24/09/2012 Newsnight


24/09/2012

Will Plan Vince save the UK economy? Allegra Stratton unpicks the Liberal Democrats' strategy to differentiate themselves from their coalition partners. With Kirsty Wark.


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This programme contains some strong language. Tonight, planning a party

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post coalition, how dot Lib Dems reconnect with voters while

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insisting the coalition is the only show in town? At their party

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conference today, Vince Cable became the highest profile figure

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to suggest there could be a hung Parliament at the next election and

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in his speech, he did his level best to demonstrate if he was

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leader he could deal with both parties. I'll speak to one of the

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architects of the coalition. Abu Hamza, Babar Ahmad and three

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other terrorism suspects lose their battle not to be extradited to the

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US. Why did it take so long? We'll speak to this human rights lawyer.

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He's also Babar Ahmad brother in law.

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It's still an apology up to a point from the Chief Whip. I'm very clear

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about what I said and didn't say. I want to make it absolutely clear

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that I did not use the words attributed to me. What does this

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say about the Government's real attitude to the police?

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Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer by this sun of

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York. What will happen if the mortal remains of the -- if the

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last Plantaganet king of England are in a car park? The yellow

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marker marks the feet and the head near toast us. He's under the

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contact service parking space? Good evening. What happens when you

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have to look both ways at once? That's the dilemma for the Liberal

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Democrats at their annual knees-up in Brighton. One minute they're

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boasting about what they've achieved in coalition Government.

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The next they're talking about a different economic model, almost a

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Plan B, that they'd deliver if they had a Government of our own. Our

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political editor Allegra Stratton is there watching them twist and

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turn. Vince Cable gave his speech today. It was quite a good speech.

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Many people rated it. The thing was what he demonstrated throughout it

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was that throughout being in Government he's been able to

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persuade the Tories and cajole them into some of his ideas, like the

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bank. For many months he wanted it and now he's got them to sign off

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on it. He was rude about the Labour Party throughout his speech. The

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idea that Vince Cable is a shoe-in to go into Government with the

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Labour Party, if there was a hung Parliament, is wrong. This was

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today a speech where he was showing that he could do a deal with both

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parties. This time last year, he described

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battling the recession as a war. And he meant it. Now he's come to

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stand for many things, V for Vince, V for victory and even for some of

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his supporters, V For Vendetta. There's a lot riding on these two

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shoulders or two fingers. There's great anxiety in the hall about

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what to do about both the party's fortune and also the economy. For

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many, Vince Cable is the man to turn both around. First, the

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obligatory crowd pleaser, a suggestion that the Conservatives

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were turned on by sacking people, an offence to the majority of

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Tories who believe in greater deregulation. We've seen off the

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head bangers, who want a hire and firaclure and seem to find the idea

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of sacking people as some kind of aphrodisiac.

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With that done, onto V for vision, economic vision. We need a new

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British business bank with a clean balance sheet and an ability to

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expand lending rapidly to the manufacturers, exporters, the high

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growth companies that power our economy. And I can announce to you

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today that we will have one. This is no small thing. With �1 billion

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up front capital it's not far off the investment banks capital who

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have in the region of �5 billion. But it was familiar. This was

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broadcast at the weekend. actually, it's that this morning I,

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well I set up a community bank. What? You did what? You set up a

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bank? I had a moment of weakness and they exploited it. Yeah we

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didn't have much choice because it was all going to piss in a kettle

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here. We had to get the Economist out of the way. What are you

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talking about? We were having a preliminary meeting when Phil

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started to crow. It was embarrassing. You bought a bank out

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of social embarrassment? I sometimes buy the big issue out of

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social embarrassment, I don't buy a -- buy a fucking bank. That the

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thick of it beat the Business Secretary to announcing his own

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policy is because Vince Cable has been talking about this bank for

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some time now. The Chancellor and Vince Cable have been pushing what

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is an activist and interventionist straty. Many inside Government say

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there's a lot of Plan B in this Plan A. Nonetheless, some in the

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party want Plan B, the actual thing. They hay vote in the afternoon. It

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was rejected. In his speech Cable ridiculed Ed Balls call for a Plan

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B. He might as well have been ridiculing some of his own audience.

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Even so, see how thae plauz. Balls says, workers of the world

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unite, we need a Plan B. We should, he says, not cut the deficit in six

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years, but seven. Wow! The key paragraph is probably this one

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coming up, his bank will help. But Cable knows other efforts may be

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needed. Right now we're fighting recession and the need is for a

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demand stimulus. The country must not get stuck in a downward

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escalator where slow or no growth means bigger deficits, leading to

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more cuts and even slower growth. That is the way to economic

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disaster and political on livion. Note that mention of political

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oblivion, the opinion polls suggest Cable is a political chezman

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capable of bringing back long departed voters. Conservatives are

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beginning to push that they think their friend Nick Clegg is a busted

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frush and instead Vince Cable should become Deputy Prime Minister

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at some point. Why? The argument goes if you have Vince Cable as

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Deputy Prime Minister it's easier to see how you have a PM David

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Cameron in the future and harder to see how Ed Miliband would run his

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own Government. That is the Conservative plan V. When we ask

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people how they would vote if Vince Cable were leader of the Liberal

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Democrats rather than Nick Clegg, the votes go up from around three

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million to around four million. Not back to the seven million there

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were in 2010. But a useful lift. It looks to me as if the bulk of this

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extra million come from people who voted Lib Dem last time, went back

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to Labour because they didn't like the coalition and would consider

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voting for another left of centre Lib Dem leader. Would it make a

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second Prime Ministerial term for David Cameron more likely? All the

