Jo Coburn is joined by writer David Goodhart to discuss Brexit, populism and housing policy. Plus how successful are politicians at bluffing knowledge of the economy?
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Hello and welcome to
the Daily Politics.
As the deadline looms, negotiations
over a Brexit deal grind on,
with the EU demanding more progress
on the terms of Britain leaving
before allowing talks on trade,
we'll speak to the Vice President
of the European Parliament.
Theresa May has said building more
homes is her 'personal mission',
so how will the Government find
the money and will they be prepared
to take on local opposition?
Labour is demanding an emergency
budget to fund a public sector pay
rise, provide more money
for infrastructure, and increase
spending on public services.
We'll ask a member of their Treasury
team where the cash will come from.
And forget left and right
in politics, there's a new fault
line between the somewheres
and the anywheres, find out
which side you're on.
All that in the next hour,
and with us for the whole
of the programme today,
the author and commentator
He works for the think-tank
Policy Exchange, and is the author
of the Road to Somewhere,
more of which later.
Welcome to the show.
First this morning, universal credit
is back on the agenda after reports
in the press that the Government
was preparing to cut the length
of time claimants have to wait
before they receive payments.
It's currently six weeks,
but Theresa May has come under a lot
of pressure to reduce the time,
including from some of her own MPs.
Yesterday, during PMQs,
Jeremy Corbyn yet again attacked
Mrs May over the benefit.
Will the Prime Minister pause
Universal Credit so it can be fixed?
Or does she think it is right to put
thousands of families
through Christmas in the trauma
of knowing they're about to be
evicted, because they're in rent
arrears, because of Universal
Can I say to the right honourable
gentleman that there have
been concerns raised,
there have been concerns raised
in this House previously
over the issue of people
managing their budgets to pay rent.
But what we actually see...
What we see is that over...
We see that after four months,
the number of people
on Universal Credit in arrears has
fallen by a third.
Has the Government response on
Universal Credit been adequate?
don't think we've heard the full
response so far, and I think we are
told we will hear something in the
budget about this. Pretty well
everybody agrees that the principles
behind it are good ones, bringing
together lots of different benefits,
simplifying, helping to reduce a
little bit the cliff edges, those
huge poverty traps that a lot of
people suffer from. The problem is
implementation, and it always is.
Tax credits was the same problem,
going back to Labour in power. You
get the feeling that the people who
design these benefits are not
experience the understanding the
experience of the people who claim
The critics said that people
who work on benefits do not work on
a monthly or six weekly cycle, and
lots of people have been forced into
arrears or forced to go to the
banks. If the Government says it
will shorten the waiting time from
six weeks to five weeks, possibly to
a month, will that be enough to
answer and deal with real problems
I don't know, I'm not
an expert. The amount of money in
the whole system has been
substantially reduced over recent
years. George Osborne used it as a
cash cow, so putting more money in
will surely help.
You would like to
see the amounts go up as well as the
waiting time brought down to help
people who are on this benefit?
Otherwise, you think the
policy's success has been put at
risk by the Government dragging its
feet, as critics say, other not
doing anything about the
I think it is starting
to do something about it. The
Government has already moved on
paying for the phone call and a help
line and so on. These are minor
adjustments that surely can be made,
but I think that putting more money
into the pot is the major priority.
Now, it's time for our daily quiz.
The question for today is,
which senior minister -
according to The Times -
has apparently been
showing off in Cabinet,
using lots of technical terms
and "long, economicky words" to
audition for the role of Chancellor?
Was it a) Andrea Leadsom
audition for the role of Chancellor?
Was it a) Andrea Leadsom
c) Liam Fox or d)
Was it a) Andrea Leadsom
At the end of the show,
David will give us
the correct answer.
We've heard a lot about
the arguments surrounding the EU
withdrawal bill being scrutinised
in the Commons over the last few
days, but where are we with
the actual negotiations
between the Britain and the EU?
The European Union
has three red lines -
a financial settlement,
citizens' rights and
the Northern Irish border -
that have to be resolved before
talks can progress on the UK's
final status deal.
At the last round of negotiations
earlier this month, the EU gave
the UK a two-week deadline
to clarify key issues and for talks
Both sides agreed there had been
progress on the issue
of settled status for EU citizens
in the UK after Brexit.
On the financial settlement,
the EU still wants clarity
from the UK in terms of what it's
willing to pay to meet financial
commitments made as a member.
The UK has said it "will honour
commitments" but has not specified
whether that includes unpaid
liabilities for projects,
or if that will cover pensions.
The issue of the Irish border
between Northern Ireland and Ireland
remains a serious challenge,
both sides say, with "frank
David Davis has rejected suggestions
that Northern Ireland
could have a separate status
from the rest of the UK and remain
within the European customs union.
He wants to "prevent a hard border"
and told House of Commons
in September he was confident
the use of technology "will make it
possible for the border to be
as light-touch as it is today."
The UK's Brexit Secretary has played
down the two-week deadline,
saying the key date
is the December European
Council, on the 14th.
Let's get more on this
with Adam Fleming, who is at his
favourite haunt in Brussels,
the European Parliament.
I was listening to the MEP Manfred
Weber yesterday. He was here, and a
close colleague of Angela Merkel,
and he seemed to think that the mood
was more optimistic, that he felt
that the conversation was positive
with Theresa May, but still no green
light. What is the mood in Brussels?
