18/12/2017 Daily Politics


18/12/2017

Labour's Stephen Kinnock and Suella Fernandes from the Conservatives join Jo Coburn. They look ahead to Theresa May's statement on the Brexit negotiations.


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Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello and welcome to

the Daily Politics.

0:00:390:00:44

Theresa May gathers the Cabinet's

big beasts to talk about the UK's

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post-Brexit relationship with the EU

- will they be able

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to agree a way forward?

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A "culture change" is needed

to ensure safety is prioritised over

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costs in the construction industry -

that's according to the author

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of an interim report

into the catastrophic

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Grenfell fire disaster.

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Are poor regulations

still putting residents

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of tall buildings at risk?

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Labour had all women shortlists

in 1997 to increase the number

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of female MPs, so why not introduce

all-disabled shortlists to get more

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disabled people into parliament?

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We'll hear from the campaigner

who says that's exactly

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what should be done.

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OK you can vm buttercup. Not sure

what mum will say about it.

That

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Theresa May is how to negotiate.

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And some say British

Politics has been a bit

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like Pantomime this year -

so that's where we're taking

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the Daily Politics later...

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All that in the next hour

of knock-about yuletide

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entertainment for the whole family.

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And joining us for the duration,

Labour's pantomime Dame,

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Stephen Kinnock, and Westminster's

Prince Charming, Suella Fernandes.

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Welcome to the show.

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So, Theresa May has

another busy week ahead

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in the run up to Christmas.

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Following the agreement in Brussels

last week that 'sufficient progress'

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had been made on Phase One talks,

the Prime Minister will today be

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meeting with her 'Brexit cabinet'

to discuss the next phase.

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But tomorrow, she will meet

with the whole Cabinet to discuss

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the 'end-state' for the UK's

relationship with the EU

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and they aren't exactly singing

from the same hymn sheet.

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Her Chancellor, Philip Hammond,

said that the UK's relationship

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with the EU would be 'largely

unchanged' and that we will

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'effectively recreate

the status quo'.

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Boris Johnson, meanwhile,

believes the UK needs something

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'new and ambitious' giving 'zero

tariffs and frictionless trade'

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as well as the 'freedom

to decide our own regulatory

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framework'.

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Theresa May herself has said

that she wants a 'new,

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deep and special partnership'

with the EU and ruled out

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EEA-style membership.

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The EU have their own ideas

for Brexit, where the EU's chief

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negotiator Michel Barnier said

there is 'no way' the UK will be

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allowed to 'cherry-pick'

and have a bespoke deal with the EU.

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Jeremy Corbyn is also under pressure

from his Shadow Cabinet over

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the issue of a second referendum.

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'The Labour Party does not

support' one, claimed

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Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott.

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But on the same topic,

Deputy Leader Tom Watson said

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'you shouldn't rule anything out'.

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Let's speak to our political

correspondent, Ben Wright.

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Another busy Brexit week. What will

be agreed and changed this week?

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Very little I think. These are

preliminary discussions by the

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Cabinet. Amazingly, it is the first

time that the Cabinet has formally

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got together and talked about its

view regarding the final trading

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position the Government wants

between the EU and the UK after

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Brexit. 18 months on from the

referendum. This easy are

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discussions which might make the

discussions around phase one, the

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money, the rights of EU citizens

look like a picnic. There are big

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disagreements within the Cabinet

about the fundamental trading

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relationship the UK should look for.

There is also a big disagreement at

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the moment, it seems, between the UK

and the EU's starting points. The

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UK, Theresa May is clear she wants

something bespoke, something which

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combined Norwegian-style access with

a Canadian style trade agreement.

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The EU say that is not on the cards.

You have to take something based on

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a model which exists. They are

starting far apart. Time is short.

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The EU will come forward with their

proposal, their starting position by

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March. So the Government has to work

pretty quickly on this.

What about

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the Cabinet? How far apart are they

in terms of that future

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relationship?

Well, we believe there

are some significant differences,

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crucially around the question of how

much convergence there should be

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with the EU's regulatory system

after Brexit. At the moment there is

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complete convergence because we are

in the single market. The

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fundamental issue is how much EU,

sorry our Cabinet ministers are

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willing to accept that in the

future, after we have left, the two,

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well the EU and the UK will start to

diverge and how that will be

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managed. What mechanisms will be in

place. This is big fundamental

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stuff. I think there are those on

Philip Hammond's side of the

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argument who want as much single

market access as possible, with the

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po ten sham conditions and --

potential conditions. And others

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like Michael Gove who want more of a

clean break and as a consequence

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have more freedom for the UK to do

trade deals as a country no longer

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in the European Union. There are

fundamental differences on how they

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will approach this question.

Thank

you very much.

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Suella Fernandes, Philip Hammond

said our future relationship with EU

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will leave us largely unchanged and

effectively recreate the status quo.

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Do you agree with him?

In some

respects there will be things we

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want to maintain with tesmt U. We

want to maintain our commerce with

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the EU. We with are one of the

biggest customers to EU countries of

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their goods. We want to keep that

going. But there are definitely

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areas that we will want to diverge

on. We want to come out of the

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common commercial policy which

restricts our ability to design our

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own trade vision for the UK.

Philip

Hammond was saying that in reality

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won't happen. He said the UK won't

technically or legal I will be in

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the customs union or single market.

But we have committed the agreement

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at the end of last week an

environment which will effectively

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recreate the status quo - what we

have now.

To correct you the

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Chancellor has said we will be

leaving the customs union.

That is

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what he said.

He has said we will

leave, we will leave the single

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market.

Technically and legally, but

in reality it will be effective I

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will be the same?

The effect of

leaving the customs union is we will

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have freedom over our trade policy.

We will not be bound by the common

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commercial policy. We will not be

subject to the common external

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tariff which applies to goods coming

into the EU.

Will we during the

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transition period?

The

implementation period, I should say,

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which is all contingent on what the

end state is. So it is almost

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impossible to design an

implementation period before you've

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agreed the final outcome. That is

all subject to negotiations.

You

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signed letter in September saying

the UK must not pay into the EU

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budget during the implementation

period and must be able to sign free

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trade deals from March 2019, but we

will pay into the EU budge and we

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will not be able to -- EU budget and

we will not be able to sign trade

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deals in 2019.

I didn't sign a

letter.

A letter was circulated,

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asking for support from Conservative

MPs to back those points.

Yes.

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What's been agreed is we are going

to be contributing as part of the

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financial settlement, which has been

agreed by Theresa May. I suppose the

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agreement that's come forward in the

last week or so from Theresa May.

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That represents progress. It enables

us to move on to the next stage and

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nothing is agreed until everything

is agreed. That is a crucial part of

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the whole deal.

You have accepted

that we will pay into the EU budget

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and not be able to sign the free

trade agreements in March 2019?

No,

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we are making contributions as are

legally required by us under the

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financial framework and other

basises founded in law. We will be

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leaving the customs union in 2019.