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calculations of who will do a deal after the next election depends

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critically on the numbers. Unless Labour and Conservatives are very

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close together, if there's a hung Parliament, the Lib Dems will be

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forced, as last time, to do a deal with the larger partyment Of course,

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what dot Lib Dems hate more than anything else? It's being told by

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other people who should be their leader. That was a future leader

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speaking, wasn't it? Oh, he's excellent, yes. But I think he has

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always enjoyed being in the, on the finance side. I think this

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conference is going to help Nick Clegg build himself up again. It's

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not us we're angry with him, it's the people on the doorstep, who say

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oh, he increased the tuition fees. When he explain it's properly, they

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are aggressive with you, but then they are ready to listen. We're

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getting our members back. Business Secretary went where

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others haven't gone so far. He predicted a hung Parliament at the

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next election. I don't believe actually that the British people

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will want to entrust their future to any one party next time. If

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wapbtsz... There we have it from the mouth of Vince Cable, the

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British electorate won't trust themselves to have one party. What

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is he up to with this plan? If you ask small businesses what their

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problem is at the moment, you hear a lot of the F Word. We heard the

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Thick of it there. The F word for businesses is finance. They can't

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get. It Vince Cable's department estimates between 90 and �180

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billion worth of finance is missing from the system. What they'll do is

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take �1 billion worth of taxpayers' money, with private sector money,

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maybe �10 billion, it gets lent, as a one off to try and just plug a

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bit this afternoon gap. How radical is this? Frankly some small

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businesses can't take the 18 months. It's small. It's not exactly the

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speediest move from A to B in terms of plans. But north Dakota has a

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bigger state investment bank than �1 billion. It has $4 billion

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investment bank. Germany 18 billion. It says taxpayers' money can be put

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at risk to lend, albeit indirectly, straight to private businesses and

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that lending can be state directed. The Government will choose sectors,

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regions, maybe individual businesses that it thinks are a

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good bet for the overall economic strategy. 13 years of the New

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Labour third way never produced that. Whatever his detractors will

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say tonight. Vince has put his name on the bank. The same was -- as

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Boris his put his name on bikes. It's a real thing. The need to do

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this was to do something completely different? Well, I mean, look, it's

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a tacit admission that all the other things they have done, the

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Project Merlin, the voluntary hitting the targets by banks,

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haven't worked. Trying to get RBS as an investment bank, none of it

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has resulted in lending to British businesses. They are crying out for

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money. They need that capital to be able to do what Cable has

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skphrainked, which is a demand-led recovery. Thanks very much.

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Earlier I spoke to David Laws, the Schools Minister, who has cross-

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Government responsibility for policy. I asked how the investment

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bank to have an impact on the current economic situation if it

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isn't going to start for 18 months. This is an extraordinary measure in

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extraordinary times. It's the right thing to do. It comes on top of a

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series of other pro-growth measures taken by the Government, including

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the funding for lending scheme, which is under way, in which the

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Bank of England is getting additional credit to the existing

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financial institutions to help them to lend and keep the price of

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credit down. This was one of six, seven, eight, nine, ten, pro-growth

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initiatives being taken by the Government over the last few months.

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So then, we'll have another announcement, another bone being

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thrown by Nick Clegg tomorrow. That will be �100 million extra for

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nursery places. Where is the money coming from? It's coming from the

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existing capital allocation that is granted by the Treasury to the

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Department for Education. It hasn't been allocated yet. But it's

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incredibly important for the delivery of the pledge we made as a

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Government that Nick Clegg was very much involved in that we would

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provide additional places so there could be a free 15 hours of nursery,

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early years education for every two-year-old from the... So it's

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not new money? It's just shifting money from another part of the

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education budget. It's not a pledge of new money. It's not something

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that Nick Clegg has managed to ring out of the Department of Education,

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something new. It's just old money. It is money which Nick and others

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have managed to negotiate with Michael Gove to allocate to

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specifically to deliver the pledge to increase the number of places,

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free places for two-year-olds, which is incredibly important for

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making sure that we get a high quality of early years education,

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particularly for those most disadvantaged young people.

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who's loseing out, who's loseing �100 million in the Department of

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Education. If it's not new money, somewhere else is suffering?

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comes out of the overall capital allocation that the Department for

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Education has. Some of that gets allocated at the beginning of the

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year. Some of that throughout the year. This is an allocation which

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Nick Clegg has agreed with Michael Gove will go specifically into

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providing those places for two- year-olds, those 15 hours of free

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early years education, which is such an important part of our

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strategy to give the best possible opportunities for young people from

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more disadvantaged backgrounds. Let's be clear on where we stand on

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the Government spending plans, because at the 2011 Autumn

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Statement, Danny Alexander agreed with George Osborne that they would

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stick to the spending plans for 2015/16 and 16/17, but that's not

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the case any more. But Nick Clegg said it was just 15/16. So you

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diverge with the rest of the coalition on this? No, there are

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separate issues. The first thing is that the Government is part of his

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long-term planning, budget planning has to set out a level of total

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public expenditure in order to meet the fiscal mandate which looks five

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years ahead. That's exactly what the Chancellor did in the Autumn

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Statement. In addition to that, the Government has to agree the

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detailed departmental break down of that total figure for expenditure.