Manfred Weber was interesting, as
you were saying, because he because
he said he had been given the
impression that the UK was prepared
to make some movement towards the
EU, in other words, to secure
sufficient progress at the next
summit in December so that phase two
of the Brexit talks can begin, to
discuss trade, the relationship and
the transition deal. Everyone
wondered what the Prime Minister
said to him. The big theory at the
moment is that it was probably to do
with citizens' rights, because that
is the European Parliament's main
priority for the Brexit
negotiations. They are less
concerned about the money and the
Northern Irish border than they are
about peoples lives after Brexit. I
saw him do a conference the day
before in Strasbourg where he said
he was pessimistic and didn't think
that sufficient progress would be
made. Obviously, Theresa May said
something to him which made him
change his mind and feel more
chipper about how the process was
Do you think, and is the
impression in Brussels, that it will
be enough to unlock these
negotiations or the stalemate and
move on to trade talks at that
critical meeting in December?
Everyone here is waiting for some
sort of smoke signal, hint, lying in
a speech, paragraph in a written
ministerial statement, an answer in
an interview with David Davis or the
Prime Minister that gives more
detail about what the UK meant when
the Prime Minister said in her
Florence speech a couple of months
ago that the UK would live up to its
financial obligations. The Brits
thought that was enough to get them
over the line and get into phase two
of the talks, but for the EU side,
that was not enough. They welcomed
the warm words and the sentiments
that the UK would live up to its
obligations made as a member, but
they want more detail, specific
commitments being made to specific
things they have asked for in the
discussions over the so-called
financial settlement, or the Brexit
Bill, as it is known in the press.
That is what everyone is waiting
for. And then we come back to this
issue of the Michel Barnier deadline
that he has issued. He said last
Friday that he wanted that detail to
be given in the next two weeks. The
reason he said that was because of
the admin processes that the EU 27
going, that to be able to start and
trigger the talks in December, they
need a bit more information on the
UK in the next couple of weeks so
they control what documents and have
their talks with the 27 capitals.
The content they want is more
information about the money.
in Brussels, no doubt we will speak
Earlier this morning,
I spoke to the Irish
MEP and Vice President
of the European Parliament Mairead
McGuinness, and I began
by asking her whether we should be
optimistic about possible progress
in the Brexit negotiations.
It's positive what my group leader
Manfred Weber has said,
and I think that's welcome if he's
getting an indication that the UK
and that Prime Minister May may be
moving to unlock this problem
at the moment.
You can't have a green light now,
because the negotiations have not
moved on on the three core issues,
so I think that it's
I'm a bit more hopeful today
as I speak to you than I might
have been 24 hours ago.
But then that has been the way these
negotiations have developed.
There are some weeks
where you think yes,
we're getting there,
and then there are other weeks,
mainly because of the mood music
in the United Kingdom,
where we feel quite the opposite
and we get quite concerned,
but in fact we aren't making
--that in fact we aren't
making sufficient progress
on the core issues.
But it's not a one-way street,
is it, Mairead McGuinness?
And as you have now reiterated
Manfred Weber's comments that
you feel there is movement on the UK
side, what is the European Union
offering in this negotiation
if there's been movement
from the UK?
Well, I think you're quite right,
nobody has ever said this
was a one-way street.
What it is is a divorce settlement.
The United Kingdom democratically
have decided to leave
the European Union.
There are three issues for phase one
in the divorce settlement,
including financial commitments,
citizens' rights, and the border
issue, which is very
core to my constituency.
And I think on many of these issues
the European Union has been
absolutely clear on what it needs
to see happen, and we do need
the content of the Prime Minister's
speech in Florence,
which we all welcomed,
to be put into concrete
proposals on the table.
And then I think there
is room for negotiation,
because Michel Barnier,
who leads the negotiations on behalf
of the European Union,
is a very able individual
and he wants to make progress.
I think David Davis comes
with the same commitment.
But clearly there is some problem,
and I have to repeat my concern
that it appears to come from,
if you like, difficulties
within the Conservative Party.
I see front-page headlines
targeting individual MPs,
and this doesn't help the process
of progress that we all want to see.
Let's talk about the Irish border.
As you say, very important
to you particularly.
To avoid a hard border,
which all sides want,
the European Commission has proposed
Northern Ireland having a separate
status from the rest of the UK
and remaining in the customs union.
That's been ruled out
by the UK Government.
What other solution do you have?
Well, I've been very clear,
and I've said this to Secretary
of State Brokenshire recently,
and I'm saying it again,
that if we want the situation
on the island of Ireland to remain
as it is today, without any
borders or difficulties,
then we stay as we are today.
By that I mean that we respect
the decision of the United Kingdom
to leave the European Union,
but that the United Kingdom
stays in the customs
union and single market.
So that, if you like,
avoids any complexities looking
for technical solutions,
because I've tried to
make this very clear...
But that's been ruled
out, hasn't it?
But with the greatest of respect
to red lines and ruling out,
this is a much bigger issue.
This is about the peace process
in the country I come from.
This will affect very badly
the constituents that I serve.
They are deeply traumatised
by the prospect of a hard Brexit.
Why is having a border so important
to you in terms of customs?
I'm sorry, I think I
misunderstood your question.
We do not want a border,
it's very clear that if there's any
idea of a break in the current
relationships or freedoms that exist
on the island of Ireland today,
it will cause problems.
