28/02/2017 Daily Politics


28/02/2017

Jo Coburn is joined by Baroness Wheatcroft to review the day's politics, including the latest recriminations within Ukip and reaction to Sir John Major's speech on Brexit.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 28/02/2017. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.

:00:00.:00:40.

Civil War breaks out in Ukip as Nigel Farage calls

:00:41.:00:42.

for their only MP to be kicked out for undermining him and the party.

:00:43.:00:47.

After failing to win in Stoke, is it all unravelling for Ukip?

:00:48.:00:52.

John Major says Britons are being offered an "unreal

:00:53.:00:54.

and over-optimistic" vision of what Brexit will deliver,

:00:55.:00:57.

but were these just the pronouncements of a bitter

:00:58.:00:59.

And it's the annual parliamentary pancake race.

:01:00.:01:05.

Who will flip themselves to victory - the press,

:01:06.:01:07.

It's Downton Abbey meets Yesterday in Parliament -

:01:08.:01:13.

the House of Lords opens its doors to a BBC documentary crew.

:01:14.:01:19.

Has it revealed itself as a charming old relic that's

:01:20.:01:21.

A bit tight at the moment, as you can see.

:01:22.:01:36.

And with us for the whole of the programme today

:01:37.:01:44.

is the former editor-in-chief of the Wall Street Journal and now

:01:45.:01:47.

a Conservative peer, Patience Wheatcroft.

:01:48.:01:48.

First this morning, Brexit may have blown austerity off the front pages,

:01:49.:01:54.

but a reminder today that Britain is still living with a substantial

:01:55.:01:57.

deficit which the Government has pledged to eliminate.

:01:58.:01:58.

Government departments have been asked to find further

:01:59.:02:01.

budget cuts of up to 6%, to begin taking effect

:02:02.:02:03.

The Treasury has written to every department in Whitehall as part

:02:04.:02:10.

of its plan to find ?3.5 billion of savings in the year before

:02:11.:02:13.

Here's the Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell, earlier today.

:02:14.:02:19.

Only five months ago, the Chancellor and the Prime Minister were telling

:02:20.:02:23.

us, or indicating, that austerity was virtually coming to an end.

:02:24.:02:25.

What this means is deeper cuts and for longer.

:02:26.:02:29.

The Government has said actually schools and hospitals

:02:30.:02:31.

The NHS is suffering the biggest crisis since its foundation,

:02:32.:02:36.

with patients being treated on trolleys.

:02:37.:02:39.

Schools having the first budget cuts per head since the 1970s.

:02:40.:02:43.

Does this continuation of austerity showed the policies of the last

:02:44.:02:56.

seven years have failed to repair the economy? No, it shows there is

:02:57.:03:02.

still further to go. We did not have all that much austerity which was

:03:03.:03:05.

the right recipe, given what was going on in the world and the

:03:06.:03:10.

difficulties facing the economy. But there is no scope not to continue

:03:11.:03:15.

looking for cuts. Philip Hammond has been sensible. He knows any business

:03:16.:03:21.

can always find more efficiencies. Can they? Looking at local councils,

:03:22.:03:25.

they say they have been stripped to the bone and we have seen stories

:03:26.:03:29.

week after week about the crisis, as they would see it, in social care.

:03:30.:03:34.

Some of the savings they make will be given back to them to fund social

:03:35.:03:38.

care, as I understand it. There is a need. We are seeing what really

:03:39.:03:42.

needs to be done is melding the health service with social care and

:03:43.:03:48.

where it really works, it makes big improvements and savings. You say

:03:49.:03:53.

austerity needs to continue and there was not enough austerity

:03:54.:03:58.

though it was right at the time, we still have a substantial deficit and

:03:59.:04:02.

the Conservatives promised it would have gone by now. Their policies

:04:03.:04:05.

must have failed, they did not achieve what they have set out to

:04:06.:04:10.

do? Circumstances changed, the environment was far more difficult

:04:11.:04:13.

than anyone imagined when they came into power. The financial crisis and

:04:14.:04:19.

its ramifications lasted for a lot longer than people had expected. I

:04:20.:04:24.

do not think you can blame the previous administration for not

:04:25.:04:26.

getting Warrington Town, as they would have wished. Philip Hammond

:04:27.:04:31.

has said he would push back the target -- getting Warrington Town.

:04:32.:04:42.

-- borrowing down. The announcement was not done publicly. Is that

:04:43.:04:48.

really the right way to deal with these sorts of important decisions?

:04:49.:04:53.

I think it is a fairly usual way and I do not think we should spend too

:04:54.:04:58.

long thinking about what Labour's reaction is because we know all John

:04:59.:05:02.

McDonnell wants to do is borrow and that is not the answer to anybody's

:05:03.:05:07.

problems. Philip Hammond has said ?1 billion of the savings, up to that,

:05:08.:05:11.

will be reinvested rather than being used to reduce the deficit.

:05:12.:05:16.

Absolutely the right thing to do. We will be feeling some pain but I

:05:17.:05:21.

think the Chancellor is right to say there are some areas where we need

:05:22.:05:26.

to continue investing. Infrastructure is another. The

:05:27.:05:28.

Government will continue to invest. That is the right thing to do for

:05:29.:05:30.

the long-term. The question for today is,

:05:31.:05:34.

who has been spying on the BBC? Was it Donald Trump,

:05:35.:05:42.

Sky News, the German intelligence agency,

:05:43.:05:44.

the BND, or North Korea? At the end of the show,

:05:45.:05:46.

Patience will give us Now, just days after the disastrous

:05:47.:05:49.

result for Ukip in the Stoke by-election, this morning,

:05:50.:05:52.

the ongoing row within the party has exploded onto the front page

:05:53.:05:55.

of the Daily Telegraph. The former leader, Nigel Farage,

:05:56.:05:59.

has written an article calling for the resignation of the party's

:06:00.:06:02.

only MP, Douglas Carswell. Douglas Carswell became Ukip's

:06:03.:06:05.

first MP when he defected from the Conservatives at the end

:06:06.:06:12.

of August, 2014. But things turned sour

:06:13.:06:16.

when Douglas Carswell criticised Ukip's 2015

:06:17.:06:20.

general election campaign. Nigel Farage suggested in a TV

:06:21.:06:25.

debate that foreigners with HIV It was part of a strategy

:06:26.:06:28.

dubbed "shock and awful". Mr Carswell said the comments

:06:29.:06:36.

were "mean-spirited and wrong". Then, during the EU referendum

:06:37.:06:41.

campaign, Nigel Farage was part of the unofficial Leave.EU campaign,

:06:42.:06:45.

whereas Douglas Carswell opted to support the official

:06:46.:06:49.

Vote Leave campaign. And today, writing in

:06:50.:06:51.

the Daily Telegraph, Nigel Farage has said,

:06:52.:06:55.

"There is little future for Ukip with him staying inside the party.

:06:56.:07:00.

The time for him to go is now." Mr Farage claims that

:07:01.:07:03.

Douglas Carswell tried to thwart his chances

:07:04.:07:05.

of being awarded a knighthood. In leaked emails, Mr Carswell

:07:06.:07:10.

appears to mock Mr Farage's chances of receiving an honour,

:07:11.:07:15.

suggesting he could get one instead Earlier this morning, Ellie caught

:07:16.:07:17.

up with Ukip's former leader. Quick question - Aaron Banks

:07:18.:07:24.

or Douglas Carswell in Clacton, Oh, that doesn't take much

:07:25.:07:30.

working out, doesn't it? No, but what is your message

:07:31.:07:36.

to Douglas Carswell? He's tried to undermine

:07:37.:07:38.

everything we've stood for, for a very long time,

:07:39.:07:48.

in terms of policy, in terms of campaigns,

:07:49.:07:48.

and we should have dealt with this But look, it's not up

:07:49.:07:49.

to me, it's up to them. But I do not think that to have

:07:50.:07:56.

somebody representing you in the House of Commons who has

:07:57.:07:59.

a different policy agenda Do you think you deserve

:08:00.:08:01.

a knighthood or...? What's of interest is,

:08:02.:08:05.

when I try and do my job as Ukip leader and get undermined the whole

:08:06.:08:11.

time and then when Paul Nuttall tries to do his job and gets

:08:12.:08:14.

undermined, that's what matters. I'm joined now from Cardiff

:08:15.:08:19.

by the Ukip Assembly Member and economic spokesperson,

:08:20.:08:22.