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We have that so far for every year of this Parliament. I understand

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now. That means then that the Chancellor agrees now with Nick

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Clegg that actually, these spending plans for 2015/16 are the final

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spending plans? It means that so far we've agreed the detailed

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spending plans for each department and for the welfare budget right

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through to the end of 2014/15. However, it's very clear that at

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the very least we will have to have detailed departmental spending

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plans and welfare plans for 2015/16, because the general election is

:15:08.:15:18.
:15:18.:15:21.

going to take place within that Danny Alexander was wrong? No, he

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was right. What he said was we will have to have detailed plans. That

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is a separate issue that in the Autumn Statement last year there

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was a planning assumption set out for total managed expenditure going

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into 2016/17. What we are now talking about is the extent to

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which we have a detailed breakdown of those overall figures for

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particular years. Nick Clegg said that it is wrong to have a further

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welfare cut of �10 billion. What is acceptable to the Liberal

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Democrats? �1 billion? �2 billion? What is not acceptable to us is

:15:56.:16:02.

that we should go into a second stage of auster toy -- austerity to

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reduce borrowing without there being a contribution from those

:16:06.:16:10.

people on very high income. You will remember when the coalition

:16:10.:16:20.
:16:20.:16:21.

was formed, there was a contribution from taxation. And

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more recently, Nick has become concerned that some of the debate

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in the media and elsewhere has focused just on there being a

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contribution to any further austerity from departmental

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spending. �10 billion on welfare - a �10 billion cut in welfare is

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unacceptable to the Liberal Democrats? There is no movement on

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that? What's unacceptable for us is that the next stage of austerity

:16:47.:16:50.

should simply consist of welfare cuts for people on low incomes

:16:50.:16:53.

without people on high incomes making a decent contribution. That

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is the case in the first round of fiscal austerity after 2010 and

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that's got to be the case for any further austerity going ahead. That

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is the view that most commonsense members of the public would have

:17:07.:17:12.

that people on high incomes have to make a sensible contribution.

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become - we get nearer the election, the coalition looks less and less

:17:18.:17:28.
:17:28.:17:29.

tenable because you cannot - you have to distance yourself otherwise

:17:29.:17:34.

it becomes crazy, because you diverge on so many issues? I think

:17:34.:17:39.

there is a great degree of unity in a lot of policy areas in the

:17:39.:17:43.

coalition, particularly on the economic strategy. There is going

:17:43.:17:47.

to be renewed focus in the autumn for us to agree a common programme

:17:47.:17:51.

of policies that will take us through the last two-and-a-half

:17:51.:17:55.

years of this Parliament. It is inevitably the case, though, that

:17:55.:17:59.

as we get into the last three or six months running towards a

:17:59.:18:03.

general election, the parties will be focused on delivering the agreed

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programme and on setting out their competing visions of where they

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should go. That's just obvious. Most of the Parliament will be able

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to work co-operatively together. Of course, before the next general

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election, there will be a focus on the future. Thank you very much.

:18:26.:18:29.

He's cost the British taxpayer many millions in legal and detentions

:18:29.:18:32.

costs, but Abu Hamza's appeal against extradition, and that of

:18:32.:18:34.

four other terror suspects have been unanimously rejected by

:18:34.:18:40.

Europe's Human Rights Judges. So, within a few weeks, the radical

:18:40.:18:43.

cleric could be put on a plane to the United States to face multiple

:18:43.:18:48.

charges. I'm joined by Peter Marshall. What these cases have in

:18:48.:18:52.

common, all five, is that all the individuals applied to the European

:18:52.:18:56.

Court to stop their extradition to the US because they said they

:18:56.:19:01.

feared in these US top-security prisons they could be subjected to

:19:01.:19:04.

torture or cruel and inhumane treatment. The European Court

:19:04.:19:09.

turned down their request in April and today they turned down their

:19:09.:19:16.

application to lodge an appeal. are they? Well, like Frank Sinatra,

:19:16.:19:20.

Abu Hamza needs no introduction. I reported on his activities 11 years

:19:20.:19:30.
:19:30.:19:37.

ago when he took over the Finsbury Park Mosque. He revelled in his

:19:37.:19:41.

bloodthirsty reputation. Eventually, in 2006, he was jailed for seven

:19:41.:19:47.

years by a UK court for soliciting murder and inciting racial hatred.

:19:47.:19:52.

That's different from anything that he's wanted for in America. How

:19:52.:20:01.

extensive are these... That's in connection with his alleged

:20:01.:20:05.

association with a kidnap of 16 Western tourists in Yemen. There

:20:05.:20:10.

was a shoot-out at the end when the Yemeni authorities attempted to

:20:10.:20:16.

rescue these tourists, but four were killed. The Americans want him

:20:16.:20:21.

for trying to set up a training camp in the US. What about the

:20:21.:20:26.

others? Most notable is Babar Ahmad, a student and computer expert who

:20:26.:20:31.

has been in custody without trial since 2004. That is eight years.

:20:31.:20:35.

The Americans say he was soliciting funds for terrorist activities on a

:20:35.:20:41.

website he ran. He denies that and he's waged a long campaign with a

:20:41.:20:45.

lot of support. If he is to be tried anywhere, his supporters say

:20:45.:20:53.

it should be the UK. The others are Syed Talha Ahsan and two other men,

:20:53.:20:57.

Adel Abdul Bary and Khaled Al Fawwaz, who were accused of being

:20:57.:21:01.

aides to Osama Bin Laden. The Home Office have said that they could be

:21:01.:21:06.

gone within days, certainly within weeks. Thank you.

:21:06.:21:09.

In Birmingham is Fahad Ansari, a human rights lawyer and Babar

:21:09.:21:11.

Ahmad's brother-in-law. From Washington, we're joined by David

:21:11.:21:14.

Rivkin, a lawyer who worked in the Justice Department and as an

:21:14.:21:17.

associate White House Counsel in the Reagan and Bush Senior

:21:17.:21:19.

administrations. And here in London, the Conservative MP, Patrick Mercer,

:21:19.:21:27.

the former chairman of the Commons Counter-Terrorism Sub-Committee.