And if you come to my region,
I welcome you to come and be
with me in the region,
you will see posters,
you will hear people
talking with deep concern.
I met young people in Newry
from North and South just last
Friday, listen to their voices,
they know the problems
they will face if this goes wrong.
So, again, I welcome
the idea that there might be
some light this week,
and I think that's positive.
But I have to be frank on the island
of Ireland question,
and I think there's been an attempt
by some to say you can't give
Northern Ireland, or break it off
from the United Kingdom,
and I wouldn't dream
of attempting to do that.
I respect things as they are.
Which makes me come
back to my core point.
The United Kingdom should remain
in the customs union to avoid
a problem on the island of Ireland,
and then we can move
to the wider trade issues,
which I have to say are deeply
of concern to me as well.
So I think we have to marry
the political and economic,
and I think we have to work very
hard politically to find a solution
which doesn't damage us.
Because Brexit, in my view, has
the capacity to damage both sides,
and we have to avoid that
at all costs.
Mairead McGuinness, thank you.
Well, listening to that is
the former Secretary of State
for Northern Ireland,
Owen Paterson, who was a leading
campaigner for Brexit.
There seems to be a disconnect here.
Mairead McGuinness said the UK
should stay inside the customs union
and the single market, and then all
the problems about Northern Ireland
and the border go away. But that
hasn't been what the government has
been proposing. Who's not been
listening in this discussion?
have to recognise there is an
election coming up in the Republic
of Ireland. A lot of this is stated
with a view to certainly keeping up
to the mark with Sinn Fein or
putting gait pushing a strong
campaign on this. I think the Dublin
establishment is running scared. It
is extremely obvious from what the
pro minister has said we're going to
leave the single market, customs
union and European Court of Justice.
Biggest weight to destabilise
Northern Ireland is to have a crazy
suggestion of a border downbeat
Irish Sea. I've been going to
Northern Ireland for nearly ten
years now nearly every week. There
is a border this morning. There's a
currency board, a VAT border, a tax
border. I haven't had a single
business say to me the border
presents a problem. This is all
solvable with modern technology.
There are other MEPs who have stated
in fairly agitated terms that there
has to be some way of checking goods
that may come in from third
countries through into Britain and
Northern Ireland. Where would that
It happens now. 1 million
tonnes of goods go across UK roads
into the Republic of Ireland every
year, we never see them.
But we are
all part of the EU at this point in
time. When we come out of the EU
where with those checks be? How
would you resolve this?
This is all
done on electronic systems. The
World Bank did a check and they
reckon less than 2% of goods are
physically checked. These goods are
well-established. North - South
business is about 5% of Northern
Ireland's sales. You have been
slight authorised economic
operators. The milk tankers that
take milk, there's probably one of
two operators and it's very easy to
They disagree. They
say technology cannot deal with the
issue as it is, hence they've made
this suggestion of a border in the
Irish Sea that would obviously
separate Northern Ireland from
Britain. Britain has rejected that,
but that is an option. As is staying
in the customs union.
But that is
not going to happen. We have voted
to leave. We are going to leave the
customs union, the single market and
the ECJ. When you look at the budget
showing the massive advantages,
every family across the UK is going
to be £300 better off by having
cheaper food and clothing. That
helps every single disadvantaged
It still doesn't solve this
issue. She didn't sound as if she
was willing to compromise in any way
when it comes to trying to deal with
the border issue between Northern
Ireland and Ireland. Apart from the
technological solution you have, is
there anything else you have in your
pocket to try and unlock this part
of the negotiations?
It needs some
goodwill on behalf of the new Irish
government. Enda Kenny would have
been more reasonable about this. The
government are running scared of
Sinn Fein and running ahead of this.
That is the problem. There has to be
good will and a half of the Irish
government. There was a report a ago
by both houses of the Irish
government and they said we want to
keep the Common travel area and easy
movement of goods and services.
the money, it was clear from that
interview that Mairead McGuinness
and Manfred Weber said yesterday
they want concrete proposals from
the Florence speech. The hints of
more money being offered by the UK
Government. Michael Gove sort of
said in the interview last week that
that is what the British government
should do. Is he right?
extraordinary to be talking about
money now before we know what the
end arrangement is.
Would you be
prepared to do it?
The House of
Lords committee say there are no
legal obligations if we leave now.
We should come to the arrangement
and then see what we own. There will
be things like Horizon and
programmes we will carry on. If
there are legally binding
obligations we will pay them.
would you react if Theresa May says
before December we are putting
another 20 billion year raised or
pounds on the table?
I think that
would be and why is. So far the
European Union has trousered every
one of her concessions. She made a
most generous speech in Florence. We
should give them two weeks and say
we assume you aren't going to talk
about the end economic relationship.
If you don't agree, we will assume
we are going to WTO terms.
It's not no deal. Much better
would be to have reciprocal free
trade with no tariffs. If they come
back and talk to us about that that
would be a much better solution.
say it would be unwise, would you do
She's been very generous,
I wouldn't give any more
mentioned it was division within the
Conservative Party that is actually
a problem as far as these
negotiations are concerned. Does she
have a point?
Only a partial point.
