30/03/2017 Daily Politics


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The starting gun has been fired and the battle


so who won day one of the negotiations -


The Government unveils how it will turn EU law into British Law


but will the "Great Repeal Bill" do anything to reduce the number


Ken Livingstone faces a Labour Party disciplinary panel


after last year's outburst about jews, Zionism and Hitler -


were his words anti-semitic and will he be kicked out


Why some politicians still can't grasp the basic principles of


All that in the next hour and with us for the duration,


back by popular demand, former


Pensions Minister and Remain supporter, Ros Altmann,


So just 729 days and 12 hours until the UK is due to leave the EU


Who's counting? We should have a clock ticking down.


Just a divorce settlement and new treaty on Britain's future


relationship with the 27 nation block to negotiate


But when I spoke to the Prime Minister last night she struck


an optimistic note about the outcome of that process.


What we're both looking for is that comprehensive free trade agreement


which gives that ability to trade freely into the European


single market and for them to trade with us.


But it can't be exactly the same, can it?


It'll be a different relationship but I think it can


have the same benefits, in terms of that free


That was the Prime Minister. What do you make of it all, Ros? You are a


Remainer, you were, or still are? I was a Remainer, of course I accept


the result of the referendum and I think the Government is right to see


how we can best implement the result of the referendum but I do have


serious concerns about the approach, about the dump - attitude we a are


going in with. I would like it to be more friendly. She was conciliatory.


She was but the tone of the letter conflating economic trade and


security is not going down well. I have studried Europe and watched it


grow over the last 30 or more years and Europe does best when you talk


as friends and when you understand how they think. And it is not the


same way we think which is part of the reason, I suspect we are leaving


because we have different attitudes. But when the European negotiators,


or leading European figures are pretty tough with us, talk of


punishment beatings, Mr Juncker. You eat what is on the table or you


don't come to the table at all. When that happens we all say - oh, they


are being tough, look how difficult it is going to be. When the British


Prime Minister points out that security is one of the real things


that we bring to the table, people like you throw their hands up in


horror. Why? It is surely quite legitimate for us to point out that


we are very important, in or out of the EU, to Europe's security. I


absolutely agree with that. That's our real strong card but in the


letter, this issue of security was mentioned ten times. And economic


and security were conflated and pushed together five times. This is


going to inflame the people who receive the letter and I fear that


we need to go in with an attitude that says - we are your friends, you


are your partners, we want to listen and we want to work together. The


French foreign ministry has said that they're glad that misses May


has put security at the centre of the negotiations. Good. -- that Miss


May. Now negotiations haven't been


started yet but the argument has. The Prime Minister struck a more


emollient tone in her letter yesterday.


We now have a broad idea of the British negotiating position


and in the month ahead we'll get a better idea of the


negotiating position of the remaining 27 countries.


Here's JoCo, to tell us what some of the issues are.


Arguments have already broken out about key passages from


In the letter she says: "We believe it is necessary to agree the terms


of our future partnership alongside those of our withdrawl from the EU."


But the EU Commission's chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, has


which means the UK and the EU should agree the terms of the UK's


withdrawal before negotiating any future trade deal.


EU Critics have also accused the Prime Minister in her letter


of linking future co-operation on security and defence


The European Parliament's Brexit co-ordinator Guy Verhofstadt said:


The Brexit Secretary David Davis has played down the issue saying:


The next big date will be the EU summit at the end of April,


where Donald Tusk's negotiating guidelines will be will be discussed


Negotiations won't really start in ernest until after the French


presidential elections in April and May and then there are elections


As we were coming on air, to us to us Turks President of the European


Council was speaking in Malta where the European People's Party is


having a conference. Yesterday, after receiving the letter from


Prime Minister, Theresa May, invoking Article 50 I said that


paradoxically there is also something positive in brings it.


Brexit has made us the community of 27, more determined and more united


than before. I am fully confident of this, especially after our own


declaration and and I can say we will remain determined and united


until the future. That was Donald Tusk.


Earlier I spoke to the MEP Roberto Gaultieri,


who is on the European Parliament's negotiating team.


I asked him if he thought a deal could be done in two years.


It's a challenging task but I think and I can hope


The time is not much so we have to start working intensively very


soon and I hope that instead of discussing on the different


sequencing, we can start discussing substance very soon.


First there are open issues connected to a withdrawal agreement.


You say it's a challenge but it could be done within two years


but a leaked resolution by the European Parliament yesterday


said that Britain will not be given a free trade deal by the EU


in the next two years, and that any transition arrangement,


to cushion the UK's exit after 2019 could last no longer


We think that we can conclude quickly and also it depends on,


of course, the UK Government, in agreement on the elements,


the basic elements of the withdrawal deal, which we are open to discuss


also in the framework of the long-term deal.


