05/09/2017 Daily Politics


05/09/2017

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LineFromTo

Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.

:00:35.:00:39.

MPs return to Westminster where they will get their say

:00:40.:00:41.

on Brexit this week, but will they be able to disrupt

:00:42.:00:44.

the process by inflicting any defeats on this minority government?

:00:45.:00:49.

A re-invigorated Theresa May is going nowhere says her deputy

:00:50.:00:52.

and we'll be hearing more from her about policies

:00:53.:00:54.

But how long will Conservative MPs allow her to stay in post?

:00:55.:01:02.

The Maduro government in Venezuela has been condemned

:01:03.:01:03.

after a deadly crackdown against political opponents.

:01:04.:01:08.

Is Jeremy Corbyn taking a hard enough line with the South American

:01:09.:01:11.

And the First Dog enters the Elysee Palace -

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why is it so important for a French President

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All that in the next hour and with us for the whole

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of the programme today is the chairman of the 1922

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Committee - the so-called shop steward of backbench Conservative

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Now, there's been plenty of government business over

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the summer with Brexit negotiations continuing in Brussels last week.

:01:48.:01:50.

Today though MPs return to Westminster and on Thursday

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they'll debate the EU Withdrawal Bill.

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There are certain to be critical voices, but when it comes to votes

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is the Government likely to suffer any defeats?

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The Government currently has a working majority of 13 thanks

:02:04.:02:06.

There are however nine Labour MPs who supported Leave

:02:07.:02:11.

If these Labour MPs support the bill, this would give

:02:12.:02:18.

the Government a larger Brexit majority of 31.

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That means the Opposition would need around 16 Conservative MPs to rebel

:02:24.:02:26.

Former Business Minister Anna Soubry said yesterday that she had given

:02:27.:02:34.

Theresa May an "absolute assurance" that she and other would not vote

:02:35.:02:38.

There could be closer votes as the Bill advances

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One point of controversy in the Bill is expected to be

:02:44.:02:49.

so-called Henry VIII powers, clauses which give Ministers

:02:50.:02:51.

the freedom to make changes to the law with less parliamentary

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In a moment I'll be talking to Liberal Democrat Leader,

:02:55.:03:02.

Vince Cable, but first let's talk to our Political Editor

:03:03.:03:04.

Welcome to the programme. So Parliament is back! Yes. You're

:03:05.:03:12.

back. It's lovely to be back. Looking forward to the months ahead.

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Theresa May is fighting on as she said over the summer, but there are

:03:16.:03:19.

dangers, big dangers ahead potentially, let's talk about that

:03:20.:03:24.

EU withdrawal Bill with a small majority how difficult could Tory

:03:25.:03:27.

rebels and Opposition parties make life for her? Well, they could make

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it very hard and very painful and very grumpy and very fractious.

:03:33.:03:35.

There isn't however a sense at this point that on the Tory backbenchers

:03:36.:03:40.

those who supported Remain have got any desire to somehow sink the

:03:41.:03:43.

Government to bring it crashing down. The numbers are so tight that

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a really small number of them could actually do so if they really felt

:03:48.:03:51.

like it and with a working majority of 13, it would only take six Tory

:03:52.:03:56.

rebels, just six of them, to defeat the Government on any of it. But

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although they have got real concerns about the Henry VIII powers and a

:04:01.:04:04.

whole variety of issues around the withdrawal Bill there isn't at the

:04:05.:04:09.

moment an appetite to really, really do the Government damage. Are they

:04:10.:04:12.

going to make it difficult? Are they going to try and make demands?

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Absolutely, but are they going to try and carry out a succour punch on

:04:18.:04:21.

Theresa May at a time when she is fragile, not at this stage. The

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challenge for the Government is to work out what's just grand standing

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because there will be a lot of that, it's Westminster after all and where

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are there genuine attempts to make this a better bit of legislation.

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Cabinet Ministers acknowledge they will have to budge in some areas.

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Brexit is the dominating issue for many people. There is a domestic

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aagained da and it seems that Number Ten wants to remind voters and us

:04:47.:04:50.

that they are still going to pursue a domestic agenda and perhaps park

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their tanks on Labour's lawn? I think that's certainly the case for

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two reasons. One when Theresa May moved into Number Ten she was

:05:00.:05:04.

obviously visibly more passionate about the changes she wants to make

:05:05.:05:08.

this this country that the European issue. I think that's quite clear.

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She has never been one of the Tory politicians to be obsessed by the

:05:12.:05:16.

European agenda. But here she finds herself having to do that as the

:05:17.:05:20.

biggest piece of business. So she herself personally wants to get

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things done. She wants to make changes to education and she wants

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to make changes in mental health, a variety of issues. The second reason

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is, the huge Tory election disappointment for that party also

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reminded them if they are to be in a position again of being a winning

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and convincing party, they've got to talk to the public more about things

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that they actually care about. Including lifting the public sector

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pay cut? Well, here we are in June and July after the election that was

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a continual source of speculation. Messages from parts of Government,

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Cabinet Ministers who made it clear around the Cabinet table after the

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election, they wanted to see movement. But we will see. It is up

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to the chancellor in a few weeks time to write a letter to the SSRB,

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the independent... They have the remit? Exactly. It is one of these

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strange issues this public sector pay. It is independently set by

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independent bodies who guarantee their independence, who guard it

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very carefully. But there, of course, operating in a political

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context. And it was interesting the first example of this we actually

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had after the election where you had Cabinet Ministers saying we've got

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to do something about this, a whole load of noises off, the first

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independent body that came back, the teachers review body, came back

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sticking to the 1%, but making it very clear they had only done that

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through gritted teeth because ministers made it clear they

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wouldn't be able to do anything else.

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Let's talk to Vince Cable. You have called for an exit from Brexit. It

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is tougher language than we heard from your predecessor you accepted

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the referendum result, you don't? We are not talking about accepting the

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referendum result. We are talking about having a new referendum. You

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can call it a first referendum on the facts once we know what the

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outcome of the negotiation is, we are in a different position from

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where we were when the referendum took place and the public should

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have a choice then. Do they want to proceed on the basis which they know

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the Government has secured or do they want an exit from Brexit? So

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you have become the Remain party? We are e-Six Nationsly the Remain

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party, that's right. There are many who say you haven't accepted the

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first referendum whatever you want to call it which did say that we

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should leave the EU? If it emerges that leaving the EU is so messy and

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complicated and so damaging, I think as David Davis once put it in a

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democracy people have the right to change their minds, and we'd like to

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give them that right. What do you say Graham Brady? The danger that

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what Vince Cable is advocating is the possibility that we go interest

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a rather tricky, complicated couple of years of uncertainty to another

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referendum followed by more years of uncertainty followed by another

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referendum to say whether or not we accept the outcome of that. This is

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a never ending process. The country made a decision. We need to get it

:08:13.:08:16.

right for the good of the country. Why are you thwarting it? We're not

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thwarting it. We think there are a hole lot of problems coming down the

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track. I think the process of leaving the European Union will be

:08:25.:08:27.

far more difficult and far more costly and far more messy and the

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Government are clearly not ready for it. And we think there needs to be

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check. To a degree, I accept this point, the never endum world, I

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would rather we never got into this, but we are we are and that's where

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we started. We need to know what the facts are, and where the country has

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got to and then we can have a rational decision on whether we are

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to jump off a cliff or stay where we are? Do you accept the EU withdrawal

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Bill? In other words the adoption of all the EU legislation into British

:09:07.:09:10.

law? No, we don't accept it as it is. And there are two basic points

:09:11.:09:16.

here. I mean one is the process issue the so-called Henry VIII

:09:17.:09:19.

clause... We will come to that in a moment, but the substance of the

:09:20.:09:22.