Looking at the bigger picture at the
moment, we have this extraordinary
situation in which we voted for
Brexit but we didn't vote for any
particular kind of Brexit. So the
government and the half of itself,
on behalf of the Conservative Party
and the whole country, is having a
semipublic negotiation about what
kind of Brexit we want, while at the
same time negotiating it. So it is
bound to look messy. I think we
already have the outlines some kind
of. People behind their hands with
say I've heard on good authority
that Michel Barnier Binks the Irish
border issue is soluble. I mean,
that is so much an issue of
political will that the Swiss
minister was before a select
committee the other day saying
precisely that. There are technical
solutions to these things, it
requires political will. Nobody
wants to see a hard border
Let's talk about the
Telegraph singling out Tory MPs as
Brexit mutineers. Was that helpful?
I suppose it makes them think about
what they're doing because of them
have clear beliefs about this. There
is political consequence of this
that they could possibly jeopardise
the bill, which is extraordinary as
most of them voted for Article 50
which set a very clear two-year
deadline. Personally I think having
the date is a good idea because
we've got to bring compression to
the commission to start proper talks
about the end relationship. We all
ideally want reciprocal free trade
with zero tariffs. It's ridiculous
they aren't talking about that.
Having a date puts pressure on them.
We have to take a serious decision,
if they aren't going to talk about
this we have to decide we will
assume we are going to the WTO.
you see them as being obstructive
and you would describe them in terms
that they are not being patriotic?
This is a pretty boring bill. All
this is doing is... And it's an idea
I pushed four years ago. Turn the
whole corpus of European law into UK
law. Is what we did when we left
India, when we left Australia. It's
what the colony of Virginia did
before the revolution.
don't like it, the point is they
aren't going to bite fitted.
could get up at 3am and run an
abattoir, you have to have a
framework of law.
If it looks like
you are facing defeat, what should
There's a couple more weeks
until we have the vote. This
actually is a pretty boring techie
Bill converting EU law into UK law.
It's believed housing could be one
of the big themes of next week's
budget as the government tries
to give more of us a leg up
onto the housing ladder.
Theresa May has said
it is her "personal mission that
Britain builds more homes more
quickly" although how this will be
done is still unclear.
Earlier today Sajid Javid,
the Communities Secretary gave
what was dubbed a major speech
on housing and said
although progress had
been made this year,
with over 200,000 new homes built,
much more was needed.
217,000 net additions means 217,000
more people or families
with a roof over their heads.
217,000 places where people can put
down roots and build their life.
But fixing the broken housing market
will require a much larger effort.
The figures that have been released
today show that we have started
to turn things around,
but they are only a small step,
I believe, in the right direction.
What we now need is a giant leap.
We asked to speak to a housing
minister or a Government
representative, but none
Joining me instead is
the Conservative MP Chris Philp,
and the property developer
presenter Sarah Beeny.
Welcome. Chris Philp, George Osborne
famously said "We are the party of
builders". When you look at the
figures, you haven't been, have you?
We have made enormous progress. When
Labour were in office they completed
When was that?
2009-10. We are now up to 217,000
completions this year. It's almost
doubled. However as Sajid Javid said
it's not enough. We need to do more.
We need to be building 250 or maybe
even 300,000 housing units a year to
catch up with a deficit of housing
that Labour left behind. A lot of
progress but there's more to do.
Except you've been in power for the
last seven years and you've still
not reached that 250,000 target that
your own white Paper says is
required. You're still short of it
this year and been way of it for the
We are slightly short.
It's been steadily increasing.
very low bar.
That's why the
government has committed £9 billion
to social housing which is a
staggeringly large sum of money...
How many extra homes will the £2
billion that Theresa May announced
before the speech, it worked out of
The package as a whole is
£9 billion. That isn't the anything
we are doing. The housing White
Paper last year is designed to help
free up the planning system. I think
next week in the budget we will hear
What would you like to hear in
the budget on housing?
I think I'd
like to see really more thought, a
lot more thought put into Howell,
instead of building houses where
there is too much demand at the
moment, why don't we really try and
consider spreading people out across
the country and building houses...
The problem I have is there's a
massive concentration of people
living in the south-east which we
all know. Building more houses in
the south-east isn't going to bring
house prices down. What we have is
an affordability problem. It's not a
housing shortage, it's affordable
There is a housing
Is there really?
terms of demand in London and the
south-east and people moving jobs,
isn't there a shortage as well as an
There is an
argument that if there was a
shortage of housing you wouldn't be
able to find a house for sale and if
you look online there are lots of
houses for sale. There's a shortage
of houses that people can afford to
buy. What we are really talking
about is a house price issue not a
shortage of actual houses.
agree in terms of building homes
away from the concentrations like
London and the south-east where they
have traditionally been built in
We do need to spread
housing around. We need to make sure
our northern cities are being
invested in. Things like the
Northern Power has project and HS2.
I think there is a supply issue as
well as an affordability issue. We
need to be creative about where we
build. We need to make sure every
spare piece of brown field is built
on. Transport for London have 6000
acres Brownfield land.
expensive to access that.
It can be.
There is £2 billion designed to
unlock it. It may be expensive but
we need to grip the problem and get
on with it and build on that land
because houses are so badly needed.
I would like to see any public land
that is ever sold, our land that we
all own, when it sold I would like
to see it only being sold at... The
problem is the price it ends up
being worth means that people are
forced to build houses that and
affordable. Why can't we cap
affordable house prices and make
house prices stay affordable
permanently? When we sell public
land it can only ever be built on
with houses that are affordable and
That's an idea I've
heard and we should look at doing
that. I am excited about the
possibility of bringing forward more
public sector land. Network Rail
have lots of land, the MoD...
about affordability? When people
talk about affordable housing and
you look at prices of new homes,
they aren't affordable really,
certainly not to a first-time buyer
unless you've got a great big
deposit or the bank of mum and dad.