Mark Reckless. You have just heard Nigel Farage

:08:23.:08:31.

calling for Douglas Carswell to be sacked as the party's MP. What is

:08:32.:08:37.

your reaction? We have to support our new leader Paul Nuttall.

:08:38.:08:41.

Ex-leaders will always have a voice through the media. We heard from

:08:42.:08:45.

John Major yesterday. I do not think any honour could reflect the

:08:46.:08:51.

enormity of Nigel's achievements. The new leader cannot give way to

:08:52.:08:56.

ultimatums that so and so should be chairman or someone should be thrown

:08:57.:09:01.

out, he has to lead the party in his own way and I want to get behind

:09:02.:09:06.

him. The UK party chairman is said to be meeting with Douglas Carswell

:09:07.:09:09.

this afternoon to discuss it. What do you think that means? I hope it

:09:10.:09:14.

is a productive meeting. Our only MP should meet with our party Chairman

:09:15.:09:18.

of course. Is it as the result of Nigel Farage calling for him to go?

:09:19.:09:24.

I have no idea what the meeting will be about but I do not think there is

:09:25.:09:28.

any exceptional about our chairmen meeting our MP. We should, this

:09:29.:09:33.

down. We should not have personal attacks. It is not fair for you to

:09:34.:09:38.

say our performance in Stoke was disastrous. We had a quarter of the

:09:39.:09:42.

vote. Before the by-elections, it would have been inconceivable for

:09:43.:09:45.

Ukip to get that. We sought at that time of our by-elections, at the

:09:46.:09:55.

time of the by-election, I hope we would widen our appeal, yes, talking

:09:56.:09:59.

about immigration, but also widening our appeal to talk about the NHS and

:10:00.:10:03.

one of the things I'm doing at the moment is trying to cut VAT on some

:10:04.:10:09.

of the key essentials. Perhaps what is preventing you talking about the

:10:10.:10:13.

things you have just outlined is what is going on between Nigel

:10:14.:10:17.

Farage and Douglas Carswell. Is your former leader conducting himself in

:10:18.:10:22.

a way that you deem acceptable and appropriate? It is for Nigel to

:10:23.:10:26.

judge what he wants to say and he will always have a voice in the

:10:27.:10:32.

media but I think Ukip is about more than whether one person, even the

:10:33.:10:35.

ex-leader such as Nigel, should have a knighthood. Douglas has pushed

:10:36.:10:41.

hard but Ukip should have its fair share of peerages. It is disgraceful

:10:42.:10:45.

we have two chambers and one of those... Why is Nigel Farage

:10:46.:10:50.

accusing Douglas Carswell of not doing enough to secure the

:10:51.:10:54.

knighthood and asking for him to go? I think Douglas's focus and I know

:10:55.:11:00.

he met the Chief Whip and others and he has campaigned for a long time

:11:01.:11:05.

publicly and in private is that Ukip should be given fair representation

:11:06.:11:10.

in our legislature. So Nigel is wrong? It is outrageous we do not

:11:11.:11:14.

have peers in the House of Lords. We need to focus on our core message,

:11:15.:11:20.

not just controlling and reducing immigration, but improving the NHS

:11:21.:11:23.

and pushing forward on the economy. When we spoke to Nigel Farage just

:11:24.:11:30.

now, he is convinced Douglas Carswell is bent on a campaign of

:11:31.:11:34.

undermining him and dividing the party. Why? Nigel is the ex-leader,

:11:35.:11:43.

we have had a referendum, we won the referendum and Nigel paid tribute to

:11:44.:11:46.

Douglas in his article saying that Douglas had single-handedly got the

:11:47.:11:53.

nomination for the referendum... Why is he calling for him to go? We're

:11:54.:11:57.

leaving the EU, hopefully within a few weeks, we will trigger Article

:11:58.:12:03.

50, fantastic news. What Paul Nuttall will do is stake out the

:12:04.:12:08.

domestic agenda, make sure Brexit happens and it happens properly, but

:12:09.:12:12.

also, what will we do to improve the NHS? You have said he is the

:12:13.:12:17.

ex-leader and will always have a voice in the media, in other words,

:12:18.:12:20.

you do not think he should be speaking on behalf of the party.

:12:21.:12:24.

Should Paul Nuttall just ignore Nigel Farage? The gauntlet has been

:12:25.:12:30.

laid down and at some point Paul will speak to the party and he will

:12:31.:12:35.

do interviews and he needs to decide his priorities and where he wants to

:12:36.:12:39.

lead us. I cannot see how he can possibly give way to an ultimatum he

:12:40.:12:43.

should purge a certain list of people or put a particular person as

:12:44.:12:48.

German... You cannot run a party in that way. I know Paul Nuttall

:12:49.:12:52.

respects our members and activists and leads a Democratic party and I

:12:53.:12:55.

believe he is a strong leader who will focus on the key issues such as

:12:56.:13:01.

the NHS and the economy as well as immigration, and making sure Brexit

:13:02.:13:04.

does mean proper Brexit where we once again govern ourselves. Thank

:13:05.:13:06.

you very much. And I'm joined now by

:13:07.:13:08.

Michael Heaver, Nigel Farage's Why should Douglas Carswell go? When

:13:09.:13:17.

he first joined Ukip, there was mass of excitement in the party and it

:13:18.:13:20.

quickly disappeared. I will give you one example, December the 18th,

:13:21.:13:25.

2015, David Cameron had been at the EU summit we wanted to get on the

:13:26.:13:29.

front foot, Douglas Carswell that they chose to save Ukip needed to

:13:30.:13:35.

have a new leader. What we have seen is a concerted sustained effort to

:13:36.:13:48.

infiltrate Ukip from within. We have had people coming into the party to

:13:49.:13:53.

deliberately trying to take Ukip and Nigel Farage out of the referendum

:13:54.:13:56.

campaign because they deem them to be toxic. We know it is not true. We

:13:57.:14:03.

know that it was the immigration issue that won the day. These people

:14:04.:14:07.

viewed Ukip and Nigel Farage as something to be dealt with and it

:14:08.:14:12.

was... You think it is a conspiracy akin to the KGB that has been led by

:14:13.:14:17.

Douglas Carswell? This is on record. He is Ukip's only MP. It is in Owen

:14:18.:14:27.

Bennett... Are you becoming a conspiracy theorist? It is fact.

:14:28.:14:32.

There are people on the Tories party and the side who saw Nigel Farage as

:14:33.:14:37.

a threat, they saw the immigration issue as a link to be avoided. They

:14:38.:14:41.

have not shut him up. They never will. The evidence can you say, is

:14:42.:14:48.

clear. Isn't it just a spat between two grown men who hold different

:14:49.:14:54.

views within the same party, end of? No, this is about the future of Ukip

:14:55.:15:00.

and Paul Nuttall has come in, we had the Stoke by-election, disappointing

:15:01.:15:03.

performance for the party, no denying that. Whose fault was that?

:15:04.:15:07.

Allan McGregor party was on the back foot a bit too much. -- the party.

:15:08.:15:16.