Bill, you don't support the fact that by adopting EU legislation that

:09:23.:09:27.

will allow continuity and certainty when the UK leaves? Well, that would

:09:28.:09:33.

be fine if it were just adopting everything that currently exists

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automatically, but of course, once you take away from Parliament

:09:38.:09:41.

supervision of legislation and institutions as you give the

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executive power there is nothing to stop them for example, let's just

:09:45.:09:48.

take a random case. Air quality and environment. They may just adopt the

:09:49.:09:52.

European standards as they are and that's the end of it, but it maybe

:09:53.:09:57.

in translating it into British law, they wish to dilute the standard. So

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the issues around process and substance are not completely

:10:03.:10:05.

separate. Why are you supporting the idea of giving more power to the

:10:06.:10:09.

executive? You are a champion of backbenchers and less power to

:10:10.:10:13.

Parliament? I am. I think this is a really tricky point. What we need to

:10:14.:10:18.

do now is an enormous amount of legislative change in a short period

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because we want that continuity, we want that clarity that the laws are

:10:23.:10:26.

going to be the same and that businesses and individuals can rely

:10:27.:10:30.

on that... But you don't know they are going to be the same. The

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executive could decide to dump some rights and keep others. The

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Government made it clear that the standards will be the same or

:10:37.:10:40.

higher. We, of course and it is a nonsense to suggest these are the

:10:41.:10:43.

only opportunities that Parliament will have to hold the executive to

:10:44.:10:49.

account. There are so many vehicles to do that. If they were to break

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faith we could bring them back to Parliament and stop it from

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happening. You are happy to give up the Parliamentary scrutiny that you

:10:57.:10:59.

have always said along with many of your colleagues on the backbenches

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is so critical to actually making the executive accountable? The

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Government is doing the right thing in keeping faith with a promise

:11:08.:11:11.

which is the repeal of the European Communities Act will be followed by

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the replication of all of that law in British law. That can only be

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done through this mechanism and I think if Vince tried to change the

:11:19.:11:22.

mechanism we would miss the deadlines that are involved. What

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difference can you actually make though, Vince Cable with 12 Liberal

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Democrat MPs? With our 12 MPs and our rather larger number of peers,

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we can make an intervention, but it is clearly... A wrecking sort of

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intervention? Not wrecking. My phrase is constructive opposition

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and that's where I want us to be! But we will be working with people

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in other parties who share our concerns both on the constitutional

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issues which Graham has acknowledged exist and the issues of substance

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staying in the single market and the customs union where the jobs and the

:11:55.:11:58.

economic future is. Who are you going fob working with in the other

:11:59.:12:01.

parties because it is not clear in the Labour Party how big the

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appetite is in terms of supporting the philosophy that you've outlined.

:12:08.:12:10.

Yes, they have said they want to stay in the single market and

:12:11.:12:14.

customs union during a transition period, and John McDonnell and

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Jeremy Corbyn are not enthusiasts for remaining in the single market?

:12:18.:12:21.

You're right. There is a wonderful lack of clarity about what the

:12:22.:12:24.

Labour Party want. You see can't rely on them to help your 12 Liberal

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Democrat MPs? They have moved a bit and an important way. They have

:12:29.:12:32.

accepted that if there is a transition, it has got to be within

:12:33.:12:35.

the single market and the customs union, but you're right, the Labour

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Party are all over the place in telling us where we go after that.

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Right, so you can't rely on them in terms of support... We maybe able to

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vote with them collectively or with large groups of backbenchers who are

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unhappy about it with some Conservatives. Have you spoken to

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some Conservative backbenchers? Parliament is a collegiate place, we

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are not totally tribal. Which amendments are you going to plan to

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put down when it comes to the committee stage, which is the stage

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after the second reading and the vote next week? We will see whether

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the Speaker takes that and whether it is voted on, but beyond that, we

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will be proceeding through the detail as it comes. What do you say

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to your Tory colleagues, Anna saoub bury said she won't be voting down,

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she said the second reading, but when it comes to cut knee and the

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powers that we've talked about, she will be looking at amendments,

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that's her job? And they need to make their own judgements and that's

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something that I think it is a difficult and complicated job being

:13:37.:13:39.

a member of Parliament because you have to balance these issues of

:13:40.:13:42.

scrutinising legislation and standing up sometimes for your

:13:43.:13:46.

party, especially if you're in Government and Anna and others have

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sor fan been clear that they are striking a balance in this. They

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don't want to damage the Government. And thet don't want to set in train

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a course of events that would be harmful to the country. Did the

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former Brexit minister speak out of turn when he said she really needed

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to look at where her loyalty lies? For all of us our loyalty is to our

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country, but we are in a very delicately poised Parliament with

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small majorities involved in all sorts of important things. Of

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course, people need to think carefully about how they vote. Why

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do you think there is any support for your position when you look at

:14:27.:14:30.

the general election result. The polls haven't moved. There isn't

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much evidence of buyers remorse and your vote share went down in the

:14:34.:14:36.

general election. Why are you pursuing a strategy that isn't going

:14:37.:14:40.

to be a vote winner for you? We don't know what's going to happen in

:14:41.:14:46.

the next two years. The general election was in a very different

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context, the process of negotiation hadn't properly started. There was a

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lot of debate about what soft and hard Brexit actually meant. I think

:14:55.:15:01.

a lot of people took our second referendum commitment as re-running

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the last one. Do you think people haven't understood the issues? The

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economic consequences are just beginning to become apparent through

:15:08.:15:10.

the exchange rate and it is affecting people's living standards,

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but it hasn't been dramatic one way or the other, but this will

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gradually emerge over time. The come Paralympicsities of extricating

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ourselves, things like the open skies agreement, all of this will

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start to hit people in a direct way that affects their lives.

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So you are hoping that everything will go wrong? No, I hope that the

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country is in the right place eventually and I believe that what

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is right for the country is that we stay within the institutions like

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the single market, the customs union, collaborative research, the

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good environmental standards which have served this country well. Vince

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Cable, thank you very much. The question for today

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is which of these politicians At the end of the show Graham

:15:51.:15:54.

will attempt to give As business get underway

:15:55.:16:03.

here in Westminster, Scotland's First Minister,

:16:04.:16:09.

Nicola Sturgeon, will be launching her programme for Government

:16:10.:16:11.

at Holyrood this afternoon. Let's speak to the BBC's Scotland

:16:12.:16:13.