As we will hear from Theresa May

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later today, or from the Government

later today, there will be clarity

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on what our position is in terms of

designing that trade deal. Otherwise

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the work of Liam Fox is redundant. A

whole department has been set up,

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extensive energies have been put

into scoping out our potential deals

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with other third party countries.

All of that is necessary and it's

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not in vain. The Prime Minister

herself took a trip to India very

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recently on a mission to look at

what option there are for a trade

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deal. None of that means anything if

we are not out of the customs union

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and not look at trade deals after

2019.

So look at trade deals but

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there will not be any signed until

March 2019?

I open to what, I will

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not sit here and tie the Prime

Minister's hands on anything. This

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is all subject to negotiation. What

is agreed, is clear Government

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policy and garnered the unanimous

support of the Government is we are

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leaving these blocks which do tie

our hands, which do restrict us from

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exploring other trade routes.

You

did set out some red lines

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beforehand, so you will not make

that a red line about Britain

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signing free trade deals during the

next few years?

I think it is very

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important that we are, after 2019,

able to make concrete progress,

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tangible progress and advanced

negotiations with other countries

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outside the EU. That is one of the

biggest prizes that we stand to gain

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from our departure from the EU. I am

confident that the Government is

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pursuing that aim as well.

Do you

think Brexit has actually been

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softened up in the last few weeks?

I

think we have seen a series of

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reality checks and the Government's

approach to Brexit has been a

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mixture of bluster, posture and then

capitulate.

They have an agreement.

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But every single red line goes up in

smoke when it comes to the first

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contangt with reality. First --

contact with reality. They said the

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divorce talks should be in parallel

with the trade talks. That row was

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going to be the row of the summer.

It lasted until about lunch time on

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the first day. They now recognise

the need for a transition deal limit

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be a carbon copy of the status quo.

The only thing we will not have is a

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seat at the table. If that is to

take back control I am not sure what

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it means.

We know that the Prime

Minister is sticking to her guns

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that she set out in Lancashire

house. The UK will leave the single

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market and will leave the Customs

Union and she will not sign up or

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sign the country up to anything that

looks like the European Economic

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Area.

That is not going to happen.

The transition deal will be a carbon

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copy of the deal. That is not up for

negotiation. The European Union has

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been clear, if you read the...

She

said not part of the European

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Economic Area.

Beyond the transition

which could last longer than two

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years, by the way, I think that is

up for negotiation. I think that we

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would, we would be much better off

committing to the European Economic

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Area. It does actually give you

maximum market access but also the

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opportunity to control free movement

of labour. Articles 112 and 113 of

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the EEA agreement set that out

clearly.

David Cameron failed to get

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further when it come to migration.

Do you think the Labour Party is

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moving to your position now, beyond

the implementation period of

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actually remaining in the single

market and the Customs Union in some

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sort of replica to the area?

The

European Economic Area is not the

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same as, you are not subject to...

You cannot sign the free trade?

If

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you move into EFTA as well, European

free trade association, they can

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sign bilateral free trade deals.

Iceland has a trade deal with China.

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We have to understand there is a way

through this. It is about squaring

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the circle between market access and

regulatory control. EFTA ETA is the

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best way to do that. There is a

majority for it in Parliament. I

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hope that is the way to do it

otherwise we will go off the edge of

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a cliff.

Do you think that is

acceptable, bearing in mind the

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referendum?

To my mind it is not

acceptable. That has been ruled out

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by the Prime Minister, because with

that coming free movement of people

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and that was an important aspect.

You say that article 112 is a

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mechanism to control free movement T

only example is Lichtenstein, a

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population of 37,000 people. A very

small mileage of Square Mileage of

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space and used in very exceptional

circumstances, where there was a

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serious risk to the economy of the

society in which case controls over

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migration were allowed. It is not

the same as Britain's population -

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65 million people, a larger

landmass.

It is an emergency...

We

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cannot say there is a serious risk

posed by EU migrants. Our employment

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is very high. I don't think 112,

what you make out is a viable option

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for the UK.

Isn't it the case we

could end newspaper a situation

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where the UK becomes a vasel state

of the EU. We take all the rules and

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regulations but we don't have any

input. We don't sit at the table?

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Two points T transition period we

will take absolutely everything from

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the single market and the Customs

union, we will not have a seat at

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the table. I campaigned passionately

for remain. I think it is a great

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pity that the UK will not stay in

the EU. What do we do now we must

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respect the result of the

referendum? There is a way through

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this, which does actually give us a

real opportunity to reform free

0:15:030:15:08

movement of labour but also doesn't

wreck the British economy by coming

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out of the single, out of access

from the single market.

What is

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Labour's policy on having a second

referendum?

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We're not supporting a second

referendum, there are valid reasons

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for not supporting one, if it was

52% remain, 48% lead, we would have

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expected those on the Leeds side to

accept the result.

White is deputy

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leader Tom Watson think that nothing

should be ruled out when it comes to

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a second referendum?

When the facts

change, I change my mind, is the

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saying. New facts are coming out

tonight. If we leave the EU, if we

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leave in March 2019, and we see a

massive damaging impact on the

0:15:550:15:59

economy, which many people predict

would be the case, I do not believe

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so much and forecasting predictions,

I think we had to see where we are

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but we are seeing thousands of jobs

going down the drain, we are seeing

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foreign direct investment drying up

and seeing market access being

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severely limited.

Then you would

change your mind?

Any responsible

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government, whoever is in government

at the time, is the responsibility

0:16:210:16:24

of them to act in the national

interest.

Michel Barnier, Suella,

0:16:240:16:28

said that the government would not

get a bespoke deal. UK cannot cherry

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pick, we cannot have a no way of

style agreement without freedom of

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movement and aspects of the Canada

deal taking in services. What do you

0:16:380:16:42

say to him?

This is the first time

that a nation has left the EU.

I

0:16:420:16:47

think that we have to be open to

building what might not be... There

0:16:470:16:53

might not be a particular model for

it but I do think that Canada, that

0:16:530:16:59

agreement struck with the EU last

year, I think it does provide some

0:16:590:17:03

really good grounds for optimism.

He

says you are not going to have that?

0:17:030:17:07

Well, I don't know. He says that

that it depends on a lot of people

0:17:070:17:11

involved in the process. The Canada

agreement was mutually signed up to

0:17:110:17:15

by both sides. It is beneficial for

both.

But it did not take in

0:17:150:17:20

services?

That's true, and that is

why we cannot just copy and paste

0:17:200:17:24

Canada and say that it applies to

the UK. It does have some good

0:17:240:17:28

points, like an illumination of some

tariffs but it does not quite cover

0:17:280:17:35

services. 80% of our economy is

services. That's a great opportunity

0:17:350:17:40

for us.

Are you worried that we will

not get it?

I'm not worried at all.

0:17:400:17:46

I'm very optimistic, contrary to how

Stephen feels. I think there has

0:17:460:17:50

been huge progress made in showing

both sides want to strike an

0:17:500:17:53

agreement on what has been said to

be complex issues. I think it bodes

0:17:530:17:57

well for the future.

And what do you

make of the arguments that some of

0:17:570:18:02

your colleagues should be deselected

for rebelling on the EU withdrawal

0:18:020:18:05

bill last week, are you supportive

of that?