Aaron Banks has said this, they need to start pushing policy, come up

:15:17.:15:20.

with new ideas. English Parliament, proportional representation. As well

:15:21.:15:25.

as owning the immigration issue. Is it still just about immigration? We

:15:26.:15:28.

have heard successive Ukip politicians say that Ukip is broader

:15:29.:15:33.

than immigration but if you listen to Nigel Farage, that does not seem

:15:34.:15:37.

to be the case, he disagrees with Douglas Carswell's views on

:15:38.:15:42.

immigration. It is still very high up the agenda and the Tory party has

:15:43.:15:46.

wrote back saying post Brexit we may have to continue mass immigration.

:15:47.:15:52.

The party has to establish is off on a wider range of issues and overall

:15:53.:15:57.

it has to stay radical and get on the front foot. Do you think Nigel

:15:58.:16:03.

Farage himself, the ex-leader, is he just undermining Paul Nuttall's

:16:04.:16:07.

leadership and the party by the escalation of the war of words? He

:16:08.:16:12.

has devoted most of his adult life to Ukip. It is something he cares

:16:13.:16:18.

deeply about. If you contribute to it -- is he contributing to it now?

:16:19.:16:25.

He is pointing out the things he thinks are wrong with the party. Of

:16:26.:16:29.

course he is going to want to see it progress in an effective way.

:16:30.:16:36.

This is the e-mail exchange. This is about making a plea for a knighthood

:16:37.:16:43.

for Nigel Farage. The e-mail shows clearly Carswell did make a plea to

:16:44.:16:48.

Gavin Williamson at the time in the Government and that he makes a joke

:16:49.:16:54.

admittedly, afterwards. Is Nigel Farage being thin-skinned? I don't

:16:55.:16:58.

think so. Lord Pearson, no one has a bad word to say about the guy, he

:16:59.:17:03.

even says to The Telegraph today that he feels Carswell didn't give

:17:04.:17:06.

his backing to this. I think it's a shame. The potential for Douglas to

:17:07.:17:09.

have been a positive contribution to the party was there. It's been

:17:10.:17:13.

squandered and it was squandered because this is about personality,

:17:14.:17:17.

people want to stop Nigel and weaken Ukip's voice in the referendum. It

:17:18.:17:21.

thankfully failed but we are still seeing the fallout. Ukip have

:17:22.:17:24.

achieved their goal of the referendum and got the result they

:17:25.:17:27.

wanted. What do you think the future holds for the party now? They're now

:17:28.:17:31.

a party without a purpose. That's why you can see they are

:17:32.:17:36.

degenerating into this sort of trivial playground infighting. There

:17:37.:17:41.

isn't a role for Ukip any longer. The Conservative Party have been

:17:42.:17:44.

saying ten, 20 years there is no role for Ukip. I have also heard at

:17:45.:17:47.

every by-election and European by-election and general election

:17:48.:17:50.

that Ukip's job is over and it's never going to progress from where

:17:51.:17:53.

it is now. I don't think the establishment's record on calling

:17:54.:17:56.

the prospects of the future of Ukip are strong. I think for Ukip to have

:17:57.:18:00.

a future and it is at a cross-roads, it must be radical and must talk

:18:01.:18:06.

about things like English parliament, proportional

:18:07.:18:07.

representation and getting rid of the House of Lords. You are trying

:18:08.:18:13.

to come up with policies out of thin -- thin air. We had a full manifesto

:18:14.:18:16.

at the last general election. We will end it there, thank you very

:18:17.:18:18.

much. There are currently 650 seats

:18:19.:18:19.

in the House of Commons. By the next election,

:18:20.:18:22.

that number will be reduced to 600. In a giant game of musical chairs,

:18:23.:18:25.

the Boundary Commission for England and Wales is deciding which seats

:18:26.:18:29.

will disappear and what the new constituency

:18:30.:18:31.

boundaries will look like. Labour have accused

:18:32.:18:34.

the government of gerrymandering. Well, Sam Hartley joins us now,

:18:35.:18:39.

he's from the Boundary Commission for England, who are today

:18:40.:18:42.

launching their second consultation What are you hoping to achieve, Sam?

:18:43.:18:54.

Well, thank you, Jo, today marks the start of the second stage of the

:18:55.:18:57.

boundary commission for England's review. And the boundary review

:18:58.:19:01.

across the UK as a whole. In September I told you all about the

:19:02.:19:04.

first cut, the first set of boundaries we proposed and we

:19:05.:19:07.

consulted on those for 12 weeks until December. We had an incredible

:19:08.:19:12.

amount of response from the general public, nearly 20,000

:19:13.:19:17.

representations put in to us and really impassioned, well-argued,

:19:18.:19:19.

well-evidenced representations put to us in those 12-week periods and

:19:20.:19:23.

we travelled the country and heard from people direct at public events

:19:24.:19:26.

everywhere. Today is all about publishing what people have said and

:19:27.:19:30.

asking the public to look at that and look at the different and

:19:31.:19:33.

individual submissions people made to us and tell us where they agree

:19:34.:19:36.

and where they don't agree. All of that evidence will take into account

:19:37.:19:39.

before we come up with any revisions to proposals. When will we know

:19:40.:19:43.

exactly which seats are going to be taken off the electoral map? Well,

:19:44.:19:47.

our final recommendations will go to parliament in September 2018. A

:19:48.:19:51.

little bit more to go through this stage. What happens after today, for

:19:52.:19:55.

four weeks we are consulting on those 20,000-odd representations

:19:56.:19:57.

that I told you about. We will then take all of the evidence that we

:19:58.:20:01.

received back in the autumn of last year and also in the next four weeks

:20:02.:20:04.

and our commissioners will work and drill into the detail of the

:20:05.:20:08.

community-based arguments people have put to us. If we then want to

:20:09.:20:13.

revise our proposals we will consult on those later in 2017 before we

:20:14.:20:16.

will report to parliament in September 2018. What do you say to

:20:17.:20:21.

criticism that you are using an outdated electoral register, the one

:20:22.:20:25.

from 2015 and not the updated one post the EU referendum? It's a

:20:26.:20:29.

technical answer I am afraid, it's the law. The commission doesn't have

:20:30.:20:32.

scope to change that set of data. There has to be a cut somewhere so

:20:33.:20:36.

there has to be a point where we say that's the data we are using so

:20:37.:20:41.

everyone knows exactly what data they're working from. The law

:20:42.:20:45.

dictates to us and it's that September 2015 register. Thank you

:20:46.:20:46.

investment. And we're joined now

:20:47.:20:48.

by the Labour MP Stephen Kinnock and the Conservative MP,

:20:49.:20:50.

John Penrose, who as a minister was the architect of

:20:51.:20:53.

some of these changes. Welcome to the programme. You used

:20:54.:20:58.

to be the Government Minister responsible for precisely these

:20:59.:21:01.

changes, what do you say to the charge that you have used this as a

:21:02.:21:08.

mechanism for the convenience of the Conservative Party and

:21:09.:21:10.

Jerrymannedering? It's hard to argue it is that if you are making the

:21:11.:21:14.

constituencies all the same size so each individual vote has the same

:21:15.:21:17.

weight no matter where you are in the country. It's making the system

:21:18.:21:20.

a great deal fairer. It is really important that we don't delay longer

:21:21.:21:24.

because you mentioned that the electoral registers used were done

:21:25.:21:28.

in 2015. At the moment the existing boundaries are done on the basis of

:21:29.:21:32.

electoral registers from 2001. They're out of date. By the time of

:21:33.:21:35.

the next general election they're going to be almost 20 years old. We

:21:36.:21:38.

have to get on with this. We can do it more frequently in future. We

:21:39.:21:42.

probably need to do it every five years, that's what's planned so

:21:43.:21:45.

there won't be long gaps but we have to keep this more up to date. What's

:21:46.:21:48.

wrong with making constituencies roughly the same size The

:21:49.:21:52.