Editor, Sarah Smith, who is there. Sarah, a disappointing election

:16:14.:16:26.

result for the SNP, is this something of a relaunch? They will

:16:27.:16:30.

not call it that but yes, an attempt to seize the agenda once more and

:16:31.:16:34.

get to the business of governing Scotland with powers that the

:16:35.:16:40.

Scottish and already has. So much Scottish politics in the first six

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months of the year was governed by another referendum, and the time

:16:44.:16:47.

spent talking about that led the SNP political opponents to say they were

:16:48.:16:50.

neglecting their day job. Saying that they were not spending enough

:16:51.:16:54.

time passing legislation and introducing reforms to Scottish

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schools and hospitals. Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister, is

:17:02.:17:03.

grabbing initiative with her most ambitious plan yet, she will

:17:04.:17:09.

announce a huge raft of legislation, at least 16 new builds on top of the

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11 going through the Scottish Parliament and it will be a busy

:17:14.:17:16.

session, to make it clear that they are getting on with the day job.

:17:17.:17:21.

This is about saying she is in charge and running Scotland. It has

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obviously hit home that criticism of her, as you say, you neglecting her

:17:27.:17:32.

day job. Especially on the issue education? She has said that she

:17:33.:17:40.

wants to be judged on her record on education, on her government's

:17:41.:17:44.

record on education. She is inviting voters to pass judgment and they

:17:45.:17:49.

have not delivered. Scottish school standards are declining in reading

:17:50.:17:53.

and writing and maths. So, they've got to get an ambitious reform

:17:54.:17:57.

programme on the books if she is not going to be judged, as she invited

:17:58.:18:02.

voters to do, and wanting on education. And what about the

:18:03.:18:07.

independence issue? Has it been put on the back burner? It is firmly on

:18:08.:18:10.

the back burner. What was announced at Holyrood in a few months ago was

:18:11.:18:15.

that there would be a reset on the timetable and the First Minister was

:18:16.:18:20.

now willing to have another referendum before the UK left the

:18:21.:18:24.

EU. It is difficult to see how things change dramatically, it could

:18:25.:18:28.

happen before the next Scottish election in 2021 and then, if the

:18:29.:18:32.

SNP win an overall majority at Holyrood, then a referendum could be

:18:33.:18:38.

possible. Getting voters to trust the SNP on the economy, that is

:18:39.:18:43.

crucial as it could allow them to win the next 2021 elections and then

:18:44.:18:50.

take forward their plans for another referendum. It sounds like a busy

:18:51.:18:53.

session, Sarah Smith. Thank you. Now - my guest Graham Brady

:18:54.:18:58.

is dressed smartly in navy today - but the 1922 Committee -

:18:59.:19:01.

of which he is of course chair - is often referred to

:19:02.:19:04.

as 'the men in grey suits'. They're a mysterious group of Tory

:19:05.:19:07.

backbench MPs with the power to tap the party leader on the shoulder

:19:08.:19:11.

and make them stand down. And exactly who and what

:19:12.:19:14.

is the 1922 committee? The 1922 Committee was set up in

:19:15.:19:24.

1923, in 1922 the Conservative leader Andrew Bona Locke pulled out

:19:25.:19:30.

of what was the Liberals, and election followed, and a number of

:19:31.:19:34.

new Tory MPs. It was started as a forum for them but then all

:19:35.:19:37.

backbenchers were allowed to meetings and by the end of the

:19:38.:19:40.

Second World War it became the norm that Conservative leader 's work, on

:19:41.:19:43.

occasion, invited along to give account of themselves. That still

:19:44.:19:48.

happens today. Its importance has grown markedly over the years,

:19:49.:19:57.

influencing policy. Not making policy but influencing policy

:19:58.:19:59.

through the representations that are made. Made either red meetings --

:20:00.:20:10.

made at meetings. There is a hugely important task that was entrusted to

:20:11.:20:15.

the 1922 Committee since the 1960s, of overseeing the election of the

:20:16.:20:21.

leader of the Conservative Party. Voting 75 in favour of Mr Duncan

:20:22.:20:28.

Smith's leadership of the party. 1390 of not confident. The committee

:20:29.:20:34.

has the power to force a vote of no-confidence in a leader, which is

:20:35.:20:39.

what happened to Iain Duncan Smith in 2003. The Parliamentary party has

:20:40.:20:43.

spoken and the announcement has been made. I will stand down as leader

:20:44.:20:46.

when a successor has finally been chosen. Ladies and gentlemen, I have

:20:47.:20:51.

two announced that nominations for the leaders of the Conservative

:20:52.:20:57.

Party closed at 12 noon today. There was one valid nomination, that of

:20:58.:21:01.

the Right Honourable Michael Howard, member of Parliament for Folkestone

:21:02.:21:09.

and highs. Michael Howard led for just over two years, although he

:21:10.:21:13.

never became Prime Minister, he says it is always important to have the

:21:14.:21:17.

committee on side. Ultimate power resides with the backbenchers of

:21:18.:21:22.

Parliament, of the governing party. Certainly in the Conservative Party,

:21:23.:21:29.

because if you are only Prime Minister because you can command

:21:30.:21:33.

confidence of the House of Commons, you are unlikely to command the

:21:34.:21:37.

confidence of opposition parties in the House of Commons. So if you do

:21:38.:21:41.

not command the confidence of your own party, you don't command the

:21:42.:21:44.

confidence of the House of Commons which is what Parliamentary

:21:45.:21:47.

democracy is about. Conservative leaders should learn to keep the

:21:48.:21:51.

1922 Committee suite, something Margaret Thatcher lost sight by the

:21:52.:21:57.

end her leadership. -- suite. It's often been a force for stability

:21:58.:22:01.

within the Conservative Party but there can be occasions where one

:22:02.:22:07.

thinks tremendous divisions over Europe in the 1990s, under John

:22:08.:22:13.

Major, they were -- the 1922 Committee could not perform the

:22:14.:22:17.

valuable role of bringing greater stability to the affairs of the

:22:18.:22:22.

conservative party in parliament as the divisions were so great. They

:22:23.:22:27.

were called the men in grey suits, the current chairman of the 1922

:22:28.:22:31.

Committee sporting dark blue here, shows how things can change that

:22:32.:22:34.

Theresa May owes plenty to her backbenchers.

:22:35.:22:35.

And the current Chairman of the 1922 Committee is still here...

:22:36.:22:39.

Graham Brady, Michael Howard said that ultimate power resides with the

:22:40.:22:45.

party, and Theresa May had said that she would stay as long as the party

:22:46.:22:49.

still wanted her. How long would you like her to stay on as the leader?

:22:50.:22:54.

Well, I think she did a good thing last week in making it clear that

:22:55.:22:59.

she is around for the long and isn't about to cut and run. Of course,

:23:00.:23:04.

it's true that it is always subject to be supportive colleagues. There

:23:05.:23:08.

are two weighs any Prime Minister goes, their own party can choose to

:23:09.:23:13.

get rid of them or the electorate. You are happy for her to lead you

:23:14.:23:18.

into the next election? If she is, I am. We are solidly behind Theresa

:23:19.:23:23.

