Andrew Neil and Jo Coburn are joined by fund manager and gender equality campaigner Helena Morrissey to discuss the latest news from Westminster and the fallout from the budget.
Browse content similar to 09/03/2017. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
It was all smiles yesterday, but it turned out that the Chancellor's
Budget Box contained a broken manifesto promise.
Conservative backbenchers aren't happy about his increases
to national insurance for the self employed.
Will he be forced into a U-turn on his first Budget?
There was ?2 billion for social care over three years
but is it too little, too late and do we really
need yet another review of social care funding?
A Referendum on Independence in the autumn of 2018
would be "common sense", according to Nicola Sturgeon.
Has Brexit made another poll in Scotland inevitable?
And at the Daily Politics we realise that politics
And with us for the duration, fund manager, gender equality
campaigner and all-round super-woman, Helena Morrissey.
You just have to live up to that build-up now.
First this morning, it was a smaller budget than normal
- just 28 measures - but it's just one of
them that's dominating the headlines this morning.
That's the increases in National Insurance
Here's the crucial annoucement from yesterday's Budget.
To improve the fairness of the tax system, I will act to reduce the gap
to better reflect current differences in state benefits.
I have considered, Mr Deputy Speaker,
the possibility of simply reversing the decision to abolish Class 2
But the Class 2 Nic is regressive and outdated.
Instead, from April 2018, when the Class 2 Nic is abolished,
the main rate of class 4 Nics for the self-employed
will increase by 1% to 10%, with a further 1%
It is all very complicated. The key political point is
that increase in national insurance has broken a pledge that appeared
This is page 7 of the Conservative manifesto, as you can see
This is what the papers thought of that.
The Sun has the headline "spite van man" and says the Chancellor
"sparked a national wave of fury by unleashing a ?240-a-year
tax raid on Britain's self-employed strivers".
The Daily Mirror pictures Theresa May howling with laughter
at one of Philip Hammond's quips, and asks: "What's
The paper dubs it "the betrayal Budget".
"No laughing matter," declares the Daily Mail and says
the Chancellor littered his Budget with jokes but broke an election
pledge by "hammering" the self-employed and savers.
The Times headline says the Chancellor launched
a "?2 billion tax raid" on self-employed workers to provide
"Tories break tax vow" is how the Daily Telegraph puts it,
accusing Philip Hammond of breaking a key Conservative manifesto pledge.
And "Hammond falls into tax trap" is the Guardian's headline,
saying the Chancellor's attempt at a low-key package of measures
threatens to be overshadowed by the National Insurance row.
The Government's said it's sticking to its commitment not to increase
the main rate of national insurance for employed people and it's
There are actually four types of National Insurance
Class 1 is for people who are employed - that's
They pay 12% on earnings above ?155 a week and 2%
After the 2015 general election, the Government passed a law banning
increases in this particular type of National
Class 2 Nics are for self-employed with low earnings
but they're being abolished in April 2018.
Class 3 NICs are voluntary contributions that some employed
and self-employed people can choose to pay, in order to boost
Class 4 Nics are paid by people who are self-employed
The rate is currently 9% on earnings above ?8,060 and then 2%
In the Budget yesterday, Philip Hammond announced
that the core 9% rate of Class 4 National Insurance Contributions
will go up to 10% in April 2018 and then 11% in April 2019.
Because of those changes to both Class 2 and Class 4 Nics,
1.6 million people will pay ?240 more every year on average.
And that will eventually mean ?145 million going into
But that figure could go up in the future if more people become
Well, this morning the Chancellor toured the TV and radio stations,
defending his national insurance policy.
There was a broad commitment to lock taxes so that there will be no tax
increases, and that's what we have done, because the Chancellor now,
I'm working within an extremely constrained environment where we
face some new challenges in this country.
But that's the argument you could make, couldn't you?
You could basically say, yes, we've changed our policy because
We face some new challenges which we have to rise to.
I'm doing that within a very constrained environment where
most taxes cannot be raised and much of our spending is also ringfenced
And we're joined now from Central Lobby by
the Conservative MP, Anne Marie Trevelyan.
-- Dominik Rab and the shadow Treasury minister. The Conservative
manifesto said four times he would not raise national insurance
contributions. You have raised them and broken your promise will stop
this was a solid and responsible budget. With any budget committee
want to pay for things you want to do like social care and take the
edge of business rates, you must pay for them somehow. And that is by
breaking your promise? Budgets are a package it is easy to run for the
hills when there is one bit you do not like. I do not like this bit
much. The truth is, both on the substance of the policy and to make
sure we square with what we have said, and you can read out as many
bits of the manifesto as you like. There are different types of Nics.