Conservatives know there is a disproportionate number of Labour

:21:53.:21:55.

seats which are relatively small and that's why this is a jerrymander.

:21:56.:22:02.

It's about eliminating those seats. They've set a marrow margin of plus

:22:03.:22:07.

or minus 5%. That could have been set at plus or minus 10% in order to

:22:08.:22:11.

have more flexibility when you set the seats and also to give - to

:22:12.:22:14.

avoid these bizarre situations where, for example, in my

:22:15.:22:17.

constituency, a constituency line is going through the middle of the

:22:18.:22:21.

shopping centre with one, the high street in one constituency, and the

:22:22.:22:24.

shopping centre in another. Presumably they're consulting on

:22:25.:22:27.

that? They're consulting but the proposals - it's disrespectful to

:22:28.:22:30.

local communities. Looking at the figures and work that's been done,

:22:31.:22:34.

Labour are going to lose 13% of their seats and the Tories are going

:22:35.:22:39.

to lose 4. 5% of theirs. Are you saying there is no political

:22:40.:22:42.

motivation behind this? Well, I am not going to make apology for

:22:43.:22:47.

getting equal votes... It just so happen it is will benefit the

:22:48.:22:51.

Conservatives? I think with all due respect to Stephen he is giving the

:22:52.:22:55.

game away. Labour has had an inbuilt advantage under the old system

:22:56.:22:59.

because it is out of date. They want to preserve that inbuilt unfair

:23:00.:23:02.

advantage. Hanging on to an unfair advantage is not right. It has been

:23:03.:23:06.

an unfair advantage, hasn't it, because if you look at the different

:23:07.:23:09.

sizes of constituency constitutes, if Labour has more seats that are

:23:10.:23:13.

below the average size then that is unfair too, in exactly the same way

:23:14.:23:16.

you are accusing John of being? Well, I think you have to adjust the

:23:17.:23:22.

system in a way which doesn't make it look like a gerrymander. Do you

:23:23.:23:29.

think there was an advantage The demographics of the country have led

:23:30.:23:33.

to larger numbers of Labour constituencies having smaller

:23:34.:23:36.

numbers. The way you adjust that is not by having a tight margin around

:23:37.:23:40.

the electoral quota, make it more than 5%. What I think it also

:23:41.:23:45.

reflects is a worrying trend of this Government towards moving towards an

:23:46.:23:48.

elective dictatorship. They've done the trade union legislation which is

:23:49.:23:51.

massively undermining the Labour Party. They had to be dragged

:23:52.:23:54.

kicking and screaming by the courts to come and talk about Brexit. And

:23:55.:24:00.

now we see these boundary reviews. I think there is a pattern emerging

:24:01.:24:05.

here, which is Theresa May's Downing Street is about control freakery and

:24:06.:24:09.

steam-rollering the opposition out of the way. Or the opposition hasn't

:24:10.:24:13.

been strong enough until now to challenge that? That's probably a

:24:14.:24:17.

subject for another interview, Jo. Right. Just, but answer the charge

:24:18.:24:25.

that Theresa May is, you know, adopting control freakery at Number

:24:26.:24:28.

10 and steam-rollering the opposition and putting through

:24:29.:24:31.

undemocratic proposals? Normally if you get that sort of charge it's not

:24:32.:24:35.

directed against a Government that has a majority of 12. It's finely

:24:36.:24:38.

balanced in parliament at the moment. It isn't that we have 100

:24:39.:24:43.

vote majority, 100 more MPs than anybody else like Tony Blair had and

:24:44.:24:47.

we can ram through whatever we like F we get this wrong there is scope

:24:48.:24:52.

for difficulties in parliament. One might say that with the position in

:24:53.:24:56.

Scotland for the Labour Party, your loss in Copeland, is this the sort

:24:57.:25:00.

of last-ditch attempt of a desperate party? No, I think it's pointing out

:25:01.:25:05.

that we have got to have a fair way of doing things and the vast number

:25:06.:25:10.

of additional registrations that came from the referendum should be

:25:11.:25:13.

taken into account. There is also this argument about the cost. But

:25:14.:25:17.

with Brexit we are losing our MEPs and a huge number of powers and

:25:18.:25:20.

responsibilities are coming back to the British parliament. The great

:25:21.:25:23.

repeal bill is going to be a huge undertaking. This Government is

:25:24.:25:28.

looking to steam-roler it through with statutory instruments and other

:25:29.:25:31.

tools and it's worrying for the future of our democracy. On the

:25:32.:25:38.

issue of gerrymanderring and the boundaries, if it looks as if the

:25:39.:25:42.

Government is being unfair that will not help them in their plea to reset

:25:43.:25:48.

constitutionally how we elect MPs. There will always be winners and

:25:49.:25:52.

loses in any boundary changes. It's not surprising that Stephen is

:25:53.:25:56.

looking at that and conflating all sorts of other complaints about the

:25:57.:26:00.

Government into this issue when it's a very separate one. It's been

:26:01.:26:03.

running for a long time and the boundary commission is independent.

:26:04.:26:08.

There have been extensive consultations and now another

:26:09.:26:12.

consultation T needs to be done. What can be unfair about having

:26:13.:26:16.

equal constitutes? Except, although I take the point about it being the

:26:17.:26:21.

law, should you have not have changed the law before conducting

:26:22.:26:24.

this massive constitutional reform so that you didn't ex-included two

:26:25.:26:28.

million voters from this process by using an old register? Well, as I

:26:29.:26:32.

said, the register that's being used for the existing boundaries is even

:26:33.:26:37.

older, it's back from... That's not a justification. Two wrongs don't

:26:38.:26:41.

make a right. It means in future we need to not let the gap be so wide.

:26:42.:26:45.

That's still not answering the question about the problem now.

:26:46.:26:49.

Well, we can't unpick that now and go back. You take primary

:26:50.:26:52.

legislation and effectively what people who are suggesting this mean

:26:53.:26:59.

is they need a primary - an act of partment which would mean that the

:27:00.:27:02.

boundaries wouldn't happen until after the next general election, I

:27:03.:27:05.

am sure they don't mean that to happen. If you delay it any further

:27:06.:27:11.

it will be even more outdated When the facts change, I change my mind,

:27:12.:27:15.

what do you do? There is a huge fact on the ground which is there are two

:27:16.:27:19.

million extra voters, the benchmark being used for this exercise is

:27:20.:27:22.

wrong and it's being used because there is a hidden agenda. There are

:27:23.:27:27.

suggestions that supporters of Jeremy Corbyn within the Labour

:27:28.:27:31.

Party could use this as an excuse to get rid of some of the more send

:27:32.:27:38.

terrorist Labour MPs. -- centrist MPs. We take our chances and we are

:27:39.:27:42.

there to fight our corner. We fight for our constituents and that's what

:27:43.:27:47.

I am doing here. This, I am trying to be here the voice of my

:27:48.:27:52.

constitutes who have been deeply disrespected by a boundary review

:27:53.:27:56.

which is ramming on the basis of a maths formula, a boundary line

:27:57.:27:59.

across hundreds of years of history of our community. It's completely

:28:00.:28:04.

unacceptable. I have some sympathy with Stephen on the particular case

:28:05.:28:09.

specific point, that's what the independent boundary commission will

:28:10.:28:11.

need to listen to from anybody around the country who has that

:28:12.:28:14.

concern about their specific boundaries and they will want to

:28:15.:28:17.

take that into account, that's perfectly legitimate. Thank you both

:28:18.:28:18.

very much. Now, you may remember that

:28:19.:28:21.

recently Tony Blair urged the British people to rise up

:28:22.:28:23.

and change their mind about Brexit. Well, last night his predecessor

:28:24.:28:25.