May and we know that she's got a big job to deliver. There is a

:23:24.:23:26.

complicated set of things to make progress on, not only brakes or some

:23:27.:23:31.

other domestic challenges which are really important. We want her to

:23:32.:23:35.

make progress. We had a general election just now. We did not get

:23:36.:23:40.

the result we wanted but we won. We got a share in the boats, and a

:23:41.:23:47.

number of those which propelled Tony Blair to landslide result. It was a

:23:48.:23:52.

disaster, she lost the majority and she thought she would get a bigger

:23:53.:23:54.

majority and she called a snap election when she promised

:23:55.:23:59.

faithfully not to do that. I think the election result was not what we

:24:00.:24:05.

would have wanted and a lot went wrong... What went wrong? Almost

:24:06.:24:11.

everything, in my view. Including significantly the fact that it was

:24:12.:24:15.

all focused as a presidential style campaign. It didn't work for Theresa

:24:16.:24:21.

May's style. I think she was getting across to the public well, before

:24:22.:24:24.

that as someone who could relax into the role and was becoming more

:24:25.:24:29.

obviously in tune with people more able to deal with that. She is the

:24:30.:24:33.

leader and she makes the decisions in the end. One of the complaints

:24:34.:24:38.

from your colleagues was that she did not communicate outside her

:24:39.:24:45.

coterie of two advisers, how big a problem was that? I think we have

:24:46.:24:49.

seen important changes in structure and personnel, one which is really

:24:50.:24:53.

important issue brought in more people around her who are closer to

:24:54.:24:56.

Parliamentary colleagues who are good at dealing with colleagues...

:24:57.:25:02.

Are the channels of communication open? They are always open with me

:25:03.:25:08.

but with far more colleagues, they are part of the process. You were

:25:09.:25:11.

always in contact with her, were you? Ahead of the election, head of

:25:12.:25:18.

the campaign. Things change in an election campaign. My position is

:25:19.:25:23.

predicated on me chairing the Parliamentary colleagues and when we

:25:24.:25:27.

get to an election campaign, Parliament is not sitting. There are

:25:28.:25:30.

no members of Parliament. Is the reason why you are so supportive of

:25:31.:25:35.

Theresa May because you are a Brexiteer and you think that she is

:25:36.:25:39.

the best bet in terms of delivering a Brexit you would like to see? The

:25:40.:25:44.

majority of your committee is meant to represent all Conservative

:25:45.:25:48.

backbenchers, people like you, Nigel Evans and Bernard Jenkins. What

:25:49.:25:54.

about those who are not Brexiteers? Who decided to remain, and still

:25:55.:25:57.

are, unlike Theresa May who did decide to remain but changed her

:25:58.:26:02.

mind? It's a representative body and has people representing all strands

:26:03.:26:09.

of opinion in the party. Now does it represent Anna Soubry, Nicky Morgan,

:26:10.:26:13.

Dominic Grieve, who are sceptical about their plans? It is important

:26:14.:26:20.

to us in doing our job, whether it be communicating with the leader of

:26:21.:26:25.

the party, dealing with the Chief Whip, the party chairman, who

:26:26.:26:28.

represents positions that we have on the board of the party. We need a

:26:29.:26:31.

spectrum of opinion to make it happen and we have. Is there a

:26:32.:26:36.

chance that it looks to summon' that you are representing the government,

:26:37.:26:42.

to backbenchers, rather than the other way around? I do not think it

:26:43.:26:48.

is the case, I think I have been elected as the chairman of the 22,

:26:49.:26:52.

an annual opportunity for election, for the last seven years because

:26:53.:26:56.

people think I'm prepared to say it how it is and stand up and be

:26:57.:27:03.

counted. Many colleagues came on here to talk about the leadership,

:27:04.:27:07.

how angry were you with the ministers, many in post? I think we,

:27:08.:27:15.

as a committee, this was generally the view of backbench colleagues, we

:27:16.:27:19.

were very keen that having come through the general election we

:27:20.:27:22.

should be able to make progress in government and the Prime Minister

:27:23.:27:25.

should be able to get on with the job and it is very important that we

:27:26.:27:30.

are not bogged down with internal discussions. It's not what the

:27:31.:27:34.

country expects. They elect people to get on with the job and, having

:27:35.:27:39.

come through a general election... She did not win the election in that

:27:40.:27:47.

sense of the word, strictly... You have a minority and a deal done with

:27:48.:27:51.

the DUP for ?1 billion, were you happy with that deal? There are

:27:52.:27:56.

responsibilities that fall to those in government to make sure they can

:27:57.:28:00.

do the job and serve the national interest. Were you happy with the

:28:01.:28:04.

deal? That is what we are seeking to do and governed with the support of

:28:05.:28:09.

the DUP, or, as you said in your package, there are nine Labour MPs

:28:10.:28:17.

who voted in favour so far of... And you are counting on them! More would

:28:18.:28:23.

be welcome... The deal with the DUP, would you have supported that

:28:24.:28:30.

advocated it? Having the security and ability to predict what is going

:28:31.:28:35.

to happen in government is quite important. Having that arrangement,

:28:36.:28:40.

which of course does not deal with matters of controversial domestic

:28:41.:28:43.

legislation in Northern Ireland, that is really very important for

:28:44.:28:48.

the good of the governors of our country. And would it be important

:28:49.:28:53.

for the governors of the country, since that ?1 billion was

:28:54.:28:56.

miraculously found, to secure that deal with the DUP in Northern

:28:57.:29:01.

Ireland, that actually it is right now for Theresa May's government to

:29:02.:29:06.

advocate and suggest to Depay bodies that the 1% cap on the public pay

:29:07.:29:14.

sector should be lifted? This needs to be dealt with cautiously. Why, do

:29:15.:29:20.

you support it or not? There is a tricky balance to be struck. Simply

:29:21.:29:24.

letting public sector pay take off without control does not do any

:29:25.:29:33.

favours. It does not do favours for lower paid people working in the

:29:34.:29:37.

public sector as there are economic consequences which impact tax

:29:38.:29:40.

revenues, and in mortgage rates, and so on. It is right to be cautious

:29:41.:29:47.

but it is also right that we do not seek to give people the impression

:29:48.:29:51.

that a decision that was taken in 2010 by the coalition government for

:29:52.:29:56.

very good reasons is going to be something which stays in perpetuity.

:29:57.:30:00.

There must be a point where there is some flexibility. So far, all of the

:30:01.:30:04.

recommendations of pay review bodies have been met in full. And they will

:30:05.:30:12.

continue to be. They only recommend on the basis that the Treasury

:30:13.:30:15.

suggests that to them, is that good for nurses and low-paid workers to

:30:16.:30:21.

get a pay rise? It is good for everybody to have a pay rise as long

:30:22.:30:25.

as it does not prejudice the sound economic management to the country.

:30:26.:30:29.

One of the things that has been dropped because of Theresa May's

:30:30.:30:32.

result in the general election is the expansion of grammar schools.

:30:33.:30:37.