No, I am not. I think they

0:18:050:18:10

are our colleagues and I take them

at face value. They've said that

0:18:100:18:14

they wanted to improve legislation,

it is disappointing that the

0:18:140:18:18

government lost the vote on

amendments seven, but I do think

0:18:180:18:22

that we can all move forward. It's a

continued dialogue and the

0:18:220:18:27

government is listening to many

members who had tabled amendments,

0:18:270:18:31

responding substantively and, as a

result, producing a bill which I

0:18:310:18:36

think reflects many concerns in

Parliament.

Say you do not see them

0:18:360:18:40

as traitors?

I do not think it is

fair to demonise them at all for

0:18:400:18:46

carrying out something they feel

passionate about.

Did your

0:18:460:18:50

constituents vote for a continuation

on what Labour is calling the free

0:18:500:18:56

movement of easy people, if that's

what it means?

No, for those who

0:18:560:19:01

voted Leave, there were concerns

about free movement of labour, but

0:19:010:19:05

there is a real opportunity through

the economic area to pull the

0:19:050:19:10

emergency brake and put a reformed

system in place. There is clear

0:19:100:19:13

legal precedent for doing this and

we would be coming out of the EU, so

0:19:130:19:18

really negotiating on a different

basis to the one that David Cameron

0:19:180:19:21

was trying to push through back in

2016. I think there is a way of

0:19:210:19:28

allaying concerns but we need a

sensible and pragmatic approach, not

0:19:280:19:33

one driven by the ideology of

certain backbenchers in the

0:19:330:19:36

Conservative Party.

0:19:360:19:39

And for more reporting

and analysis of Brexit,

0:19:390:19:40

check out the BBC News website

- that's bbc.co.uk/Brexit.

0:19:400:19:44

A month after the Grenfell tragedy

the government set up an independent

0:19:440:19:47

inquiry into the risks of living

in a tower block.

0:19:470:19:50

Today preliminary results of that

inquiry are being published.

0:19:500:19:52

The report's author,

Dame Judith Hackitt says a "culture

0:19:520:19:54

change" is needed to ensure safety

is prioritised over costs

0:19:540:19:56

in the construction industry,

that building regulations

0:19:560:19:58

are confusing and the profession

suffers from "competence" issues.

0:19:580:20:08

The interim report tells us that

what we have in place today is a

0:20:080:20:11

system which is evolved

over a number of years,

0:20:110:20:13

it's overly complex,

and that complexity doesn't lead to

0:20:130:20:16

it being as effective

as it needs to be.

0:20:160:20:24

We're talking about a system where

there's too much

0:20:240:20:27

prescription, where there is a very

heavily layered system of guidance

0:20:270:20:30

currently, which is not helpful

in terms of leading people

0:20:300:20:33

to the right answer.

0:20:330:20:38

So, my aim for the future

is to create a much simpler and more

0:20:380:20:42

straightforward system that would be

easier for people to follow.

0:20:420:20:44

But that needs to be

re-enforced with a

0:20:440:20:46

number of changes in behaviour,

which will include a major culture

0:20:460:20:49

change across all of

the players in this.

0:20:490:20:59

And the Chairman of the Local

Government Association,

0:21:020:21:03

Gary Porter, joins us now.

0:21:030:21:08

Why is it so complicated at the

moment? It's the way that the

0:21:080:21:11

regulation and guidance has been

drafted. We have several years of

0:21:110:21:15

additional regulation and guidance

being added, and no simplification.

0:21:150:21:19

It's been a problem since 2006.

Is

it going to be easy for local

0:21:190:21:25

authorities? Are they in a position

to change the rules or at least put

0:21:250:21:29

into practice recommendations?

We

cannot change the rules, the

0:21:290:21:33

government has too.

Ayew in a

position to implement them?

Where we

0:21:330:21:37

we do do building control, they will

be renewed. Within a week or two of

0:21:370:21:44

the fire, we called for the

regulations to be looked at. It was

0:21:440:21:48

clear from test results coming in

that there was a systemic failure

0:21:480:21:51

across the country, that cannot be

down to one or two individuals that

0:21:510:21:55

were incompetent but the system

being wrong.

Or were regulations

0:21:550:22:01

interpreted to suit themselves?

I

have only quickly read the report,

0:22:010:22:05

the draft report. And out of the

recommendations, there's only one I

0:22:050:22:08

would disagree with not being strong

enough, that's the ability for the

0:22:080:22:13

industry to do desktop surveys and

do a study not of real materials in

0:22:130:22:16

real life circumstances but on

computer modelling. That's one of

0:22:160:22:21

the areas where we need to get to

grips with this. Put in limited

0:22:210:22:25

combustible materials on high-rise

buildings will be full of

0:22:250:22:32

difficulty. It's not for me to

rewrite the rules but no

0:22:320:22:36

combustibility.

None at all but will

that be what happens?

I doubt it.

Do

0:22:360:22:40

you get what you pay for when it

comes to these sorts of things?

0:22:400:22:44

Definitely not. In some cases, some

of the materials used would be more

0:22:440:22:49

expensive and more dangerous. This

isn't about cost-cutting, that's a

0:22:490:22:55

red herring. Anybody who thinks that

these buyers take place because

0:22:550:22:58

people are saving money on materials

used are incorrect.

Do you accept

0:22:580:23:03

that? That it isn't just about

money?

I think we've had a culture

0:23:030:23:09

of privatisation of contracting out

austerity. It creates a toxic

0:23:090:23:14

combination which, I do not know

whether there is a direct link from

0:23:140:23:19

that culture to the tragic events of

Grenfell. But I welcome what the

0:23:190:23:24

report says about the need for a

culture change. I do think our

0:23:240:23:27

public services need the resources

and empowerment to be able to take

0:23:270:23:34

control of the process because the

more you contract it out, the higher

0:23:340:23:39

the risks to come.

But we have heard

that you can have more expensive

0:23:390:23:45

materials and they can be more

combustible. The link that you are

0:23:450:23:49

talking about, if you cannot see a

link between austerity and safety,

0:23:490:23:52

why mention it?

I think it is how it

is managed and implemented.

0:23:520:23:58

Companies will look to cut corners

to cut costs, not in terms of

0:23:580:24:04

materials but how they do their job.

Can I refuse that point, there are

0:24:040:24:10

no councils in this country who

would endanger their lives of their

0:24:100:24:14

residents to save a few pounds. No

matter how hard done by and the fact

0:24:140:24:18

that we are a couple of billion

short on what we need to deliver

0:24:180:24:22

services properly, fire safety is

not an area that councils would

0:24:220:24:26

compromise on. More buildings in the

private sector are at risk of this

0:24:260:24:30

than councils alone. There are 15

councils with buildings caught up in

0:24:300:24:34

this. That's not to downplay that it

is 15 councils but that's out of

0:24:340:24:39

400. The vast majority of buildings

affected by this fire, and going

0:24:390:24:42

beyond this fire, they have safety

concerns with high-rise buildings

0:24:420:24:46

and will be in the private sector.