John Major joined the fray, using a speech at the think-tank

:28:26.:28:28.

Chatham House to offer what he called a reality check

:28:29.:28:30.

on the difficulties ahead. The former Prime Minister said

:28:31.:28:34.

the costs of leaving would be substantial and unpalatable,

:28:35.:28:37.

with little chance we could replicate the advantages of single

:28:38.:28:43.

market access after Brexit. The British people have been led

:28:44.:28:47.

to expect a future that seems to be Obstacles are brushed aside

:28:48.:28:50.

as if of no consequence, whilst opportunities are inflated

:28:51.:28:56.

beyond any reasonable A little more charm and a lot less

:28:57.:29:01.

cheap rhetoric would do much to protect the interests

:29:02.:29:10.

of the United Kingdom. Well, to discuss this we're joined

:29:11.:29:22.

by the Conservative MP and leading Patience Wheatcroft,

:29:23.:29:27.

who is a remain supporter and the only Conservative peer

:29:28.:29:30.

to vote for Britain to stay in the single market in the House

:29:31.:29:33.

of Lords last night, What did you make of his speech? I

:29:34.:29:41.

rather agree with him about a couple of points which were buried in the

:29:42.:29:47.

thunder of lightning -- thunder and lightning. We need to be mindful of

:29:48.:29:52.

the risks and we need to talk with a generosity of spirit with our

:29:53.:29:56.

European friends. I wrote a column in the Daily Telegraph this morning.

:29:57.:30:05.

I said both of those points. With great respect to supporters of

:30:06.:30:10.

remainer and John Major, the way it was done, it felt like a full

:30:11.:30:13.

frontal assault on the Government strategy, we note he disagrees with

:30:14.:30:18.

Brexit, but on ministers and the government, weeks before the

:30:19.:30:22.

triggering of Article 50. I respect that arguments on the substance but

:30:23.:30:28.

the man was not just unhelpful but responsible. We need to make sure it

:30:29.:30:31.

does not eclipse the sensible and positive arguments people want to

:30:32.:30:37.

contribute and I sat in the Commons among a lot of the remain MPs and

:30:38.:30:41.

listened carefully to the likes of Dominic Grieve and we need to

:30:42.:30:44.

continue to do that. What do you say in response to that, the timing,

:30:45.:30:51.

just ahead of Article 50 being triggered and extremely personal?

:30:52.:30:54.

For those of us who voted remain and still believed it would have been

:30:55.:30:57.

the right thing for the country to do, we are being silenced by the

:30:58.:31:04.

levers and the Government is really being intimidating in its approach.

:31:05.:31:09.

When Theresa May came and sat down in the Lords, there was a message,

:31:10.:31:17.

behave yourselves, or else. It was quite right John Major, former Prime

:31:18.:31:20.

Minister, should say what he believes, and I think he is

:31:21.:31:24.

absolutely right that we are being sold, as we were in the lead up to

:31:25.:31:29.

the referendum, an entirely false picture of what life will be like

:31:30.:31:34.

when we leave the EU and in particular when we leave the single

:31:35.:31:37.

market, hence I did go through the lobby last night in favour of

:31:38.:31:41.

remaining in the single market. I think we will all be poorer without

:31:42.:31:45.

it. What do you think of that come him saying what he genuinely

:31:46.:31:50.

believes? It felt like a bit of a re-heating of the arguments of the

:31:51.:31:53.

referendum campaign and we need to move on. We have looked at the

:31:54.:31:58.

single market issue on the Brexit committee. From the experts we have

:31:59.:32:02.

heard from, Chatham House, others, no one thinks we can leave the EU

:32:03.:32:07.

and by the back door go back into single market realistically. I do

:32:08.:32:13.

not think it is particularly a credible option. The key thing about

:32:14.:32:18.

John Major's speech is that we weeks away from negotiations and we need

:32:19.:32:26.

unity of and spirit. Why? I am not sure how this helps. If we all want

:32:27.:32:31.

to avoid the risk, which their undoubtedly is, of no deal at the

:32:32.:32:36.

end, how did this help? I want our EU friends to realise we have moved

:32:37.:32:41.

on, the country has moved on, by four to one according to a poll, the

:32:42.:32:49.

country wants us to get on. It strengthens our chance of getting

:32:50.:32:52.

the very best deal that everyone wants to see. Do you think it was an

:32:53.:33:01.

patriotic -- unpatriotic? I am not getting into that. I do not want to

:33:02.:33:05.

attack him. I do not agree with personal attacks. I went through the

:33:06.:33:13.

referendum campaign, never speak ill of your fellow Conservative. I want

:33:14.:33:20.

the best deal. My only concern is that some of those trying to trip up

:33:21.:33:24.

Theresa May, I am not pointing fingers, they are making the

:33:25.:33:27.

prospect of getting no deal more likely. Do you agree with that? Your

:33:28.:33:33.

view last night, the way you voted in terms of wanting Britain to stay

:33:34.:33:37.

in the single market, that is precisely what Dominic Raab is

:33:38.:33:40.

talking about, undermining it and making it harder for Britain to get

:33:41.:33:45.

a deal? It is not. What was important in what John Major said is

:33:46.:33:50.

he was suggesting that home we adopt in negotiations should be a lot more

:33:51.:33:55.

friendly and subtle than so far -- the tone. Cheap rhetoric, he said,

:33:56.:34:01.

she needs to inject more charm. Quite right. Talking about a red,

:34:02.:34:06.

white and blue Brexit, it was never going to be helpful. We want to do a

:34:07.:34:11.

deal with Europe, we want them to be on our side and I think John Major

:34:12.:34:14.

was right in saying we need the right tone. She has a very positive

:34:15.:34:22.

vision for Britain and the EU, Theresa May set it out in the

:34:23.:34:29.

Lancaster House speech. You said you need the EU leaders on board and if

:34:30.:34:35.

you paint Brexit in such a way it alienates them... I do not accept

:34:36.:34:39.

the picture of what Theresa May has done, I do not think it is a fair

:34:40.:34:44.

resemblance of the text of the speech. But I do accept a wider

:34:45.:34:49.

argument, without pointing fingers, that we need to look for win- win.

:34:50.:34:55.

With the greatest of respect to John Major or Patience, I am not sure how

:34:56.:35:00.

his contribution helped. How did it help, if not just to undermine the

:35:01.:35:05.

process? That is what Tony Blair's speech was about too. They were very

:35:06.:35:10.

different. We have had a lot of respect from my opponent this

:35:11.:35:12.

morning but actually what John Major was talking about was helpful hints

:35:13.:35:18.

on how we should conduct the negotiations and I hope that the

:35:19.:35:23.

Government will be listening. My opponent in this? I thought we might

:35:24.:35:27.

be linking arms. We share similar values. I wrote widely for the

:35:28.:35:36.

Telegraph when you were at its helm. I am wary when people say with

:35:37.:35:41.

respect because it often means the opposite. Part of the concern of

:35:42.:35:46.

John Major was a concern way less regulated, lower tax economy. It

:35:47.:35:51.

would see the NHS suffer if we do not get a good deal. A lot of people

:35:52.:35:57.

will still be waiting on the ?350 million going into the NHS. What do

:35:58.:36:02.

you say to the substance of what he said? The NHS in lots of ways can be

:36:03.:36:07.

strengthened. But the truth is we have got control of our public

:36:08.:36:11.

services now, there is an impact from immigration on the NHS, some of

:36:12.:36:15.

it is positive because we have European staff, but some of the

:36:16.:36:18.

strain we debated at length in the referendum... But we need to move

:36:19.:36:24.

forward. There are risks of leaving the EU. I have written about them

:36:25.:36:27.

today. I am not going to say with the greatest of respect... With the

:36:28.:36:32.

greatest of deference. You must have said that 300 times! I would like

:36:33.:36:38.

unity of spirit. I agree the way we talk to our European partners is

:36:39.:36:44.

critically important. We are hearing positive noises that of the EU, the

:36:45.:36:49.