You passionately campaign for that, how upset were you about that? I'm a

:30:38.:30:43.

practical person, I am pragmatic in politics. I think people should be

:30:44.:30:46.

free to have the kinds of schools that they want to have and that

:30:47.:30:49.

includes grammar schools. It is a shame, we would like to see some

:30:50.:30:59.

expansion as well. Now - this morning MPs have been

:31:00.:31:04.

debating the continuing political Protests have led to more than 120

:31:05.:31:07.

dead since April, with thousands President Nicolas Maduro declared

:31:08.:31:11.

victory in elections last month - which critics have described

:31:12.:31:14.

as a sham. The country's opposition

:31:15.:31:16.

leaders are hoping to drum up support from governments

:31:17.:31:18.

in Europe and yesterday met with French President Emmanuel

:31:19.:31:20.

Macron. Over the summer, the Labour leader

:31:21.:31:21.

was asked if he condemned What I condemn is the violence

:31:22.:31:30.

being done by any side, Violence is not going

:31:31.:31:38.

to solve the issue. The issues are partly structural,

:31:39.:31:41.

because not enough has been done to diversify the economy

:31:42.:31:43.

away from oil. That has to be a priority

:31:44.:31:47.

for the future. But we also have to recognise

:31:48.:31:49.

there have been effective and serious attempts in reducing

:31:50.:31:52.

poverty, improving literacy and improving the lives

:31:53.:31:53.

of many of the poorest people. We're joined now from parliament

:31:54.:32:03.

where MPs have been debating the crisis in Venezuela

:32:04.:32:05.

by the Labour MP and chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group

:32:06.:32:07.

on the country, Graham Jones. And in the studio, Ben Chacko from

:32:08.:32:10.

the Venezuela Solidarity Campaign. He's also editor

:32:11.:32:13.

of the Morning Star. Welcome to both of you. Graham

:32:14.:32:24.

Jones, has the party gone far enough in condemning the situation in

:32:25.:32:29.

Venezuela and the government led by Nicolas Maduro? I think we made a

:32:30.:32:32.

strong statement at the start of the summer, with one of my neighbours.

:32:33.:32:37.

They put out a strong statement on behalf of the Labour Party and I

:32:38.:32:40.

thought it was acceptable but we need the opposition and the

:32:41.:32:43.

government who need to come together to condemn the regime in Venezuela.

:32:44.:32:47.

More needs to be done and we have all seen the television pictures and

:32:48.:33:00.

hear those stories. It is a tragic situation there. Has Jeremy Corbyn

:33:01.:33:02.

led from the front in condemning the government in Venezuela? He has made

:33:03.:33:05.

a statement that it is more about the Labour Party, it is an

:33:06.:33:08.

unequivocal but strong statement and we need to move on from that. Why is

:33:09.:33:13.

it down to the Labour Party? He said that he condemned violence on all

:33:14.:33:16.

sides. It sounded like Donald Trump condemning all sides in

:33:17.:33:21.

Charlottesville. Should he be condemning in fairly singular terms

:33:22.:33:31.

the impressive regime in Venezuela? You have the powerful and powerless,

:33:32.:33:35.

I do not conflate the two. Their risk responsibility in the regime

:33:36.:33:42.

and it is incumbent on all of us. To condemn the Venezuelan regime for

:33:43.:33:48.

human rights abuses, and how it is treated, democracy in Venezuela,

:33:49.:33:52.

there are various things, including trafficking drugs. Then, do you

:33:53.:33:59.

condemn the government in Venezuela? I think it was a very one-sided

:34:00.:34:04.

affair this morning, your television clip earlier showed, as many of the

:34:05.:34:08.

images that we have seen showed, many of these protesters are armed,

:34:09.:34:13.

they have home-made mortars, they are throwing Molotov cocktails,

:34:14.:34:18.

there are paramilitaries in August, there was an attack on the Supreme

:34:19.:34:23.

Court, everybody is talking as if these are peaceful protests and they

:34:24.:34:26.

are not. I do not deny that the government, there have been police

:34:27.:34:29.

officers who killed protesters and they have been arrested and charged

:34:30.:34:32.

but there is violence on both sides and everybody is talking as if the

:34:33.:34:37.

opposition are peaceful. Is it the opposition who have become more

:34:38.:34:41.

violent as the UN human rights watch have said as people in Venezuela are

:34:42.:34:45.

starving. Opposition politicians and protesters are being beaten,

:34:46.:34:51.

tortured, jailed and killed and it is being done by Nicolas Maduro's

:34:52.:34:56.

government with impunity? I do not think that is right at all. These

:34:57.:35:05.

are official lines from the UN human rights watch, that is their report,

:35:06.:35:10.

ready for their eating in Geneva? The majority of the deaths in the

:35:11.:35:13.

Venezuelan protests have not been caused by security forces and where

:35:14.:35:16.

they had been involved, they have been arrested and tried and police

:35:17.:35:20.

officers have been jailed for those incidents. It is a violent uprising,

:35:21.:35:24.

one of a succession by the Venezuelan right, to overthrow the

:35:25.:35:29.

presidency before the elections next year. If they were so confident that

:35:30.:35:33.

the president was unpopular, why can't they wait and win the election

:35:34.:35:37.

next year against the president? And what about holding a one-sided

:35:38.:35:41.

debate that has not fairly reflect the violence on the side of the

:35:42.:35:42.

protesters? I don't think there is many people

:35:43.:35:53.

hold that view. Some people signed Early Day Motions. If you're

:35:54.:35:59.

sympathetic, there is plenty of opportunity for the Venezuelan

:36:00.:36:01.

solidarity movement to garner the support of MPs to come and debate.

:36:02.:36:06.

The fact that they weren't there probably speaks volumes about what

:36:07.:36:09.

is right and what's wrong. So is it really responsible for the Labour

:36:10.:36:13.

leader, Jeremy Corbyn, who has heaped praise certainly on Maduro's

:36:14.:36:18.

regime in 2014, 2015 saying that actually it had success in policy

:36:19.:36:22.

areas like health and education, saying these were a cause for

:36:23.:36:26.

celebration? I think the current situation is not a cause for

:36:27.:36:29.

celebration. I don't think there is anybody that would agree with that

:36:30.:36:32.

and I have not heard Jeremy say anything to the extent he supports

:36:33.:36:38.

what is going on in Venezuela. He did in 2014. Should he just cut his

:36:39.:36:43.

links with any campaign that Maduro is involved in in Venezuela? I am

:36:44.:36:50.

not aware that he has any links with the current regime. It is a clear

:36:51.:36:57.

case that is a militaristic authoritarian regime, communist

:36:58.:37:01.

regime, I'm not surprised the Morning Star supports and is

:37:02.:37:05.

undermining the lives of the people in Venezuela. The economy has

:37:06.:37:11.

collapsed and that's why people have taken to protesting. The economy has

:37:12.:37:15.

collapsed. Inflation has soaredmed people are starving. There is

:37:16.:37:19.

anecdotal reports of peopleAgeing in bins and eating their own pets. Can

:37:20.:37:23.

you be surprised by the level of protest? People aren't prepared to

:37:24.:37:27.

wait as you said for another year for elections and they've been

:37:28.:37:31.

accused the Maduro of rigging the elections that have happened? I

:37:32.:37:38.

think that's an absurd allegation that the elections were rigged. That

:37:39.:37:45.

constituent Assembly was summoned because of the economic crisis,

:37:46.:37:48.

because there is an economic crisis. Whose fault is the economic crisis?