Then, of course, to conclude all the details of a comprehensive


association free trade agreement, maybe it would take longer than two


We think that it might be longer and this is also the role


of the transitional agreement, during which we could finalise


How much money do you think the UK needs to pay


I'm not going to give an exact figure because we rely


on the figure that the competent bodies will define.


We are not going to ask one single pound more than what is already


agreed as a commitment, a liability by the United Kingdom.


A row has broken out, as I'm sure you know,


because Guy Verhofstadt has said that the Prime Minister linked


security and trade in her letter to Donald Tusk and he said


that there could be no bargaining between those two elements.


I appreciate the tone of the letter but indeed there is one paragraph


which I think was not the most happy, let's say, formulation,


where it sounds like, "A failure to reach an agreement


would mean that co-operation in the fight against crime


We would not, we say this in our resolution,


have a trade-off between, let's say the role of the UK in the area


of security and defence, and some special arrangements


We want a comprehensive deal, so no trade-off, no cherry picking.


How much power does the European Parliament


really have in terms of shaping these negotiations?


The European Parliament will have to give its consent...


...to the divorce agreement at the end.


Of course we'll have also to vote on future agreements.


That's why we will follow closely all the steps of the negotiation.


Will you miss the UK in the way that Donald Tusk expressed yesterday once


he'd received the letter from Theresa May?


We had a very moving moment with our UK colleagues


I considered, since the beginning, a mistake, the Brexit,


That's one view from the European Parliament.


I'm joined now by the Conservative MP Dominic Raab, who supported


Brexit and by Paul Blomfield, Labour's Shadow Brexit minister.


