there is a large number of immigrants, but many


places, for example, working class heartlands, it is not the numbers


that is the problem, it is the sense of a lack of control. Andy Burnham


says that he doesn't want to be considered again as Shadow Home


Secretary because he is off to run for mayor of Manchester. A vacancy


there. Do you fancy that? My phone has not yet rung! It has only just


announced it. What I really hope is that Jeremy will move towards


Parliamentary Labour Party election for Shadow Cabinet positions. I


think if that happens, then I think it will make the bridge back to


cohesive and united party far easier to cross. I can see that it is not a


note. My phone has not yet rung. I am so honoured and privileged to be


serving my constituents, the steel crisis is still taking up a huge


amount of my time. I understand. There is plenty to be getting on


with. I thought that you were going to say you honoured and privileged


to be on the Daily Politics! Indeed! I doff my cap! LAUGHTER


Now, does the acronym MSM mean anything to you?


I'll give you a clue, according to those who use


the term we are part of it, as are most of the journalists


"MSM" stands for Mainstream Media and some on the Left say


they are to blame for the difficulty the left have in getting


So Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters have been trying to bypass


like in this YouTube film about Jeremy Corbyn


Get a good quality apprenticeship, but I require a society which gives


every young person an opportunity to get an apprenticeship or go to


university, so that the opportunity is there, and not be saddled with


debt at the end of it. We have turned education into a commodity


for under fives and over 18s, 30 years of being told that neoliberal


economics is the answer to everything. No, it is up at the


answer to everything. It is an hour-long film, available on


YouTube, Jeremy Corbyn speaking with these people.


I've been joined by the director of the centrist Labour group


and by Momentum activist Bhaskar Sunkara,


which offers "socialist perspectives on politics,


Quite a mouthful, is it an online magazine? No, we are in print. We


have 20,000 subscribers. Is it the mainstream media that is not giving


Jeremy Corbyn a fair crack of the whip, or is it laid the's constant


divisions and arguments that are undermining it? It could be both! If


you are under constant attack from your own party, it is very difficult


to actually develop the message discipline, to figure out what


points you should be consistently hammering across the mainstream


media. At the same time, the media can also create a hostile


environment for pushing forward ideas to begin with, that does not


mean that certain ideas cannot get across, that does not mean that the


left should avoid that a reign of the mainstream media. You still


think you should engage? I consider myself a member of the


pre-mainstream media, that is the entire point of why I do politics


and... What does that mean? I hope to one day be a member of the


mainstream media with my publication, I hope my ideas become


the mainstream. Not that I would just be sitting at home doing this.


Does the mainstream media treat Jeremy Corbyn's Labour Party badly?


I don't think that it does, it does its job, shining highlight what is


happening inside a very powerful organisation that we are all hoping,


and the country expects, to be the opposition and the alternative


government. It deserves a lot of scrutiny, and when there are


semi-mistakes coming directly from the office of the leader, it is not


surprisingly there is key insights, and that makes news in the country,


and then, actively divisive things are done by the leadership which


they know MPs are going to dissent on, and dissent is interesting to


the public. And covered by the media. The Labour Party is a party


in transition. I am based in the United States, I would not even


define myself as an activist, I am an ally, but when you have a party


in great transition, so many new members, people engaging in these


debates are the first time, a lot of people are inspired by Jeremy


Corbyn, for the first time, of course there will be different


messages and debates. Protestation. That is politics, it is not an usual


particularly. The fact the media is playing up these divisions, I think


that is also potentially fair, but to me, the fact there is not a


unified voice coming out of the Labour Party, that is a natural part


of a party in transition. Because it is going through a certain change.


The also have people getting their message in first. In the debate


between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, people are not dealing with


the reason why Trump did not win. It seems to me that people who know


that Jeremy Corbyn's ideas will not go down well with the public get


their reasons in earlier. The mainstream media, to me, are doing


their job. You gave me a hard time when I was last on the programme. A


Labour leader always faces the hostility of what we used to call


the Tory press. Although it is not as powerful as it was, there is


still an identifiable Tory press. A Labour leader like Mr Corbyn gets it


in the neck even more than others, though Ed Miliband and Neil Kinnock


would tell you they got it badly as well. If you say, they are behaving


to tag, what about the non-Tory press part of the mainstream media?


Is that treating Mr Corbyn fairly? I think it treats in normally. There


were complaints about the Guardian being unfair. I think it is quite


pro-Corbyn in its editorials. But the amount of mistakes they have


made is newsworthy, and they come about as news. It is something you


have to put up with. I think the public, crucially, see politicians


who complain about the media as silly as sailors complaining about


the sea. For Labour, it has always been more difficult. We know we are


the change-makers and we have big ideas and it will always be harder


to break the status quo. We have to accept that, otherwise it looks ugly


to the public. In the United States, perhaps not planned, but it happened


in reality, the mainstream media turned out to be Donald Trump's


biggest ally, because they kept putting him on. Even small L liberal


networks like ABC and NBC, I will put Fox in another corner. But he


was good ratings, so they gave him a tonne of time on-air. And he didn't


have to spend money on TV commercials. For that insurgent, the


mainstream media was an ally. In a certain sense, yes. He deserved that


attention because he was compelling because people were for him. I think


his politics are abhorrent but he deserves that attention. Bernie


Sanders and other candidates weren't getting that attention even though


they had similar polling levels. There should be some criteria, and


it should be rooted in how much support a politician has, how much


grassroots energy they have. Should Mr Corbyn engage more with the


mainstream media? I think every politician needs to engage with the


mainstream media, it is important. I haven't seen Mr Corbyn shy away from


interviews, from the mainstream media. I think there is a narrative


that says Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters only care about social


media and not the mainstream media. I think they are just trying to


reach people however they can. Should he? He cancelled an event


yesterday morning. The point just making is, how thankful I we have --


are we that we have the BBC? They have Corbyn supporters, people who


are not, and they balance things out. If we had an American-style


media, like Fox News and ratings every minute of every day, and shot


politics is the only way to get on the media. It is not just the BBC,


ITV is regarded as a public service broadcaster, so is Sky. And Channel


4. I feel like a socialist making a Nationalist argument, but the


American print media is probably less biased and more objective.


