27/11/2017 Daily Politics


27/11/2017

Jo Coburn is joined by Kate Hoey and Paul Masterton to look at the government's new industrial strategy and the issue of the Irish border in the Brexit negotiations.


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Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello and welcome to

the Daily Politics.

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The Government's publishing

its industrial strategy today,

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alongside an announcement that two

big pharmaceutical firms are to

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invest more than £1

billion in the UK.

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Will it be enough to turn around

the UK's sluggish growth prospects?

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We will look at the political

reaction to the other big news - as

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it is announced that Prince Harry is

to marry the actress, Meghan Markle.

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New Defence Secretary Gavin

Williamson will answer

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questions from MPs for the first

time this afternoon,

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amid reports he's facing a growing

Tory rebellion over cuts

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to the Armed Forces.

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Some Labour MPs aren't happy

at being asked to sign what's

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being a called a 'loyalty test'

by the Jeremy Cobyn-supporting

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group Momentum.

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Is this part of a sinister

plot, or an innocent way

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to hold MPs to account?

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And we'll be taking a look at what's

thought to be one of the most

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photographed Christmas trees

in the world - it's travelled

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hundreds of miles and it's just gone

up outside the Houses of Parliament.

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All that in the next hour,

and with us for the whole

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of the programme today two MPs

who've managed to take a short break

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from planning their Royal

engagement parties -

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it's Labour's Kate Hoey

and the Conservative Paul Masterson.

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Welcome to the show both of you.

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So, it's the announcement

an expectant nation has been

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waiting for for months,

breathless with excitement.

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No, not the Government's

industrial strategy -

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although we'll be talking about that

in a moment - but the even more

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long-awaited engagement

between Prince Harry

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and the American

actress Meghan Markle.

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The party leaders have been

offering their congratulations,

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the Prime Minister said on Twitter,

"I would like to offer my very

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warmest congratulations to HRH

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

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upon their engagement.

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And Jeremy Corbyn was asked about it

on a visit to Scotland.

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First of all, my congratulations to

them. I wish them well. I hope they

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have a great time and great fun

together. Having met Harry a couple

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of times, I am sure they'll have a

great deal of fun together. What

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about you? Are you planning to buy

your hat soon?

I am pleased the

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engagement's happened because we

have all waited for this and it

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takes up a lot of media interest. I,

like any couple getting engaged - it

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is great. Cob gratlations to them.

-- congratulations to them. Prince

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Harry has changed his image and done

so much. I was involved with the

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Invictus Games and he really was so

good with athletes and I think this

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will be welcomed by everyone. He, I

think Jeremy was pleased too,

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because he's an Arsenal supporter

and Prince Harry is apparently an

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Arsenal supporter.

You are telling

me a lot of things I don't know! I

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what about the effect it will have

on the nation?

I think it will be a

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nice, positive mood for poo emto

look forward to. When we look back

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to William and Kate and my wife and

I made the trip from Scotland to sit

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by the Mall. It is a nice, happy

occasion. There is a lot of doom and

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gloom. It is something the nation

will be happy with.

I am sure

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Theresa May will be happy too. He's

changed the tone of the Royal Family

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- he and his brother talking openly

about the grief of losing their

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mother. Has that changed the image

of the Royal Family?

Prince Harry

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and William have allowed people into

the Royal Family, see them growing

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up, feel the Royal Family is more

modernised.

I think they are

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appealing to the younger generation,

which is something we needed to

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happen to make sure. Because I am a

great royalist, you see. I want to

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see the Royal Family be successful.

I think this is good.

Now

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Now to the other big news

of the day, if perhaps

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if perhaps not quite as big -

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it's the Government's long-awaited

industrial strategy.

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Details of the plan,

which is designed to show how

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Government funding and policy can

boost investment from private

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firms, will be announced

in the Commons later today.

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Alongside the launch,

two pharmaceutical firms have said

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they will invest more

than £1 billion in the UK, creating

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about 1,850 jobs.

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The company MSD will support

a new research centre in London,

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while German's Qiagen will develop

a genomics and diagnostics

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campus in Manchester.

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Here's Business Minister Greg Clark

welcoming the news.

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Well, this is going to act on all of

the contributions to improving

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productivity, so getting the best

research and development. We have

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got the best kit across the country.

Making sure that we invest more in

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skills that are needed in training,

transport connections. We need to

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connect better our towns and cities

across the country. To make sure we

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respect the fact that different

places need different things. And so

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we are going to bring them all

together in a long-term plan that

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can make sure that Britain takes

advantage of the opportunities of

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the new industries of the future.

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Simon, how much interest will there

be in this Government's industrial

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strategy when we've had the

announcement of a royal engagement?

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I wonder if there was a call to

number ten saying, I wonder if you

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mind us to announce this today. He

thought he was up against the

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volcano in Bali, now there's the

royal engagement. This document has

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taken two years to putting to. Five

sectors, five levers the Government

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can pull. The idiot's guide is this

- the Government chucks in money,

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aligns some academic institutions

around it, puts money into skills

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and crucially allows the sectors a

test-bed to twrie out their new

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stuff. For life sense r sciences

that could mean early adoption of

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new medicines for the NHS. For the

sector it could mean driverless

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cars. Hey presto, public investment

ensues. They were looking at this as

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the industrial strategy in action.

And basically it's been in the

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pipeline for a while. It became all

the more urgent after we had that

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assessment of Britain's economic

prospects from the Chancellor and

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the OBR last week. They said this is

something we should do, anyway. It

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is getting more urgent and with

Brexit around the corner it is

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something the Government should get

involved in. You will remember

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previous Tory Governments would have

run a mile using the words

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industrial strategy, with all the

memories of failed Government

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interventions. This Government is

unapologetic saying we can play a

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role and get things going, with

Brexit around the corner the need is

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as urgent as ever.

The figures of

productivity and growth will this be

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transformative in reversing the

fortunes of the UK industry?

I was

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at the institute with the Secretary

of State today - this is a

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high-tech, high-skilled,

productivity area. Most of the

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country is not like that. The

challenge for the Government will be

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to look at if areas of the economy

where people are more likely to

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drive white vans than wear white

coats - hospitality, retail - they

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are more difficult to get at. They

are the bits he has to refresh the

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parts of the economy that this

industrial strategy might not reach.

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The big banner... There'll be a

pipeline of announcements, which

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will say, look it is all working,

just as we had with Nissan, if you

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remember. He went to Nissan and

provided reassurances and got a big

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amounted of investment there. Since

then, investment in car

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manufacturing has gone down sharply.

It will be very interesting to see

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if they can keep up the momentum of

this investment. Everyone thinks it

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is welcome. Will it unhelp unlock

the pro-tuckive of the economy,

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which is the lion's share of it?

Thank you. Is it little, too little,

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a lot too late?

I don't think so.

Think I what this document does is

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recognise the world is moving

quickly. As a country we need to

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make sure we are at the forefront or

we will get left behind. It is a

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clear plan for the Government to

invest in key sectors where we have

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huge potential and make sure we are

at the forefront and pick up on the

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productivity, growth and skills

issues, which were highlighted

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there.

Kate Hoey, Michael Heseltine,

a former minister said the best way

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is by stopping Brexit?