Welcome to you both. Was it necessary, Dominic Raab for the


Prime Minister to say - if there is no deal, then security cooperation


will be weakened? She didn't say that. What she said - we could read


it out, it was a long paragraph, she said "We are going on the best deal


on trade and on security." We could of course cope if we didn't have the


deal on security but, it would make us weaker and we should make our


relationship stronger, so we should redouble our efforts. Honestly,


no-one could fairly call that a threat. It is a statement of fact. I


didn't call it a threat Some have. But I asked, was it necessary for


the Prime Minister to say that? Well, I think it is a statement of


fact, that we are not saying, as some people have on the Project Fear


side that we will fall over a cliff. It says, of course, either side


could cope with this but we want to be stronger not weaker. I thought


Remainers said we would be weaker without the cooperation we are


saying we want an agreement and an agreement on trade. Let me get Paul


Blomfield's reaction? This letter has been weeks if not months in


preparation, it was carefully constructed and clearly deliberate


that in that one paragraph the threat of non-cooperation on


security was linked to the opportunity -... Well there wasn't a


threat of non-cooperation, it said it would weaken, there is no threat


of non-cooperation. Well the implication is there. You are right,


of course, Andrew, the wording is careful. But the implication was


there. What implication? Well, if we can't do a deal on trade that


satifies Britain, we may not do a deal on security. Now I think this


is playing games with something that is not just of interest to the rest


of Europe but is hugely important to the British people that we cooperate


on security. Sure. The two shouldn't be linked. But Downing Street, last


night, issued statement, or briefed that whatever is in this document


that's gone now, as our Article 50 process, does not refer in anyway to


by lateral sharing of intelligence. And it is bilateral sharing of


intelligence, Britain between and France, for example, which is by far


the most important intelligence sharing. Well, Downing Street need


to clarify, exactly what they did mean by that paragraph. Because it


was taken to mean an interdependence in the discussions Anti-Terrorism,


Crime and Security Act cooperation and trade. "In security terms,


fwalure to reach agreement of an overall deal would mean our


cooperation against the fight against crime and terrorism would be


weakened." That's right. Isn't it a statement of the object Jews It is


and of critical importance to the British people that we maintain


that. It was unfortunate but I'm sure thoughtfully considered that it


was linked in the same car graph on trade. Sho -- a statement of the


obvious. When you look at the scale of what


hers to be done, the divorce Bill settlement has got to be agreed, and


we seem to be pretty far apart on that, and it's very complicated as


well. Then we have to agree, and the Prime Minister said to me last


night, a comprehensive free trade agreement. Can all that he done by


October of 2018 to begin the ratification process? The total


processes to make years, but you're right, we need to do the lion's


share within 18 months. It is feasible with goodwill on all sides,


but you are right - it will be a challenge. Could you not see a


transitional period, not an implementation period, which is the


language of the Government, but a transitional period well, although


there may be agreement by the end of the Brexit process, things will


remain to be resolved in a transitional period? First, I think


it is great news that people are talking not about whether this deal


can be done but Hal. The timescale is tight because the EU has imposed


that on us, but there we are. It was the Lisbon Treaty that we all voted


for. On outside... Article 50 was drafted by a Brit. Under a Brit. But


about the transitional point... I am saying this is an EU rule that we


have to stick to. It is not anything the UK has chosen, certainly not


this Government. In terms of transitional and implementation


period, this is my personal view. If we get to the end of the two-year


deal, we've sorted out the principles and the lions share of


the future is there but we have not dealt with every detail, I think it


is interesting that some people were saying we needed an extra year to do


that, and I would be quite relaxed. If we only had a very short period,


the goodwill on all sides built up, we just need to make sure we don't


miss anything. I'm relaxed about it. The European position at the moment


is that they don't want to talk about our future relationship with


the EU until the matter of the divorce Bill, the divorce


settlement, has been agreed. Should the Government agree to that, or


should it demand that negotiations take place in parallel? I think


making demands of that sort, which would stall the process, would not


be helpful. Which demand - ours or theirs? The one that we would make


that we would only talk about the future in parallel with talking


about the settlement. So it's OK for Mr Barnier to demand that we had to


settle the divorce Bill before the future relationship, but it would be


wrong for us to demand that we do both at once? I mean, whose side are


you one? I am not saying that, Andrew. It is a matter of


discussion, and different comets from both sides have suggested there


may be spaced a compromise. The important thing is that we don't let


the discussion around the divorce Bill get in the way the discussion


on the future relationship. The Government at the moment is saying,


no, we need to discuss both in parallel, and indeed, the very idea


of a divorce Bill, which is controversial on this side of the


Channel, we can't agree to that until we see how good the new


arrangement is going to be, going forward. I'm trying to find out,


does your party agree with that or not? We think we need to get the


best settlement, going forward. I think it would make sense, Andrew,


if we could have parallel discussions, and I think


compromise... You have already compromised on this. Angela Merkel's


language has shifted subtly. She has said, we won't settle first but we


need the questions to be answered before we go for the dual track. I


think it is sadly and gently already been resolved. We shall see. Our


words were interesting, and they will not as hardline as the word


from Mr Barnier and Jean-Claude Juncker. We know you are a


backbencher. As a backbencher, can we agree, do you think, from the


comments David Davis made on Question Time on Monday night, and


the Prime Minister's replies to my questions last night about


immigration, that the 100,000 target is dead, never going to happen? In


the context of national policy as a whole or Brexit? That even once we


have left the EU, we are still not going to get anywhere near net


migration of 100,000. I think the Government has been clear. We want


to aim for that. Of course, when we get outside of the EU and we've got


the controls we want, actually, we'll be able to look at it in the


round and make sure we get the advantages of immigration, but also


check the costs and strains. I am not particularly wedded to arbitrary


targets. So it is dead? One thing that is crucial is that the overall


volume of immigration can be reduced, and that we got control,


because that's what the public want to see. But neither on Monday night


this did Mr Davies, or the Prime Minister last night, mention the


target. I did, but they didn't. That is significant. What do you want me


to do, postmortem your interviews? I want to know if you think that the


target is dead. I will give you this: It is pretty demanding, but


the most important thing is, the volume can come down. More


importantly than that, the qualitative side, making sure we get


the advantages of migration. I want to hear from Roz. Immigration


control and the implication of a substantial fall in numbers was put


at the very heart of the argument, one of the most significant factors.


One of the major reasons, I emphasise just one, why a lot of


people voted to leave. You are right, it was. Since then, they have


been talking down expectations. David Davis has been in a stony,


saying to East European workers, it will take years and years and years,


don't worry, there is little changing. Do you think it is dead?


Yes, and it has been for a long time. It certainly hasn't been


achieved, that's for sure! It may be like that Monty Python parrot. I


think that having this arbitrary number should never have actually


been promised in any case. We have an ageing population and we need


immigration. If you have economic growth, and part of the reasons why


we have had immigration is because of the economic success we've


achieved, and we need these people to come in. With an ageing


population and a growing economy, it is imperative that we continue to


have immigration. More than half has come outside the EU anyway. You


can't put a number on it. If the economy slows down, or if more


ageing people keep working... In terms of EU immigration, people have


been coming here to work and do the jobs we need done. We will leave it


there, but I think we are holding you two hostage. Cos I know you are


enjoying it so much! Just when you thought


we we were leaving the Europe, or the EU at least, a French


word keeps being used Yes, talking about the "acquis"