So it isn't a case of public versus

0:24:460:24:52

private, but private sector

buildings, or people who own their

0:24:520:24:57

own homes, they are in as much risk?

In the case of Grenfell, there were

0:24:570:25:03

a lot of red flags bring down by the

residents and they felt that there

0:25:030:25:07

were things happening in that

building which caused serious

0:25:070:25:12

concerns and action was not taken. I

think the key challenge we have is

0:25:120:25:16

making sure that accountability is

right, that the report looks at this

0:25:160:25:22

in the broadest possible terms, and

we never see the awful and tragic

0:25:220:25:26

mistakes happening and Grenfell ever

again.

Stephen has a point in so far

0:25:260:25:32

as until October this year, they had

not released funds to make tower

0:25:320:25:37

blocks safe according to some

councils when asking for funding for

0:25:370:25:40

cladding and sprinklers. Why not?

To

date, I know that the government has

0:25:400:25:47

responded extensively. There's

nothing anyone can do to bring back

0:25:470:25:51

the people who died.

But they have

not responded?

The government set up

0:25:510:26:00

a fund where if councils need help

setting up installations there is a

0:26:000:26:06

process where they can go to

government and requests would be

0:26:060:26:09

considered. I think that is the

right thing to do.

Are you reassured

0:26:090:26:13

that there are not tower blocks in

this country that are still at risk

0:26:130:26:16

from these kinds of fires? There are

people living in tower blocks that

0:26:160:26:22

are in danger?

I am reassured that

tower blocks in the ownership of

0:26:220:26:27

councils and housing associations

have been identified and appropriate

0:26:270:26:30

measures have been taken in the

interim, like fire wardens with

0:26:300:26:34

24-hour cover, one with a fire

engine permanently outside of the

0:26:340:26:38

building. The ones the state owns, I

am perfectly comfortable that we are

0:26:380:26:43

doing as much as we can to make it

safe but the vast majority of

0:26:430:26:46

buildings in the private sector, and

some that we do not know where they

0:26:460:26:53

are. We have called for those who

did the testing to release all of

0:26:530:26:56

the test failures they have got.

They are refusing to release test

0:26:560:27:00

failures. We do not know which

materials are safe and what

0:27:000:27:07

buildings are clouded with which

materials.

The report from Judith

0:27:070:27:12

Hackitt describes a mindset of doing

things as cheaply as possible, and

0:27:120:27:17

passing on responsibility for

problems and shortcomings to others.

0:27:170:27:19

What do you say to that?

I would

refute that.

That is what she has

0:27:190:27:25

found.

As a private sector person as

well, I can guarantee that councils

0:27:250:27:32

around the country are paying more

than the private sector equivalent.

0:27:320:27:36

Let's not look at the equivalent,

are you trying to do things as

0:27:360:27:39

cheaply as possible because, in all

fairness, councils claim they have

0:27:390:27:43

had budgets cut to the bone?

As

efficiently as possible, not as

0:27:430:27:47

cheaply.

Is that value for money?

In

the report, as it comes out, if she

0:27:470:27:54

implicates councils on the basis of

saving a penny to risk a pound, that

0:27:540:28:02

is not what councils do. They take a

long-term view of the investment

0:28:020:28:05

they make in those homes. Grenfell

had £8 million invested in it. If

0:28:050:28:08

they were not spending money on the

building, the fire would not have

0:28:080:28:11

happened.

What do you say about the

efficiency of councils? And the one

0:28:110:28:15

that oversaw the Grenfell Tower?

Obviously there is a real need to

0:28:150:28:21

ensure that standards are met, which

is why a review of what standards

0:28:210:28:25

are applicable is necessary. If

those standards are higher than what

0:28:250:28:29

is currently in place there's an

added burden on councils to meet

0:28:290:28:33

requirements.

Should the government

put fans behind it?

This funding is

0:28:330:28:39

available on a discretionary basis

but if this is council owned

0:28:390:28:43

property, tenanted out to

individuals, then there is a burden

0:28:430:28:48

on councils to undertake that cost.

Would you be happy to do that?

As

0:28:480:28:55

part of day-to-day cost pressures,

councils should account for that and

0:28:550:28:58

it should be done so through the

rent book. Unexpected issues, that

0:28:580:29:03

is an unexpected issue, nobody would

have covered that building and

0:29:030:29:07

expected that, the government will

have to mobilise funds, even if it

0:29:070:29:11

is only with the local and national

governments standing shoulder to

0:29:110:29:17

shoulder, suing those who have

broken rules to make it happen, this

0:29:170:29:20

is not going to be about a few

million or even today's numbers of 1

0:29:200:29:25

billion, this will be into billions

before we'd managed to resolve the

0:29:250:29:28

issue from across the whole country.

It's the most serious issue facing

0:29:280:29:33

our housing stock since before the

war.

Is the Treasury prepared to put

0:29:330:29:36

out this money?

As I've said, the

funding is available and

0:29:360:29:42

case-by-case councils can make

applications. There's that backdrop

0:29:420:29:48

but as Gary recognises comedy

private sector and private rented

0:29:480:29:51

properties in the whole area, which

are as of yet unidentified, we do

0:29:510:29:54

not know the extent to which fire

safety regulations are being met.

0:29:540:29:58

Gary Porter, thank you.

0:29:580:30:00

Now, Theresa May told the Commons

last week that she wanted to make

0:30:000:30:04

sure that disabled people who wanted

to work are able to do so.

0:30:040:30:07

But do disabled people feel able

to go into political life and why

0:30:070:30:10

are so few of them represented

in our parliaments, assemblies

0:30:100:30:12

and council chambers?

0:30:120:30:13

Here's disability rights campaigner,

Alice Kirby, with her soapbox.

0:30:130:30:23

Let's go next door for

Prime Minister's Questions.

0:30:230:30:25

Thank you, Mr Speaker.

0:30:250:30:28

At the last election,

the Liberal Democrats made history

0:30:280:30:32

by becoming the first political

party to select

0:30:320:30:36

a candidate using an all-disabled

shortlist, now we need every

0:30:360:30:38

political party

to follow their lead.

0:30:380:30:41

There are over 30 million

disabled people in the UK.

0:30:410:30:45

That

means we make up 21%

0:30:450:30:48

of the British population,

0:30:480:30:51

but only six of our MPs define

themselves as disabled, that

0:30:510:30:53

is less than 1% of

the House of Commons.

0:30:530:30:56

And that's just not good enough.

0:30:560:30:58

But the solution is simple.

0:30:580:31:03

All disabled shortlists

counter the over and

0:31:030:31:05

subconscious prejudice

that

0:31:050:31:07

blocks disabled people

from getting elected,

0:31:070:31:11

or even putting themselves

0:31:110:31:12

forward in the first place.

0:31:120:31:15

Some people say we

should just choose the

0:31:150:31:17

best people for the job.

0:31:170:31:19

You can still do that,

it's just the people

0:31:190:31:21

being picked are disabled.