We will have a separate piece of national insurance legislation. The
need to make sure we are not hurting the entrepreneurial classes, to make
sure we live by, not just the letter but the spirit of our commitments.
It would mean this promise is not worth the paper it is written on. If
you are self-employed, and you have voted Conservative on the basis of
your four promises in the 2015 manifesto, you were sold a false
prospectus. You have picked out selective bits of the manifesto. We
were asked about this at length. I agree with you that we need to
square what we are doing with not just the letter but also the spirit
of the commitments. I do not agree with that. Just address this. David
Cameron tweeted during the 20 15th election campaign when people were
making up their minds, you said, Labour needs to raise national
insurance to make their sums add up. Hard-working people will end up
paying for is that you have had to raise them and hard-working people
will pay. That was said in the context of Ed Miliband talking about
the National Insurance employer 's contribution, which we said would be
a jobs tax. I'm not going to argue that this will be the one thorny
issue in the Budget. It is fine for journalist pick a hole in something.
It is a package. You made the promise four times. There was no
mention, when you put the legislation through. The Government
has said it concentrated on class one. It did not cover the ones you
put up yesterday. The minister in the House of Lords at the time,
cheated the registration through the Lords will she did not even know
this is what was being planned. She said she would never have expected
us to do this or that we said in good faith we would not raise
national insurance rates. That is the woman that took your legislation
through. We have all types of national insurance contributions and
rates. There is a query about whether we are living up to both the
spirit, as opposed to just the letter, of the commitment. We do
have national insurance legislation which is separate from the Budget
which is an opportunity to look at this from the round. We do not want
to penalised the entrepreneurial classes. We must deal with the
nuances which was said around the time of the election. The advantage
with that being stand-alone legislation is we must look at this
properly and keep our promises. The truth about this Budget, you can
pick a hole in it. I understand that is your job. If you compare the
package we put forward, both to cut taxes for basic rate taxpayers, will
be saving the average taxpayer ?1000 year to the income tax allowance, to
the extra money will put into social care, if you want to do that
responsibly you must come up with a package. Jeremy Corbyn was talking
about windmills yesterday. One of the choices is not to break your
words to the British people. I am looking at whether we can trust a
Tory manifesto and the paper it is written on. That is what journalists
should do. If you want to pay for the things that Tory MPs say, we
have to put into business rates and schools you can only do if you face
up to the difficult decisions. The Labour Party is totally incapable of
that. Jonathan, when the Government turn this manifesto promise into
legislation, why didn't Labour check what national insurance
contributions it was going to cover? This is a straightforward commitment
in the manifesto and parliament from the Conservatives. Of course they
have broken their commitment. We allow them to legislate. Why didn't
you track? Everyone believed they were generally ruling out a raise.
Isn't it your job, as the official opposition, to check the Government
is living up to its promises and make sure that a promise which
seemed to come up or national insurance contributions, all classes
of them, was actually the case rather than being selective? The
Government has clearly broken its manifesto pledge. There is no
Conservative MP who believed their promise or national insurance
related to social national insurance plans. Everyone believed they were
promising to freeze this. It focused on one type of Nics. You failed to
hold the Government to account on the other classes of Nics. They made
a clear commitment that the issue here is not just about the manifesto
commitment. It is about the fact the premise of Chancellor gave for this
change is not correct. Self-employed people to not have the same rights
as the employed. They do not have access to sick pay or maternity pay.
What is really extraordinary, when you look at the one thing,
Conservative MPs will rightly praise their record. A huge part of that
has been self-employed people and now they are turning round and
hammering them. I understand that. Given the immensity of the situation
and what has happened, why did Jeremy Corbyn not raise it in
response to the Budget yesterday? Responding to a budget is the
hardest thing. This is a broken manifesto pledge. Where you in the
chamber yesterday questioned that you will know it was buzzing around
the House, particularly on the Tory side when they realised what was
being done. Yet, the Leader of the Opposition in a pledge given four
times could not even manage to raise it in his response. He did mention
the impact on self-employed people. He did not mention that it was a
broken promise. The chamber was buzzing when the enormity of what
they had done came through and people realised. Again, the
opposition missing an edge. We made a decision to oppose this. Even as
Jeremy had just about done, just about as quick as you could do so
does you do not get the documents in opposition until the transfer has
sat down. Everybody knew what happened. The press knew what
happened. We needed the Redbook. When you look at the cuts in tax,
you can clearly see this is not a large amount of money being raised.