or "acquis communitaire" is de It's the accumulated legislation,


legal acts, and court decisions which constitute the body


of European Union law. Today the Government is launching


a white paper in preparation for a bill that will transfer


all that into British law. The perhaps misleadingly titled


"Great Repeal Bill" White Paper has been published in the last hour


by the Brexit Secretary, We have been clear that we want a


smooth and orderly exit, and the Great Repeal Bill is integral to


that approach. It will provide clarity and certainty for


businesses, workers and consumers across the United Kingdom on the day


we leave the EU. It will mean that as we exit the EU and seek a new


comedy and special partnership with the EU, we will be doing so from a


position where we have the same standards and rules. But it will


also ensure that we deliver on our promise to end the supremacy of


European Union law in the UK as we exit puts our laws will then be made


in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, and interpreted not by


judges in Luxembourg but by judges across the UK. The question is, how


is it done and what done? The White Paper on the question of how gives


sweeping powers to the executive. Sweeping because it proposes a power


to use delegated legislation to correct and thus change primary


legislation and also devolved legislation by delegated


legislation. Sweeping because of the sheer scale of the exercise. In


those circumstances, one might expect some pretty rigorous


safeguards to the use of these sweeping powers, but none are found


in the White Paper. David Davis and Kia Starmer there in the Commons.


Dominic Raab, is this a cut and paste job rather than a Great Repeal


Bill? There are two stages. We want to get the applicable laws from the


EU into UK law so we have certainty. We can then decide which repatriated


laws we want to keep, where there are EU laws that will I, where we


want to revise them, repeal them entirely. This does two things.


First, make sure that the people watching this show can hold the


people that write the laws of the land accountable. Second, it gives


us certain click -- certainty. The Henry VIII close... Explain that,


because not everyone will know. -- clause. Let's stick on the certainty


issue - do you think it will give certainty and ensure a smooth


transition incorporating thousands of pieces of EU legislation into UK


law in the first instance? Dominic has let the cat out of the bag, if


it was not already, that it incorporates the laws into UK law


and then they will start taking them apart, which is why they were keen


to get out of the EU in the first place. We're talking about important


protections in employment, for consumers and for the environment.


Which ones do you think he will remove, not him personally, but the


Brexiteers? Many of his colleagues have been talking about employment


laws because they see them as holding back business. I have


already been clear on this. We have fairly difficult challenges in the


workplace, with the so-called gig economy. Let's take the quote from


Priti Patel, still in the Cabinet, but who last year said the Institute


of Directors, are dozens of laws in proposed, with the cost totalling


?32 billion. Money that should be invested in jobs and growth is tied


up in red tape and appeasing the EU's bureaucracy. We could deliver a


?4.3 billion boost to our economy and 60,000 new jobs. So you're going


to, or would like to, cut in half the burdens of the EU social and


employment legislation? You like the Prime Minister has been clear, we


will not Whee Kim workers' rights. You can relieve the pressure on


small businesses without Di looting right. For example, the Digital


economy -- Whee... The cat is not out of the bag. We have said... You


said you would look at the laws you like and those you don't. Just put


it in the context of what you are saying, and you will keep the ones


you like. The ones you may not like could be the social employment


legislation, or Priti Patel is wrong. We want to leave the EU but


have the laws of the land in a place where we have certainty for


businesses and citizens. Of course, as a process of taking back control,


we will work out sensibly, Caerphilly, just as everyone would


expect, which laws help and which we want to keep, and which ones hinder


and which we want to get rid of. You were a work -- carefully. The Prime


Minister is right that we must transpose EU law into our own so


that we have certainty. Right, you are agreed. Theresa but we need to


be mindful that a number of the red tape regulations have been our own,


imposed by ourselves, with gold plating. We need to look at that.


These Henry VIII powers, I think, Parliament needs again to be mindful


that we don't want just one section of the ministerial team to be able


to override primary legislation. We have two years, a diplomatic track,


and we have to make sure we're just a laws to reflect the deal we


strike. So you will go over the heads of Parliament? No, let's be


clear. The constitutional committee of the House of Lords have said that


it is imperative if you're going to get legal certainty in two years, to


have some Henry VIII clauses. This would be pushing through, as some


people would argue, pushing through secondary legislation, which would


mean it would not be the same level. Excuse me, Dominic Raab, I am


talking. I am saying what the clauses are, and they could be used


to actually pass legislation without the same level of scrutiny as


exists... You said gathering round. I did not. I said pushing through,


passing legislation that means you don't have the full scrutiny of


Parliament. Is that something you are worried about?