:21:27.:21:32.

Fahad Ansari, what is your reaction to tonight's decision? We are

:21:32.:21:36.

obviously quite disappointed with Europe's decision. We are not very

:21:36.:21:40.

surprised. It is really irrelevant for us. This matter should never

:21:40.:21:44.

have even reached Strasbourg. If the British police had done their

:21:45.:21:49.

job nine years ago, and submitted the material seized from Babar

:21:49.:21:54.

Ahmad's home to the domestic prosecution authorities rather than

:21:54.:21:58.

secretly sending it to their US counterparts, Babar Ahmad would

:21:58.:22:02.

have been prosecuted in this country and if convicted, would

:22:03.:22:08.

have been released by now. Nothing to do with Abu Hamza, it is Babar

:22:09.:22:12.

Ahmad's case that you are pursuing? Absolutely. Obviously, my

:22:12.:22:20.

involvement with these cases has been with Babar Ahmad's case as a

:22:20.:22:24.

family member and a campaign member from the last seven or eight years.

:22:24.:22:27.

This issue, he is a British citizen, he is someone who has worked and

:22:27.:22:30.

lived in this country his entire life. He's someone who is accused

:22:30.:22:33.

of a crime committed in this country. The crime was not

:22:34.:22:38.

committed in America. It was not committed in Russia or Pakistan. He

:22:38.:22:41.

should face trial in this country. We have never said that he should

:22:41.:22:45.

escape trial. We have always called for him to face the serious

:22:45.:22:49.

questions in a British court of law. That is the judicial process

:22:49.:22:52.

running its long course, Patrick Mercer. Do you accept that it had

:22:52.:22:59.

to take this length of time? disappointed that this has had to

:22:59.:23:03.

take this length of time. These men are innocent until proved guilty.

:23:03.:23:07.

We must not get away from that. What I do think is quite wrong is

:23:07.:23:11.

that individuals should have had to spend this amount of time, not just

:23:11.:23:14.

being deeply concerned about their future, not knowing whether they

:23:14.:23:19.

are found guilty or innocent, but absorbing British taxpayers' money.

:23:19.:23:24.

I wish it hadn't taken this long. I'm glad we seem to be approaching

:23:24.:23:27.

a resolution. Do you make any quantitative difference between

:23:27.:23:31.

alleged crimes committed here and abroad, as Fahad Ansari is saying?

:23:31.:23:34.

I think that individuals should be tried in the country where the

:23:34.:23:40.

crime is committed. David Rivkin, what is your view of tonight's

:23:40.:23:44.

decision? Well, it's high time. My view is the reason it's taken so

:23:45.:23:49.

many years is because these individuals and lawyers have

:23:49.:23:55.

advanced all sorts of arguments for the British Criminal Justice System,

:23:55.:23:58.

then for the European justice system. I don't understand they

:23:58.:24:04.

should have been tried only in the United Kingdom. Under our

:24:04.:24:08.

extradition treaty with Great Britain, if you commit a crime that

:24:08.:24:18.
:24:18.:24:18.

takes place using electronic means, using websites, using other

:24:18.:24:24.

communications there is a variety of choices prosecutors have. I

:24:24.:24:28.

don't know any principle that says you should only be tried in Britain,

:24:28.:24:32.

or France, or Germany. The notion they would be tortured in the

:24:32.:24:36.

United States is preposterous. The reason the arguments took so long

:24:36.:24:39.

to resolve is because the lawyers pressed all the buttons. I don't

:24:39.:24:42.

feel any sympathy for them. lawyers pressed all the buttons

:24:42.:24:47.

that there were there to press? should they complain about how long

:24:47.:24:52.

it's taken? It is a silly argument, don't you think? Fahad Ansari, can

:24:52.:24:56.

you respond? For a representative of the Government of the United

:24:56.:25:00.

States to argue that the United States doesn't torture is

:25:00.:25:05.

preposterous. As regards to this specific case, we have due process.

:25:05.:25:09.

The problem was, there was an abuse of that process nine years ago when

:25:09.:25:15.

the evidence was not given to the DPP. In terms of prosecuting Babar

:25:15.:25:19.

Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan in this country, the offence has taken

:25:19.:25:22.

place in the United Kingdom. They are British citizens, they have not

:25:22.:25:25.

stepped foot in the United States. So why should they be extradited to

:25:26.:25:30.

the United States? The websites in question were accused of running

:25:30.:25:35.

campaigns in Chechnya, so if that was the case, why haven't Russia

:25:35.:25:39.

requested the extradition? And in Afghanistan. Again, there is a

:25:40.:25:43.

British interest. 150,000 people signed a petition for Babar Ahmad

:25:43.:25:49.

to be tried in this country. There is enormous public interest. The

:25:49.:25:53.

DPP has that evidence for the first time in eight years. They have been

:25:53.:25:58.

presented with the evidence and he is trustworthy and honest and

:25:58.:26:02.

integrity enough to make a proper decision on this. David Rivkin, the

:26:02.:26:07.

question that Babar Ahmad and others ask is whether or not these

:26:07.:26:11.

men will get a fair trial in America? I would say of course

:26:11.:26:14.

they'll get a fair trial. I don't know what evidence of torture the

:26:14.:26:19.

gentleman is talking about. I can tell you even if you don't like

:26:19.:26:22.

military justice systems in Guantanamo, they will be tried in

:26:23.:26:27.

the civilian justice system. That is THE most due process-laden

:26:27.:26:31.

system in the world. If I was a guilty person, I would rather be

:26:31.:26:35.

tried in the United States than anywhere in the world. If he is

:26:35.:26:40.

convicted, he will be serving his time in humane conditions without

:26:40.:26:44.

any torture. This is all quite preposterous. One more thing. I

:26:44.:26:49.

don't understand the notion that had he been prosecuted in the UK he

:26:49.:26:53.

would somehow have not been eligible for extradition to the

:26:53.:26:57.