I would

expect someone like Michael

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Heseltine to say exactly that. I

think what he should be saying today

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is, brilliant, we are seeing a

large, two large pharmaceutical

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companies really investing huge

amounts of money in this country at

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a time when people like him are

saying no-one wants to invest. I

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mean, it's an industrial strategy,

we've had them before. It is what

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happens on the ground, but the new

technology and money going into

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making sure we are keeping up with

the rest of the world and being

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ahead of the rest of the world is

important.

We are not ahead in terms

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of productivity and slower growth.

In terms of investing is really

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important. The key thing for me and

I was worried last week when I heard

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the figures on apprenticeships

because it has not gone up, it has

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gone down. It is crucial. It has to

be a key part of any industrial

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strategy.

The industrial strategy

will be influenced by Brexit,

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clearly since that is the biggest

decision that the Government is

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grappling with. Again, I ask you,

what do you say to Michael Heseltine

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saying the best way to promote

industrial strategy and reverse

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slower growth and downgraded

productivity figures is to stop

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Brexit?

That is over dramatic.

Brexit changes Britain's place in

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the world and we need to decide what

sort of country we want to be post

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Brexit. Do we want to be dynamic, at

the forefront, able to attract the

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best and brightest from the world or

will we meander through? The

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strategy is a clear strategy for the

Government in saying, yes, Brexit

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changes things, but we will utilise

what opportunities there are from

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that.

Do you think it is difficult

for companies to decide whether to

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invest and when to invest when they

say they don't know the shape of

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Brexit?

From the north of the border

we saw the run up in the border

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referendum and it did place a hinder

rens on investment decisions. It is

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wise we move to this next round of

talks getting clarity.

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Now it's time for our Daily Quiz.

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And as today is apparently one

of the busiest shopping

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days before Christmas,

we might be able to help

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because the questions

is, which party leader

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has been immortalised,

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if that's the right word,

with their own annual?

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The perfect stocking filler

for someone you don't

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particularly like.

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Is it, A.

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Theresa May?

0:11:470:11:49

B.

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Vince Cable?

0:11:500:11:51

C.

0:11:510:11:52

Jeremy Corbyn?

0:11:520:11:53

D.

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Arlene Foster?

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At the end of the show Paul and Kate

will give us the correct answer.

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Let's turn to Brexit, as there's

been plenty of discussion over the

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weekend about the future of the

Irish border and how that affects

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the negotiations in Brussels.

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Theresa May has made

clear her desire to move

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onto trade talks with the EU

at the December summit.

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But, the EU won't move

on until "real progress" has been

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made on the Irish border issue -

and have set a deadline

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of 4th December.

and have set a deadline

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As a continuing EU member

state, Ireland has a veto

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on whether the EU-UK talks can

progress on to trade.

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And Leo Varadkar,

the Irish Prime Minister -

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wants a written guarantee

that there will be no hard border

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between Ireland and Northern

Ireland.

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But International Trade Secretary

Liam Fox said this weekend that

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a final decision on the future

of the border between

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Northern Ireland and the Republic

can not be decided until the UK

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knows what sort of trade deal it

will have with the EU.

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The two governments also disagree

over what a future trading

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relationship between Ireland

and the UK should look like.

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Irish European commissioner

Phil Hogan told the Observer

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newspaper yesterday

that it was "a very simple

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fact" that remaining

in the single market -

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or allowing Northern Ireland to do

so, would end the stand-off.

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But, Theresa May has repeatedly said

Britain will leave the single

0:13:210:13:24

market and customs union.

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I am joined now by Mr Richmond, who

is the spokesman on EU affairs.

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Welcome to the programme Neil. Just

before I come to you, Kate Hoey,

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there's been no detail from the UK

on how the Northern Irish border can

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work. The Irish Government wants

certainty. What is wrong with that?

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. I think they could play a greater

part in getting that certainty

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because there is no real reason why,

with goodwill and political will,

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that we cannot work out a situation

where certainly there's no problem

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with people moving. We've had a

common travel area since 1921. There

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is no problem with that. With trade,

there are all sorts of

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technological, electronic reasons,

ways of doing it. The Republic of

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Ireland is going to be actually even

worse off if they veto this and we

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end up with a no deal because they

are going to suffer even more. So I

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really think what the Republic of

Ireland should be doing is being

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positive, working with us and not

trying to play this sort of idea

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that they are going to be stopping

things happening because they don't

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like the fact that people have left.

But the bottom line to me is very

0:14:290:14:33

clear - there's no way Northern

Ireland will be treated differently

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from the rest of the UK. Do you

accept that, Neil Richmond, that

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point that Northern Ireland will not

be treated separately, so says the

0:14:410:14:46

Government, Kate Hoey has repeated

it, although she's not part of the

0:14:460:14:49

Government, that Northern Ireland

will not stay in any separate

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customs union?

Absolutely. I reject

the fact. We set out at the start of

0:14:520:15:01

negotiations, as agreed by the

European Commission and the UK

0:15:010:15:04

Government that we needed to handle

and get significant progress on

0:15:040:15:08

three clear issues before phase two.

We missed the deadline back in

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October. The Irish Government has

put out a series of possible

0:15:130:15:17

solutions. We would love the UK to

stay within the European Union, the

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customs union. I appreciate that is

not realistic. A new customs

0:15:220:15:26

agreement will make sure Northern

Ireland is not treated any

0:15:260:15:28

differently to the rest of the UK

and the Irish border can remain as

0:15:280:15:32

it is, which. Any technological

solutions will be a turn backwards

0:15:320:15:42

to a dark place in our history.

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return to a dark place, threatening

the peace process, if there were to

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be technological solutions for those

customs checks across because, as

0:15:490:15:56

has been said by the police force,

as soon as you put any sort of

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technological tracker or a roving

customs in check anything like that,

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along the border, it will become a

target for a very real paramilitary

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threat.

We don't want that to go

back, we have gone from a situation

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where we have 270, it is a great

place to be in, we have come a long

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way, we want to maintain that, the

Irish government are the UK's best

0:16:240:16:28

friend when it comes to European

talks and we want to get this

0:16:280:16:31

resolved. We want to move on to

phase two as soon as possible but we

0:16:310:16:35

have got to stand up for the rights

of all Europeans and Irish people in

0:16:350:16:39

these negotiations.

He describes

Ireland as Britain's best friend and

0:16:390:16:43

says there has been a positive

response, are you prepared to risk

0:16:430:16:46

the peace process or any sort of

infrastructure along that border for

0:16:460:16:51

keeping Northern Ireland separate,

when you'll Richmond says there is a

0:16:510:16:55

solution in terms of some sort of

customs...?

A lot of smuggling goes

0:16:550:16:59

on at the moment and we do not have

any border at all, communal activity

0:16:590:17:03

at the border, the idea that somehow

because you have electronic tracing

0:17:030:17:07

of lorries going forward and back,

particularly those people who trade

0:17:070:17:13

everyday, farmers who send milk back

and forward, over the border, there

0:17:130:17:17

is no reason why they cannot be

given special status which happens

0:17:170:17:20

in other parts of the world where

there are borders. Because they are

0:17:200:17:24

going back and forward. People in

Northern Ireland generally, whether

0:17:240:17:29

they voted remain or leave, will

find it quite wrong and actually,

0:17:290:17:34

quite almost, I can hardly think of

the word, because it makes me

0:17:340:17:40

annoyed, somehow the idea that

because the United Kingdom is

0:17:400:17:43

leaving the EU, that that is going

to threaten the peace process, and

0:17:430:17:48

therefore, we should be almost not

leaving because if we leave, that

0:17:480:17:52

could threaten the peace process.