The help to buy scheme is designed
to give people a boost to their
mortgage. They only require a 5%
deposit. Generally speaking you are
right. Pricing is a function of
supply and demand. There is massive
demand and not enough supply. That's
why prices are so high. The root
cause of this is increasing supply.
That's what the housing White Paper
and budget next week will do.
think Sarah has a point. Britain has
two infrastructure problems. In
London and the south-east it is
housing or housing affordability. In
the Midlands and the north it is
transport infrastructure. It's not
even say much about the big project,
Northern Powerhouse, but it's about
the little links. The connection
between Burnley and Lancashire. I
spoke to Yvette Cooper who said
there is only one train from her
constituency into Leeds every day.
If the great Northern and midland
towns revive even more than they
have done already, if they continue
to grow and flourish, and they will
do, then we can sort out some of
those infrastructure links and the
pressure of people coming down to
the south-east will be relieved
on that issue, without transport
links, can you build those homes
elsewhere in the country if there
are isolated pockets aren't well
served by transport links?
a lot of affordable homes already
that nobody can get, so we don't
necessarily need to build more
homes, we just need to get the
people to the homes, and that means
the infrastructure, it needs the
jobs there, the schools and
hospitals, and that will stop the
concentration. If you invest in
business outside London, where the
houses are, then the people will
follow the jobs.
In terms of land
you could build on, builders like
green belt - should it be built on
It is precious and it improves
the quality of life for people who
live on the edge of large cities,
including my own constituents in
Isn't that the
problem, councils in constituencies
such as yours will block this?
belt covers a large area, and you
could look to see if there are bits
that are not what you and I would
imagine and do an audit of that. You
could also build higher in the
centre of town. Croydon town centre
is an ideal place to go up 20 or 30
stories, and it is very accessible
because the station has fantastic
links. The point Sarah made about
transport links is important, and if
we invest more in transport links
that bring people into those
northern cities like Manchester and
Leeds, that will help.
Government borrowed significant
amounts of money to do it?
doing it already. We have a £35
billion capital spending programme.
There is Crossrail. We are building
HS2, one of the biggest high-speed
rail projects in the world. And we
are spending on affordable housing.
Is it enough or should they be
Or allowing local
authorities to borrow more or
encouraging housing associations and
local authorities. One bit of the
housing market that works well is
student accommodation. Student halls
of residence are going up across the
country all the time, so it is
clearly possible to do.
are they an obstruction?
planning system is actually have
gone backwards. I would like to see
individuals being ... It being much
simpler to get planning permission.
In the process has been made much
harder for individuals and much more
complicated than it used to be.
Another thing I would love to see
years, you used to be able to go to
your local authority and ask the
planning department whether you were
likely to get planning for something
or not, and now you need to pay for
that, which pushes away individuals
from perhaps doing development
because they have to pay for advice.
I think that's crazy if we actually
want people to... We are better off
with people doing building work
individually rather than just a
developers. Individuals actually
employ people who live locally, and
that's good, gets the world moving.
Thank you to both of you for coming
in, and we will no doubt hear more
about housing in the budget.
Next week, we need an emergency
budget to save our public services,
according to Shadow Chancellor John
This morning he's made five demands
to the Chancellor, Philip Hammond,
including more cash to public
services and serious
all to be funded by more borrowing.
Here's a flavour of
what he had to say.
Cuts to public spending damage the
whole of society. And when a
Government, as the Tories did, cut
research funding by £1 billion, it
has real economic consequences. When
they cut investment spending by
nearly 20 billion, it has an impact
on business. Investment in the UK is
the third lowest of any major
developed economy, head of only
Portugal and Greece. Public spending
on transport is the very lowest at
the developed economies. Without the
investment, you don't get the new
equipment and technology that can
sustain growth. It means skilled
people and those with talent and
ideas across the whole country are
not realising their potential. And
businesses cannot grow as they
Listening to that is the Shadow
Treasury Minister Anneliese Dodds.
She is here with me now. How much
money can labour guarantee it will
be able to extract from the big
corporations and the super-rich?
our manifesto, we set out very
clearly the fact that, for example,
we felt that £70 billion was being
squandered on tax cuts through
corporation tax and for the very
richest earners as well, by altering
the system for the highest earners.
We think that money could be much
better spent on growth- promoting
investment, like that that John was
Can you guarantee
that you will get that kind of
money? It is a big pot of money you
are talking about, but when you look
at the detailing your manifesto and
the costings, you are relying on
more money coming from tax avoidance
that you think is still out there,
and getting that guaranteed stream
of revenue year-on-year.
be debate about some of the detail,
I accept, but Labour set all the bat
out at the general election. The
Conservatives didn't. The only
numbers in their manifesto were the
page numbers. We set up where the
money would come from, and there has
been a debate about elements of it,
which is healthy. We encourage that.
We feel, on the fundamentals, yes,
we absolutely can pay for these
investments, and we think we have to
because we are doing so badly as a
country now when it comes to
investment. We have to deal with it
Do you agree that the
country is doing badly and so needs
this emergency injection of cash,
which is really just based on their
The country is growing
less fast than it might be.