It was a wrong decision. Stick with us for the moment. We're going to
talk to one Conservative MP who is very happy about it. While I was
reading all those figures and the different types of national
insurance contributions. When I talked about class 4 Nics, it is
people earning that a year and not a week. Where you surprised by the
announcements from Philip Hammond on Nics?
I think on this issue, we need a U-turn quickly. How is that going to
happen? I believe as the others have said, the National instruments
contribution changes will be brought forward in a separate bill and we
need to change that. We need to keep the pressure up so people understand
this change is not acceptable. This change affects ordinary working
families who have taken the risk of setting up small business and many a
ploy apprentices, the backbone of our economy, and it makes us feel we
have broken our promise, it is not acceptable and cannot proceed. What
impact will it have on people thinking about starting their
business or setting up self-employed? It will not have much
impact in terms of people thinking of setting up their business because
they are entrepreneurs and there has been a huge rise in the
self-employed who want to take that risk, it shows the wrong message and
says we are not providing you with every possible opportunity to make
it easy. The Government has a great record of employment over seven
years and making it easier for people to set up business and take
risks. This type of change is very complicated and people do not like
complicated issues and it sends the wrong message. In terms of revenue,
it raises money and my local public organisations waste more than that
over the next 12 months. It does not race a lot of money and the
Chancellor in his defence said it is a matter of fairness that this had
to be seen in terms of trying to equalise the tax paid by an employee
to nurse and an agency nurse. What you say to that? I do understand the
element about fairness and I campaign for fairness, but there are
two microwaves, one is to raise a tax level which I do not think is
fair and the other is to reduce tax levels. As a Conservative MP, I
prefer lower taxes with reformed public services and more money
delivering services people want to help ordinary working families. I am
using the phrase fairness to get round this, what is fair is giving
people everybody opportunity to get on in life. Are you embarrassed by
this when you have to face your constituents, some of them unhappy
about this? I am not embarrassed in the sense of this is politics and
people's lives. You said it is a broken promise. We have got to go
out and fix it, it is not a broken promise yet and we have to ensure
this does not go through and I will be working with people to deliver
that. These changes go into a separate bill is not part of the
main finance bill and that happens in May and June. When you talk about
pressure in the next couple of days, apart from appearing on programmes
like this, how will you pressurise the Chancellor? There is no
indication of change. We have back channels and we are talking in the
party about the issue. No doubt people are dead if I do love all of
opposition and I am sure Philip Hammond is a great Chancellor and he
will look at the issue in more detail and come up with a better
solution that does create change. Thank you very much.
Dominick, was the indication of what you said that because there is
legislation for this, do you want changes on this? The point Philip
Hammond was made was the treatment of self-employed and employed needs
to be equitable and I made the argument about National Insurance
being consolidated with income tax. We have freestanding legislation and
we can look at it in the round and be consistent with our promises and
we do not penalise the entrepreneurial classes. The problem
with this is that we are putting 10 million into the NHS by 2020 and an
extra ?2 billion in social care. It is all very well Labour saying what
they do not like, but if you ask for a credible alternative, you would
not get one. You have had a good say, I want to hear from Labour.
Look at the detail of the Budget and the big expenditure. It is that huge
cut the corporation tax and inheritance tax. If you did not tax
entrepreneurs, that might generate revenue. You can make that argument
about any tax rate, it is the balance between what you are asking
people to pay with this tax on self-employed people compared to
your big giveaways to big organisations. Hold on. How much has
corporate, corporation tax receipts fallen since it was cut? If you look
at the red book. I am asking you a question, how much? The net cost is
about 18 billion. Corporation tax has come down from 28, the 20%,
since 2010. How much have receipts fallen? I do not have that figure, I
can tell you for the next five years. That is projection, I want
the real figures. I will tell you the real figures. Corporation tax
receipts up from 40 billion to 50 billion, so where is the cut? The
cutters into the rate and how would you know you would not have got more
money? Corporation tax receipts have not fallen, can we agree? Yes, there
is a cost to agreeing to reduce corporation tax. You do not know
that we know about forecasts, look at the OBR forecast in November and
talk to me about forecasts. What you make of this? I am a bit confused.