Isn't it a real worry?

Well, there

0:17:520:17:57

are dissidents but they are there at

the moment, operating, crossing the

0:17:570:18:01

border, things are still going on,

quite horrible things have happened

0:18:010:18:07

even in the last few weeks, they do

not get much publicity over here but

0:18:070:18:12

it is important we do not allow

people like the dissidents to thwart

0:18:120:18:18

what has been a democratic process

of the people of the United Kingdom,

0:18:180:18:22

Northern Ireland is an integral

part.

How responsible is it, Neale

0:18:220:18:26

Richmond, of you to bring up the

peace process, why is the Irish

0:18:260:18:30

government wanting to revive any

idea that piece may be threatened

0:18:300:18:35

while these negotiations are going

on? In order to use a stick against

0:18:350:18:40

the British government, to make a

decision that you would like to see

0:18:400:18:46

in terms of this invisible border?

The Irish government, along with the

0:18:460:18:50

UK Government, our programme towards

the Good Friday Agreement, it is

0:18:500:18:56

absolutely our responsibility to

make sure there is no undermining of

0:18:560:18:59

the Good Friday Agreement.

Why

should there be?

Well, because if

0:18:590:19:03

you put in hard infrastructure, it

is a step backwards and provides a

0:19:030:19:07

viable threat or new dissident

terrorists, not smuggling, I'm

0:19:070:19:12

talking about targeting the

institutions of a border that we did

0:19:120:19:14

not ask for and we did not want and

we have to make sure our small

0:19:140:19:20

island maintains its peaceful

disposition at the moment.

Go on.

0:19:200:19:25

This morning, Bertie Ahern said on

radio, he can see the solutions

0:19:250:19:30

would happen, one or two things may

be more difficult but ultimately it

0:19:300:19:35

can work, the technological

electronic surveillance, and all of

0:19:350:19:38

that, it is not have to be at the

border, it is not at the border of

0:19:380:19:42

some of the other places.

We are

very close to negotiations finishing

0:19:420:19:48

and we have seen zero detail from

the United Kingdom government. We

0:19:480:19:51

did not see it from the speech in

Florence, the Irish government has

0:19:510:19:56

put in a detailed solution and we

have seen nothing and we cannot be

0:19:560:19:59

expected to move on to phase two on

just a promise. We need a solid

0:19:590:20:03

agreement with detail that will

guarantee that there is no border,

0:20:030:20:07

technological or otherwise, there

cannot be a border. There cannot be

0:20:070:20:10

a physical border. I'm been very

straight on that, a return to a

0:20:100:20:15

physical border is a step adequate

and a threat to a very fragile peace

0:20:150:20:19

process that those that are still

living on the island see everyday.

0:20:190:20:23

Why doesn't the government just give

them a written guarantee?

Well, the

0:20:240:20:29

Prime Minister has stated very

clearly, as has David Davis, as have

0:20:290:20:33

all of us, are we really saying that

the Irish government does not

0:20:330:20:38

actually believe the word of the

British Prime Minister?

0:20:380:20:42

We want detailed.

Why don't you

provide a written guarantee?

I am

0:20:440:20:49

not...

-- we want detail.

Talking

about a hard border... He's thinking

0:20:490:20:57

a hard border does not even have

electronic technology, that is

0:20:570:21:02

nonsense, a hard border to me is

what was there when the IRA were

0:21:020:21:06

bombing and bringing over arms

across the border, that was a hard

0:21:060:21:09

border. We are not going back to

that and no talk about ending the

0:21:090:21:13

peace process is helpful at all in

that discussion.

Do you not take the

0:21:130:21:18

British government's word on that,

no return to a hard border?

We

0:21:180:21:25

absolutely accept the word of the

British government, but what we have

0:21:250:21:28

not done, and it was the same when

the tea shop met the Prime Minister

0:21:280:21:31

last week, and the Foreign Minister

met the secretary of foreign

0:21:310:21:36

affairs, we both asked very nearly

of him, we want detailed, when the

0:21:360:21:40

United Kingdom put it in detail, the

European committing negotiating team

0:21:400:21:48

will agree there has been

significant and enough progress to

0:21:480:21:50

go on to phase two. -- Taoiseach.

That is what we want and what we

0:21:500:21:54

need, we do not want to hold this up

for no reason.

Do you take Neale

0:21:540:21:59

Richmond's point that there has not

been enough detail from the British

0:21:590:22:03

government, that they are asking for

something without setting out

0:22:030:22:06

precisely what it is.

At the moment

when it comes to Northern Ireland, a

0:22:060:22:11

lot of empty platitudes about no

hard border, treating it as the rest

0:22:110:22:15

of the UK but no one is saying what

that means, I think we are seeing

0:22:150:22:19

clearly why Northern Ireland was not

a big part of the Leave campaign in

0:22:190:22:23

a referendum because they had no

idea how to deal with it if they

0:22:230:22:26

won. I agree with Kate and others on

one thing, this is one area where

0:22:260:22:30

the solution is intrinsically linked

with the future trading relationship

0:22:300:22:33

and this is one area where the EU

insistence on splitting it into two

0:22:330:22:37

parts simply does not work.

Do you

accept the idea that there could be

0:22:370:22:41

a separate arrangement?

I'm not

comfortable with that particularly,

0:22:410:22:47

it gets messy in and of itself.

It

may solve a problem... But it would

0:22:470:22:53

cause lots of other problems.

It

would cause lots of other problems.

0:22:530:22:57

When you talk about a hard border,

describe what a hard border is in

0:22:570:23:00

your mind, because if it is not a

return to the infrastructure,

0:23:000:23:04

checkpoints, that we associated with

the troubles, before the peace

0:23:040:23:09

process, what hard border is it that

you mean?

Any change to the material

0:23:090:23:13

border that we have at the moment is

a return to a hard border, be roving

0:23:130:23:17

customs checks, the online

infrastructure, all of these things

0:23:170:23:22

that Kate and others have suggested,

we have seen no detailed proposals,

0:23:220:23:27

the government have not given us

proposals, I reject the suggestion

0:23:270:23:30

the EU has set up the process, this

is an agreement between the United

0:23:300:23:35

Kingdom and negotiating issues,

three key issues, citizens rights,

0:23:350:23:39

the situation of Ireland, this was

agreed by both sides. We are

0:23:390:23:43

sticking to the agreement and the

negotiating timetable. If government

0:23:430:23:48

is serious they will give us some

detail.

Is it helpful to that

0:23:480:23:51

Ireland will pay for a border if it

comes to no deal?

We will not be

0:23:510:23:55

putting up a border, so if they wish

to have a border they will have to

0:23:550:23:59

pay for it.

What if they chose to

Europe -- you chose to leave the

0:23:590:24:05

European union, it is your decision.

We did not choose to leave.

Our

0:24:050:24:08

people have made a decision.

They

did not consider what the result of

0:24:080:24:13

the decision would be.

We are

leaving the single market, we must

0:24:130:24:16

find a solution.

You made the

decision... You have not thought

0:24:160:24:21

about what a border would look like.

Will Ireland use its veto? I really

0:24:210:24:26

hope Ireland does not need to use

it, there is no need to use it, if

0:24:260:24:30

the UK Government sits down and sets

down their mission, and their vision

0:24:300:24:35

for the United Kingdom and the

relationship post "Brexit", it will

0:24:350:24:39

make things easier. A lot of people

who painful Eve did so without ever

0:24:390:24:43

saying what the future would look

like, this is a top three

0:24:430:24:46

negotiating issue for both sides,

critical importance, we want to move

0:24:460:24:51

on to the future relationship. -- a

lot of people who campaigned for

0:24:510:24:58

leave.