United States. The American government made a showing to the

:26:57.:27:00.

Criminal Justice System that they have committed a crime... That is

:27:00.:27:09.

not true. You display your ignorance of the Treaty. That is

:27:09.:27:13.

the problem with this treaty which campaigners have been... Let me

:27:13.:27:17.

bring Patrick Mercer in on this. These are strained relations?

:27:17.:27:22.

course it is. I believe that they will get a proper trial in America.

:27:22.:27:25.

I'm convinced of that. Above everything else, no matter what the

:27:25.:27:30.

lawyers say, if I talk to my constituents, 99 out of 100 - and I

:27:31.:27:36.

have tried to do this - say, "Get these men out of this country, get

:27:36.:27:39.

them back to the country whereas they will receive the proper

:27:39.:27:44.

trial." Is this a victory for the European Courts? I think - I don't

:27:44.:27:48.

think it is a victory at all. This has taken far too long for us to

:27:48.:27:52.

come to this particular point. What I would say is I hope that in the

:27:53.:27:57.

future that our Government looks towards its memoranda of

:27:57.:27:59.

understanding that it has negotiated with the various

:27:59.:28:04.

countries involved and invokes those properly and early? People

:28:04.:28:07.

have the recourse of the European Court, that is their right?

:28:08.:28:12.

course they do. The fact remains that I think the majority of the

:28:12.:28:15.

people inside this country deeply resent the amount of time that

:28:15.:28:19.

these individuals have stayed here and consumed their taxes. Now, at

:28:19.:28:25.

last, we are getting the right result. I would second that. Fahad

:28:26.:28:31.

Ansari, what is your next step? would request the Home Secretary to

:28:31.:28:37.

undertake not to extradite Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan until

:28:37.:28:39.

the Director of Public Prosecutions has made a decision on whether

:28:39.:28:42.

there is a case to answer for them being prosecuted in the UK. For the

:28:42.:28:47.

first time, he has the evidence which was kept hidden from the

:28:47.:28:50.

Crown Prosecution Service for eight years and he's a man of integrity.

:28:50.:28:57.

I trust he will make the same decision that 150,000 people, more

:28:57.:29:01.

people than in Theresa May's constituency have asked for. Thank

:29:01.:29:04.

you. Like all scandals that threaten the careers of Cabinet

:29:04.:29:07.

ministers, it is the length of time they are in the headlines and

:29:07.:29:11.

questions that remain unanswered that often prove to be their

:29:11.:29:15.

undoing. And so the Government's Chief Whip was up early this

:29:15.:29:19.

morning to speak truth unto the nation that he didn't call Downing

:29:19.:29:23.

Street police officers "plebs". His problem, however, remains that many,

:29:23.:29:27.

including the police, still maintain that is not quite the

:29:27.:29:35.

truth. 8.02am, a camera crew is summoned

:29:35.:29:40.

to Whitehall on the promise that Andrew Mitchell, the Chief Whip,

:29:40.:29:46.

was to break his silence. He arrived not in any grand

:29:46.:29:51.

ministerial Jag, but in a hatchback, a pleb's car, were one ever to use

:29:51.:29:59.

What exactly did you say to the police officers on Wednesday?

:29:59.:30:03.

wants first of all to reiterate the apology I made last week, after the

:30:03.:30:07.

incident on Wednesday night in Downing Street. It had been the end

:30:07.:30:11.

of a long and extremely frustrating day, not that that is any excuse at

:30:11.:30:15.

all for what happened. I didn't show the police the amount of

:30:15.:30:18.

respect I should have done. We should all respect the police. They

:30:18.:30:23.

do an incredibly difficult job. I've apologised to the police. I've

:30:23.:30:27.

apologised to the police officer involved on the gate and he's

:30:28.:30:32.

accepted my apology. I hope very much that we can draw a line under

:30:32.:30:36.

it there. It hadn't worked before the weekend. So limiting his

:30:36.:30:39.

comments to camera to what he said in a written statement on Friday

:30:39.:30:43.

was never going to work now. Mr Mitchell far from drawing a line

:30:44.:30:47.

under this issue, simply seemed to underscore his failure to address

:30:47.:30:52.

the key questions. Had he sworn at the police and had he called them

:30:52.:30:55.

plebs? I'm very clear about what I said and what I didn't say. I want

:30:55.:30:59.

to make it absolutely clear that I did not use the words that have

:30:59.:31:03.

been attributed to me. With that he was gone, dais peering into the

:31:03.:31:08.

Cabinet Office only yards from the scene of his original troubles. The

:31:08.:31:13.

Sun meanwhile had its teeth in Mr Mitchell's rump and wasn't letting

:31:13.:31:17.

go. Its leading political columnist said it was serious and simple, Mr

:31:17.:31:23.

Mitchell had to take the police to law. If the police are indeed lying,

:31:23.:31:28.

which is the only other alternative, which is a substantial lie if it's

:31:28.:31:34.

correct, they have an officer in the diplomatic protection service

:31:34.:31:39.

who has given evidence on her official log... Backed up by others

:31:39.:31:44.

as well. Backed up by witnesss in the same service. Why would they do

:31:44.:31:47.

that? Why concoct a story which would be extremely damaging and

:31:47.:31:51.

then to leak it to the press? You're saying Mr Mitchell is

:31:51.:31:55.

obliged either to sue or resign? think he has no choice. He has to

:31:55.:31:59.

take them on. This cannot be allowed to stand. Home Secretary

:31:59.:32:02.

found earlier this year how taking the police on, over pay and

:32:02.:32:06.

pensions would lead to real difficulties. Trevor Kavanagh says

:32:06.:32:10.