:37:49.:37:54.

And who was in charge of Venezuela in terms of squandering the oil? Do

:37:55.:37:58.

you believe that when a Government makes mistakes in its economic

:37:59.:38:02.

policy that gives a right to the Opposition to overthrow that

:38:03.:38:06.

Government? No, it doesn't. The Opposition, since winning the

:38:07.:38:08.

majority in the National Assembly which they did in 2015. But they

:38:09.:38:13.

claim those were rigged. They won the majority so I don't see why they

:38:14.:38:18.

would claim they were rigged. Since then there has been the opposition

:38:19.:38:23.

controlling the Parliament and control by Maduro and they have

:38:24.:38:27.

failed to work together. This was summoned as an attempt to get

:38:28.:38:30.

through the deadlock. The opposition boycotted the talks and boycotted

:38:31.:38:33.

the Assembly. They don't want to move forward on this. They don't

:38:34.:38:38.

want dialogue, they want to take to the streets to attack the police and

:38:39.:38:41.

overthrow the regime. What evidence is there to suggest that a Labour

:38:42.:38:45.

Government would follow any of the policies of the Venezuelan regime?

:38:46.:38:49.

Well, there seems to be a sneaking admiration on the part of Jeremy

:38:50.:38:52.

Corbyn... I don't think it is necessarily sneaking. Well, thank

:38:53.:38:56.

you. There is lots of evidence that Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell,

:38:57.:39:01.

the people running the Labour Party, actually have seen the Venezuelan

:39:02.:39:04.

Government as a model for economic policy. Now the fact that the

:39:05.:39:08.

Venezuelan Government has destroyed the economy of a country that should

:39:09.:39:11.

have been one of the wealthiest countries in South America and is

:39:12.:39:15.

therefore made the lives of its people a misery really ought to make

:39:16.:39:20.

people pause for thought and reflect on whether people like Jeremy Corbyn

:39:21.:39:24.

and John McDonnell are really people who could be trusted with the

:39:25.:39:28.

economy of our own country? Should the Government be working harder

:39:29.:39:32.

with the opposition parties then in Venezuela to do something about it?

:39:33.:39:39.

We should make it clear that we dep pri kate any Government that fails

:39:40.:39:45.

to allow proper political freedom in the way it does and the way it is

:39:46.:39:49.

dealing with the protesters. I think we have to condemn the complete lack

:39:50.:39:54.

of political freedom in Venezuela, but we have to be realistic about

:39:55.:39:57.

what we can do. The starting point has to be that we don't give them

:39:58.:40:01.

support. We don't support that there is a body of opinion in the United

:40:02.:40:05.

Kingdom of any significance that is on their side. All right, gentlemen,

:40:06.:40:07.

thank you very much for joining us. Now, what's the most

:40:08.:40:11.

effective way for parties Some people think the Conservatives

:40:12.:40:13.

need a new strategy to counter Jeremy Corbyn's success at appealing

:40:14.:40:17.

to young people during Some Conservative activists think

:40:18.:40:19.

they've found the answer. They've set up a new

:40:20.:40:25.

organisation designed "Activate" - as it's called -

:40:26.:40:27.

is not officially affiliated to the Conservative Party -

:40:28.:40:31.

but many are already describing it But polls suggest the party

:40:32.:40:34.

have their work cut out One recent YouGov poll gave Labour

:40:35.:40:38.

a whopping 52 point lead among Labour also enjoy big

:40:39.:40:49.

leads on policy issues. Only 4% of young people thought

:40:50.:40:55.

the Conservatives were best on issues like housing,

:40:56.:41:00.

compared to 44% who favoured So how are the Tories trying

:41:01.:41:02.

to turn this around? George Freeman - who chairs

:41:03.:41:08.

the Prime Minister's Policy Board - is organising a festival later this

:41:09.:41:11.

month that has been branded as "Tory Glastonbury",

:41:12.:41:16.

saying "Why is it the left who have Meanwhile

:41:17.:41:21.

the new Activate organisation say they aim to "engage young people

:41:22.:41:24.

in the right of centre politics and make a case

:41:25.:41:27.

for what Conservatism can offer." The group hasn't formally launched

:41:28.:41:29.

yet but it's had something of a rocky start since it got up

:41:30.:41:33.

and running online last week. Membership is priced

:41:34.:41:37.

between ?5 and ?500 - prompting claims it is too exclusive

:41:38.:41:39.

and out of touch with Activate also issued an apology

:41:40.:41:43.

after messages from a WhatsApp group apparently used by young

:41:44.:41:57.

Conservative activists were published by the

:41:58.:41:58.

Guido Fawkes website. It included controversial comments

:41:59.:42:08.

about "gassing" chavs and carrying And last night Activate's announced

:42:09.:42:11.

on their Twitter account that they were calling

:42:12.:42:14.

for Theresa May to resign and endorsing Jacob Rees-Mogg

:42:15.:42:16.

to take over as leader, but it wasn't clear if the group had

:42:17.:42:18.

been the victim of a hack. We're joined now from Nottingham

:42:19.:42:22.

by Sam Ancliff who is involved in the Conservative "grass roots"

:42:23.:42:28.

youth movement, Activate and from Glasgow by Rhea Wolfson

:42:29.:42:29.

who's been an organiser Welcome to the programme. Now,

:42:30.:42:40.

apparently, you're no longer affiliated with the group that

:42:41.:42:44.

you're supposed to be associated with, are you, or aren't you? So I

:42:45.:42:48.

have seen the same tweet which I imagine you're referring to and I am

:42:49.:42:53.

very much still part of the group and still the official spokesperson.

:42:54.:42:56.

What we are a victim of as you said earlier is a hack that's taken place

:42:57.:43:01.

on our Twitter. It has been an on going situation since Thursday and

:43:02.:43:04.

we are working with the police and with Twitter to get it resolved and

:43:05.:43:07.

we hope we will have access within the next 24 hours. Are you a member

:43:08.:43:11.

of the Conservative Party? I am a member, yes. Have you always been a

:43:12.:43:14.

member of the Conservative Party? Only in the last 18 months or so.

:43:15.:43:19.

Right. On the point of the Twitter announcement, just to clear up any

:43:20.:43:22.

confusion, right, you say that this recent tweet saying that you are no

:43:23.:43:29.

longer affiliated with Activate has been hacked basically, so it is a

:43:30.:43:32.

fake tweetment but what about the Twitter announcement calling for

:43:33.:43:35.

Theresa May to stand down and endorsing Jacob Rhys Mogg for

:43:36.:43:39.

leader. Is that Activate's position? Certainly not. You drew the par

:43:40.:43:49.

parallels between us and Momentum. We are not about any one politician.

:43:50.:43:54.

It would be wrong of us to endorse one candidate. We are about to

:43:55.:43:58.

helping engage and unite young Conservative voters and that's

:43:59.:44:02.

separate to any one politician. But as you say, it got off to a fairly

:44:03.:44:09.

tricky rocky start. You have had to clarify that you are part of

:44:10.:44:12.