Snoonchts deeply worried T talks about correcting, using secondary


legislation, negative resolutions, no debate to correct primary


legislation. There is no precedence of that. I accept we are in a


completely unprecedented situation and I note... Plenty of... I will


come back to you. I know what the Lords are saying, we need some


assurance that is no primary legislation affecting important


rights for people and protections will be involved and secondly, we


could set up an independent body to just oversee what is pushed into


secondary legislation. But how long would that take We have had the


former clerk of the House of Commons today, and he should know, he is an


expert in these things, saying, actually it could take ten years to


extricate Britain from EU legislation unless there are some


powers the executive has where they'll argue it is for relatively


meaner bits of legislation, we will be doing this for ten years. -


minor. I this for minor bits that's fine but lets make sure by having


proper oversight. Tim Farron has said that - we are going to launch a


legislative war, we'll grind the Government's agenda to a stand still


unless proper and vigorous safeguards are given over the Great


Repeal Bill and the bill is now in the Prime Minister's court. Do you


sign up to this? ? Know, it is not our yobbive to make things grind to


a halt. It is to make sure there is proper accountability. By all means


put some stuff into secondary legislation but make sure there is


proper oversight and it is simply not a Government legislation. David


Davis said the UK must follow the EU case law up to the point of bricts.


Do you accept that? We have to make sure EU law and obligations are met


up until the point we leave, we need pragmatism and speed and flexibility


to achieve that. Do you think it'll go beyond that European Court of


Justice, or you don't want to see... I think there will be an issue


around regulatory equivalence, where if we want to export into the EU


we'll have to be mindful of their standards which will include the


case law but that's something totally different. All right. Thank


you both. Now, some of today's younger


employees could be working into their 70s before they can


claim the state pension. At least, that's one of the ideas


being considered by the Government as it looks to make the rising


pensions bill more affordable. And while there's no talk


of retirement here - JoCo and I long ago abandoned hope


of that - not everybody likes the idea of working


into their twilight years. ARCHIVE: National Insurance


contributions are going to build up a better standard of


comfort for the old. Back in the 1940s, not many people


lived beyond the age of 70, so they didn't have a


very long retirement. Today's 65-year-olds are expected


to live into their mid-80s, but this is costly for the public


purse, with state pension spending due to go up by ?20 billion


over the next 20 years, so the Government is looking at ways


to bring down the One proposal is for today's 20-


somethings to wait until they're in their 70s


before they qualify for the state pension,


and as you can imagine,


that's going to have big implications you do a physical


job, like these guys. I don't have a personal pension,


so I'll be relying on the state pension, and I don't


think that I'll be able to work till I'm 70 in this


physical environment. And in the future, that's


going to be a softer So, what are your pension


plans for the future? I haven't really thought that far


ahead yet, but I need to. But, yeah, got to definitely


think about retiring, and I don't really want to be


working until I'm 70, definitely Meanwhile, a review


by former CBI boss John Cridland recommends


that a state pension That's seven years earlier


than currently planned. The age changes,


together with the removal of the triple lock, which


uprates pensions by inflation, earnings,


or 2.5%, could result I believe the most


this one generation of pensioners can bear


is being asked to wait The Government may need to save more


money because of the problems of an ageing society


on public expenditure. If they should save more


money, don't go to the state pension age, look


at the indexation arrangements What about those people


doing physical jobs - Can they really be


expected to work into In hard manual jobs


in your mid-60s is a really tough thing to ask, but people can


re-skill to do other jobs. Someone on a construction


site has very valuable skills


in the retail sector. When we go to a DIY store,


we talk to someone who has done the role that they are then


helping us to do. I'm not saying that it's easy,


but it is possible to re-skill The first state pension


came in in 1909. You would take your pension book


to the post office, cash it in Back then, though,


you had to be 70 to qualify, and we could be


going back to that. The Government is due


to make its response to the state And who better to discuss


all of that with than Ros Altmann, So Ros, the state pension age for


men is 65 at the moment. It is between 60 and 65 for wi. It is to


rise for 66 for both -- for wi. It is to rise to 66 for both by 2020


and due it reach 48 for both by 2046. Is that enough for should it


go higher? I actually think that we need n my view, to get away from


this idea that there is one magic age which you keep pushing up, that


everybody has to live by. The problem we've got is we have vast


differences in life expectancy across the country. And some people


have a life expectancy, 15 or 20 years less than others in our


country. Some people have very hard, physical labour jobs, some people


started work at 15 and contributed to National Insurance and could be


contributing for well over 50 years, taking one-quarter of their salary


and yet, unless they live long enough to reach this ever-rising


state pension age, they may get absolutely... They may never get