There are tabloid stories that come out about Corbyn that are shocking


and unsubstantiated, and that would not fly in America. Sanders did not


get treatment. On the left, we had access to lots of those I've --


outlets. It is nice to talk on the mainstream media about the


mainstream media! He's inspired colouring books,


poetry and a play, and now Jeremy Corbyn has prompted


the publication of Here it is - it's The Little Red


Book of Corbyn Jokes, and we'll be talking to the man


behind it in just a moment. First, though, we asked Adam


to test the jokes out So, I've got this book of jokes


about Jeremy Corbyn. What is long and rigid and gets you


up in the morning? The Morning Star


newspaper's editorial. Do you not read


the Morning Star? How many of the commentariat does it


take to change I don't even understand


your accent, but... My wife went out drinking with Fidel


Castro's wife. Wow, that's the best


response we've had. What starts with a screw-up,


takes nine months and ends up with a load of kicking


and screaming? At least you're still


smiling, I suppose. What did the Irishman say


when he walked into the That's entirely a matter for


the Irish and needs no input from What would happen if James Bond


took Viagra. What would happen if James Bond


took Viagra? He would continue being


a state-sponsored terrorist whose I strongly resent the


implication of patriarchal behaviour contained


in What's black-and-white and red


all over? The Tory press after


it's been nationalised. Oh, that's a good


one. What did the socialist pigeons


say to the neoliberal I think it's the way you tell them,


Adam! I've been joined in the studio


by the man who dreamt up "The Little Red Book


of Corbyn Jokes", Jason Sinclair. And by the comedian Grainne Maguire,


who supports Jeremy Corbyn. Welcome to both of you. You were


laughing all the way through. She liked your jokes. How difficult was


it to put it together, to find enough jokes to fill this book? We


tend to write a joke whenever something catastrophic happens in


the Labour Party, so... What are you saying? There was a lot of material.


What is your all-time favourite Jeremy Corbyn Joe? Oh gosh, I don't


know. A quick easy one was, why did the chicken cross the road? White?


Neoliberalism. Do you find them genuinely funny, or are you laughing


at us into the? Corbyn jokes give me life. I just love them so much. The


letter gets accused of being sanctimonious and taking themselves


too seriously, so I think it is important to poke fun is ensure that


we can laugh at ourselves. Do you have one of these books? No, but


fingers crossed I will get one today. What about topical jokes from


the conference? Well, I'm not saying my mother-in-law hates me, but I am


just saying what Seamus put on the autocue. Knock knock. Owen Smith --


who's their? Owen Smith. Owen Smith who? Exactly. What is it about


Jeremy Corbyn that lends himself to humour? Because he comes across as


so humourless and Ernest, so it is funny to see what it could be like


if he was telling a joke. How do you think Jeremy Corbyn would be if he


told a joke? Would he be as good as your reporter? The bar is lower with


Adam. Would you agree with that about Jeremy Corbyn? I think he


comes across as so earnest and well-intentioned that he would try


to be funny, but he would just end up with a lot of facts about the


Irish potato famine. The Irish potato... You are a Corbyn


supporter. I support Jeremy and the Labour Party in all its wonderful


facets, but I do stand-up comedy, and it's important to poke fun at


Jeremy. Do you poke fun? Is he a good source of material? It is funny


they say he has a problem with women. He has been married three


times and his ex-girlfriend is in the Shadow Cabinet. If anything, he


gets on too well with women, if you ask me! You could look at it from


that perspective. Did his ex-wife vote for him? I don't know if


anyone's would, to be fair. I'm sub tries G voted once for him. She did


an interview just before the result saying she wasn't supporting him


this time. What has the response been to the book? Next... Very


diplomatic. There are 12 5-star reviews and some one star reviews.


What about Corbyn now, with his renewed mandate's are their jokes


that you will be able to make? He is leader for the second time around.


What will you do? Labour itself is like a dysfunctional, crazy family


with lots of strong personalities. Whenever there is a disaster, there


are people who are so happy to give an interview. Morin sadness than in


anger, but where is my like? There is -- more in sadness. On Amazon, it


says "This is not raisins." How do you respond to that? That's true,


it's not as tasty as raisins, but it might be funny. How many jokes


altogether? It is quite big writing, not many jokes on the page. Tell


like there are a lot of introductory essays, parodies and pastiches, not


just jokes from the twitter account. -- there are a lot of introductory


essays. What were the last words of the Marxist intellectual before


committing suicide? Comrades, please don't


That's all for now, but i'll be back here on BBC Two


in just one hour's time, with live coverage of


So, grab a sandwich, make yourself a cup


of tea, and see you back here at two o'clock.


He will have a lot to say about various policies, and we'll be


bringing it to you alive and uninterrupted from 2pm this


afternoon. Grab a sandwich, get a cup of tea, and we'll see you back




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