0:31:210:31:28

And the word disabled

is not a synonym for

0:31:280:31:31

incompetent, incapable or unskilled.

0:31:310:31:36

In the 1990s, the Labour Party

revolutionised politics by adopting

0:31:360:31:40

all-women shortlists.

0:31:400:31:43

It was controversial

at the time but it

0:31:430:31:46

clearly worked, as there are more

women than ever in the Commons

0:31:460:31:50

and not only in seats

where they are used,

0:31:500:31:52

and not only by parties who

0:31:520:31:56

use them, because they've brought

about a cultural change.

0:31:560:32:02

Disabled people do not

need mouthpieces or

0:32:020:32:05

champions, we need MPs and ministers

who truly understand the

0:32:050:32:08

discrimination we face.

0:32:080:32:12

Politicians need to

reflect wider society.

0:32:120:32:16

It's time MPs started

truly representing

0:32:160:32:18

the UK's biggest minority group.

0:32:180:32:23

And Alice Kirby joins us now

from our Sheffield studio.

0:32:230:32:30

Alice, it is your position that

Parliament can only truly represent

0:32:300:32:34

disabled people if the Commons is a

complete microcosm of wider society?

0:32:340:32:39

That needs to be the goal. If we

look at, it seems like we're always

0:32:390:32:45

aiming to have gender equality in

the Commons. I don't see why it

0:32:450:32:48

should be different for disabled

people.

Do do you accept there may

0:32:480:32:52

be more than six MPs who may not be

visually disabled they may have

0:32:520:32:59

dyslexia or hard of hearing and they

are aware of the many struggles that

0:32:590:33:04

disabled people face as a result?

We

only know of six MPs who have said

0:33:040:33:10

they are publically disabled. Are

probably more. That speaks to a

0:33:100:33:15

larger issue of why politicians are

not comfortable saying they are

0:33:150:33:19

disable and is it because of this

culture of disability that makes you

0:33:190:33:24

weak and not a good politician?

Something like an all-disabled short

0:33:240:33:30

list will bring about a cultural

change there, like all-women short

0:33:300:33:34

lists, that would make these people

more comfortable being identified as

0:33:340:33:39

disabled publically.

Do you agree it

would help balance reputation?

I

0:33:390:33:46

have to say I really want more

disabled people to get involved in

0:33:460:33:51

public life and generally

employment. But I do disagree with

0:33:510:33:54

the principal of all short lists

based on personal characteristics

0:33:540:33:59

whether on disability, on gender,

whether it is race or anything else.

0:33:590:34:02

I just feel it doesn't really, it is

not robust enough to enable the best

0:34:020:34:09

people to come through. I think that

people don't need favours being

0:34:090:34:13

done, they can thrive on a level

playing field with more

0:34:130:34:17

encouragement and more engagement.

That is really the challenge for us.

0:34:170:34:21

They have not thrived so far.

I

would disagree. We have millions

0:34:210:34:30

more disabled people in work. We are

seeing progress. That should be

0:34:300:34:33

encouraged and built upon rather

than saying short lists for people.

0:34:330:34:37

What do you say in response?

. I

don't think so. We have six MPs out

0:34:370:34:42

of 650. If there was true reputation

there would be 130 disabled MPs. I

0:34:420:34:48

don't see how we will get there

without the help of all disabled

0:34:480:34:51

short lists. I don't think they are

ideal, we should not use them

0:34:510:34:55

long-term, but for now it is the way

forward.

When you talk to disabled

0:34:550:34:59

people, Alice, what are the barriers

they say that put them off trying to

0:34:590:35:03

get into Parliament?

I think there's

a variety of reasons. I think, comes

0:35:030:35:11

back down to discrimination. I don't

feel parties feel confident

0:35:110:35:15

selecting disabled people. I don't

think disabled people feel confident

0:35:150:35:19

to put themselves forward to be

elected. There is the access to

0:35:190:35:25

office fund which provided financial

support for disabled people running

0:35:250:35:30

elections to cover adjustments like

taxi fare and sign language

0:35:300:35:38

interpreters. A key area would be

job sharing for MPs to allow MPs who

0:35:380:35:44

wouldn't be able to work full-time

to still run for office

Do you take

0:35:440:35:49

the point like funding which would

help accessibility should be

0:35:490:35:53

reinstated by the Conservatives?

It

is not always about money. It is

0:35:530:35:57

more about engagement. I think

providing opportunities for work

0:35:570:36:03

experience, for internships, for

apprenticeships in Parliament, for

0:36:030:36:05

including more people in the party,

whether it is Conservative, Labour,

0:36:050:36:10

Lib Dems, from a wide variety of

backgrounds should be encouraged. My

0:36:100:36:15

experience in the Conservative Party

is that people of all abilities are

0:36:150:36:18

welcome. And we have champions for

disability rights. People who are

0:36:180:36:23

disabled and also people who are not

disabled, who don't have to have

0:36:230:36:31

those characteristics.

The Labour

Party used all-women short lists -

0:36:310:36:36

should they do it for disabled

people?

It is an interesting idea.

0:36:360:36:39

E-I would like to see it piloted.

It

has been.

Where?

The Liberal

0:36:390:36:47

Democrats selected their candidate

from an all-disabled short list.

I

0:36:470:36:51

would very much like to see it

piloted in the Labour Party. I think

0:36:510:36:55

it would be, because you are looking

for candidates who have experience

0:36:550:37:00

of campaigning, knocking on doors.

Ideally a good connection to the

0:37:000:37:04

local area and political experience.

So we do want to make sure that we

0:37:040:37:08

have all of that. Now, as you say

there are 13 million disabled people

0:37:080:37:12

in this country. So no doubt within

that talent pool we have it. But

0:37:120:37:15

there is also a problem with getting

people to come forward into politics

0:37:150:37:18

in general. I think they look at the

amount of abuse that politicians get

0:37:180:37:25

on social media, the very polarised

nature of the political landscape in

0:37:250:37:29

which we live at the moment, at the

complexity of it. Sometimes the very

0:37:290:37:34

long working hours. So there are a

lot of other barriers to getting

0:37:340:37:37

people into public life. This is an

interesting idea.

Perhaps you could

0:37:370:37:41

work with the Labour Party, help

them do that pilot?

I would love to.

0:37:410:37:46

So, just seven sleeps

until Christmas and if you're

0:37:500:37:52

exhausted, you can bet Theresa May

is after the Advent she's had.

0:37:520:37:55

We know there are boy's

jobs and girl's jobs

0:37:550:37:57

in the May household,

so while Mr May is making the mince

0:37:570:38:00

pies and wrapping the presents,

the Prime Minister has

0:38:000:38:02

the un-enviable task of getting her

cabinet to agree on Brexit.

0:38:020:38:05

the un-enviable task of getting her

Cabinet to agree on Brexit.

0:38:050:38:08

I expect she'd prefer to be peeling

the Brussels sprouts -

0:38:080:38:10

though maybe she's had

enough of Brussels....

0:38:100:38:17

This afternoon Theresa May

will make a statement

0:38:170:38:18

to the Commons on last week's EU

summit in Brussels.