German Foreign Minister and finance minister, but it does not help the

:36:50.:36:52.

positive voices there if it looks like we are divided at home. They do

:36:53.:36:57.

not understand our attitude. They think we want the benefits of being

:36:58.:37:03.

in the club without paying the conscription. We need to frame this

:37:04.:37:10.

about why it is, for example, barrier free trade, in both sides'

:37:11.:37:16.

interests. In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, we will continue

:37:17.:37:20.

to support them... Dominic Raab, if you do not keep them onside, the

:37:21.:37:25.

former Chancellor George Osborne has issued a stark warning to the

:37:26.:37:32.

British economy, if Theresa May fails to secure a trade deal, it

:37:33.:37:36.

would be the biggest act of protectionism in British history. Do

:37:37.:37:40.

you agree with him on that? No. I want to be respectful to George

:37:41.:37:47.

Osborne as well even if I get in trouble with Patience! If we go into

:37:48.:37:50.

the negotiations say we want to be a global leader... Global leader in

:37:51.:37:54.

free trade, we have these other potential free trade deals, we are

:37:55.:38:00.

saying to our EU friends, barrier free trade is in your interests and

:38:01.:38:04.

our interests, how is it us engaging in protectionism if the EU does not

:38:05.:38:10.

give us that deal? We have a strong opportunity to get a good deal for

:38:11.:38:14.

Britain and the EU. Even Sir Ivan Rogers who gave evidence to the

:38:15.:38:18.

Brexit committee said he thought the prospects of a positive deal were

:38:19.:38:22.

very strong. There is an issue around timing. Let us go in with

:38:23.:38:27.

ambition and confidence. It is not just Dominic Raab who once unity of

:38:28.:38:31.

spirit, your colleague in the House of Lords, Dominic Lawson, he

:38:32.:38:36.

criticised your stance last week on this programme. What do you say

:38:37.:38:39.

about your Tory colleague Baroness Patience Wheatcroft who has written

:38:40.:38:43.

that if he is applied the brakes to Brexit, they will be doing their

:38:44.:38:48.

job? She is silly. The people have spoken, the House of Commons has

:38:49.:38:56.

accepted this, I am -- overwhelming majority, and for one eccentric

:38:57.:39:04.

peeress to complain about it is neither here nor there. You and --

:39:05.:39:10.

you are an eccentric peeress customer I feel very strongly about

:39:11.:39:15.

this. People have spoken and indeed they have by a narrow majority. But

:39:16.:39:20.

in a general election, five years later, they can change their mind,

:39:21.:39:25.

when they know what they voted for may not have delivered what they

:39:26.:39:30.

expected. What people voted for in the referendum varied hugely. Yes,

:39:31.:39:35.

they voted to come out of the EU, but on what terms? I maintain that

:39:36.:39:38.

when we know what the terms are, we should give people the chance to

:39:39.:39:43.

speak again. Very respectfully, Dominic Raab, thank you for coming

:39:44.:39:44.

on the Daily Politics. Now, Britain's famous for its

:39:45.:39:49.

world-class academic institutions, but we've long been criticised

:39:50.:39:51.

for failing on vocational education. They were the brainchild of former

:39:52.:39:53.

Education Secretary, Lord Baker - But as Jenny Kumah explains,

:39:54.:39:59.

the project is running into trouble. The first UTCs opened in 2010 under

:40:00.:40:05.

the coalition, with cross-party They offer 14 to 19-year-olds

:40:06.:40:07.

hands-on, practical learning in specialisms like science,

:40:08.:40:15.

engineering and health care. Universities and local employers

:40:16.:40:22.

back the schools and play a key role A typical day starts at 8:30am

:40:23.:40:25.

and finishes at 5:30pm. Students have access to modern,

:40:26.:40:34.

industry-standard equipment. The idea is that they gain

:40:35.:40:35.

workplace skills, alongside a broad academic education,

:40:36.:40:39.

moving on to university or further But performance of these

:40:40.:40:43.

schools has been mixed. Five have already closed down,

:40:44.:40:47.

like this one in Burnley, Three more are due

:40:48.:40:52.

to close this August. Now, former Education

:40:53.:40:58.

Secretary Michael Gove has criticised the schools,

:40:59.:41:00.

some of which were Writing in the Times,

:41:01.:41:02.

he said that... And we're joined now

:41:03.:41:28.

by Kenneth Baker. You thought it was all rubbish, what

:41:29.:41:38.

Michael Gove has said about UTCs, but can you explain their track

:41:39.:41:43.

record in closing down a number because of low pupil numbers? Last

:41:44.:41:51.

year, we had 1300 leavers in July at 18, only five joined the ranks of

:41:52.:41:57.

the unemployed. Why have they closed down? The unemployment rate is the

:41:58.:42:02.

lowest in the country, 0.5%. The schools Michael Gove is praising had

:42:03.:42:11.

a rate of 11.5%. We are providing engineers and they would not get to

:42:12.:42:14.

university unless they were well-educated. 30% become

:42:15.:42:19.

apprentices. The national standard for apprentices is a percent. We

:42:20.:42:23.

exceed the general standard for going to university. What do you say

:42:24.:42:26.

to Michael Gove when he was looking at the number that have closed, not

:42:27.:42:31.

enough people is going to them in the first place? He never supported

:42:32.:42:35.

them. He was totally opposed to them. I had the support of George

:42:36.:42:39.

Osborne and David Cameron. They wanted them. The reason foreclosures

:42:40.:42:46.

is very difficult. Schools are hostile to us because they lose

:42:47.:42:53.

students. Justine Greening likes them and she has changed the law to

:42:54.:42:57.

allow our heads to go into local schools to explain what UTCs do

:42:58.:43:01.

which will increase recruitment dramatically. Does it raise the

:43:02.:43:06.

question that 14 is the wrong age to take children from the schools they

:43:07.:43:10.

are in into the technical colleges? I think so. It is too young to make

:43:11.:43:15.

these sorts of life determining choices. I think it is really

:43:16.:43:20.

important that up to the age of at least 16 children have a rigorous

:43:21.:43:25.

academic education because in today's society they need to be as

:43:26.:43:28.

good as they possibly can be at the basics before they decide what to

:43:29.:43:34.

specialise in. I am opposed to selection at 14. I struggle now to

:43:35.:43:37.

see how on earth are we allowed schools that start at 14 to be

:43:38.:43:42.

called university technical colleges. The University backs each

:43:43.:43:47.

one and it is backed by local employers, they control the board.

:43:48.:43:52.

All improvements in education have failed. We want to ensure it does

:43:53.:43:56.

not fail and it will not because we are doing what the economy needs.

:43:57.:44:00.

Michael Gove boys opposed them and try to stop them. What about raising

:44:01.:44:09.

the age? If the poor got GCSEs at 16 and then went to the UTC? -- if

:44:10.:44:17.

pupils got. I am sure 14 is right. In 1945, they tried to do it, they

:44:18.:44:23.

believed 13 14, that is what the private sector does, Europe is going

:44:24.:44:28.

to do this. If I was designing the national curriculum today as I did

:44:29.:44:33.

in the 1980s, I would stop it at 14, that is what Austria does and they

:44:34.:44:37.

have to lowest rate of youth unemployment in Europe. There is

:44:38.:44:40.

selection at 11 if people go for exams for private education. If

:44:41.:44:47.

there is selection at 11, why isn't 14 OK? I have come to the view

:44:48.:44:52.

selection is dangerous. I go into a lot of schools in Kent and the

:44:53.:44:57.

grammar schools are siphoning off the talent. The answer is to have

:44:58.:45:01.

the best possible comprehensive system and although the private

:45:02.:45:05.

sector does have entrance exams, actually, it -- to one takes

:45:06.:45:17.

children with a broad spectrum of academic achievements. Starting at

:45:18.:45:25.