Activate and their spokesperson and you have had your Twitter account

:44:13.:44:18.

hacked and you are saying you don't support Jacob Rhys Mogg or any Prime

:44:19.:44:21.

Minister, it is not going well, is it? We haven't officially launched.

:44:22.:44:29.

We were setting up our Twitter accounts and have been thrust into

:44:30.:44:32.

the public eye which is something we are happy to be in. We're

:44:33.:44:35.

interviewing on several platforms across the country. So we're getting

:44:36.:44:41.

great publicity from this. We have had teething problems because we

:44:42.:44:44.

weren't fully established and we were getting set-up and as soon as

:44:45.:44:48.

the teething problems are sorted out then I'm looking forward to a

:44:49.:44:51.

message that we can spread. As you rightly said, we don't support any

:44:52.:44:54.

one politician. What we do, we support the Conservative Party and

:44:55.:44:57.

we support the Government in their aims. Right. And whoever is at the

:44:58.:45:01.

head of that will always have our support. Do you have some sympathy

:45:02.:45:07.

with Sam, acsakeses of chaos, factional insfiting and accusation

:45:08.:45:11.

and counter-accusation, it sounds familiar to you, doesn't it? I think

:45:12.:45:17.

any parallels will fall flat on their face quickly. Just in the

:45:18.:45:21.

things that Sam expressed about having a youth organisation that

:45:22.:45:23.

brings people together to support the Government, that is entirely the

:45:24.:45:27.

opposite what Momentum was trying to do which was create a Labour Party

:45:28.:45:33.

and an opposition party that was ready to govern, but was going to

:45:34.:45:38.

engage people in the pliical realities of day-to-day life.

:45:39.:45:42.

Activate is off to a bad start just looking to appeal to young Tory

:45:43.:45:46.

voters because there aren't many out there. If they want to have success,

:45:47.:45:50.

look at how you can inspire young people. That was what Momentum was

:45:51.:45:54.

about. It was about a platform that was already putting forward a

:45:55.:45:56.

popular policy, that was reaching out to young people and saying the

:45:57.:46:00.

reality around you is terrible. You are getting a terrible deal. The

:46:01.:46:03.

Labour Party is the way to challenge that. Right. If Labour were in

:46:04.:46:08.

Government would you not be supporting them then? It's not about

:46:09.:46:12.

whether we would be supporting the Government. The Labour Party has

:46:13.:46:15.

transformed in the past two years into something that's really an

:46:16.:46:18.

incredibly exciting thing to be part and a huge part of is that is to do

:46:19.:46:24.

with Momentum, Momentum saying these are the things that people want,

:46:25.:46:28.

we're listening to people, but putting forward best practise.

:46:29.:46:33.

Momentum played an important role in the general election by utilising

:46:34.:46:37.

online tools that the Labour Party hadn't and showing they can be

:46:38.:46:39.

successful and now it will be a process of integrating that into the

:46:40.:46:43.

party. You had terrible teething problems too and there was

:46:44.:46:48.

infighting between groups on the left particularly a tempted coup on

:46:49.:46:54.

John Landsman who was one of the founders, you sympathize with Sam as

:46:55.:47:01.

he tries to set up Activate? I don't know what the internal workings are

:47:02.:47:09.

of Activate. There will be wrangling and always in Labour Party groups

:47:10.:47:13.

because people care passionately about what we do. Does this warm

:47:14.:47:18.

your heart? Does this fill you with joy Graham Brady that you could

:47:19.:47:22.

think about associating yourselves with a group like Activate? I don't

:47:23.:47:27.

think we are thinking about associating with Activate. We are

:47:28.:47:30.

careful about affiliating and associating with particular groups.

:47:31.:47:33.

I listened to Sam being interviewed and he made it clear that he and

:47:34.:47:36.

others have been treated unfairly and this is a story that is about

:47:37.:47:41.

somebody hacking their account and sending out messages that aren't

:47:42.:47:44.

coming from them at all. I don't think it would be fair to tar him

:47:45.:47:49.

with that brush. Right. Except there have been other whatsapp comments

:47:50.:47:53.

Sam that come out. Reportedly this was used as a precursor to Activate

:47:54.:48:05.

and it was, "Can we release compulsory birth control on chavs?"

:48:06.:48:11.

Did you support those comments. The whatsapp group in question was one

:48:12.:48:14.

of potentially hundreds out there. I know of a few that existed, but they

:48:15.:48:18.

are looking to maybe set something up. I do know that a couple of our

:48:19.:48:22.

members including myself was in that whatsapp group. I don't deny not

:48:23.:48:26.

being in there. I never saw that conversation take place until it

:48:27.:48:30.

came to light in the media, but they are disgusting comments. I come from

:48:31.:48:36.

a little town, a former mining town in Ashfield. I lived in a council

:48:37.:48:41.

house my whole life. I would probably be tarred by the same brush

:48:42.:48:44.

as these people are saying. I found out that one of the three people who

:48:45.:48:48.

are saying those disgusting comments is one of the people leaking to the

:48:49.:48:54.

media which brings to question the credibility of those comments. It

:48:55.:48:57.

makes it difficult to set up a group like this and the sort of thing

:48:58.:49:01.

you're trying to do and to appeal to young people for right of centre

:49:02.:49:05.

politics. What about the price range between ?5 or ?10 and ?500? It seems

:49:06.:49:11.

random in some ways, never mind expensive for young people to join?

:49:12.:49:16.

Our membership fees are ?5 for under 25, ?10 for anyone over that age. On

:49:17.:49:24.

the website, we are still in the early stages of setting up the

:49:25.:49:29.

website and getting it already. The platform we are using to take

:49:30.:49:32.

members as a shock platform so people can dine -- donate more. It

:49:33.:49:39.

will not be changing the future, it is not a huge priority, it is

:49:40.:49:43.

numbers on a web page. And do you think you need your own Momentum in

:49:44.:49:48.

the Conservative Party? I think Momentum is a little worrying and we

:49:49.:49:52.

should be concerned about what it has done to the Labour Party in

:49:53.:49:55.

making it more extreme and supporting a shift to the hard left.

:49:56.:50:01.

I would not want our own Momentum but I would like us to have the

:50:02.:50:05.

policies which help us connect to younger people and if that is by

:50:06.:50:13.

organising a Tory Glastonbury, fine! Get your tickets now! Thank you to

:50:14.:50:15.

both of you. Now, in this dog eat dog world,

:50:16.:50:17.

what do you do when the polls are bad and your approval

:50:18.:50:20.

rating is slumping? You don't roll over -

:50:21.:50:22.

you get yourself some good PR with either animals or children -

:50:23.:50:25.

that's the approach taken by the He's recently acquired himself

:50:26.:50:27.

a new labrador cross - called Nemo - perhaps in the hope

:50:28.:50:31.

of boosting his ailing ratings. So can politicians win us

:50:32.:50:33.

over with their pooches? Let's have a look back

:50:34.:50:36.

through the archive. # And they call it puppy love

:50:37.:50:57.