Obviously there is the Brexit
shadow. We are still in a slow
recovery path from the financial
crisis. But yes, we have
historically been a short-term
economy in terms of private
investment. We have never been big
investors. Anyway that governments
can help stimulate that is surely a
good thing. There is a complete
cross-party consensus on bringing
money in from tax avoidance. All
parties have always agreed, and I
think you may be slightly a victim
of your own ideology that the Tory
Party are protecting their
super-rich friends. It is nonsense.
If it was easy to get money out of
corporations and rich individuals, I
think any Government would have done
it. Elements talk about it and try
to do it.
I sat through the debates
around the Finance Bill that we have
just had. There were some very well
thought through measures that Labour
was arguing for is part of those
debates of which the Government
refused to accept, measures that are
in place in countries very similar
to Britain. You have to acknowledge,
we have a specific UK problem that
isn't afflicting other economies. We
are the only growing economy where
people's living standards haven't
Let's pick up on
that issue. The unions have called
for a 3.9% pay rise to some parts,
or all parts, I think a the public
sector, particularly now that the
Government has signalled an end to
the freeze. The user pot that?
think there should be rises in line
with inflation, but ultimately it
should be the pay review bodies that
They are guided by
governments, and presuming that you
were the Government, would you be
advising 3.9% pay rises, as the
unions have said, because you say
you want it to be above inflation?
We had a load of these discussions,
and even in this chair at the time,
when this came up in front of
Parliament. We said we think the pay
review bodies need to be freed from
the shackles they have. They need to
look at recruitment challenges. If
they end up saying, you need a rise
of that magnitude to deal with
recruitment... I don't want to say a
figure, which I think would be
People will want to know
what you are proposing, and what you
would support, so all I'm asking is,
would you be prepared, whether it is
the pay review bodies that will
suggest it, freed from the shackles,
as you describe, would labour be
prepared to back that level of pay
The point is, we don't want
this politicised in the way the
Government has made it. We think
that pay has to
keep in line with costs, and we want
the independent pay review bodies to
do that. We set out how we would pay
for it, some months ago, and unless
we get a grip on this, we will see
the situation continuing come off
when nurses have to have a second
It might help with retention.
How much would it cost?
Government's own figures said they
thought they would save £5 billion
over format years. It is 1.25
billion every year, in practice, to
get us towards the direction we are
travelling in. -- over foul-mac
years. -- over four. Some people are
leaving professions because they are
not paid enough.
A lot of the things
being talked about by yourself and
John McDonnell would not be just
borrowing to invest, it would be a
lot of extra public spending, on
schools, health, public sector pay,
children's services, and that would
be current, day-to-day spending,
Where we need
additional spending, that is
sensible. It's not like we are in a
situation at the moment where the
Government hasn't increased
spending. If you look at spending on
some of the areas of benefits, it
has been going up because people's
incomes have been going down. I
don't think we should suggest that
currently the Government hasn't
increased spending. It has.
are talking about labour, and I am
saying that your current day-to-day
spending would go up to paper the
things you want to do.
Yes, but we
have explained where that will come
from. We try to beat transparent
In terms of welfare, the
Shadow Chancellor talked about
children in poverty and poverty in
general, but labour is only
committed to reversing one third of
the Government's £12 billion welfare
cuts. If it is so desperate, why
aren't you reversing all of them?
When it comes to Universal Credit,
this new approach to benefits,
packaging five into one, it is not
just about the spending levels but
about getting that system to work. I
think it wouldn't be
sensible at this stage to say,
right, we will totally change that
system again. We have had so much
So not all of the welfare
cuts have been a bad thing? You are
not going to reverse more than a
third, as you say.
We need to have a
review of Universal Credit. There
are things that can be done now to
make that system worked far better,
for example, the fact that the work
allowance has been cut means that
you are not better off in work than
you would have been under the
Isn't this the point
at this time as Labour is
indicating, that austerity, to use
the word that was used by the
Conservatives, that it is time to
end it and reset the narrative on
the economy and spent on the public
I think they can take their
foot off the pedal a bit. In
2009-10, the deficit was 10% of GDP
or something, and it is now down to
2-3%. We are moving in the right
direction. The total public debt to
GDP is just about hitting 90%.
I think they have to still
talk tough up to a point, but I
think they can and probably will
take their foot off the pedal.
you have some sympathy for the
Yes, but the
problem is that if you go rapidly in
the other direction, you build up
the stock of debt. You might quote
Japan at me. Japan has 220% of GDP
as public debt, but it is a high
saving country. All of the people
who lend money to the Government are
Japanese, and nearly one third of
our public debt is in foreign hands.
They will stop supporting Britain
and you will have a 1981 Francois
Mitterrand situation. You will have
to do a U-turn.
You should agree
that we should not just be looking
at spending but at revenue as well.
If you look at the falls in revenue,
because of low pay and because of
cuts the corporation and the highest
rates of income tax, if we reverse
that, we can build up revenue, which
is a sustainable way of getting to
the place we want.
Lope has fallen
for the first time in 15 years.
depends -- low pay. It depends how
you calculate it.
We will have to
end it there.
Not that long ago Labour in Scotland
dominated the political landscape
in a way that today they can only
dream of, both in
Edinburgh and London.