Difficult to find a solution

to the border issue without the

0:24:580:25:01

trade talks being part of it, it has

been said, if Ireland uses its veto

0:25:010:25:07

before the EU and Britain have had a

chance to talk about the shape of

0:25:070:25:10

the trade deal, that will destroy it

before we get there.

We have zero

0:25:100:25:14

interest in using the veto, the veto

is that hard Brexit, which is a

0:25:140:25:19

disaster for us, but the situation

on the island of Ireland is of

0:25:190:25:26

utmost importance, we must resolve

that, when we get a clear idea, we

0:25:260:25:29

are not looking for a final solution

in the next week or ten days, we are

0:25:290:25:35

looking for significant progress

allowing us to do what we want to

0:25:350:25:37

do. We did not choose Brexit, we

have got to deal with the mess of

0:25:370:25:43

it, it is going to affect the island

of Ireland much more...

It may not

0:25:430:25:48

be much longer before the island

public...

Your lack of knowledge is

0:25:480:25:55

delusional about the Irish public

voting for leaving the European

0:25:550:25:58

Union, delusional.

Is it delusional?

Lots of options dealing with the

0:25:580:26:04

Northern Irish Republic question, by

building a wall and getting the

0:26:040:26:10

Irish to pay for it, that is... That

is not one of them.

They are the

0:26:100:26:15

only ones talking about a border, we

don't want a border, we can handle

0:26:150:26:19

it electronically.

On that we will

leave it, Neale Richmond, thank you

0:26:190:26:23

for joining us.

0:26:230:26:30

Later today, Defence Secretary Gavin

Williamson will be speaking

0:26:300:26:32

in the Commons for the first time

since he took up the job,

0:26:320:26:35

and it looks like he's had

a tricky first few weeks.

0:26:350:26:38

You may remember on Friday's

programme we talked

0:26:380:26:40

about a possible rebellion

within the Conservative Party over

0:26:400:26:42

the issue of defence spending,

and at the weekend The Times

0:26:420:26:44

reported that Defence Minister

Tobias Ellwood has spoken

0:26:440:26:46

of his "deep discomfort"

about the levels of cuts facing

0:26:460:26:49

the Ministry of Defence.

0:26:490:26:50

He is even said to be threatening

to resign over the matter.

0:26:500:26:52

Well here's the former Defence

Secretary, now Trade Secretary

0:26:520:26:55

Liam Fox speaking to Sky yesterday.

0:26:550:26:57

And there is a review going on at

the present time, I think back to my

0:26:570:27:01

own time as Secretary of State for

Defence when we had a similar review

0:27:010:27:04

ongoing and there is always a lot of

tension, not just between the MoD

0:27:040:27:08

and the Treasury but also inside the

MoD between the different parts of

0:27:080:27:12

the Armed Forces. Naturally, there

are concerns about the future shape

0:27:120:27:16

of that, but this is an ongoing

discussion, I'm afraid it is not

0:27:160:27:21

unknown for some of these tensions

to spill over into the public

0:27:210:27:24

domain, I think that we should wait

and see exactly what sort of

0:27:240:27:28

compromise we reach, because that is

what it will be, and remember, the

0:27:280:27:33

United Kingdom is the fourth biggest

military budget in the world.

0:27:330:27:38

Well, we're joined now

by the Conservative MP and member

0:27:380:27:41

of the Defence Select

Committee Johnny Mercer.

0:27:410:27:45

I thought about reports that Tobias

Ellwood would resign if proposed

0:27:450:27:48

cuts go ahead, have you spoken to

him?

I have not spoken to Tobias,

0:27:480:27:52

sensible guy, that is a decision for

him, he clearly sees what is going

0:27:520:27:56

on in the Ministry of Defence, my

role in this, it is not about me, it

0:27:560:28:00

is what we as a Conservative Party

do in defence, we are the party of

0:28:000:28:04

defence, we need to get it right,

this is a critical time.

You have

0:28:040:28:08

written a letter, and many other

Tory MPs...

About 30 MPs are there

0:28:080:28:14

to hold the feet to the fire of the

government about defence, this is

0:28:140:28:18

not about individuals, it is about

arriving at the right answer when it

0:28:180:28:21

comes to defence, when it comes to a

lot of the stuff in the budget,

0:28:210:28:25

great stuff around artificial

intelligence and 5G, when it comes

0:28:250:28:29

to that stuff, cut your cloth

according to what you can afford.

0:28:290:28:33

Defence, pay what is necessary to

keep people safe.

You will hold

0:28:330:28:36

their feet to the fire, how far are

you prepared to go to stop these

0:28:360:28:40

cuts.

It is interesting, security

does not go to a vote, and so we

0:28:400:28:44

need to be clever in how we go about

this, my initial position has been

0:28:440:28:48

to make it very clear to the Prime

Minister and to the Chancellor and

0:28:480:28:51

the MoD that there is a group of

backbench Conservative MPs appeared

0:28:510:28:55

to hold the government to account.

That is where we are at the moment,

0:28:550:28:58

no point in doing things which may

not be necessary and hopefully one.

0:28:580:29:03

You would go so far as to defeat the

government on these cuts...

I'm not

0:29:030:29:11

prepared to see and the group

standing with me are not prepared to

0:29:110:29:14

see a further degradation in this

country's military. We will see

0:29:140:29:19

where we get to once all is said and

done.

You think that is a real

0:29:190:29:24

threat, what you have outlined?

It

is not a real threat, it is the

0:29:240:29:27

reality of the situation, we are the

party of defence and we are prepared

0:29:270:29:32

to see it through.

Is there a threat

of the Armed Forces being shrunken

0:29:320:29:35

in the way you describe?

I think

there is a clean threat -- clear

0:29:350:29:41

threat, the options on the table are

pretty horrific, we are at a

0:29:410:29:45

critical moment with defence forces,

when you look at some of the

0:29:450:29:48

proposals, it will change what we

are as a teal one military nation

0:29:480:29:52

not only for ourselves but how we

look in the eyes of our allies, and

0:29:520:29:55

I'm afraid we are prepared not to

accept it.

Have you got faith in

0:29:550:30:00

Gavin Williamson to stand up for the

Armed Forces in the way that you

0:30:000:30:03

would like to see?

He could be, I

know people have said he has no

0:30:030:30:08

experience in things like that but

he could be the best Defence

0:30:080:30:12

Secretary we have ever had. If we

were to see an increase in the

0:30:120:30:17

military capability or at least stay

where we are, then that would be a

0:30:170:30:20

good result, I think that the Times

of salami slicing are over, we have

0:30:200:30:26

now got to a point, we need to ask

what we want from Armed Forces, what

0:30:260:30:31

we expect from them, what the

British public one, they pay for

0:30:310:30:34

this, I do not believe they are

prepared to see something like the

0:30:340:30:37

size of Belgium in the UK Armed

Forces, it is not something they

0:30:370:30:41

recognise and it is not something

that I am prepared to put up with

0:30:410:30:44

either.

Will there be a showdown

with the Chancellor?

That is for

0:30:440:30:49

Gavin and the Chancellor, how they

work it out in cabinet is nothing to

0:30:490:30:52

do with me.