# I guess they'll never know... # How the young hearts really feels

:50:58.:51:11.

# And why I love her so # And they call dead puppy

:51:12.:51:21.

-- and they call it puppy love Lerma just because we are in our teens

:51:22.:51:33.

# Please tell them it isn't fair # To take away my only dreams

:51:34.:51:47.

# I cry each night # Might here is for you -- might

:51:48.:51:52.

cares # I hope and I pray

:51:53.:52:04.

# That maybe some day # You will be back in my arms once

:52:05.:52:08.

again # For all of you dog lovers out

:52:09.:52:12.

there... We're joined now by the French

:52:13.:52:16.

journalist Marie Le Conte, who has written about President Macron's

:52:17.:52:19.

dog, Nemo. Do you think it is enough to save

:52:20.:52:26.

his poll ratings? Probably not quite but it is definitely a start. French

:52:27.:52:31.

people love dogs, but also there is a tradition in France of the

:52:32.:52:34.

president having a dog and having a black labrador. There is definitely

:52:35.:52:45.

a strong start there. Why the black labrador, why the tradition in that

:52:46.:52:53.

breed? I'm not sure, there was one dog who followed the previous leader

:52:54.:53:05.

everywhere. There is a full volume autobiography by her! Of course! And

:53:06.:53:08.

following that, presidents decided to get their own black labrador,

:53:09.:53:12.

including Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy. Shouldn't he be

:53:13.:53:19.

striking out and getting a different breed? He had a dog, an Argentinian

:53:20.:53:24.

mastiff called Figaro, what happened to him? He is staying with one of

:53:25.:53:30.

his wife's children. And actually, one of Emmanuel Macron's problems at

:53:31.:53:34.

the moment is that, if anything, he has been too ambitious and done his

:53:35.:53:40.

own thing. It's a way of showing that he can do things in a

:53:41.:53:43.

conventional way. Has he gone up in your estimation is now he has a

:53:44.:53:47.

black labrador? I think that's rather a British kind of a dog and

:53:48.:53:52.

possibly a Tory kind of a dog. Perhaps it is a fifth columnist that

:53:53.:53:58.

we've got! And here, Prime Ministers, they do not tend to

:53:59.:54:01.

favour cats but they tend to have cats on Downing Street rather than

:54:02.:54:07.

dogs. Is that safer? Rather than going for the dog? I don't really

:54:08.:54:13.

know, I think someone did have ducks before, Emmanuel Macron has brought

:54:14.:54:18.

his back, they did have ducks in the garden. And what house can he do to

:54:19.:54:26.

boost his poll ratings, aside from just deflecting attention onto his

:54:27.:54:30.

new pooch? I think he needs to stop having the image of playing at being

:54:31.:54:38.

president, he needs to be more serious and focused, and try and

:54:39.:54:41.

take it step-by-step rather than decide to have sweeping reforms all

:54:42.:54:46.

at the same time. Thank you for being our correspondent and reporter

:54:47.:54:50.

on the new dog for President Emmanuel Macron. We will be watching

:54:51.:54:53.

him and his ratings as a result of the labrador!

:54:54.:54:56.

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

:54:57.:54:59.

The question was which of these is the odd one out?

:55:00.:55:05.

Jeremy Corbyn, Kerry McCarthy, Chris Williamson,

:55:06.:55:08.

I certainly do not have the answer, but I am prepared to guess. My guess

:55:09.:55:26.

is that maybe Jeremy Corbyn is the odd one out. Why? I'm wondering if

:55:27.:55:31.

all of the others are already a beacon and Jeremy Corbyn is just

:55:32.:55:34.

thinking about it. You are so smart, aren't you? -- vegan. Remi Corbyn is

:55:35.:55:43.

thinking about becoming a vegan, he is already a vegetarian. This might

:55:44.:55:48.

have given you a clue about diet. And we're joined now by one

:55:49.:55:52.

of those politician-vegans - Labour MP Kerry McCarthy

:55:53.:55:55.

and Nora Bergman who is I presume that you made all of

:55:56.:56:01.

these. I can see the eyes of the studio crew are thinking, which 1am

:56:02.:56:08.

I going to have? What is a vegan diet? So, the vegan diet means that

:56:09.:56:12.

you do not consume anything that comes from an animal. Not meat,

:56:13.:56:19.

dairy, eggs, and not funny. -- and no honey, so you need to find

:56:20.:56:26.

substitutes for everything, especially as a vegan chef. How

:56:27.:56:32.

difficult is it? Actually, it's not. In this world we are very advanced

:56:33.:56:37.

and we can find everything everywhere, even in local shops. So

:56:38.:56:41.

it isn't difficult and it is better for our planet. It is better for our

:56:42.:56:48.

health and important for animals. Have you been working on Jeremy

:56:49.:56:56.

Corbyn to become a vegan? I have not directly lobbied him! There are a

:56:57.:57:01.

couple of other MPs I have won over. I have been with Jeremy, he gave me

:57:02.:57:05.

a sandwich once when we were in Cumbria looking at flooding, and he

:57:06.:57:09.

assured me that it was vegan. It was very nice. Then he went and bought a

:57:10.:57:15.

cheese and onion pie because there was nothing I could eat there! I

:57:16.:57:28.

have been one for 20 or 25 years and it was a lot more difficult. Do you

:57:29.:57:34.

just eat cake? People think you only live on lentils and macrobiotic

:57:35.:57:38.

beige stuff but the danger is now, in the past, there were only healthy

:57:39.:57:41.

options but now you can get vegan junk food everywhere! It's

:57:42.:57:53.

tempting! You have been a vegan for two years? Two and a half Men is. Do

:57:54.:58:04.

you have a political star as a potential recruit? I just want... As

:58:05.:58:08.

many people as possible? And what would you say to Jeremy Corbyn to

:58:09.:58:13.

convince him to become a -- become a vegan? Be compassionate

:58:14.:58:26.

for animals. I have the vegetarian Society in my constituency. That

:58:27.:58:29.

does not mean that you are a vegetarian! I have eaten magnificent

:58:30.:58:33.

vegetarian food but I also like to eat meat. It is a small step to go

:58:34.:58:39.

towards being a vegan and it is not that difficult. Do you cope? I do.

:58:40.:58:50.

-- do you cook? Is there any politics in this at all? I think he

:58:51.:58:54.

was saying what he feels, he has been vegetarian for a long time. I

:58:55.:58:58.

think he just said that he was eating more vegan food and it is

:58:59.:59:02.

because there are more options around now. I'm not sure he will

:59:03.:59:07.

take the final plunge but it is good. Any step in the right

:59:08.:59:11.

direction is a good thing. You will continue the campaign. Did in any

:59:12.:59:16.

time as we are about to do the closing headings. The studio staff

:59:17.:59:18.

are saying do not touch it! The one o'clock news is starting

:59:19.:59:20.

over on BBC One now. I'll be back at 11:30 tomorrow

:59:21.:59:25.

with Andrew for live coverage Experience the power

:59:26.:59:36.

of the BBC Proms.

:59:37.:59:40.