Now however they face an SNP
government that's been in power
for ten years and a resurgant
Scottish Conserative party
under Ruth Davidson.
Under this backdrop
the Scottish Labour Party
are electing a new leader.
Here's Elizabeth Glinka with more.
MUSIC: "Needle in a Haystack"
by The Velvelettes.
If Scottish Labour was on a dating
website, its status might
read "it's complicated".
There have been five
leaders since 2008.
When Kezia Dugdale took over
in 2015 it was described
as the worst job in politics.
Now, another new leader is due to be
announced this weekend.
This is a classic contest
in the Labour Party
between the left and the right.
Richard Leonard is the left
candidate backed by the Corbynistas,
although he's not a Corbynista
himself, he's an old-fashioned
His younger opponent Anas Sarwar
is much better known.
He has the backing of more
than Richard Leonard,
and he got off to a bad start.
But since then he seems to have
found his feet a bit.
He may have found his feet,
but the former MP and now MSP has
faced some challenges.
From his children's private
education to his family's business.
But meeting volunteers at this
charity in Edinburgh,
he bristled at the idea
that he was the
A 34-year-old from the West
of Scotland, second generation
migrant Muslim is now
somehow the establishment.
That shows you where our politics
has got two in Scotland.
I'm not the establishment's
choice in this contest.
I'm not someone who wants
to fight for the status quo.
I'm someone that recognises
that our political system is broken,
our economic system is broken,
our social system is broken,
and that's why we need radical,
bold, but also credible change
in our country.
Meanwhile, his opponent who is vying
to become the first Englishman
to lead Scottish Labour,
is keen to eschew the Corbynista
tag, despite having senior Corbyn
aides now running his campaign.
I'm a bit long in the tooth
to be a Corbynista.
I've been a member of the Labour
Party since the early 1980s.
There are some similarities,
dare I say, with Jeremy Corbyn
in the sense that I've
been pretty consistent.
My views have been consistent,
my political principles and values
haven't really changed,
and that is meant from time
to time I've been a bit off
message or out of fashion.
But I've stuck to my views
and I think that they are things
that give authenticity
and credibility to leadership.
But this internal battle may seem
a little academic when you remember
that Labour is the third party
in Scottish politics,
behind the SNP and the resurgent
Tories under Ruth Davidson.
Whomever wins, they're
going to have a real uphill struggle
on their hands before the next
elections in 2021.
Both those candidates seem to define
themselves against the SNP.
And actually, for the Labour Party
in Scotland right now,
the problem is not the SNP.
The problem is trying to get ahead
of the Tories and Ruth Davidson.
Richard Leonard or Anas Sarwar's big
problem is going to be
that they are up against two
of the most formidable political
operators not just in Scotland
but in the UK scene.
In the event of victory,
both men have spoken with passion
about uniting the party.
We'll find out on Saturday who's
been deemed Mr Right.
I'm pleased to say Sarah Smith
joins me now from Glasgow.
Whoever wins, how much of a
difference will it make to Labour's
fortunes in Scotland?
It will be
very interesting to see if they can
open up a different debate. You look
at both of these candidates, they
are broadly seen as left and right.
Both of them have come up with more
radical tax plans than Jeremy
Corbyn's manifesto in the general
election. Anas Sarwar is talking
about a 50p top rate starting at
£100,000 a year. Richard Leonard
talks about a one-off windfall
wealth tax on the better off in
Scotland. What they hope is that by
espousing policies more radical than
those Jeremy Corbyn promotes, that
they can create a new audience in
Scotland. Maybe get some of the
young people who are energised and
excited by the idea of independence
to come back and support the Labour
That's interesting because
it's a difficult job. They are up
against Nicola Sturgeon and Ruth
Yes, it is one of the
toughest jobs there is in UK
politics where the Labour Party is
languishing in third place and
you've got to really strong
performers you have to try and go up
against. What the Labour Party has
to do is create the space for an
argument between Nicola Sturgeon and
Ruth Davidson. They haven't had much
of a hearing, not necessarily
because there's been anything wrong
with their leader but because of a
slightly confused position on the
constitution. The SNP obviously in
favour of independence, the Tories
the staunch defenders of the UK.
Labour desperately want to change
the subject, talking about tax,
benefits, poverty and inequality. If
they can do that they might get a
Sarah Smith, I always ask
you to put your money on one of the
candidates. Richard Leonard was
always seen as the favourite. Is
that still the case?
He is still the
favourite at the bookies. His camp
appear more confident than Anas
Sarwar's team. They have a lot of
backing from the trade unions. Anas
Sarwar's camp say a lot of new
members of the Labour Party they
believe have signed up to support
him but their votes could be dwarfed
by the union affiliates and
registered supporters who presumably
come in for Richard Leonard.
Are you from somewhere, or anywhere?
According to my guest of the day,
your answer will put
you on either one side,
or the other of one of major fault
lines running through politics.
Those who are from somewhere
are more rooted to where they live,
value security and are troubled
by high immigration.
If you're from anywhere you're more
mobile, better paid and more
comfortable with immigration.
It's a split that crosses political
parties, although in last year's
party conference speech Theresa May
embraced the idea, and left people
in no doubt which side she was on.
That spirit that means recognising
the social contract that says
you train up local young people
before you take on cheap
labour from overseas.
That spirit that means you do
as others do and pay
your fair share of tax.