anything back. That seems to me to be inflexible in a way that isn't


socially enwhich tab. But -- equitable? How would you have a


variable pension age? How would you do it? A number of ways. My favoured


option would be to have a band of ages which recognises different life


expectancy and different job experience. So, for example, if you


have contributed to national insurance for 50 or more years, you


started work at 15 or 16, then from 65 or 66 you can start it get some


state pension. Possibly if you are seriously unwell, in the same way as


the private pension system recognises that, there could be some


recognition. The problem we've got at the moment is - if you're healthy


and wealthy enough to live to the actual state pension starting age,


and you don't take it, you can get a lot more. But if you are unhealthy


or not wealthy enough to wait, it's tough luck. Until you reach that


age, 67, 68, whatever it is going to be, or even more, you get not a


penny and that seems to me, not to reflect the flexibility that we need


and probably should accommodate in our system. Can I check one issue of


principle with you. All the projections are based on the


assumption that longevity is rising and people are living longer and


they are doing the kind of jobs that is not manual labour where it is


really difficult to carry on after you are 60, never mind 65. But I


also see reports that today's younger generation is in many ways


less healthy than their parents. Are we sure people are going to keep on


living longer? And that's the other reason why I think continually


planning to increase and push the age up is not the right way to


manage state - or not the best way to manage state pension policy. In


fact, life expectancy has fallen in the last two or three years. And we


haven't fully understood why yet. What we do need, though, and I think


what is more powerful in controlling the costs of state pension in our


ageing population is perhaps to look at the way in which the state


pension increases each year. Let me come on to that. The other big issue


is the triple lock, everybody calls t the Government is committed to it,


I think the Labour opposition is committed to T so state pensions go


up -- committed to it. State pensions go up by CPI, or average


earnings or two-and-a-half %, whichever is the higher. That's


right. It's expensive. You get signs the Government is trying to find


ways of getting out of this, at least for the next election and so


on. Should we keep it, adjust it or drop it? To be honest, I would be in


favour of keeping it until 2020. They have to do that. We have


committed to do so. But after that, looking at it differently because


the 2.5% doesn't make any sense from an economic or social perspective.


It is just a random number, picked from the air in a way. But also, I


think what Labour hasn't necessarily understood and what pensioners


generally need to realise is that the triple lock is a bit of a trick.


It doesn't cover the whole of the state pension and indeed the triple


lock does not protect properly, the poorest and the oldest pensioners,


who are the very groups you would most want to protect. They don't get


the triple lock. They don't? The Pension Credit, the means-tested


benefit for all the pensioners who don't have enough income from their


state pension. From the state pension alone. Is not triple locked.


Only the basic state pension in the old state system is protected to


around ?120 a week. The new state pension is fully protected up to


?160 but only available to the youngest pensioners, so it is the


wrong way around. So you are saying there are 1.6 million pensioners. I


mean pensioners are much better off, on average, than they used to be 20


or 30 years ago On average but... My but is coming but 1.6 million


pensioners, one in seven are still living in poverty and you are saying


the triple lock, that many people would most benefit from the triple


lock, they are actually not. They don't. Absolutely. I think we need


to reconsider this idea. The 2.5% adds hugely to the forecast


long-term costs of delivering the state pension. It adds billions of


pounds. If we just love to a double lock, that would take the pressure


off the rises in state pension age and will also be fairer if we can


apply it properly... To the poorer pensioners. Yes. All right. We'll


leave it there. A lot to be discussed in the years ahead before


the parties decide on manifesto for 2020. Only another 30 years of work.


Now, the former Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, is appearing


in front of a Labour Party disciplinary panel to answer


allegations that he's brought the party into disrepute.


Mr Livingstone is currently suspended from the party


after a series of interviews last year in which he suggested -


amongst other things - that Adolf Hitler supported Zionism


before his appointment as Chancellor of Germany in 1933.


Here's a clip of Mr Livingstone's appearance on the Daily Politics


last April, when he was asked about those comments


If I was to criticise the South African Government you wouldn't say


I was racist, you would say I was critical of that Government.


Blurring these things undermines the importance of anti-Semitism. A real


anti-Semite doesn't hate the Jews in Israel they hate them in Stoke


Newington or Islington. It is a physical loathing.


And this morning, our cameras caught up with Mr Livingstone as he entered


that disciplinary hearing, and he was asked again


I simply said back in 1933, Hitler's Government signed a deal


with the Zionist movement which would mean that Germany's Jewish


community were moved to what is now Israel.


That's very different to saying that Hitler supported


The SS set up training camps so that German Jews,


who were going to go there, could be trained to cope with a very


different sort of country when they got there.