0:30:520:30:53

We are a team and it is about coming

to the right conclusion for defence.

0:30:580:31:02

We have called ourselves a party of

defence. Let's show that and make

0:31:020:31:04

sure we get it right.

You are a

backbench MP, the Government could

0:31:040:31:08

choose not to listen to you. What

evidence do you are? . Everyone

0:31:080:31:14

knows the Government has a fairly

small majority. Some of us are

0:31:140:31:18

prepared to stand pretty resilient

against a further reduction in our

0:31:180:31:22

capability and spending on the

millty. Paul, you have had some

0:31:220:31:27

experience of extracting money and

funds out of the Chancellor - what

0:31:270:31:31

advice would you give? Do you think

they should stand in the way that

0:31:310:31:35

Johnny Mercer has described to get

more money?

When it comes to defence

0:31:350:31:39

mattersly not tell Johnnie how to do

his job.

What about money out of the

0:31:390:31:44

Chancellor?

This is a matter that

matters to you and you will not

0:31:440:31:48

budge on. Johnnie is right - the

first call of any Government is to

0:31:480:31:52

protect the realm. The world is

changing. Our armed capability has

0:31:520:31:57

to reflect that. Scaling it back in

some of the ways suggested will put

0:31:570:32:02

our position as a global leader

under threat.

But the national

0:32:020:32:07

security adviser, who seems to have

the time say on the Defence Review,

0:32:070:32:12

has said you need to increase cyber,

instead of increasing the size of

0:32:120:32:21

the Armed Forces?

I am afraid the

Prime Minister decision's will

0:32:210:32:27

decide our configuration. I accept

his decision. He has an insight into

0:32:270:32:31

that side of the security apparatus.

I do not deny that. These sort of

0:32:310:32:35

decisions rest on the Prime Minister

and it will be her decision to make.

0:32:350:32:39

You will understand the Government

heard you say a minority government,

0:32:390:32:45

a small majority, with the DUP -

aren't you going to be causing more

0:32:450:32:50

trouble for it?

It is about doing

the right thing, like on tax

0:32:500:32:57

credits, Universal Credit. The

Conservative Party, I am I frayed,

0:32:570:33:00

people don't want to hear -- I am

afraid people don't want to hear it,

0:33:000:33:04

but we are a team.

Do you support

the hole being plugged in the MoD

0:33:040:33:11

budget?

The Government is about

priorities and choices. I think in

0:33:110:33:14

terms of security both of the nation

and of our service personnel when

0:33:140:33:19

they are out overseas that is not

something which can be compromised

0:33:190:33:23

and the money if allocated to other

things needs to be found.

Labour

0:33:230:33:26

said it will stick to the 2%

spending as a proportion of GDP,

0:33:260:33:33

even stripping out pensions, do you

support that?

If onin i was to push

0:33:330:33:38

his group into a situation where

there was a vote in Parliament I

0:33:380:33:42

think a substantial number of Labour

MPs would support it. We do

0:33:420:33:45

recognise that for the public this

is absolutely a huge issue. We do,

0:33:450:33:51

we should be putting our Armed

Forces at the front of an awful lot

0:33:510:33:56

more than we are at the moment. And

I imagine what will happen, because

0:33:560:34:02

he's got a good group with him and

there is a minority government, the

0:34:020:34:06

DUP I think will wanted to support

more money that's being spent on

0:34:060:34:11

defence. This is something where we

will see a way of going back on

0:34:110:34:16

what's been said op it.

And you may

have the support of the former

0:34:160:34:21

Defence Secretary, who said I hope

to find an early opportunity to

0:34:210:34:24

speak outen the the right level of

defence spending to face the threats

0:34:240:34:28

our country faces and do so more

freely than the constraints of

0:34:280:34:31

Government allowed. Is he part of

your cohort?

He has an insight into

0:34:310:34:37

this. When he was at defence, over

the last six/nine months, he was

0:34:370:34:43

saying we should spend more on

defence. When you are a minister

0:34:430:34:46

your hands are tied. It will be

interesting to get his insight.

When

0:34:460:34:52

is the crunch moment for you on

this?

The review has been pushed

0:34:520:34:56

back - a new Secretary of State, it

is coming in February. We will look

0:34:560:35:00

and see where we go from there. This

is not about the drama of

0:35:000:35:04

rebellions, it is making sure we, as

a party, do the right thing.

Thank

0:35:040:35:07

you.

0:35:070:35:12

Let's look now at the other stories

likely to be making the news

0:35:120:35:15

at Westminster this week.

0:35:150:35:16

Tuesday marks the deadline set

by Speaker John Bercow

0:35:160:35:18

for the Government to publish

the so-called 'Brexit papers',

0:35:180:35:20

a set of studies examining

the economic impact of Brexit.

0:35:200:35:23

Robin Walker and Chloe Smith,

respectively Brexit

0:35:230:35:24

and Northern Ireland Ministers,

will appear in front

0:35:240:35:28

of the Northern Ireland Committee

hearing about the Irish border

0:35:280:35:33

on Wednesday.

0:35:330:35:35

And the PM and Jeremy Corbyn

will also face each other

0:35:350:35:38

on Wednesday for their weekly

session of PMQs.

0:35:380:35:43

The ONS release the migration

statistics in the year

0:35:430:35:45

ending June 2017 -

the first full year of data

0:35:450:35:49

since the Brexit referendum

- on Thursday.

0:35:490:35:53

And in the afternoon,

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt

0:35:530:35:57

delivers the keynote speech at

the King's Fund annual conference.

0:35:570:36:00

Labour's Afzal Khan will introduce

a Private Member's Bill on Friday

0:36:000:36:03

that aims to keep the size

of the House of Commons at 650 MPs,

0:36:030:36:09

and to abandon the Government's

plans to reduce it to 600.

0:36:090:36:15

We're joined now by the journalists

Jessica Elgot from the Guardian

0:36:150:36:17

and Sam Coates from the Times,

they're enjoying the cold

0:36:170:36:20

snap on College Green.

0:36:200:36:30

The industrial strategy announcement

being talked about on the news, of

0:36:310:36:33

course and it has been trialled -

has it been blown out of the water

0:36:330:36:37

by the news of the royal engagement?

Yes. If you were uncharitable you

0:36:370:36:42

would say it made so few ripples

before the announcement that I

0:36:420:36:48

wasn't sure that Greg Clark isn't

grateful to the royal couple for

0:36:480:36:53

making their announcement so he can

tell himself it is not getting much

0:36:530:36:56

play. The industrial strategy has

been a subject of enormous angst

0:36:560:37:01

inside Whitehall. Disproportional

compared to the coverage it gets,

0:37:010:37:05

because surprise, surprise it looks

like it makes incremental reform, if

0:37:050:37:09

you could call it reform to the way

business interacts with Government

0:37:090:37:13

and how we help our businesses start

and grow. I think because it's not a

0:37:130:37:19

Big Bang thing toy to play with this

morning, it doesn't really get as

0:37:190:37:24

much credit in the media as I think

Greg Clark might have wanted.

On

0:37:240:37:29

that, money is announced -

supporting some of the new

0:37:290:37:33

industries, AI and some of the tech

industries. Will this not help in

0:37:330:37:38

some way to help alleviate some of

the downgrade in productivity and

0:37:380:37:42

growth?