If you want to see more activity, you want to tax it less, and less
activity or use of something, you tax it more. The sugar tax makes
sense. You have talked about making sure this does not affect
entrepreneurs, I think it does and that slightly does not make sense. I
would like to see it in the context of the vision for where we are in
terms of encouraging entrepreneurs in this country, and where there has
been a rise, which is great. The Chancellor gave the game away by
talking about the fact he saw this as a mismatch which needs to be
addressed between self-employed and NICs is a cost of ?6 billion to the
Exchequer. It is not really a cost, we should turn this around and think
it is revenue, people are running this, it is their money and we are
trying to encourage them to earn more of which they will give some to
the revenue. Corporation tax is a great example, companies have the
right and they paid more revenue. That encourages them to thrive. It
is not strategically make sense which is why it was for me
disappointing. One Tory backbencher who sounded like he could be
rebelling, said Mr Hammond in the Budget yesterday hammered three
types of people who vote Tory. The self-employed, owners of small
companies, and the thrifty who save for their old age. You have hit all
three. Who was that? I am not telling you. You speak be terms as
well. Don't throw that at me. I think it is fair enough. What is
wrong with it? If people will not go on the record and stand up as I am
doing for the difficult choices we make it is worth pointing out.
Nobody has told me if we reverse National Insurance, which I would
like to do, how we pay for it. How would you pay the money not just for
cutting taxes, the personal allowance or corporation tax which
we agree is positive, but also to do things for social care, the elderly
and the vulnerable, to do stuff for training and new schools money? That
is the business of serious and credible government. It is what
Labour territory at catered. A final point. 85% of people who pay
National Insurance will be unaffected. Of the 15% affected, 60%
will benefit from the cuts. The lower paid benefit, 116,000 or
under, you will not be affected by this. -- ?16,000. This is quite a
progressive change. The big increases come from those who are
self-employed, who make a lot of money, so why are you opposing a
progressive tax change? I do not agree with that analysis, ?16,500
earnings, that is not breaking it in. Where is the money coming from?
What about the inheritance tax cut? How is it right to go ahead with
that and hitting those who generate the wealth? That does not raise the
10 billion extra for the NHS or the ?2 billion extra. You cannot have it
both ways. The inheritance tax is ?1 billion! He did that, I did the
other! Moving on, you are staying here, we are keeping you hostage. We
have not finished with you that. Now, in the lead-up to yesterday's
Budget, the Chancellor had been under increasing pressure to find
extra cash for England's Local authorities say that more
than ?4.5 billion has been cut from social care budgets since 2010,
at a time when demand is surging. Yesterday, Mr Hammond responded
to claims of a crisis by promising yet another review
of social care funding. But he also said there
would be some more money Let's have a listen
to what he had to say. Today, Mr Deputy Speaker, I am
committing additional grant funding of ?2 billion to social
care in England under Mr Deputy Speaker, that's ?2 billion
over the next three years, with ?1 billion available in '17/'18 -
that will allow local authorities to act now
to commission new care packages and forms a bridge to the better care
funding that becomes available And I'm joined now from
Central Lobby by Norman Lamb, the Lib Dems' spokesman on health,
and former Health Minister under Dominic Raab and Jonathan Reynolds
are still with us. First of all, Norman, do you welcome
the money announced by Philip Hammond for the short-term? It is
certainly better than nothing, but it is inadequate because if you
think the increase in the National Minimum Wage, the so-called national
living wage, costs an extra ?900 million in the coming year, this
really does not go anywhere near reaching the level we need to get
social care stabilised again. The health foundation, independent
organisation, reckons the gap is ?2 billion. If they are right, this
settlement inevitably means more older people will have care needs,
who don't have those met. Who will end up inevitably, unnecessarily in
hospital, increasing the burden on the NHS. It is yet another sticking
plaster and my total frustration with the Government is that rather
than lurching from crisis to crisis and diverting the crisis at last
minute in this way, surely the time has come when we need to take a once
in a generation look at the NHS care system. It was designed in the 1940s
and the needs have changed so much in the period since. I put together
a group of cross-party MPs, Conservative, Labour and Liberal
Democrats. It was not taken on board, those recommendations. We met
with the Prime Minister, she has agreed to sanction the start of a
dialogue. We will soon meet with the new health adviser but I do not have
enormous confidence the Government will take this approach. The money
first of all, ?2 billion over three years. If you take what the councils
and local government associations say, they need almost three times
that, so this is a sticking plaster and it will not meet the needs
councils say is necessary. It is a pretty big sticking plaster, ?2
billion. I agree it is a first step and nobody thinks we have got the
social care issue sorted for the long term in a sustainable way. It
is very thorny. I do think it would be a good idea to forge a
cross-party consensus on this, but the problem is if you are in
opposition and I am not this about labour, but the temptation would be
not to do the quiet and steady and sensible things of agreeing about
principles, but to criticise anything and any step to be taken.