0:38:180:38:21

She'll tell MPs there is a "shared

desire" to make rapid progress.

0:38:210:38:27

Tomorrow morning, the Cabinet meets

and it's expected they will discuss

0:38:270:38:30

for the first time just

what the final deal with the EU

0:38:300:38:33

should look like, and on Wednesday

MPs will debate whether the date

0:38:330:38:35

and time should be put on the Brexit

bill, it was expected to be a tricky

0:38:350:38:39

moment for the government,

however Conservative MPs

0:38:390:38:41

are expected to rally around

a compromise amendment

0:38:410:38:43

proposed by Oliver Letwin.

0:38:430:38:46

It's a busy day on Wednesday,

because in the afternoon

0:38:460:38:48

Theresa May is in front

of the Liaison Committee,

0:38:480:38:50

made up of chairs of each

of the select committees,

0:38:500:38:53

it will grill the Prime Minister

on a range of issues.

0:38:530:38:56

Finally, as Parliament

breaks up for Christmas

0:38:560:39:03

at the end of this week,

it's likely that at some point

0:39:030:39:06

we'll finally hear back

from the Cabinet Inquiry into Damian

0:39:060:39:09

Green.

0:39:090:39:10

The First Secretary is being

investigated over claims he made

0:39:100:39:12

inappropriate advances

towards a political activist

0:39:120:39:14

and over allegations that

pornography was found on a computer

0:39:140:39:16

in his office.

0:39:160:39:17

And it's wall-to-wall Christmas

parties here in Westminster,

0:39:170:39:21

but we've managed to drag away two

journalists from the mulled

0:39:210:39:26

wine and warm prosecco -

Heather Stewart of the Guardian

0:39:260:39:29

and the Financial

Times's Sebastian Payne.

0:39:290:39:32

Welcome. What sort of clarity do you

think we will get as a result of

0:39:320:39:37

these meetings with the smaller

Cabinet and then the wider Cabinet

0:39:370:39:40

about Britain's end state with

Europe?

To be honest, I fear not

0:39:400:39:44

very much. Already those around

Theresa May are playing down the

0:39:440:39:47

idea that we will get any definite

answer. We may be well into the New

0:39:470:39:52

Year before we have anything too

specific. We may get some mood

0:39:520:39:56

music. We will hear a constructive

discussion and they have bared some

0:39:560:40:01

of their differences. I don't think

we will get a clear outline of the

0:40:010:40:05

trade deal they want to end up with.

Do you agree? Will it be a case our

0:40:050:40:10

relationship will remain unchanged

as Philip Hammond has indicated, not

0:40:100:40:15

just during the implementation but

beyond?

The key question is this

0:40:150:40:20

issue of regulatory divergence, how

much ability does the UK want to

0:40:200:40:23

have to change rules after we leave

the EU? The whole of the Cabinet

0:40:230:40:27

wants the ability to change

regulations. The question is, where

0:40:270:40:30

do we start from? Do we start from a

place of being exactly the same, or

0:40:300:40:34

from day one, we will start to heave

regulations out of the window and

0:40:340:40:39

cutting that red tape? It will begin

with a constructive discussion, that

0:40:390:40:45

is how they will describe it, really

it will not be until mid-or late

0:40:450:40:51

January until we have any idea on

where the Cabinet agrees on this

0:40:510:40:54

issue. There are, there is no

consensus. They have different

0:40:540:40:59

opinions on this. Some side will

have to give way. I think the

0:40:590:41:04

Euro-sceptics have given away so

much on the exit deal. They will be

0:41:040:41:07

very firm on not giving away too

much on what comes next.

We've had a

0:41:070:41:12

Government defeat over the

meaningful vote. There is another

0:41:120:41:15

row expected, although it may have

been defused over the weekend by

0:41:150:41:19

offers of a compromise over the date

and time being written on to the

0:41:190:41:22

face of the bill. Do you think that

has meant the Government is safe in

0:41:220:41:27

that vote, Heather?

Yes, I think it

probably S it is very odd, this was

0:41:270:41:33

an amendment the Government tabled,

to declare to make law that we would

0:41:330:41:38

leave in March 2019. That outraged

some of the sort of pro-EU MPs who

0:41:380:41:45

felt, hang on, what if we have not

done a deal which that date? What if

0:41:450:41:50

the Government needs more days,

isn't it crazy to lock us into that

0:41:500:41:54

timetable? They looked like they

could face defeat on this. Labour

0:41:540:41:58

were readying themselves to defeat

the Government. At the end of last

0:41:580:42:01

week we had an amendment from Oliver

Letwin, which looks as though

0:42:010:42:04

probably he was doing that with the

say so of Downing Street. He's

0:42:040:42:09

managed to persuade the Brexit

rebels in the Tory Party led by

0:42:090:42:21

Dominic Greave. Do we expect the

Government to have that amendment

0:42:210:42:26

and hopefully we can go away without

another row.

Or another amendment.

0:42:260:42:31

We will not have a Christmas

amendment. Let's talk about Theresa

0:42:310:42:39

May, Sebastian Payne, because during

this year there were those who

0:42:390:42:42

thought she wouldn't make it to

Christmas, but she has made it to

0:42:420:42:45

Christmas as Prime Minister. There

are now reports saying she could be

0:42:450:42:49

asked to stay on until 2021 by the

Conservative Party, what do you

0:42:490:42:53

think of that?

It was Jeremy Corbyn

who said he would be in Downing

0:42:530:42:58

Street by Christmas. He's not got

long to fulfil that prediction after

0:42:580:43:01

the general election. This story

does have a lot of sense because the

0:43:010:43:04

Conservative Party really wants to

try and get as much of Brexit as

0:43:040:43:09

locked and loaded before the next

general election in 2022. If Theresa

0:43:090:43:13

May stays on to secure that

comprehensive free trade deal they

0:43:130:43:17

need to have to make Brexit look

like a success, then see how it

0:43:170:43:21

goes. The odd thing about Theresa

May is we say this situation is

0:43:210:43:26

unsustainable and it proves

sustainably. Over and over again she

0:43:260:43:31

hangs on. Will she make it through

next year? And it looks like she

0:43:310:43:35

will. If she makes it through next

year she will probably make it

0:43:350:43:40

through until the end of Brexit.

Then it is where the party is at -

0:43:400:43:44

how confident is it feeling?

Conservative donors will not let her

0:43:440:43:49

fight the general election. So I

think she could go a year or two

0:43:490:43:53

years in the run-up to that. They

will not want to take the risk again

0:43:530:43:56

of putting her in front of the

ballot-box because all of those

0:43:560:44:00

problems with her personality and

what have you, are still there.

0:44:000:44:06

Thank you very much. Do you think

Theresa May should fight the next

0:44:060:44:11

election?

I think she should

continue as the leader of the

0:44:110:44:15

Conservative Party until she decides

she want to step down. She's proving

0:44:150:44:20

all the critics wrong. Everyone

predicts gloom and crisis. Actually

0:44:200:44:25

she defies them wrong. We have seen

in the last week how she has managed

0:44:250:44:29

to strike this agreement. People

said it would be impossible. She's

0:44:290:44:33

managed to bring yun in the party.