The strategy is something

that Government is supposed to do -

0:37:420:37:47

it is hard, boring work, they are

unlikely to get much credit from the

0:37:470:37:51

public for. The kind of things you

mention, they are dif kurlt for

0:37:510:37:56

ordinary people to relate to. You

heard words like "productivity."

0:37:560:38:00

What does it mean to the average

person who might vote Conservative.

0:38:000:38:05

What Greg Clark is talking about is

so people get better skills so they

0:38:050:38:10

can earn more mon nif. That is

something which needs to -- more

0:38:100:38:13

money. That is something which needs

to be got across.

Johnny Mercer has

0:38:130:38:20

been on the programme sounding

pretty strong and defiant in the

0:38:200:38:26

proposaled cuts to defence. It is

Gavin Williamson's first outing

0:38:260:38:28

today - will he compromise?

Will

Phillip ham mond compromise? He gave

0:38:280:38:36

the budget in which there was no

mention of defence. The timing is a

0:38:360:38:42

little curious that this eruption

from sort of people around the MoD

0:38:420:38:45

is coming after a big spending and

budgetary statement. There aren't

0:38:450:38:51

normally announcements around about

now. So it is interesting to see

0:38:510:38:55

where this will build to. Built into

the budget numbers last week was a

0:38:550:39:00

little bit of forgiveness for some

spending plan for 2019. I wonder if

0:39:000:39:05

there is not a little bit of cash

stored up for this announcement?

0:39:050:39:09

There? But ultimately, it will fall

on the shoulders of Gavin

0:39:090:39:13

Williamson, as you say. It is his

first big public test. He's never

0:39:130:39:19

done a big public role until now. He

has one thing in his favour, which

0:39:190:39:22

is he knows a lot of backbench

Tories from his previous job as

0:39:220:39:28

Chief Whip. Theresa May will be

conscious that people like Johnnie

0:39:280:39:31

can cause a problem in the media and

the Commons Chamber if they don't

0:39:310:39:36

feel they are listened to. That is a

thorny thing to come.

Let's move on

0:39:360:39:42

to the story that Momentum is asking

Labour Party candidates to sign a

0:39:420:39:46

contract to say they are supporters

of the organisation campaign - what

0:39:460:39:50

do you make of this?

It is the kind

of thing that is really set to rile

0:39:500:39:55

Labour MPs who are not necessarily

natural Momentum sympathisers. If

0:39:550:39:59

you look at the statement itself, it

is all motherhood and apple pie.

0:39:590:40:04

There's not a lot in it that many

could object to. Do you support the

0:40:040:40:09

Labour manifesto, do you support an

com I that works for the many, not

0:40:090:40:13

the few? There is not much to object

to there. Many are saying to me,

0:40:130:40:17

hang on a minx obviously we gree to

this because we are Labour MPs. Why

0:40:170:40:23

sign up to this external

organisation as well? Momentum has

0:40:230:40:29

got the most extraordinary

campaigning manpower. Labour MPs I

0:40:290:40:31

spoke to over the election said they

were stunned, even ones who are not

0:40:310:40:36

sympathetic to Jeremy Corbyn when he

first started as leader, how many

0:40:360:40:41

people Momentum could get out in

their constituencies, campaigning

0:40:410:40:45

for them and leafletting for them. A

lot felt it had a huge impact on the

0:40:450:40:50

result at the last election. If it

means for a Labour MP whose seat is

0:40:500:40:54

not the safest that they lose out on

that manpower if they don't sign

0:40:540:40:58

this statement, that the a very

powerful tool.

Thank you very much

0:40:580:41:02

for standing out in the cold for us.

0:41:020:41:13

By building on the nerge and

enthusiasm of the campaign. Now some

0:41:170:41:22

Labour MPs are not happy. Wes

Streeting said, no way am I signing

0:41:220:41:26

up to outsource my thinking to a

third party organisation.

0:41:260:41:31

No-one from Momentum was available.

We are joined by Jo Foster. Isn't it

0:41:380:41:47

enough for them to support values -

why sign up to the political

0:41:470:41:52

objectives of Momentum

It is

important that we look at the fact

0:41:520:41:55

it is at the selection process. It

is at the selection process. Often

0:41:550:42:00

when people go through the selection

process they want to say we want to

0:42:000:42:04

be your MP.

Even for reselected MPs

or those standing again, are you

0:42:040:42:10

talking about them being included?

Just the initial selection.

0:42:100:42:15

Obviously for any pressure group,

for instance progress or trade

0:42:150:42:17

unions, if you want the support of

that organisation you need to say

0:42:170:42:21

you support those aims. As Jessica

said they are very tame. Often

0:42:210:42:26

Momentum have been attacked in the

press by Labour MPs and so on. If

0:42:260:42:30

they want to support an MP it would

be helpful for Momentum to know

0:42:300:42:34

those MPs support their aims and

will not attack them in the press.

0:42:340:42:38

What do you think of the Stalinist

approach to politics -?

If you meet

0:42:380:42:46

most Momentum members they range

from 16 to people in their 50s. My

0:42:460:42:50

friend's mother is a small sea

Conservative, but backs those

0:42:500:42:54

values.

Will you sign up if you had

to?

A lot has been made of this. I

0:42:540:42:59

don't think it is particularly

different from what MPs do at the

0:42:590:43:02

moment, anyway. Momentum has changed

the Labour Party enormously just by

0:43:020:43:08

getting so many young people I

voveed and so many people who are --

0:43:080:43:13

involved and so many people,. Many

people who have joined Momentum want

0:43:130:43:21

to see the country change and they

supported Jeremy. It is from the

0:43:210:43:25

same ones I would have expected.

And

you would sign up to it if you were

0:43:250:43:29

asked to?

We all say certain things

when we are being selected. It

0:43:290:43:34

doesn't always mean you vote with

the Labour Party, as Jeremy himself

0:43:340:43:38

knows.

Would you sign it? This is

binding, presumably?

To be honest I

0:43:380:43:44

cannot read the detail. If it to say

do we support the aims of the Labour

0:43:440:43:47

Party and whatever, you know, I

think this has been made a big

0:43:470:43:50

issue.

If it binds you to supporting

everything that Jeremy Corbyn...

0:43:500:43:56

Isn't that the point, it is bidding,

you join the campaign of momentum.

0:43:560:44:02

Momentum will not turn up at your

house and put you in the back of a

0:44:020:44:07

van if you change your vote.

Is hate

now a political objective of

0:44:070:44:12

Momentum? Because it was said at the

Take Back Conference, make it hate

0:44:120:44:21

again. I am full of hate these days.

Another said, I am on team hate.

0:44:210:44:25

There was a specific mention of

Phillip May, as someone who should

0:44:250:44:30

have loads of hate - is that

acceptable?

0:44:300:44:34

I do not disagree -- I do not agree

with that, we are moving away from

0:44:370:44:48

the politics which was very

mainstream where all parties were

0:44:480:44:53

from the same position, it is being

said that it is OK to disagree with

0:44:530:44:59

other people.

This is specifically

about hate and being full of it,

0:44:590:45:05

when the tone of politics is unkind

to say the least in many quarters,

0:45:050:45:08

is this the sort of thing which

should be espoused?

I think they are

0:45:080:45:12

talking more about anger than hate,

unfortunate choice of words, in the

0:45:120:45:16

comments they have made, clarified,

they have been quite clear.

They do

0:45:160:45:21

use the word hate, do you think it

is helpful and healthy.