What I would love to see, Norman is right, is Tim Farron genuinely
reaching out to the Government and saying, let's have a coalition on
that issue. Let's stick to the money. The money is important, you
said a sticking plaster and not enough. You said it was a big
sticking plaster. I said it was a first step. And you said it was a
big sticking plaster. The figures do not add up if you are sitting in a
local council and you have to deal with adult social care. ?4.6 billion
has been cut from the adult social care Budget since 2010, according to
those councils, white or you only giving ?2 billion? We have had a
wider discussion about the difficulty raising revenue, you need
to know where you cut taxes or what you cut? They are difficult
decisions and we have taken a first step and it is not a question of the
death tax I am not in favour of, but at what point you say you could cap
costs. Whether working with the private sector, they can depend what
we do, and none of this is easy stuff. So the cuts were wrong in the
first place the local government spending?
I'm not going to accept the figures put forward by the representatives
of the Local Government Association. The Government must look at these
issues in and around. Jonathan Reynolds, you have talked about more
money. Where would you find it? The capital gains tax cut from last year
and the bank levy. These are difficult decisions. Did a good
people on the front by commissioning services, worried about the safety
of adults and children and families who feel the impact of that. They
can take ?4.5 billion out of the system. Jonathan Reynolds, I had
just done the money. Let's have a look at your figures. We talked
briefly about corporation tax. Let's have a look at the projection. If
you look at the cuts, it would bring in between three 7p. How much I be
put forward as a Labour Party question what we have me completely
different choices. You pledged ?15 billion worth of spending pledges.
Even if we take that projection of corporation tax is at its highest
level of ?10 billion, you are short. Where would you find the money? It
is the bank levy and the inheritance tax cut. The priority has to be the
stability of public services. That is not the priority of this
government by any means. Should it be a priority that money should be
spent there? It should be borrowed or taxes should rise. The priority
is, we need a long-term solution. One thing which is disappointing
about the Budget yesterday, it is not visionary in terms of how we're
going to address that priority which is one among several priorities. How
does it all stuck up over the next decade or to macro, not just the
next 12 months question what our hypothecated tax? Would you back it?
Something might potentially be possible. As I said on Monday,
please not another rebuke of that is basically what we have. -- review.
In greater Manchester, we're bringing together health and social
care to do it. We need national government to show the same level to
get a long-term settlement. On a hypothecated health tax, would you
be in favour question what you want to increase income tax. We have set
up an expert panel to look at the case for this. Attacks for the NHS
and for care. People would see where money was going. -- a tax. An
independent assessment of what the system needs and people would have
confidence that their money was going on what they care and awful
lot about. A leading Conservative supported what we are arguing for. I
hope there will be a growing consensus this sort of reform is
what is needed. Thank you very much. Thank you.
Now, EU leaders are meeting in Brussels this afternoon for one
Theresa May will be there for what's almost certainly the last such
gathering before Article 50 is triggered and negotiations
proper begin on Britain's departure from the EU.
Our deputy political editor, John Pienaar, is there for us.
John, well come back to the programme. What is on the agenda
today? -- welcome back. The leaders, including Theresa May, will start
arriving now. They'll be talking about migration and picking up where
they left. At that informal summit. They will talk about the economy and
future free-trade agreements. The lobby talking about security and the
Western Balkans and Russia. -- they will be talking. Theresa May is not
staying for much longer after that. They'll be talking about the
anniversary of the EU's and entreaty of Rome. She will not be there. It
is hard to see why. It was thought generally inappropriate to have the
discussion about the togetherness of the EU just before the divorce.
Donald Tusk is the president of the European Council. That is where the
heads of state and heads of government gather. His own country,
Poland, is opposing him. What is going on here? It is a curious and
interesting feud between Donald Tusk, the president of the council,
and the Polish government. His ruling party in Poland are political
opponents of Donald Tusk. He staged a sit-in in the parliament not so
long ago. He accused Donald Tusk of supporting the overthrow of the
Government will do that is all very nasty. People like Angela Merkel and
President Francois Hollande will stay where they are. Theresa May
will no doubt try to use keep -- try to keep out of it. Nicola Sturgeon
has been talking about the second independence referendum. Let's
listen to and then I will come back to you. Within that window, I guess,
of when the outline of the UK deal becomes clear, and the UK ex-eating
the EU, I think it would be the common-sense time for Scotland to
have that choice, if that is the road we choose to go down. You're
not running out Autumn 2018? I am not ruling out anything, no. John,
Scotland's minister is talking about a second referendum in the autumn of
2018. -- First Minister. It is possible by then we will not know
the full Brexit deal and negotiations will still be going on.