-- unity in the party. You would

0:44:330:44:40

like to see her there until 2021?

For as long as she wants to stay in

0:44:400:44:45

place.

0:44:450:44:50

And there's something exciting

coming up this evening -

0:44:500:44:52

and it's happening in

this very studio.

0:44:520:44:54

My colleague Chris Mason

is here to explain...

0:44:540:44:57

R We are turning a podcast into a

live event tonight. I know this

0:44:570:45:03

studio is well known for the

nerdometer going north-bound...

Only

0:45:030:45:09

occasionally!

It goes to the moon

and back. We are talking Brexit from

0:45:090:45:18

45 minutes, from 6. 15pm. Going live

on Radio 5live and on the News

0:45:180:45:25

Channel later, and globally

tomorrow. We have Laura and our

0:45:250:45:32

Europe editor, Tony Connolly from

RTE, around the issue of the Irish

0:45:320:45:38

border and a panel of

Brexit-casters. The people nerdy

0:45:380:45:43

enough to devote clicking on their

phone something which says

0:45:430:45:49

"Brexit-cast."

0:45:490:45:49

Do you listen to this podcast? It is

a red letter day!

Have you heard of

0:45:540:46:00

it before?

I have, but I haven't

been invited on!

We will rectify it

0:46:000:46:05

in the New Year! That's my Christmas

promise to you both!

On the record!

0:46:050:46:09

A lot of talk of amendments I am

sure!

0:46:090:46:13

Some said he wouldn't survive

for more than a few months,

0:46:130:46:15

but Jeremy Corbyn is set to enjoy,

or endure, his third

0:46:150:46:18

Christmas as Labour leader.

0:46:180:46:19

Our Guest of the Day Stephen Kinnock

was one of his critics.

0:46:190:46:22

And here's the moment British

politics went full Borgen,

0:46:220:46:24

as Stephen received some political

advice from his wife,

0:46:240:46:26

the ex Prime Minister of Denmark,

after the surprise result

0:46:260:46:28

on election night.

0:46:280:46:30

Stephen Kinnock receiving advice

there. Wouldn't that have been the

0:47:280:47:31

time to say what a great night that

Labour had said and it was as a

0:47:310:47:35

result of Jeremy Corbyn's

leadership.

That is what I went on

0:47:350:47:38

to say in the interview but also the

story of the night is that it was

0:47:380:47:42

complete humiliation for Theresa

May.

Jeremy Corbyn, if he had

0:47:420:47:46

suffered losses at that election

rather than Labour gaining seats,

0:47:460:47:49

would he have put himself forward

for the leadership? No. You wouldn't

0:47:490:47:54

have considered it?

You weren't

going to launch a leadership bid?

0:47:540:47:59

No, I've only been an MP for five

minutes! I don't think that excludes

0:47:590:48:02

you from standing for leadership!

But did you realise at that point

0:48:020:48:06

that everything was different in the

way that you imagined before the

0:48:060:48:09

exit poll?

We spent a lot of that

campaign being many points behind in

0:48:090:48:14

the opinion polls, and even on the

last night, there was only one poll

0:48:140:48:18

predicting the result we got. I

think that everybody was pretty

0:48:180:48:22

surprised and taken aback by the

result. I am the first to say that

0:48:220:48:26

we underestimated Jeromy and

overestimated Theresa May. What I

0:48:260:48:32

thought was interesting about the

programme was that it shows politics

0:48:320:48:36

in its unvarnished and slightly

chaotic, confusing state. Also, some

0:48:360:48:39

comedy as well. With all due respect

to you, Joe, sometimes these

0:48:390:48:46

interviews, it is politician comes

on and says what they are going to

0:48:460:48:49

say and get their point across and

you try and catch us out. What I

0:48:490:48:53

like but Light on the wall

documentaries is that it shows the

0:48:530:48:56

reality. And a lot of time in the

constituency seeing my brilliant and

0:48:560:49:02

wonderful activists and constituents

-- a fly on the wall documentary.

0:49:020:49:06

That is politics.

It is about

revealing the truth and finding out

0:49:060:49:11

what politicians genuinely think

rather than what they present in

0:49:110:49:14

public. Maybe we should come to your

constituency and film! Do you think

0:49:140:49:20

Jeremy Corbyn has had a good year?

I

think so. I think we've pushed the

0:49:200:49:26

government so hard on things like

Universal Credit, we've seen the

0:49:260:49:29

government falling to pieces over

Brexit. The keys to say, yes, there

0:49:290:49:34

are two jobs for the opposition,

hold the government's feet to the

0:49:340:49:38

fire and say look, we are the

government in waiting. We are able

0:49:380:49:41

to answer the questions and we have

a brilliant manifesto to build on.

0:49:410:49:46

But we need to put more flesh on the

bones and we need to take that

0:49:460:49:50

forward.

Do you accept Jeremy

Corbyn's position is clear?

0:49:500:49:57

Unassailable. He delivered on the

campaign fantastically and I believe

0:49:570:50:00

that he is tapping into the anger

that people feel after seven wasted

0:50:000:50:05

years of Tory failures and we need

to build on that and turn it into a

0:50:050:50:10

positive vision for the country.

Yesterday, Michael was interviewing

0:50:100:50:13

Tom Watson. About who would be

leader if

0:50:130:50:20

Labour won the next election. How

long do you reckon before you are

0:50:200:50:25

bridging's Deputy Prime Minister?

I

have no idea whether that would come

0:50:250:50:29

to pass... I doubt it but if you are

saying...

You think that Labour will

0:50:290:50:33

never win or you will never be given

the chance?

If I'm honest I think

0:50:330:50:37

they will give it to Emily

Thornberry!

0:50:370:50:40

It's interesting to hear him said

that, would you support Emily

0:50:400:50:48

Thornberry being Deputy Prime

Minister?

Emily is a very talented

0:50:480:50:52

politician, she's done a great job

as Shadow Foreign Secretary. In the

0:50:520:50:57

end, it's a matter for the democracy

of our party, something that, I

0:50:570:51:00

believe passionately in. I did not

hear that interview, I have to

0:51:000:51:06

admit. I am slightly taken aback

hearing it right now, I think that

0:51:060:51:11

Tom is an absolute star of our

labour movement. He is doing a

0:51:110:51:15

fantastic job as deputy leader. I

hope that was not an indication of

0:51:150:51:19

his own plans or mindset. He is a

brilliant deputy leader.

Listening

0:51:190:51:24

to that, do you think he feels

marginalised?

I must admit that

0:51:240:51:28

hearing that for the first time as

I'd have done so now, it sounded a

0:51:280:51:34

little like he was a bit resigned,

and I find that both surprising and

0:51:340:51:40

disappointing. As I say, he's an

absolutely brilliant MP, deputy

0:51:400:51:46

leader of our party and I think that

he is the kind of guy that we

0:51:460:51:49

desperately need to be having at the

heart of our decision-making process

0:51:490:51:54

as we shake a manifesto and shape

the campaign to return a Labour

0:51:540:51:58

government in the next election.