We're joined by Mike Catts from the Jewish Labour movement. And


Jonathan Rosenhead, who is giving evidence


We heard the first clip. I take it it is all right that it is all right


to hate Jews in Israel, as long as you don't hate them anywhere else in


the world. Anti-Semitism has had hatred at its heart but it isn't


expressed at hatred, it is discrimination, it is not wanting to


live next to them or the rest of things. A whole range of things. He


said it is OK to hate them in Israel. No I think he was pointing


out that talking about Israel and Jews is inappropriate much this is


about Jews, it has nothing to do with Israel. He didn't say that, I


have to say. What I actually said, though, we have to listen to what he


said because he is defending himself against claims of anti-Semitism. He


said "You are only a real anti-Semite if you hate all Jews,


not just those in Israel." So you can hate Jews in Israel and still...


You are reading that in. It is up to you, it is not in the words. What


else would you read into it? Criticism of Israel is not criticism


of Jews, and it is not anti-Semitic. What do you think? I think the


reputational damage of his comments on the Labour Party... That is what


is really at stake here. He came in last year to defend an MP after


comments she made. She immediately put her hand up and said, what I


have done is wrong, and she is a shining example of how you can go on


a journey of education and realise why doing something is anti-Semitic.


Is Ken Livingstone anti-Semitic? Very hard to understand someone who


turns victimhood into Calabria late -- collaboration. I was a GLA


candidate and he was on radio London telling people that Hitler


supporting Zionism was a very matter-of-fact thing. When we go out


on the doorstep in Jewish areas, a question we get asked is why he has


not been expelled yet. That is why the NEC has referred this to the


panel. What is the point of making all these comments? He wasn't asked


about Hitler or Zionism, or in fact anything to do with the pre-2nd


World War period, so why make these comments? One may wonder why he made


that the tour. Well, I am asking you. Everything he said is factually


correct. Will come onto that in a second. Hitler and the Nazis


negotiated for many years and got concessions from the Zionist


movement. Both movements wanted to get the Jews out of Germany. Do you


think it is offensive to talk about Adolf Hitler and not as and Zionism


in the same breath all these years after 6 million Jews died in the


Holocaust? The Holocaust was one of the major seminal events of our


political experience. It is a conference reference by all people


in political discussion, the same as apartheid, to say that you cannot


talk about Israel in the same breath as Nazism is a restriction of free


expression. The Holocaust educational trust is an independent


body that has done a lot of work in education. It points out when


commenting on Mr Livingstone's comments that he is throwing around


the Holocaust like political confetti, and that deliberate misuse


of the Holocaust is anti-Semitic as he has a duty of care. He is high


profile and has done some important job, so he should have a better


sense not to say these things he thinks he can justify them on narrow


academic grounds. Either I think that in dispute, but that is by the


way. He should have better sense than to repeat some of this stuff


this morning. I don't know how he thinks that we'll win over the panel


or repair his reputational damage with the Jewish community. The fact


that Ken Livingstone says, when we're talking about Zionism and not


as in, 6 million Jews were murdered on the orders of Adolf Hitler, and


he makes a connection between that and the existence of the state of


Israel, is that helpful on the doorstep for the Labour Party? I


think the Labour Party should be grown-up enough to have a serious


discussion, instead of having red lines and saying you cannot discuss


this. The Jewish labour movement has many members. On the question of


Jewish people identifying with Israel, researchers found that 91%


of them do. You are kidding yourself if you think this is inoffensive. We


have had comments from the Labour Party and across the Jewish


community, Chief Rabbis, trusts, and lots of people have said this is


offensive, in a very common-sense way. It has been said that it is


biased and that this panel is being held in secret - what do you say to


that? I must say, I find this attitude very puzzling. Ken


Livingstone must be aware that his remarks were gratuitously offensive.


If he did not intend that at the time, he knew afterwards and he kept


repeating them. This issue is about the reputation of the Labour Party,


and how it has impacted on it, his remarks. He came out to defend


remarks by an MP who herself said she had been anti-Semitic by trying


to say they were not anti-Semitic. Things like, everything Hitler did


in Germany was legal. That is not about Israel, that is about


anti-Semitism, so I think it is very difficult to quite understand what


his idea of anti-Semitism truly is. Do you think he is anti-Semitic?


What he has done has certainly come across that way. But the decision


that needs to be made by the panel is, what impact did it have on the


Labour Party? Did it bring the party into dispute before the May oral


election? Does he have anything to apologise for? No. The people who


have attacked him and Jeremy Corbyn have brought much more offence and


disrepute on the party than he has. You may join me canvassing in


Finchley and Golders Green and other areas. London has the largest Jewish


population in the country, and where we live, we know that there are lots


of Jewish voters. Tell me they don't ask why Ken hasn't been dispelled


from the party. Frankly, honestly, we have the mainstream Jewish


opinion on our side in this case. We have to leave it there. Thank you


for coming in. I knew we would not get through the


morning without mentioning Hitler, and we didn't!