I understand the Government is not minded, the British government is
not minded, to agree a second referendum until a Brexit deal is
done and dusted. Is that your understanding? No. Yes, it is you
can see why that would be. Nicola Sturgeon was keeping the possible of
a possible referendum next year wide open. You have probably seen there
has been a new opinion poll today which bases of support for and
against Scottish independence very evenly balanced indeed. Most of the
polls in recent months have been favouring the idea of staying in the
union. Nicola Sturgeon no doubt would rather have a big lead before
going for another referendum poll. She cannot afford to lose a second
time here is the key thing was that she is under pressure as well and
under pressure from the march of Brexit. If there is a Scottish
referendum after Britain is on its way and out of the European Union,
the Scottish voter would be asked, do they want to leave not only the
union and the European Union as well? Nicola Sturgeon wants to keep
up the pressure and see the polls shift she can the chance are armed.
Eye-macro thank you very much for that.
-- chance her arm. The Nice summit was a four shirt summit.
Now, last week, elections in Northern Ireland failed to resolve
Sinn Fein gained seats and Unionists no longer have an overall
The DUP are still - by one seat - the biggest party, but with
Sinn Fein's Michelle O'Neill still refusing to share
power with DUP leader Arlene Foster, there's deadlock.
The clock is ticking, as they now have three weeks to try
Yesterday, the Northern Ireland Secretary,
James Brokenshire, had a busy day - in Westminster for Cabinet,
and then off to Northern Ireland to continue talks.
Here's what he told reporters last night.
I'm not going to provide a running commentary in relation
There have been, I think, some helpful discussions that have
taken place over recent days and a real commitment that I've
discerned from the parties to get back into government,
to get back into an Executive, and therefore delivering
But I know that this won't all be plain sailing,
but underlining that sense of what we have at stake here,
the real issues that matter for Northern Ireland,
that positive sense of progression that we need to continue
to maintain that momentum, and that is my intent,
and the intent of the Government, to see that that does happen.
That is the Northern Ireland Secretary.
And we're joined now by the former Ulster Unionist leader and now
Welcome to the Daily Politics full stop talks are ongoing to try to
restore the assembly. How optimistic are you? A deal can be reached if
the major parties want to do it. So far, they are not really giving
terribly encouraging signals. The DUP still seems to be mired in the
mess they were in in the run-up to the election. As a result partly of
the heating scandal beforehand? And other things as well. At the same
time, Sinn Fein is not giving encouraging signals. Adams has
reverted to the sort of language she is using 20 years ago. Walking out
on the secretary of state is the sort of stunt that was done 20, 25
years ago. I don't think that he is in modern, grown-up politics yet.
You know a lot about what is needed to de-escalate these sort of
confrontation where the to macro sides cannot agree. Is Arlene Foster
the sticking point? -- to macro sides cannot disagree if she went,
that would be the problem solved. I am not sure they should focus
clearly on that. There is a problem. It is more about her behaviour than
anything else. There would be ways in which she could change that which
might make a difference. I don't like the way in which Sinn Fein is
saying they want to wait until the inquiry that was established to look
at that heating initiative, that it reports. That might be six, nine, 12
months away. They have lost faith, haven't they? They said they did not
like the way she was leading proceedings at Stormont. If she does
not go, I cannot see how the deadlock breaks. I'm why do people
are backing themselves into corners. We don't have very much time. I am
worried that people are backing themselves into corners. Is James
broke and share and honest broker in this? -- Brokenshire. You have to
look at the Brexit talks and the fact that eight seats are very
important in any votes that are coming up. Do you think they can be
seen as honest brokers? I would not worry too much about Parliamentary
arithmetic. As the last few weeks have shown, the Government is coming
in every time with a very large majority. While the figures might
look low, the Government has a small majority. The Government is Her
Majesty's government. It has its objectives and we know what they
are. At the present time but they need to get devolution restored in
Ireland. No problem from government in this respect. The problems are
coming from the DUP and Sinn Fein. They need to change the way they are
doing things. There does not seem to be a very clear how that might be
done. They are backing themselves into corners. It is said that all
James Nics does is waffle, waffle, waffle, and has been called a bad
day for unionism. -- Brokenshire. Nobody is in the same league as
Gerry Adams when it comes to waffle. It does not look promising though,
does it? As I say, I hope the Secretary of State has some
contingency plans. I am married to an Irishman and I should probably
say nothing about waffle. What are you implying? Nothing at all. There
is talk about unionist unity, coming together to talk as one. That is a
distraction. Choose drawing away attention from the mess she has
made. -- she is drawing away attention. Other parties do need to
address the problem, a problem they have created. If you were a betting
man, do think the deal will be reached in the three weeks? -- do
you think? I think that will be rather tough.