David Cameron is now to reap the whirlwind from Mitchellgate. One of

:32:10.:32:15.

the problems that arises from this is that the Prime Minister has now

:32:15.:32:20.

come out whole heartedly in support of the police in such a way, that

:32:20.:32:23.

it weakens the operation, the policy that the Government's

:32:23.:32:26.

pursuing of trying to reform the police. It gives the moral high

:32:26.:32:30.

ground to the Police Federation, which is resisting by tooth and

:32:30.:32:33.

nail everything that the Home Secretary is trying to do to reform

:32:33.:32:38.

the Police Service. Mr Mitchell may be very clear about what he said.

:32:38.:32:42.

Others aren't. His friends have been briefing he did swear at the

:32:42.:32:45.

police officers, one policewoman and one policeman, but he didn't

:32:45.:32:50.

call them plebs, the class word. The Sun today repeated what it said

:32:50.:32:54.

they said he'd said. "Best you learn your (BLEEP)ing place. You

:32:54.:32:59.

don't run this (BLEEP)ing Government. You're (BLEEP)ing

:32:59.:33:03.

plebs." Sun which many see as the Conservative party of the plebian

:33:03.:33:07.

wing say Mr Mitchell's comments wreck David Cameron's attempts to

:33:07.:33:12.

rid the party of its image as posh boys and Bullingdon Club bullies.

:33:12.:33:15.

Their coalition partners, who have to take their laughs where they

:33:15.:33:19.

find them, were tickled pink by Vince Cable's efforts to rejoin the

:33:19.:33:24.

class war at their party conference. Being told however that jokes about

:33:24.:33:29.

social class are not good for the unity of the coalition. But as a

:33:29.:33:32.

mere pleb, I couldn't resist it. LAUGHTER

:33:32.:33:37.

APPLAUSE The Liberal Democrats Home Office

:33:37.:33:41.

minister playing it straight said in his view Andrew Mitchell still

:33:41.:33:45.

had a lot of explaining to do. can understand as well why people

:33:45.:33:48.

feel we need to get to the bottom of it and explaining to the media

:33:48.:33:52.

what was not said is not the same as explaining what was said. There

:33:52.:33:57.

is a sense of all the loose ends not being tied up. There was some

:33:57.:34:01.

relief for Mr Mitchell tonight with the Cabinet Secretary ruling he won

:34:01.:34:05.

be investigated because the police officer had made no complaint. Mr

:34:05.:34:08.

Mitchell is denying telling the officers from the Diplomatic

:34:08.:34:13.

Protection Group "you haven't heard the last of this." He'll be hoping

:34:13.:34:19.

it is the last of it. Extraordinary goings on in a car

:34:19.:34:21.

park in Leicester could change history and resurrect the

:34:21.:34:28.

reputation of a king, who's been marked by history as a grotesque

:34:28.:34:33.

murderer. If the remains are those of Richard III it may start a chain

:34:33.:34:37.

of events which would render Shakespeare's famous play and

:34:37.:34:42.

history books suspect. He may not have killed his nephews after all.

:34:42.:34:47.

Who knows. Much to discuss in a moment. First David grosman has

:34:47.:34:53.

been watching as events unfold. If you don't know your Plantaganet

:34:53.:34:58.

from a hole in the ground, you probably still know Richard III.

:34:58.:35:03.

Now is the winter of our discontent... That's him, or is it?

:35:03.:35:07.

At the bottom of a hole in the ground in a Council car park in

:35:07.:35:10.

Leicester, wre told there have been located the bones of the last

:35:10.:35:16.

Plantaganet king. This particular performance of Richard III closes

:35:16.:35:19.

soon. They start filling in the hole tomorrow. But what this ark

:35:19.:35:24.

logical dig has really uncovered is how deep feelings still run about

:35:24.:35:29.

this long dead monarch. There are people in Britain, indeed all round

:35:29.:35:33.

the world who are spectacularly furious that their hero should be

:35:33.:35:37.

portrayed as a tyrant. There's a lot of information about Richard

:35:37.:35:45.

III before the Tudor writers to get to him. What you can see is

:35:45.:35:51.

perversely, you see a man who was loyal, brave, pius and just. It's

:35:51.:35:56.

completely the opposite of Shakespeare's portrayal. This

:35:56.:36:00.

wasn't just you came along, dug the car park and found bones and you

:36:00.:36:06.

thought, well that could be Richard III? Not quite. The lead

:36:06.:36:09.

archaeologist on the dig is Richard Buckley from the University of

:36:09.:36:12.

Leicester. He said the first clue was the position of the body in the

:36:12.:36:17.

part of an extra investigated friary which corps responds with

:36:17.:36:19.

contemporary reports. But there was more compelling evidence.

:36:20.:36:25.

second thing is the signs on the skeletal remains themselves,

:36:25.:36:29.

particularly the spinal abnormality, trauma to the skull and then the

:36:29.:36:36.

remains of this projectile point between two vertebrae. It was an

:36:36.:36:38.

unusual burial in that clearly somebody had died a violent death

:36:38.:36:43.

and it was if the choir of a church. And there the spinal abnormality. I

:36:43.:36:49.

thought that was all Shakespeare's imagination. Well, this is, this

:36:49.:36:53.

abnormality doesn't necessarily mean that he was a hunch back as

:36:53.:36:56.