Now, back to our main story - the triggering of Article 50.


After her statement in the House, the Prime Minister then took


questions from MPs for three and a half hours.


She told journalists last night that she only had an apple and a few


nuts to sustain her before that marathon session in the Commons.


The Article 50 process is now underway, and in accordance with the


wishes of the British people, the United Kingdom is leaving the


This is an historic moment from which there can be no


The Prime Minister says that no deal is better than a


But the reality is, no deal IS is a bad deal.


What we on these benches have become accustomed


to the views of members on the other side of the House being incapable of


understanding that the people of Scotland voted to remain in the


The substance of the deal that we achieve, and I'm


interested in the outcomes of this deal, will be the best possible deal


for the people of the whole of the United Kingdom.


And I especially welcome that we want a special


relationship with the EU based on friendship,


trade and many other collaborations, once we are an


This day, of all days, the Liberal Democrats


will not roll over as the official opposition have done.


Our children and our grandchildren will judge all of us


I am determined that I will look my children


say that I did everything to prevent this calamity


that the Prime Minister has today chosen.


It's never been more true - the devil will be in the


As that detail emerges, will the Prime Minister ensure that


everyone in her teens stop the practice which has been


so prevalent of claiming that every awkward


question is evidence of a desire to overturn the will of the British


Because nothing will more surely destroy that unity of purpose


It was pretty lively in the Commons yesterday. Theresa May has now


delivered her Article 50 letter to politicians.


but politicians don't always follow through when they ask


the public a question, and the public give them an answer


That's a dilemma that's facing councillors in the Isle of Wight,


who are putting an even more weighty decision to a public vote.


When the Isle of Wight Council invited the public to vote for the


name of their chain ferry, officers stated that a certain


name, Floaty McFloatface, would not be accepted.


And you guessed it, a petition was sooned signed by more than 1000


people, calling for it to be named just that.


This week the council leader slapped down his officials


and said if this name was the most popular,


This was all the fault, of course of Boaty McBoatface, the


name suggested by a public poll for a polar research ship which was


blocked by ministers and given to this sub instead.


We just don't know what's good for us.


Strictly viewers voted John Segreant back on the


competition, week after week, until he bowed out voluntarily.


Lawmakers overturned a public vote to name a


And in Austin, Texas, people tried unsuccessfully


to name the city's waste management service, after Limp Bizkit front


Some people at first thought this man was a joke


Voters have until the end of next week to make suggestions for the


floating bridge, before the top six names also go to the polls,


and as the BBC remains impartial, we will just say that we do not


favour Floaty McFloatface above any of the other names available.


And we can speak now to Sally Perry, the journalist


who broke the story of this attempted democratic outrage.


She writes for the local news website 'On the Wight'.


That's a good name. Hello. It's going to be called Floaty


McFloatface, isn't it? Oti I guess, you've seen the number of people who


have signed a petition so far, and it's over 2000. It is known locally


as Floaty anyway, so calling it Floaty McFloatface is well-suited.


Maybe it will just be shortened. Whether it would stand the test of


time, I don't know, but at the moment, everybody seems very happy


about it and it is putting a smile on lots of faces, just even the


thought of it. Once you see it on the side of the floating bridge, I


think it could become a tourist attraction. I'm sure it will! Whose


bright idea was it to ask the public what this bridge should be named?


One of the councillors raised it in a meeting a couple of weeks ago, and


then a press release came out on the council last week with that little


Bthe bottom, and you know what happens when you tell people that


they can't do something! -- with that little veto. Did you do this to


get -- did they do this to get publicity? He is not a councillor


who is shy of media attention, so you could be right! Is it a nice


bridge? It is brilliant, such fun to ride on, a real novelty. It is a


lifeline for a lot of people. I live in the south of the island, so it is


a novelty when I go on it. When visitors come to the island to see


us, we always take them on the floating bridge. Sally Perry, thank


you for that. I look forward to seeing Floaty next time I am in the


Isle of Wight. Have you ever vetoed a name, Roz? The last time I heard


about it was when I was in primary school and we were asked to come up


with names the teams, and a teacher said about one suggestion, you can


have whatever you want, but not that! Lets ask the viewers what we


should be called. Time to end this programme!


The one o'clock news is starting over on BBC One now.


I'll be here at noon tomorrow with all the big


Marine Le Pen has her eyes on the French presidency.


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