Iain Duncan Smith protested about the rise as well.
Now, our guest of the day, Helena Morrissey, is writing a book
Helena herself has clearly done all right for herself,
managing to combine her role as Chief Executive of a top
investment management firm with bringing up nine children.
I've come back to my old school, a place I have many memories of.
Now, when I was here, the internet was brand-new,
no-one had mobile phones, and a certain girlband
# Yo, I'll tell you what I want What I really, really want...
# What you really, really, really want #.
But although the Spice Girls were topping the charts in the late-'90s,
women were poorly represented in public life.
Less than a fifth of MPs were female.
And on the boards of the biggest companies,
It's no wonder some were calling for a bit more 'Girl Power'.
On the face of it, these Year Elevens will be entering
I want to finish college and uni, and then go into training
I plan to go into Environmental Science.
I hope to be doing something political.
Like, maybe as a Member of Parliament.
Would any of you ever see yourself as Chief Executive of a big company,
or really being at the top of your game?
As long as you work hard, you can get anywhere in life.
Could you ever see yourself being a Director in a boardroom?
But I think the most important thing is that we shouldn't start choosing
women for these jobs because they're female, just to balance the pay gap
or the gender barrier, whatever, we should be choosing them
because they're the right person for the job.
Last year, just over a third of managerial and senior
A quarter of FTSE 100 companies now have a female Director.
There's 196 female MPs, that's 30% of the Commons.
A little less in the Lords, where 26% of peers are women.
In 2016, women accounted for 28% of judges in England and Wales,
but far fewer have made it to the upper echelons.
Just one judge on the Supreme Court is female.
There has been progress, but the progress has been patchy.
There has been particularly fast and significant
However, the gender pay gap then opens up as soon
as women get into their 30s, where they might just be thinking
There has been progress on getting more women onto boards,
but most of those positions are non-exec, so they're not
the people actually making the day-to-day decisions
When it comes to exam results, the tables have turned.
Last year, 71% of female pupils got a C or above at GCSE, compared
And that trend's continuing at university, with 37% of young
women entering higher education, compared to just 27% of men.
It's, in fact, now boys who are becoming the disadvantaged,
some argue, and we're in danger of taking our eye off
Working class white boys are the bottom of the stack.
They don't qualify for any special dispensation.
They certainly don't qualify for any special initiatives.
Because the feeling is, it's impossible to be born a white
male and to be born disadvantaged, despite the facts which
Do you feel like you're about to enter a world
where there is still inequality for men and women?
There's more of a stereotype of women being bossy.
And then men, they're the strong leaders.
I think that women are really seen as pretty faces too much.
I think men just dismiss their capability because of how they look.
We have come very far and women should be,
But I think it's so important that we don't give up,
to just be like - oh, yeah, that's fine, then.
Well, there's certainly some young women in here prepared to continue
fighting for greater equality, but have us girls already
broken the glass ceiling, or is there still a lot more to do?
And we're joined now by the economist Alison Wolf.
First, to quote from your book, why is it a good time to be a girl?
First, we have had a big Spotlight on gender equality and that is
helpful in terms of raising awareness and making people think
about why is that, why have we not got equality in the 21st century? It
seems odd. And I think Smart businesses and organisations and
people are realising with difficult problems, we need more than one type
of person to solve an appetite for cognitive diversity. What is that in
English? Thinking differently. I do not think men and women are
different in every respect, but we do have different attributes. Women
tend to be empathetic. I want a mix of perspectives. The first step was
women on boards and that is a start, not the finish. And now we have got
quite a lot of momentum. It is not just about having some women in a
boys club or a man's world, but changing the world so it is more
balanced. Alison, is it a good time to be a girl? It is a fantastic time
to be an educated girl, not sure it is a fantastic time to be a girl
generally. I am very depressed by the way the feminist discussion and
of women focuses so much on how many women there are one boards and the
High Court, compared to even two generations ago, it is staggering
progress. If you look at society as a whole, you get a growing gap
between the highly educated who are more like men in many ways and other
women, who are overwhelmingly working in low paid service jobs. Is
that true of male and female? The digitally true for female. Partly
for good reasons, inequality has increased more among women than men.