Shakespeare says. It's an abnormality that lots of people

:36:56.:37:02.

have. It may mean one shoulder was higher than the other. That got

:37:02.:37:06.

exaggerated in the telling. He did ride into battle and so forth. It

:37:06.:37:11.

didn't affect his mobility at all. Do you feel a sort of, an affinity

:37:11.:37:16.

with him here. Do you find an emotional connection with Richard

:37:16.:37:20.

III as a character or is he just a person from history? I'm beginning

:37:20.:37:26.

to, funnily enough. As an orkologist we dig barials all the

:37:26.:37:34.

time. Usually they're unnamed people. We know nothing about them.

:37:34.:37:38.

To find a burial of a potentially named individual and somebody who

:37:38.:37:44.

has died a violent death, yes, it's a moving experience.

:37:44.:37:47.

# Heifer had a hump and my arm was all right #

:37:47.:37:53.

There have been attempts to rehabilitate Richard, like on

:37:53.:37:56.

horrible histories, the children's programme.

:37:56.:38:03.

# Tudor propaganda, it's all absurd # Time to tell the truth about King

:38:03.:38:08.

Richard III # It was Shakespeare who took

:38:08.:38:11.

Richard's reputation, but should recare? After all in return he gave

:38:11.:38:16.

us a great work of literature. Shakespeare did him an odd favour,

:38:16.:38:25.

didn't they, because Edward IV and Henry VII don't rank very high and

:38:25.:38:30.

in the middle is Richard III who is a major figure, for all the wrong

:38:30.:38:38.

reasons. So Shakespeare's done him a sort of strange service. Between

:38:38.:38:43.

infamy and being forgotten... you choose infamy? I suppose you

:38:43.:38:47.

might, 500 years later. If you then get, if everyone then gets told

:38:47.:38:51.

that you weren't so bad after all. It might all work out very nicely

:38:52.:38:56.

for him. He gets the glamour and he gets a decent biography. And maybe

:38:56.:39:01.

a good funeral. Maybe. So what should happen to him now do you

:39:01.:39:04.

think? There's going to be much debate between interested parties

:39:04.:39:09.

as to his final resting place. State funeral do you think?

:39:09.:39:13.

knows. I wouldn't like to say. Might be nice. We've had the

:39:13.:39:17.

Jubilee and the Olympics, Richard III's state funeral could be the

:39:17.:39:22.

next big thing. We in Leicester would like to see him stay here.

:39:22.:39:27.

The people in York say he should come to York. People in London say

:39:27.:39:30.

oh, Westminster Abbey. Why Leicester? I suppose he died in

:39:30.:39:36.

Leicestershire at Bosworth. That is true. He's been buried here for 527

:39:36.:39:39.

years and nobody's shown any interest until now in looking for

:39:39.:39:43.

him and removing him. So finders keepers? Yeah, probably.

:39:43.:39:50.

# Now my tale is told, you won't hear a bad word

:39:50.:39:54.

# About a special ruler, King Richard III.

:39:54.:40:02.

I'm a nice guy. Here to help us decide whether it

:40:02.:40:09.

was good King Richard or crook back dig, are Dan Jones and Annette

:40:09.:40:13.

Carson author of Richard III the maligned king. Whether or not these

:40:13.:40:17.

are the bones of King Richard it won't make much difference to you

:40:17.:40:22.

because you think he's a good guy? Not being an historian I don't go

:40:22.:40:27.

in for judgments about people. I'm more interested in buy graphical

:40:27.:40:33.

material. I'm interested in people who make the best of a bad job.

:40:33.:40:38.

believe... They get dealt a bad hand and they get on with it.

:40:38.:40:42.

believe he was maligned. However you, tell me about what you think

:40:42.:40:45.

about this dig in the first place and whether or not it's going to be

:40:45.:40:50.

conclusive evidence? I think one of the impressive things is that they

:40:50.:40:55.

found the spot. This was research which located the choir of the

:40:55.:40:59.

church of the grey friars and found a body which may or may not be

:40:59.:41:02.

Richard. If it is Richard and there's going to be the DNA

:41:02.:41:06.

decision, it doesn't actually alter anything in history about whether

:41:06.:41:10.

or not he did away with the Princes. That still is completely uncertain.

:41:10.:41:15.

Absolutely. If we found a skeleton the DNA tests prove is Richard III,

:41:16.:41:20.

then we've found a skeleton that DNA proves is he. It doesn't alter

:41:20.:41:25.

anything else we know of his career. Unless there is permission given in

:41:25.:41:28.

Westminster Abbey to dig up the Princes and see if there's a DNA

:41:28.:41:32.

connection with Richard, am I right? Yes, but it's a long shot as

:41:32.:41:37.

to whether that's likely to happen. I don't think anyone's agitating

:41:37.:41:42.

for it. What we're interested in now is the fact that Richard has

:41:42.:41:48.

become something of a cause celebre. The media are terrifically stirred

:41:48.:41:52.

up about it. People in England now are watching the television and

:41:52.:41:55.

thinking, oh, maybe I'll find out more about this guy. From that

:41:55.:41:59.

point of view, it can only be a good thing that he's become

:41:59.:42:02.

somebody that people are interested in right now. If you want to solve

:42:02.:42:08.

a mystery, that's really a whole different ball game. We're not

:42:08.:42:14.

detectives. But what would be exciting for you as an outcome from

:42:14.:42:18.

this? It would be exciting to know that we'd located the bones of

:42:18.:42:22.