But today, too many people
in positions of power behave
as though they have more in common
with international elites
than with the people down the road,
the people they employ,
the people they pass on the street.
But if you believe you're
a citizen of the world,
you're a citizen of nowhere.
You don't understand what the very
word "citizenship" means.
Theresa May there in 2016.
Well, to discuss this we're joined
by The Guardian columnist
Jonathan Freedland -
and our guest of the day
David Goodhart has long had
an interest in these issues.
You used to be part of the liberal
metropolitan elite as you would
describe yourself, what changed?
became interested in questions of
national identity and immigration. I
wrote a book about immigration a few
years ago. I think I started to see
the world from a slightly different
perspective. I had assumed, like so
many people of my generation growing
up in the 60s and 70s, going to
university, I assumed that the
liberal litany was not only
righteous but was the way for the
future. You have two, obviously all
sensible people believe in openness,
autonomy, self-realisation. It
gradually dawned on me that very
large sections of our population
have completely different world
view. That doesn't mean to say they
are xenophobic or bad people. Some
of them may be. But many people want
basic, simple things. Stable
communities, secure borders,
national citizen rights before
universal rights. They want decent
outcomes for people who don't go to
university, decent narratives for
young kids who are not popping off
to universities. These basic things,
that seemed not any longer to be
part of the centre-left agenda. That
made me change my mind on some of
Do you think the
definition of somewhere and anywhere
is helpful in terms of understanding
the social trends or politics in the
It's a useful tool and been braced
by a lot of people. I don't think
the nowhere category was helpful. In
the context of leaf and remain it
essentially delegitimised Remainers
and conjured up the notion of
rootless cosmopolitan Zaza citizens
of nowhere, which is in idea with a
bad history. I think the categories
are to bald. Some of the trace hear
tributes to somewhere for example in
community cohesion and valuing
communal bonds, I think some of the
most anywhere parts of the country
exhibit those traits. Grenfell Tower
is once again in the news rightly
and Finsbury Park after that terror
attack. You saw communities of
diverse people coming together and
showing exactly the bonds of
community your model Mania tributes
are often the most rooted and
grounded. The growth of the British
minority population acts as a bridge
in some ways between the anywhere
worldview and the somewhere
worldview. Jonathan and others have
made the reasonable point, and in
the introduction to my paperback
edition of the book I acknowledge
that. I'm not saying that anywheres
citizens of nowhere. They are not
just an elite. This is something I
keep emphasising. The educated and
mobile, and it's such an important
link in this country because of
residential universities partly.
People who have achieved identities.
They passed exams, went to good
universities, have more or less
successful careers. Those people
constitute a quarter of the
population. If you look at the value
and opinion data they are
consistently there across everything
from support for the EU to
immigration and so on.
automatically disconnected from
what's around them.
We saw that in
the last election. The Bristol West,
the Manchester within short. They
aren't where they came from
originally but they've made new
That was my point,
largely, that they showed great
qualities of community cohesion. The
point about minorities is important.
Part of what the somewheres bemoan
is the idea that diversity has
imperilled their lives. I think the
model, as David describes it, buys
into too much of that notion that
minorities and diversity has
imperilled that life. I think
actually they exhibit just the kind
of community bonds you would want,
and therefore to cast newcomers and
minority communities as somehow the
crowd on the horizon is, I think,
unhelpful and also at variance with
Which I don't do. You used
that phrase in your review of my
book and there's no evidence I use
that. It's to do with scale and pace
You say people object to
their communities being changed to
rapidly by mass immigration so you
are talking about the scale and pace
of change. Has immigration been bad
It's been good and bad.
For many people it's been far too
large and far too rapid. I think
that's indisputable and is one of
the reasons, probably the biggest
single reason we are leading the
European Union now, is because of
the way that freedom of movement has
operated. 1.5 million people came
over five years and changed the face
of many urban and suburban areas of
the country. Just too fast.
think that is, in some people's
mind, would be seen as
anti-immigration or even perhaps
Some people would cast it
that way. It's helpful if we can get
beyond that. I think it's so hard to
know that. So many of those
communities have so many other
problems. They've been left behind
economically, social neglect, etc.
The idea is certain that the change
in immigration often in places that
have experienced hardly any
immigration, that that is the root
of their problems. I agree it became
central in the referendum.
It's an emblem of nostalgia
and gloss. That is real but is it
down to the fact society has got
more diverse? I'm not sure.
from Barnsley, 40 years ago you
lived in one of the great coalfields
of Western Europe. But now you see
the national story has completely
passed you by. The focus is entirely
on the great metropolitan centres
with their large minority population
and you see that at a loss. You
don't have to be xenophobic to feel
a sense of loss.
The sense of loss
might be more of a shift from
Barnsley to the metropolitan area
and not because they've got more
Who is more virtuous,
somewheres or anywheres?
worldviews are entirely did it, we
have divine bridges between them --
are entirely legitimate.
There's just time before we go
to find out the answer to our quiz.
The question was which Cabinet
minister has been showing off
in Cabinet while trying to audition
for the role of Chancellor?
Was it Andrea Leadsom,
Michael Gove, Liam Fox,
or Gavin Williamson?
So David, what's the correct answer?
That is very easy because I read the
Times, it is Michael Gove.
done, you've got it! He did have a
favourite phrase which I can't
That's all for today.
Thanks to our guests.
Andrew will be back tonight
with This Week tonight.