13, 14. You think Theresa May's pushing of the grammar schools

:45:26.:45:28.

business guided? I do. Looking at the academic rigour, isn't that one

:45:29.:45:36.

of the issues that parents might think there will not be enough

:45:37.:45:39.

rigour on the academic side in the technical colleges at that age which

:45:40.:45:42.

means we will be getting a less good education? We teach GCSEs and

:45:43.:45:48.

A-levels. Only this morning I was at a seminar of UTC students, we had

:45:49.:45:54.

former alum and I working for companies and they are doing degree

:45:55.:45:59.

apprenticeships. They would never have done that if they stayed at

:46:00.:46:03.

conferences. They are going to get a degree paid for by computer

:46:04.:46:07.

companies in this instance. They will have no debt and get a degree.

:46:08.:46:11.

They could not have done that if they were... At 18, they also had a

:46:12.:46:19.

technical diploma. They had made things with their hands. It made

:46:20.:46:21.

them highly employable. Let's talk about the report. The

:46:22.:46:31.

importance of the stem subjects. If we don't improve stem subjects in

:46:32.:46:35.

our country economic combroet is going to decline. What do you say to

:46:36.:46:40.

that I concur. I think it's important that children have a

:46:41.:46:43.

rounded education. And stem is obviously part of that. Life is very

:46:44.:46:48.

technical these days and I applaud the fact that so many of the

:46:49.:46:51.

graduates from these schools are going into apprenticeships, I am a

:46:52.:46:54.

huge believer in apprenticeships. Absolutely. And far better to do an

:46:55.:46:58.

apprenticeship and get a degree than come out of a degree course with a

:46:59.:47:01.

lot of debt and probably not the best job prospects. Will you be

:47:02.:47:07.

supporting the UTCs... Visit one with me. I would love to do that.

:47:08.:47:12.

You got something out of the interview. We will have a visit.

:47:13.:47:16.

Now the House of Lords has opened its doors

:47:17.:47:20.

The first part of "Meet the Lords" aired on BBC two last night.

:47:21.:47:24.

Let's have a look at the clip of the crossbench hereditary peer,

:47:25.:47:28.

Lord Palmer, as he shows the cameras around what one of his

:47:29.:47:30.

colleagues called the best daycare centre in london.

:47:31.:47:38.

colleagues called the best daycare centre for the elderly in london.

:47:39.:47:41.

Lord Palmer is doing some lobbying of his own.

:47:42.:47:44.

This used to be our television room which had the most lovely

:47:45.:47:47.

comfortable chairs in it and to watch big sporting

:47:48.:47:50.

events like Wimbledon or Cheltenham races or whatever.

:47:51.:47:53.

And I came in here the other day and was amazed to find that it had

:47:54.:47:56.

As you know, we're very, very short of space and a lot

:47:57.:48:00.

of the new members do want a desk but I have never ever seen these

:48:01.:48:04.

desks occupied, which does seem really rather extraordinary.

:48:05.:48:07.

I actually put down a written question about this.

:48:08.:48:12.

Why has the television room closed down and will there be

:48:13.:48:15.

And I was told in no uncertain terms, no, there will not be

:48:16.:48:19.

And we're joined now by the Green peer who also appeared

:48:20.:48:25.

in last night's documentary, Jenny Jones.

:48:26.:48:30.

Can you answer Lord Palmer's question, why has the T V Room been

:48:31.:48:35.

turned into an office no one uses? I would imagine the shortage of space

:48:36.:48:40.

is the reason for that. But, do we use a T V Room? I couldn't even tell

:48:41.:48:44.

you where it is. He obviously use it is. Did you ever see it? I don't

:48:45.:48:49.

know. If I am in the Palace of Westminster I have other things to

:48:50.:48:52.

do than watch television. What struck you most about the

:48:53.:48:56.

documentary? I am afraid I haven't watched the whole thing. I suppose

:48:57.:49:00.

the suggestion that a lot of peers don't pull their weight, don't do

:49:01.:49:08.

the work and take the money, that's quite upsetting statement really

:49:09.:49:14.

because... This was from the former Speaker, do you think she was right?

:49:15.:49:18.

She obviously saw somebody leave a taxi and run in. It's one anecdote

:49:19.:49:22.

and it's hard to draw real conclusions from it. I would imagine

:49:23.:49:25.

of course there is abuse, there is abuse in every system. But my

:49:26.:49:30.

impression is people seem to work quite hard. Right. She said there

:49:31.:49:34.

was only a hard core of people who work hard to justify the daily

:49:35.:49:39.

allowance which is about ?300 a day. And that many, many peers, she said,

:49:40.:49:43.

don't do very much at all. Well, the House is too big. There are moves

:49:44.:49:49.

afoot to slim it down. The most one gets in a vote is around 550. There

:49:50.:49:54.

are more than 800 peers, so, clearly not everybody is turning up all the

:49:55.:49:59.

time. But if they're not there to vote they're not probably claiming

:50:00.:50:03.

the allowance as well, so I don't think the criticisms are entirely

:50:04.:50:09.

fair. If the Baroness did see somebody really abusing the system

:50:10.:50:11.

like that she was in a good position to do something about it. Right. You

:50:12.:50:14.

think some action should have been taken? It showed the rarified world

:50:15.:50:18.

of the House of Lords and the trappings that go with it. It also

:50:19.:50:24.

showed the workings of the place in terms of what they do as far as

:50:25.:50:27.

legislation is concerned. Do you still think the upper chamber has an

:50:28.:50:31.

important role to play in refining the laws that come from the House of

:50:32.:50:34.

Commons? I definitely do. I would say it ought to be different. I

:50:35.:50:38.

would like to see a fully elected chamber. I think that we could then

:50:39.:50:42.

reduce the number of pierce to a reasonable level. But the fact is we

:50:43.:50:48.

take a lot of what is technically called rubbish from the Commons and

:50:49.:50:53.

do turn it into better legislation. There are some brilliant minds in

:50:54.:50:57.

the House of Lords. Some people with real expertise, I don't include

:50:58.:51:02.

myself necessarily, but I think democracyising it is the way

:51:03.:51:05.

forward. Why did you take up a peerage in an unelected House if you

:51:06.:51:10.

want it to be elected? Because as a Green you take every single

:51:11.:51:12.

opportunity you can to fight the Government. I sit in the House of

:51:13.:51:15.

Lords, I argue against the Government, I vote against the

:51:16.:51:18.

Government, I speak, it's fantastic. A fantastic opportunity. Do you

:51:19.:51:21.

think some of what was shown will undermine the case for the House of

:51:22.:51:25.

Lords remaining as an unelected House? I feel some of it won't help.

:51:26.:51:29.

Nevertheless there was evidence of the work that goes on. Oona King was

:51:30.:51:35.

talking about committee work and Jenny is right there is a huge

:51:36.:51:39.

amount of legislation that arrives from the -- arrives from the Commons

:51:40.:51:43.

barely scrutinised at all and in the Lords it gets looked at. There are

:51:44.:51:49.

experts there. There are people with medical backgrounds, scientific

:51:50.:51:52.

backgrounds, a share of judges and people with legal backgrounds. They

:51:53.:51:57.

can bring their intellect to work on what really does need improvement,

:51:58.:52:01.

there is just too much legislation coming our way, I think. How

:52:02.:52:04.

sustainable do you think the House of Lords is in its current form at

:52:05.:52:08.

the moment? You proposed an elected chamber but the problem is it would

:52:09.:52:12.

then be very competitive with the House of Commons. And many people

:52:13.:52:18.

believe that should be the body that proposes and pushes laws through.