It is one or

0:45:210:45:28

two people, I don't think you should

brand everybody on the left or even

0:45:280:45:32

in momentum, particularly, in the

same way, but I do think politics

0:45:320:45:38

generally and politicians have two

be very careful about the words they

0:45:380:45:42

use, because they can be taken out

of context so easily. Mostly, people

0:45:420:45:51

who are active and want to change

things get annoyed and angry when

0:45:510:45:55

they see policies that are very much

not in the interests...

And that is

0:45:550:46:01

justifiable, to disagree and in

quite an assertive manner, against

0:46:010:46:03

the policies that have been seen in

the Tory government, in momentum and

0:46:030:46:08

in Labour's mind, that have made

people poorer.

There is no problem

0:46:080:46:12

with being angry and disagreeing but

the question of whether hate is

0:46:120:46:15

inappropriate reaction, no, it is

lazy, it is easy, it is harmful, and

0:46:150:46:20

at some point, we have to describe

that there is a level below which we

0:46:200:46:24

will not allow political discourse

to fall. -- have to decide. Does not

0:46:240:46:30

mean you cannot campaign march on

the streets, does not mean you

0:46:300:46:33

should count yourself, but you carry

yourself with a certain level of

0:46:330:46:40

respect.

This is a Christmas card

you received.

0:46:400:46:43

That is nothing to what I have been

called! I just ignore them really. I

0:46:500:46:55

have been called that they would

like to string me up, all sorts of

0:46:550:46:59

things, therefore this came in,

politicians have always got certain

0:46:590:47:04

amounts of abuse. Perhaps it got

more during the whole referendum

0:47:040:47:11

campaign and since actually I think

it has got worse since but my view

0:47:110:47:14

on all of that, I don't go running

off to the police because I get an

0:47:140:47:20

e-mail saying...

Should MPs be

careful?

I want to comment upon

0:47:200:47:24

that, I have big issues with what

Kato said, I am a Scottish

0:47:240:47:28

Conservative, I'm used to this sort

of stuff unless I'm being chased

0:47:280:47:32

down the street with pitchforks but

this is the first time my

0:47:320:47:36

constituency staff have felt

uncomfortable and the first time my

0:47:360:47:39

wife said she feels frightened. Kate

and I are in Westminster three or

0:47:390:47:42

four days a week, safe, but staff

and families are not. Simply saying

0:47:420:47:46

it is part of the job, get on with

it, ignores the fact there is people

0:47:460:47:50

around us who do not deserve this.

Should they be called traitors and

0:47:500:47:55

mutineers on your side, and then,

the abuse that has come from the

0:47:550:48:00

remains eyed about calling people on

the Leave side stupid, ignorant,

0:48:000:48:04

bigoted -- remain side.

It is

exactly what we saw in Scotland

0:48:040:48:10

following independence referendum,

so it is not surprising, the

0:48:100:48:13

divisions are heated and unpleasant.

As politicians we have a duty to

0:48:130:48:17

moderate language with the way that

we speak to one another and

0:48:170:48:20

oppressed to a certain extent does,

people take their lead from that and

0:48:200:48:23

if you say, just get on with it, it

is nothing, it lends an air of

0:48:230:48:28

acceptability.

In terms of calling

people traitors, betraying the will

0:48:280:48:32

of the British people, did that mean

someone is a traitor? This was a

0:48:320:48:36

phrase you used in the Commons in

September. You said anyone voting

0:48:360:48:41

against Brexit is betraying the will

of the British people.

That is not

0:48:410:48:44

calling them a traitor.

Does it lend

itself to that kind of language?

I

0:48:440:48:50

was saying it in a perfectly

acceptable reasonable tone of voice

0:48:500:48:53

if I recall, but, I... I feel

strongly that all the attention has

0:48:530:49:00

gone on those, as if it is coming

from the Leave side, and in fact,

0:49:000:49:07

just because some of us have not

gone public, like one of your

0:49:070:49:12

colleagues did, about the abuse she

got, it is almost as if we do not

0:49:120:49:16

get abuse... No abuse should be

accepted.

Let's leave it there.

0:49:160:49:24

Do you ever feel you've had

enough of elections?

0:49:260:49:28

Not a view we'd subscribe

to on this programme,

0:49:280:49:30

but how about getting rid of voting,

and politicians, and letting

0:49:300:49:33

the public decide how

to govern the country?

0:49:330:49:35

Here's the political writer

Paul Evans with his soapbox.

0:49:350:49:41

The ballot-box doesn't give

us a very good way

0:49:520:49:54

of telling Government what we want

them to do, does it?

0:49:540:49:57

It allows politicians

to treat us like dummies.

0:49:570:49:59

In elections, we're only allowed

to say what it is we think

0:49:590:50:02

that we want in advance.

0:50:020:50:10

Businesses don't survive

by giving people what

0:50:100:50:11

they say that they want.

0:50:110:50:12

As as Henry Ford allegedly

said, "If I asked my

0:50:120:50:15

customers what they wanted,

they would have asked

0:50:150:50:17

for a faster horse."

0:50:170:50:20

If we were redesigning democracy

now, we'd do it very differently,

0:50:200:50:23

wouldn't we?

0:50:230:50:25

One change that I would like to see

is for all of us to have

0:50:250:50:29

ownership and equal

control over the whole

0:50:290:50:30

of the public sphere,

0:50:300:50:31

not just one vote every few years.

0:50:310:50:33

I'd like to have a personal

democracy budget,

0:50:330:50:35

say £20 a month, where

we could each allocate

0:50:350:50:37

the money that is spent

in the whole of the policymaking

0:50:370:50:40

microeconomy of lawmaking

and Government.

0:50:400:50:50

Not just on MRs, but think-tanks,

civil servants, lobbyists and even

0:50:510:50:53

the ownership and direction

of the media.

0:50:530:51:01

No more press Barons,

dark money, or stealthy bank

0:51:010:51:04

rolling of lobbyists.

0:51:040:51:10

Could even replace politicians

and political parties with agents

0:51:100:51:14

who bid to manage all or part

of our monthly personal

0:51:140:51:19

democracy budget for us.

0:51:190:51:20

We could move our budget

around at any time.

0:51:200:51:23

It would be the job of these agents

to keep their customers satisfied

0:51:230:51:26

by working to ensure that we get

the quality of Government

0:51:260:51:29

that we want, and if they don't,

they lose the business.

0:51:290:51:32

It's as simple as that.

0:51:320:51:35

So it's time for us to close down

these polling stations,

0:51:350:51:38

get rid of these ballot pencils

and start doing democracy

0:51:380:51:40

properly, because we're not

headless dummies, are we?

0:51:400:51:48

Paul joins us now. You say in your

book that these ideas may be seen as

0:51:550:52:00

a provocation, maybe an

understatement... How would it work?

0:52:000:52:09

Imagine we were starting from

scratch, we know everything we know

0:52:090:52:12

now about how feedback loops work

and how people make choices and all

0:52:120:52:18

of the flaws in representative

democracy and the flaws in direct

0:52:180:52:21

democracy, referendums, if we were

doing things again, we would do them

0:52:210:52:26

differently and I think this is the

way we would do it.

Getting rid of

0:52:260:52:30

the ballot box and not having

elections, how would that make it

0:52:300:52:33

better?