Richard III. There's no doubt about that. Aside from that I don't know

:42:22.:42:25.

what more we're going to tell about Richard other than what we know

:42:25.:42:30.

already. We're not going to tell whether or not it was he who killed

:42:30.:42:34.

the Princes or Henry Tudor. Absolutely not. It's not going to

:42:34.:42:44.
:42:44.:42:44.

alter one crime from his reign from which everything else followed.

:42:44.:42:48.

was saying if you looked at pre- Tudor sources there's less

:42:48.:42:54.

propaganda. There's a different view of King Richard. What we know

:42:54.:42:59.

about Richard before he became king and while he was king, he was a

:42:59.:43:02.

loyal aristocrat and a capable soldier. If this were his soldier,

:43:02.:43:08.

all the injuries, head wounds and arrow in the back, would be

:43:08.:43:12.

consistent with Tudor historians that he was a brave soldier on the

:43:12.:43:16.

battlefield. It is enormously fascinating, isn't it? People are

:43:16.:43:22.

gripped by this, because you don't find a monarch very often, do you?

:43:22.:43:26.

You don't. People are gripped by Richard III any way. The reign

:43:26.:43:31.

lasted two years. The gap between the black propaganda which emanated

:43:31.:43:36.

from Tudor historians, early in Henry VII reign and he was turned

:43:36.:43:44.

into a Plantaganet iago by Shakespeare. It seemed he was quite

:43:44.:43:49.

a competent king, although only for two years. And this deformed

:43:49.:43:57.

monster is so huge people are fascinated. Extol os is is not the

:43:57.:44:04.

Shakespearean humpback. It is not a hunch back, that has another name.

:44:04.:44:08.

Scoliosis is an S bend in the spine which makes one shoulder higher

:44:08.:44:13.

than the other and depending on the severity. When all the work is done

:44:13.:44:17.

on the body, then the big decision will have to be made about where to

:44:17.:44:21.

have the funeral and what kind of funeral to have. What's your view?

:44:22.:44:26.

It's out of our hands. At the moment, we have a plan and now

:44:26.:44:30.

suddenly a load of other people have leapt in. What's your plan?

:44:30.:44:35.

The plan has always been, according to good ark logical prob tis, if

:44:35.:44:41.

you exhume body when you reinter it, you place it in the nearest, the

:44:41.:44:45.

place that's nearest to where you exhumed it from. You go for

:44:45.:44:50.

Leicester? Yes. Would you go for York or Westminster Abbey? I think

:44:50.:44:53.

you have to stick with best practice and go with Leicester. I

:44:53.:44:56.

think the city of Leicester will be delighted. They have put a lot of

:44:56.:45:00.

work in it. They have closed a Council car park all summer.

:45:00.:45:04.

he's a monarch, shouldn't he be interred in Westminster Abbey?

:45:04.:45:10.

don't know. I think there would be something cartoonish for the bones

:45:10.:45:15.

of a medieval king. We haven't heard from the Queen. Westminster

:45:15.:45:19.

Abbey is actually a bit Tudor inclined you know. It's not the

:45:19.:45:23.

place I would have chosen. wouldn't be happy there then. Thank

:45:23.:45:27.

you both very much. And the front you both very much. And the front

:45:27.:45:30.

pages. The Sun go all out: Now cop pleb row minister claims outburst

:45:30.:45:34.

came after long and frustrating day, presumably this included his

:45:34.:45:40.

gruelling lunch time Serb at UK's poshest curry house. The Daily

:45:40.:45:44.

Telegraph, police log reveals details of the pleb rant and there

:45:44.:45:51.

the picture of Megan, mother's plea to run away. The Guardian - torture

:45:51.:45:54.

traumatised scar, the children caught up in Syria's war. And on

:45:54.:46:00.

their bottom page, Abu Hamza to be extradited to the US.

:46:00.:46:05.

That's all from Newsnight tonight. Sleep well, unlike as Richard III

:46:05.:46:11.

says the son's of Edward sleep in Abraham's boz om. Jeremy will be

:46:11.:46:21.
:46:21.:46:43.

Hello. We seem to have roared straight into Autumn. Rain and

:46:43.:46:47.

gales continuing overnight and for Tuesday as well across northern

:46:47.:46:50.

England, Northern Ireland and across many parts of Wales too.

:46:50.:46:55.

Across Scotland the initial rain easing away across southern areas

:46:55.:47:00.

but the winds continue through the afternoon. As will the rain in

:47:00.:47:03.

North West England. Very different across the south-east. East Anglia,

:47:03.:47:07.

south-east England one or two showers but sunshine coming through.

:47:07.:47:11.

Temperatures 15 or 16 degrees. Persistent rain starts to swing

:47:11.:47:16.

back in to south-west England as the afternoon wears on. It turns

:47:16.:47:19.

increasingly wet across the rest of Wales too. Across North Wales it

:47:19.:47:24.

rains more much of the day. That could cause further problems.

:47:24.:47:26.

Northern Ireland, brisk northerly winds blowing the rain away. It

:47:26.:47:30.

make it's feel chilly, 12 or 13 degrees at best. Northern Scotland

:47:30.:47:37.

hang onto the rain and strongest winds. Still some rain around

:47:37.:47:39.

certainly and fairly low temperatures through Tuesday.

:47:39.:47:42.

Notice a bit less in the way of rain, once we get through to

:47:42.:47:46.

Wednesday and a better chance of one or two sunny intervals breaking

:47:46.:47:49.

through, certainly the case further south. Don't rule out heavy showers

:47:49.:47:52.

across southern parts of England during Wednesday. There could be

:47:52.:47:55.

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