And the puzzle, the challenge. It, is that the upper-middle-class,
careers are increasingly possible because we have a servant class
which is overwhelmingly female. Doing the lesser page jobs. You have
come paid to get more women on boards and have had some success, is
that more symbolic than anything? It is certainly not the end, it is a
start. We started with the boards because you could easily measure it
and it was very visible and after the financial crisis, we did not
have good oversight of companies are in the financial sector and we
needed changes. The target is 30%? As a critical mass point, ultimately
we want complete balance. I agree we need progress in all areas of
society and not just more women in very senior roles, although we have
not got parity or anywhere like that as we have in the nonexecutive
roles. But the emphasis has to be now on I think having real momentum
throughout. Yesterday was International Women's Day and there
was a sense in some areas of people feeling we were taking a step back
because we have had some developments, the election of
President Trump, leaving people wondering if we have enough positive
momentum. I am optimistic and I think sometimes and people is an
opportunity to look again at making decisions -- and upheaval is an
opportunity. But I agree with Alison. I was not surprised but
depressed that International Women's Day events focused so much on people
like us, to be brutal. I am not convinced putting an Uxbridge
educated metropolitan female on a board is such a change from an
Uxbridge educated male on the board. I feel we always will be more aware
of our surroundings and the best thing that could happen for women is
for advantage and successful women and for women to be more aware of
what is happening to people in other parts of society. I want to
emphasise this because what is happening in our economy is
increasingly shift work, part-time work, often at very difficult hours.
And they are not people who can put children in nine to five daycare,
people who can afford nannies, more likely they will be nannies. I just
feel it is predictable and depressing that those who have done
very well seem to be very much concerned with how to make things
even better for people like us. What about replacing a male metropolitan
elite with a female metropolitan elite? That is not the end game,
obviously. I think we did see some of that to begin with and people
felt it was dropped on, we have women on our board, we don't have to
do something around the rest of the population. But I want to say how
generous with their time a lot of women in senior roles are about
speaking in schools, reaching out and being a role melt all. We cannot
fix every problem, but you have to start somewhere and I feel we are
trying to show we can make a positive impact, it is not one thing
or the other. A lot of what you say is that the question of gender
inequality is inextricably intertwined with our traditional
class inequality. I think it is, I absolutely think it is, but I also
think for many women, life has in some ways become harder and many
would like to be in families where there could be a breadwinner when
the children are small, instead of being in Waitrose getting every
shift they can at 10:30 p.m.. Thank you, very interesting.
Now, this programme obviously takes its politics very seriously,
but not all politicians share our high-minded approach,
and apparently think it's a bit of a laughing matter.
So, here, for your disapproval, some laughing politicians,
starting with Theresa May at PMQs yesterday.
And we're joined now by the Times sketchwriter Patrick Kidd
and the Conservative MP Michael Fabricant.
Welcome, both. You have two laugh at some stage in politics? If you sit
in the House of Commons as I do religiously, you have to laugh or
you would go mad. Or cry! Theresa May really was throwing herself into
that. What was the hilarity about? It was a natural reaction, like
watching a rhinoceros roller-skate Philip Hammond is telling jokes! The
shoulders went like a vulture in the jungle. It was not anything that had
been said to her, Jeremy Corbyn was asking a question about local
government Finance and clearly somebody whispered to her and that
set her off. Did it looks slightly inappropriate? We saw the contrast
with Jeremy Corbyn, a serious matter, the Budget. You have never
seen Jeremy Corbyn smile, let alone laugh. I think he has smiled. He has
not much to laugh about but I am not going to be party political! Me,
party political? It is always appropriate to laugh and smile and
show your humanity and Theresa May comes over very well doing that. But
does it look great to have an outbreak of hysterics? Contextually,
it seems odd what happened yesterday. I do agree we need
politicians with a human side and with social media. The idea of
everybody walking around Po faced and not caught out at any moment
enjoying themselves, we would not want that either, so put them a bit
of slack. Do you inject humour into the boardroom? Yes, that is
essential, I think. In all walks of life. There are serious matters to
attend to, but also, if you are enjoying yourself, you tend to be
having better ideas. Not a lot of chuckles in asset management, let's
be honest! I am struggling to think of a good joke! Wendy Duet tell your
best joke and did you enjoy Philip Hammond's jokes? Mine was forced, I
wanted to show they were jolly. I did the shoulders as well. If you do
not find it funny, you do that and people think you are doing. Theresa
May, it is very nerve-racking getting these questions and some of
them you know in advance and others you do not. I have not done my
homework, but not many PMQs she has done. At the moment, it is sometimes
laughter of relief. What about the NIC announcements, were they funny?
I thought they were interesting. It was Philip's jokes. Who is there?
Philip the coffers, we need your money! You wonder what was said to
her, David Cameron was laughing once and somebody had made a joke about
Jeremy Corbyn, saying, he is good, isn't he? Yes, that is why I voted
for him. I will be back tomorrow with a range
of guests. And I will be back here tomorrow. Goodbye!
The very embodiment of the England that must emerge.