I'm not proposing to take

control from people, I'm proposing

0:52:330:52:38

to give a much greater layer of

control. A ballot paper, one square

0:52:380:52:42

on the box every four years, and

that is the only input you have,

0:52:420:52:47

alternatively, politicians choose

and cherry pick a subject, offer us

0:52:470:52:51

a rough and on it and all of a

sudden that is what we are stuck

0:52:510:52:54

with. I'm proposing that we need to

have total ownership, shared

0:52:540:52:58

ownership over the whole of the

public sphere.

0:52:580:53:01

Not just MPs, we have seen that a

lot of MPs, Margaret Beckett, for

0:53:040:53:07

instance, stood... The Article 50

vote, she said, I will be voting for

0:53:070:53:13

this bill, although I fear it's

consequences both for the economy

0:53:130:53:16

and for the whole of society are

potentially catastrophic... She has

0:53:160:53:22

been 40 years in Parliament, 40

years, and she doesn't yet know what

0:53:220:53:26

her job is! The first job of a

politician is not to vote for

0:53:260:53:29

something that you think is going to

be catastrophic! It doesn't matter

0:53:290:53:32

what an opinion poll says,

politicians this is the argument, I

0:53:320:53:38

would have thought every politician

would have had it drilled into them,

0:53:380:53:42

the day that they stood for

Parliament, yet MPs... Imagine if

0:53:420:53:47

someone had taken out an insurance

policy, paying it for 40 years, the

0:53:470:53:51

day the disaster happens, they find,

no, I am not jumping in to help you.

0:53:510:53:56

What you think of that description

as MPs taking their responsibility

0:53:560:54:00

in the way it has been outlined.

I

think they take them incredibly

0:54:000:54:03

seriously.

Why do they vote for

things they do not believe in?

I

0:54:030:54:07

think you are misunderstanding what

goes on in Parliament, lots of

0:54:070:54:10

things happen, especially between

individuals...

Do you think signing

0:54:100:54:15

Article 50 was good for the country?

I wasn't in Parliament at the time.

0:54:150:54:19

I was, I voted for it, I did, I did

believe it.

I am not clear how this

0:54:190:54:25

is better, because you are talking

about agents, who will appoint the

0:54:250:54:29

agents, how often are they change?

What happens if they don't do what

0:54:290:54:33

you say, you are replacing the words

MPs with agents.

All questions

0:54:330:54:37

answered in my book!

LAUGHTER

From all good book-sellers...

In a

0:54:370:54:43

few seconds, try to put a little bit

of flesh on the bones. Well...

I did

0:54:430:54:48

a back of a fact packet calculation.

The public sphere costs £15 billion

0:54:480:54:54

a year to run, every civil servant,

every lobbyist, all these think

0:54:540:54:57

tank, all this dark money that comes

in from an adaptable think tanks

0:54:570:55:02

like the Adam Smith Institute and

the Institute for Economic Affairs,

0:55:020:55:06

-- Adam Smith think tank. -- comes

in from think tanks.

They are not

0:55:060:55:13

here to answer the accusation that

they are accepting dark money.

I do

0:55:130:55:17

run a website which looks at the

opaque funding of a lot of things,

0:55:170:55:23

whofundsyou, is the website.

If they

voted Conservative, for the DUP, who

0:55:230:55:28

voted for that, for the DUP to be

part of a confidence and supply

0:55:280:55:33

vote.

People vote at an election

based on the candidates and party

0:55:330:55:36

platforms that are there, it is what

the result is, the leader of the

0:55:360:55:40

largest party, there to form a

government.

So you thought it was

0:55:400:55:44

good value for money?

Nothing

unconstitutional about what the

0:55:440:55:48

government did, Labour would have

done the same if they had the DUP to

0:55:480:55:51

support them.

We will end it there,

and you very much for coming in,

0:55:510:55:55

good luck! -- thank you.

0:55:550:56:00

It's still November,

so most of you probably won't have

0:56:020:56:05

thought about putting

up your Christmas decorations.

0:56:050:56:06

But here in Westminster they're

a particularly festive bunch,

0:56:060:56:08

and this weekend the tree went up

outside the Houses of Parliament.

0:56:080:56:11

The Sitka spruce, which is rather

larger than the one in the average

0:56:110:56:14

living room, travelled 330 miles

from a forest in Northumberland,

0:56:140:56:17

and took the whole day to put up.

0:56:170:56:19

Well we're joined now

by

Tanya Nesbitt-Rex,

0:56:190:56:20

she's the Christmas Tree Manager

from the Forestry Commission,

0:56:200:56:23

which must be one of the best job

titles in the country.

0:56:230:56:25

She's in our Leeds studio.

0:56:250:56:27

Very exciting that the Christmas

tree has gone up, tell us about this

0:56:270:56:29

spruce.

We are really excited that

it has gone down again this year,

0:56:290:56:33

16th year in a that the tree has

come from the forest in

0:56:330:56:39

Northumberland, it was identified

one year ago, that tree, and it has

0:56:390:56:43

been growing on open ground, and it

has been allowed to flourish,

0:56:430:56:48

created a nice tree that we have

managed to transport down there this

0:56:480:56:52

year.

What is special about this

Sitka spruce? Why is it the right

0:56:520:56:58

tree to have outside the Houses of

Parliament?

It has been growing in

0:56:580:57:00

open ground plots, has not been

growing in a plantation, has been

0:57:000:57:04

allowed to spread and the branches

have got stronger, so actually, once

0:57:040:57:09

we manoeuvre it, it is 45 foot high,

quite a large tree to move, and we

0:57:090:57:15

are transporting a 313 miles, so we

need it to be a good quality tree.

0:57:150:57:20

How may people does it take to put

up? I'm not sure, actually, we just

0:57:200:57:25

take it on the truck.

We leave it

there!

We leave it for them to put

0:57:250:57:31

up. Have you seen it up yet?

I have

seen the photos, I think it is a

0:57:310:57:36

really nice tree, we are really

pleased with it.

Have you seen it

0:57:360:57:40

yet?

I hope that it is straight, I

hate it when you see the top going

0:57:400:57:45

slightly to the right to the left.

Perhaps you could volunteer to help

0:57:450:57:49

to see if is straight. Your first

time really.

Yes, actually, I had

0:57:490:57:54

been down to Westminster before I

was elected but yes, I wonder if we

0:57:540:57:59

can do home visits.

LAUGHTER

Thank you very much for joining us.

0:57:590:58:03

Have a happy Christmas, even if it

is a little early to say.

0:58:030:58:09

There's just time before we go

to find out the answer to our quiz,

0:58:090:58:12

and sticking with the Christmas

theme the question was which party

0:58:120:58:15

leader has their own annual

out for Christmas...

0:58:150:58:17

A) Theresa May

b) Vince Cable

0:58:170:58:18

c) Jeremy Corbyn

or,

0:58:180:58:20

d) Arlene Foster.

0:58:200:58:22

So what's the correct answer?

0:58:220:58:25

Jeremy! Did you say that because you

saw on the front of the two

0:58:290:58:35

annuals... Look, you can have one as

well. I'm sure you will be very

0:58:350:58:39

pleased, and there is one for you.

Goodbye from all of us here, they

0:58:390:58:45

can look through their annuals. You

are going to be reading that one!

0:58:450:58:50

Let's have a look inside...

0:58:500:58:52

Jo Coburn is joined by Labour's Kate Hoey and Paul Masterton from the Conservatives. They look at the government's new industrial strategy, the issue of the Irish border in the Brexit negotiations and speak to former soldier and Conservative MP Johnny Mercer about defence spending.


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