But

he was also wrong about Jeremy

0:51:580:52:01

Corbyn initially?

Well, who really

knew? He saw that coming? We all

0:52:010:52:08

made the mistake of believing the

opinion polls and we made the

0:52:080:52:12

mistake of thinking that Theresa May

is a competent politician, and a

0:52:120:52:15

competent campaign when clearly she

is not. She is an absolute

0:52:150:52:20

liability. Nobody really saw that

coming until it happened. We had a

0:52:200:52:24

brilliant manifesto full of sensible

mainstream party policies and we

0:52:240:52:29

were facing the most inept

Conservative campaign in living

0:52:290:52:33

memory.

Has the party triumphed in

terms of candidate elections? And

0:52:330:52:39

aback actually, there's a very

lively debate going on in the party

0:52:390:52:42

but it's a mixed bag in terms of

selections, I have seen selections

0:52:420:52:47

for marginal seats where there has

been mixed... The secret is, bring

0:52:470:52:52

this together and that is the magic

of the Labour Party and the labour

0:52:520:52:58

movement, that's what we've done in

the campaign. We have a little more

0:52:580:53:02

magic for you in the show...

0:53:020:53:04

Now - politics has been pure

pantomine this year.

0:53:040:53:07

Oh no, it hasn't!

0:53:070:53:08

"Oh yes it has".

0:53:080:53:09

And come to think about it.

0:53:090:53:10

Where's Ellie?

0:53:100:53:11

She's behind you!

0:53:110:53:13

Oh yes, there she is....

0:53:130:53:21

Hello! Hello ladies and gentlemen,

boys and girls, here I am wanting to

0:53:210:53:27

tell you an interesting fairy tale

today. It is a fairy tale about an

0:53:270:53:31

MP who wanted to talk about her

local theatre in a far-away,

0:53:310:53:36

mystical and magical land called

Enfield North. That MP went all the

0:53:360:53:40

way to Parliament to talk about the

pantomime, like all good stories

0:53:400:53:44

things did not go to plan...

0:53:440:53:48

Enfield is very fortunate to benefit

from three local theatres. Indeed, I

0:53:480:53:53

will be taking my grandchildren to

the Millfield to enjoy Dick

0:53:530:53:58

Whittington over Christmas.

Point of

order, Jane Ryan. I feel that I have

0:53:580:54:09

inadvertently misled the house, Mr

Speaker, during business questions,

0:54:090:54:13

when I suggested that honourable and

right honourable member 's could

0:54:130:54:17

enjoy the pantomime of Dick

Whittington at the Millfield Theatre

0:54:170:54:20

this Christmas.

That was the last

pantomime Izod there. If honourable

0:54:200:54:25

members wish to the Millfield

Theatre, it would be to enjoy Jack

0:54:250:54:30

and the Beanstalk!

I would be very

grateful to the honourable lady,

0:54:300:54:35

that is an extremely helpful

clarification! Moreover, in the

0:54:350:54:39

process of offering that

clarification to the house, the

0:54:390:54:43

right honourable lady has served

further to highlight the important

0:54:430:54:50

work done by, and the continued

pleasure brought about by the

0:54:500:54:55

theatre which I believe to be in her

own constituency.

Oh, no, it isn't!

0:54:550:55:03

Joan Ryan is with me, through the

magic of television!

What happened?

0:55:070:55:11

I wanted to raise a point about

funding for the arts, and in

0:55:110:55:16

particular for local theatres, who

have suffered a great deal from the

0:55:160:55:19

local authority cuts imposed by the

government. I did this in the

0:55:190:55:24

business question, and I thought

that I would mention Millfield

0:55:240:55:27

Theatre, this fantastic local

theatre, that we have in Enfield and

0:55:270:55:31

the fact that we are having a

fantastic pantomime again this year!

0:55:310:55:35

But I got the name of the pantomime

wrong! Oh, no, you didn't. Oh, yes,

0:55:350:55:42

I did!

Have you seen it yet?

Not

yet, I have tickets for myself, my

0:55:420:55:47

husband and our grandchildren on the

20th of December and we are so

0:55:470:55:50

looking forward to it. I've been to

pantomime is here before and they

0:55:500:55:54

are brilliant.

It was pretty funny.

Would you take a role if they

0:55:540:55:58

decided to ask you next year?

There

are those who think that MPs appear

0:55:580:56:04

in pantomime on a daily basis in

parliament, but I can assure you

0:56:040:56:08

that we don't, it's a serious

business and I do not think that I

0:56:080:56:11

could match the performers that we

have here!

What are you doing here?

0:56:110:56:18

It is Mr Fleshcreep. We are all

forgetful from time to time, you

0:56:180:56:27

should not be held responsible.

Do

you have any politics?

Yes, we have

0:56:270:56:35

important lessons about community

spirit and being true to yourself

0:56:350:56:38

and what would happen to you if you

are a naughty, naughty man... Nigel

0:56:380:56:43

Farage! Sorry, I have a cold.

And

it's

0:56:430:56:48

a busy time of year for you?

It's

optional to go for Matilda, and one

0:56:510:56:59

doesn't like to be typecast when one

is naughty and green.

It is

0:56:590:57:04

difficult. Food for thought...

Nothing left to say, really!

You've

0:57:040:57:08

done and the puns, I got the fright

of my life!

I had the privilege of

0:57:080:57:15

being at the rugby club in my

constituency, their Christmas

0:57:150:57:22

pantomime. They did Cinderella.

Was

it funny?

It was absolutely

0:57:220:57:29

hilarious. It was the least

politically correct thing I've ever

0:57:290:57:32

seen in my life, refreshingly so!

Are in pantomime?

I'm not, I do plan

0:57:320:57:38

to go to one, I'm not sure yet, I

could go to one in my constituency,

0:57:380:57:45

a great place for pantomime.

Thank

you to both of you. But before we

0:57:450:57:52

go, back over to you, LE.

Take it

away, team!

0:57:520:58:00

# Ladies and gentlemen, boys and

girls, it's what you have all been

0:58:000:58:03

waiting for...

# Greetings each and everyone

0:58:030:58:10

# Young or old

#

0:58:100:58:18

# In the giant's lad...

# I'm a simple lad from good stock

0:58:180:58:27

# Saying that we don't have a large

# Greetings each and everyone

0:58:270:58:33

# Young or old

# Nobody dares...

0:58:330:58:39

# It's the place to be

# Living here

0:58:390:58:42

# Is the only time

# You can hear the giant roaring...

0:58:420:58:51

#

0:58:510:58:56

MUSIC: Stayin' Alive

by Bee Gees

0:58:570:58:58

It was more than just a dance movie.

0:58:580:59:01

Labour's Stephen Kinnock and Suella Fernandes from the Conservatives join Jo Coburn throughout the programme. They look ahead to Theresa May's statement on the Brexit negotiations to the Commons and speak to disability rights campaigner Alice Kirby, who wants political parties to introduce all-disabled shortlists.


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