:52:19.:52:22.

There are checks and balances. You can make the terms of office

:52:23.:52:25.

shorter, for example, and make sure people don't stand again and things

:52:26.:52:31.

like that. It could be a challenge, but not an undermining of the

:52:32.:52:35.

Commons. The fact is at the moment the House of Lords is often more

:52:36.:52:43.

liberal, more generous, I would say, than the Commons and I think in

:52:44.:52:46.

general a good job is done, although a lot of changes are needed. Would

:52:47.:52:49.

you be frightened of an elected House of Lords? No, but I think it

:52:50.:52:53.

wouldn't be as effective as the House of Lords that we have at the

:52:54.:52:56.

moment. I think the Commons certainly would be frightened of it.

:52:57.:53:01.

They don't like the idea of having an elected second chamber. Then, at

:53:02.:53:06.

the moment the Lords is aware that it is the elected chamber, which

:53:07.:53:11.

actually has the final say. We have the right, indeed the duty if we

:53:12.:53:15.

think it is required to say to them, look, take another look at this,

:53:16.:53:19.

think again. In the end, we are absolutely clear that the Commons is

:53:20.:53:23.

paramount because it is a democratically elected chamber. Are

:53:24.:53:26.

you clear on that as far as Brexit is concerned? Yes. You are. Despite

:53:27.:53:30.

the fact you voted against the Government last night and voted for

:53:31.:53:35.

Britain to remain in the single market which Dominic Raab and others

:53:36.:53:39.

would say is not in the spirit of supporting Article 50, why did you

:53:40.:53:42.

vote against? To send a message to the Commons that we think and those

:53:43.:53:46.

of us who voted that way, do share the view, we think they should look

:53:47.:53:49.

again at the options for leaving. Right. Do you think the way Patience

:53:50.:53:54.

behaves on Brexit will eventually be a challenge to the House of Lords

:53:55.:53:57.

and its existence? I think everybody in the House of Lords understands

:53:58.:54:01.

they have to vote with their conscience and last night a lot of

:54:02.:54:06.

peers voted to stay in the single market. My main concern is about the

:54:07.:54:11.

environmental and social protections that I see as potentially being

:54:12.:54:15.

scrapped and we have two years to put in place all sorts of

:54:16.:54:17.

regulation, this is nothing to do with a deal with the EU, this is all

:54:18.:54:22.

about setting up procedures within the UK so that we can actually

:54:23.:54:26.

effectively police environmental issues and social issues of equality

:54:27.:54:30.

and work. Much more to watch of course on the House of Lords. You

:54:31.:54:32.

can watch it, not behind your sofa next time.

:54:33.:54:35.

Now, it's Shrove Tuesday, which can only mean one thing -

:54:36.:54:37.

Commentary on this gladitorial contest between peers,

:54:38.:54:40.

MPs and the press is from the Daily Politics'

:54:41.:54:42.

Spring has sprung and everyone is here.

:54:43.:54:49.

there is the editor of this very programme...

:54:50.:54:53.

..and some MPs with varying degrees of enthusiasm for the whole

:54:54.:54:58.

Oh, God, I hadn't even thought about it.

:54:59.:55:09.

Most people just say chocolate or booze.

:55:10.:55:11.

Very good skills from Catherine McKinnell.

:55:12.:55:24.

There is nimble Nigel Nelson, political editor

:55:25.:55:28.

David Burrowes is slipping all over the place.

:55:29.:55:32.

He's sound as a pound, as Stephen Pound, that is.

:55:33.:55:43.

And it was the MPs who surged to victory.

:55:44.:55:46.

All of this is for the charity Rehab which helps people

:55:47.:55:49.

with disabilities, but politics is never far away.

:55:50.:55:51.

Clive, are there any other contests you're thinking of entering?

:55:52.:55:53.

Too much fun. At least it was in the sunshine. We are joined now by David

:55:54.:56:12.

Burrowes and the Conservative peer Ros Altman. I don't see flour or

:56:13.:56:18.

pancakes over you! You weren't out of breath at all. Did you win? We

:56:19.:56:23.

did. We always win. You do, I think. We didn't win. I sort of worked that

:56:24.:56:30.

out. Why not? Well, first of all, there were only five of us. We each

:56:31.:56:35.

had to go twice. It was a slight disadvantage. Usually you have too

:56:36.:56:42.

many Lords, now too few. We did try and toss the pancakes, we were good

:56:43.:56:46.

tossers but not good winners. Did you cheat, did you run around

:56:47.:56:49.

without flipping the pancake? Well, the spirit of the competition, we

:56:50.:56:53.

always complain about when we have the defence of sticking to the

:56:54.:56:56.

rules, but there was a broad interpretation of the rules. We are

:56:57.:57:01.

the law-makers and we are entitled perhaps to... It was not about

:57:02.:57:04.

winning, but also about supporting the charity. We need to scrutinise

:57:05.:57:10.

this. Tell us about the charity. It's Rehab, it's all about

:57:11.:57:14.

supporting independence for disabled people of all backgrounds trying to

:57:15.:57:18.

ensure they get into work. 20,000 childrenen and adult people, they do

:57:19.:57:23.

great work up and down the country. We are having fun. Great to flip

:57:24.:57:27.

pancakes and support a charity. Is this the first time you have done it

:57:28.:57:35.

It is. There were - it was fun and there were members of the public.

:57:36.:57:39.

You raised a crowd. I always try and support charity. I have done it, I

:57:40.:57:43.

have done it myself. I wasn't very good. I was very slow. I was trying

:57:44.:57:47.

to flip the pancakes too often as everybody else ran past me. Yeah,

:57:48.:57:51.

what were the press like this year? The press lost. They're very

:57:52.:57:55.

competitive. They struggled with a bit of the balance issue sometimes.

:57:56.:57:59.

You thought about this script haven't you! Have you not taken

:58:00.:58:03.

part, your excuse today was that you are on the show. Exactly. But I am

:58:04.:58:09.

good with pancakes. I must have a good next year. How did they choose

:58:10.:58:13.

who does it? They didn't actually choose. They sent e-mails out to

:58:14.:58:18.

everybody. I think the mugs that replied, the people that replied...

:58:19.:58:21.

I am happy to volunteer for something like this. It's really

:58:22.:58:25.

good. Maybe something about Brexit at the moment, 11 of us doing

:58:26.:58:29.

pancakes. That's your last money. Thank you very much.

:58:30.:58:32.

There's just time before we go to find out the answer to our quiz.

:58:33.:58:35.

The question was who has been spying on the BBC?

:58:36.:58:37.

(C) The German intelligence agency the BND?

:58:38.:58:41.

It was the German intelligence agency. Don't you bank on it. All of

:58:42.:58:45.

them! The one o'clock news is starting

:58:46.:58:45.

over on BBC One now. I'll be back at 11.30 tomorrow

:58:46.:58:50.

with Andrew for live coverage Good morning, this is BBC Breakfast.

:58:51.:58:52.

Morning, Dan. In the sports news, we have

:58:53.:59:06.

the latest on the Welsh rugby team, Poppy's sports day,

:59:07.:59:10.

and news on Andy Murray. The headlines coming up, but our

:59:11.:59:13.

next guest is really quite special. Jack, the toast's burning.

:59:14.:59:16.

Welcome, Daniel Radcliffe. We've been hearing how

:59:17.:59:20.

changes to petrol prices

:59:21.:59:24.

Jo Coburn is joined by Conservative peer Baroness Wheatcroft to review the day's politics, including the latest recriminations within Ukip and reaction to Sir John Major's speech on Brexit.


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS