18/11/2016 Newsnight


18/11/2016

With Emily Maitlis. Donald Trump's cabinet picks, are Theresa May's Jams (just about managing) anything new, and was celebrity a factor in Trump's victory?


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Transcript


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Tonight Donald Trump shows his hand and leaves no one in any doubt

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of the kind of government he wants to run.

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Three hardliners on immmigration, justice and terrorism -

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this man will be his security advisor.

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Anybody that is foolish enough to think that conflict or wall can't

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break out again, although have to do is study a little bit of history.

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They call them Jam, people who are Just About Managing,

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but is it anything more than a sticky new label?

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We'll discuss whether the Government can actually do anything for them.

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When this 14 week job interview is over only one

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And has the Trump victory just proved celebrity status is now

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I can comment on something I am sort of an expert at,

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which is Donald Trump's much better on camera.

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He's really good at delivering lines and I supported Hillary but she's

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The big question - perhaps the biggest question -

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of a Donald Trump presidency was whether it would

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sound very different to a Donald Trump campaign.

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The first indication of an answer came today with a resounding no.

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The President-elect has named three of his top cabinet posts -

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national security advisor, attorney general and CIA chief.

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All three jobs have been taken by loyalists, all of them hardline

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supporters of the Trump policy on immigration and on terrorism.

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They flesh out parts of Trump we weren't sure

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Tonight, as Donald Trump agreed to pay out $25 million to settle

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a lawsuit over Trump University, a move he now hopes will end that

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controversy, we ask what his time in government will really look like,

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and whether today's annoucnements provide the closest indication that

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Donald Trump did indeed mean what he said.

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The first top Trump cards will not come as any surprise to those

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expecting the new presidency to herald a sharp shift to the right.

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Retired Lieutenant General Mike Flynn will be national security

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adviser, a man with a tough approach to militant Islam who warned us back

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in July to take trumpet his plans seriously. They underestimate Donald

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Trump. They underestimate his big strategic leadership capabilities,

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his very effective large problem-solving capabilities, and

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his ability to make decisions. Michael Flynn, like Trump, has

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called for closer ties between the US and Russia, a warmth that has

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worried security experts. Sarah Chase, a security adviser, worked in

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the same office as Mike Flynn for three years. He is someone that at

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best I would be comfortable with if there were grown-ups in the room.

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The problem is in this administration, there really don't

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so far seem to be many grown-ups. And so I don't see what prevents

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things from going off the rails a bit. Trump's Attorney General will

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be Jeff Sessions, a man who sees eye to eye with Trump on immigration,

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and was the first senator to endorse him. The house of the Senate are

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charged up, they believe we have got a new leader, and the president will

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be the one who sets the agenda. The names still have to be vetted by a

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confirmation hearing, and this is where Sessions could face obstacles.

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I am not a racist, I am not insensitive to blacks, I have

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supported civil rights activity in my state. Accused of racism 30 years

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ago, he was forced to withdraw from a judge ship under Reagan. I have

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known him for several years, albeit not well. He has been a very able

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senator, a Conservative member, but you never know what is in someone's

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heart. I just won't believe that he is a racist. Mike Pompeo will head

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the CIA, a former Army officer who has served three terms in Congress

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committee shot to prominence over the congressional investigation into

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Benghazi, memorable for its 12 hours of unflinching questioning of

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Hillary Clinton. Are you saying there was no balance? There was two

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pages. I have seen the CIA function almost as a rogue organisation, and

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the thought of having a rogue in charge of a rogue organisation is

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pretty distressing. Of course, these incendiary words like rogue, racist,

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ideologue, may strike a note of fear into those who, for the sake of

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argument, we might call the liberal elite. But they won't have much

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truck with Trump supporters themselves. These appointments have

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already had the backing of the former leader of the KKK as well as

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more moderates along the way. However loud the words of warning

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shout, at this point it is criticism shouting at itself. These

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appointments confirm that Rob rewards loyalty and they have

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probably all passed muster with his son-in-law, Jarrod Cashin, critical

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gatekeeper to the selection process. The one confirmation we haven't had

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yet is Pape Souare is crucial, the Secretary of State. Names touted for

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this role include Marco Rubio and Mitt Romney, both as likely and are

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unlikely as each other. And if anybody wondered whether this

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campaign rhetoric would be cemented in policy, perhaps the first hints

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are starting to emerge. Make America great again. If Trump's own ideology

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was ever in doubt, that of those who will now surround him and act for

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him are not. Donald Trump's wall is beginning to take on a whole new

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meaning, a set of Dell -- citadel around the man himself.

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John Fredricks is a long-time Trump supporter.

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He speaks to a solid base of supporters through his

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And from Washington I'm joined by Julianne Smith,

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a Deputy National Security Advisor to the Obama administration.

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John, do you think it is a good or bad thing that Donald Trump seems to

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be surrounding himself with completely like-minded folk, men? I

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think he is surrounding himself with those that he wants to put in his

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cabinet that will carry out his agenda. He ran one of the most

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specific campaigns in the history of America. He laid out very, very

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specific agenda items. He told the American people exactly what he was

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going to do. He said it over and over and over, it was not vague, it

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was not a visionary without specifics. He proposed a contract

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for America, everything that he said he was going to do, we expect Donald

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Trump is going to do. He got elected with the biggest electoral college

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mandate since Ronald Reagan in 1984. This election was not close. He has

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a mandate. We expect President-elect Trump is going to do exactly what he

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told the American people he was going to do for 18 months. Is it

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matter to you that one of those people is Jeff Sessions, one of only

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two people not to be confirmed as a federal judge because of racist

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remarks, and now he will be Attorney General, does that bother you?

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Absolutely not. I know Jeff Sessions very well, I know him from Alabama,

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I have talked to him many times, probably had him on my show 20

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times. So it is not a worry? Jeff Sessions has represented the state

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of Alabama, he has been a stellar member of the US Senate, he is a

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statesman. We can go back and find what somebody set or posted on

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social media said in 1959 or 1963. He was denied a position as a

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federal judge. Does racism not matter any more in America? Of

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course race matters! You can't just paint people racist because you

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don't agree with their policies. What happened on November the 8th

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and America had nothing to do with race at all. It was about jobs, and

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it was an absolute revolt in America of working-class Americans who have

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been kicked to the curb, their jobs shipped overseas, they had no

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advocate until Donald Trump came along, and he said, look, I am going

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to fix this. I want to bring Julianne Smith in. This is clearly

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what America has voted for, this is the Trump that they want. Let me

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first say in terms of Trump delivering on his promises, we have

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already seen a softening of his core position, so I disagree that the

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American people are going to get exactly what they voted for. A lot

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is said on the campaign trail. It is a different story when you are

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sitting in the Oval Office. He has rolled back his language on the

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infamous wall. He has rolled back his promises on health care already

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after meeting with the president. For me personally it is a good

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thing, because I don't want him to deliver on many other things he

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about on the campaign Trail, and so I would like to see him soften his

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position on Russia. I don't think we should declare that our article five

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commitments inside the Nato alliance are connected to whether or not our

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allies are spending enough on defence. So yes, I do hope that the

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voice of reason prevails, and that when these folks get into the chair

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and prepare to govern, they are faced with the reality of managing a

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very complex national security environment, and things are going to

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look a lot different is once they get into that White House. John, I

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want to look at that voice of reason in the detail. David Duke, former

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leader of the KKK, said that Jeff Sessions must stop the massive race

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discrimination against whites. Are you happy that these people who are

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tweeting these kinds of statements are now representative of your

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government? It is unbelievable, Emily, that you would bring that up,

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and I disagree totally with Julianne, we will get to that of a

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second. You can find complete idiots like David Duke who is a

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reprehensible character, who Donald Trump has disavowed a thousand

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times, he wants to put out a tweet, I don't care what he says. What

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about Mike Flynn, he tweeted that fear of Muslims is rational. These

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people have nothing to do with the campaign. He is the new national

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Security adviser. That is Michael Flynn. He said fear of Muslims is

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rational. He said that in February. And that tweet was accurate at the

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time based on the fact that some Muslims had come in to San

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Bernardino, they were not properly vetted and they blew 30 people away

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at a Christmas party. This is a tough time in America. We have the

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same thing going on at a gay bar in Orlando, so that was justified at

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the time. But to bring up David Duke is ridiculous. It was before

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Orlando, actually. You wanted to bring in Julianne. Julianne, do you

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accept that this is a failure I Democrats, that if this is what

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America has chosen, then Obama's priorities with Cuba and Iran were

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the wrong ones. Identix that at all. Let me remind everybody that Hillary

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Clinton did win the popular vote, so this was not to me an indication of

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a sweeping mandate. I think again when you see the Trump team settle

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into their seats, just wait. We can have this conversation in a couple

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of months. They will go soft on a lot of these things. They will

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understand the benefits we get from our Iran deal, our friends in Israel

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and abroad and why they support the Iran deal, why it makes us safer.

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They will deal with the complexities of China active in the South China

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Sea, a resurgent Russia aggressively trying to divide Europe from the

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United States. When they are faced with this very Comdex agenda, I have

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a feeling you are going to CH Ainge intone. Look at what we have seen

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already since the election. There has been a tremendous softening

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opposition. John? There is no softening of position whatsoever. He

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is going to build a wall just like he said he is going to do. Now he is

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saying a fence. It is going to be a wall! You can read into anything you

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want. He hasn't been in office yet. If you look at the number of people

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that he has nominated or appointed to key staff positions, they are

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wholly consistent with his position. What you are doing in his Washington

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elite doublespeak, that is what people rejected, that somehow this

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is complex. One last question to both of you. Do you think America's

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allies need now to be concerned about the kind of world we are

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entering and whether we will remain allies in it? Julianne? Yes, they

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should be worried. They should be worried that you have a president

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coming into office who is questioning the overarching value of

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our global network of alliances. Russia and China wished they had a

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network of alliances and partners like we did, and guess what, when we

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are in the soup, the first people we call our our allies in Europe. For

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Donald Trump to call into question the Nato alliance is unbelievable,

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and I think our allies, particularly in Europe also other corners of the

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world, should be very concerned by his comments on nuclear

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nonproliferation, the way in which he is waving around America First.

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It is an unbelievable stance to take on Nato, John? I think eventually

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our allies across the globe are going to understand what a

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compelling president this is going to be. He is going to put America

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first in everything he does, and that will be a little bit different.

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Nato was constructed when we had the Iron Curtain, it is outdated and

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needs to be restructured. People that are not paying their share

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should be paying their fair share, that is the way the world works. I

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think Donald Trump is going to look for alliances that make sense. He is

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going to wipe out ices, and I think the allies are going to look at him

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as a beacon of freedom for the world. We will have to come back to

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you both at some point. Thank you both very much indeed for joining

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us. It was in her first

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speech as Prime Minister on the steps of Downing Street back

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in July that Theresa May turned her focus on an economic

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group she referred to those people But that, in the age of Twitter,

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wasn't short enough And with the reudctionist speed

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of a Thick Of It satire, the phrase got sliced

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to three letters, or Jam. All politicians have attempted

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to speak to this demographic - alarm clock Britain, the scrimpers

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and savers, squeezed middle - the ten million or so adults

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who make up a good proportion So does the Jam grouping

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mean anything different? Ahead of next week's Autumn

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statement, the first big set piece test of the Government's policies

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post the Brexit vote, we ask what capacity the Government

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actually has to spend. # Pump up the jam #.

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Theresa May told us who she was for even before she told us what you was

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going to do. You have a job but you don't always have job security. You

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have your own home but you worry about paying the mortgage. You can

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just about manage but you worry about the cost of living and getting

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your kids into a good school. The government I lead will be driven not

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by the interests of the privileged few, but by jewels. We will do

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everything we can to give you more control over your lives. -- but by

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jewels. Just about managing rapidly became

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known as the jams. They are only the latest expression of a common

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political theme. In the US presidential elections we've had

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forgotten Americans. At the last UK election we had Ed Miliband's

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squeezed middle. And what ever happened to Nick Clegg's alarm clock

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Britain? And when he was Prime Minister Gordon Brown could not open

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his mouth without the words hard-working families come tumbling

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out. But does any of this mean anything beyond politicians trying

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to get sweet with swing voters? There is certainly a good reason why

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the government is appealing to just managing families, these low-income

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working families. A combination of the effects of the economic

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downturn. And particularly large increases in housing costs mean the

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disposable ink runs in this group haven't risen over a decade. --

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disposable incomes. This group is right to feel the government should

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be doing something about them. And the government is right to appeal to

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them. How do we engage with this demographic? First is finding out

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who we are talking about... This has been brilliantly satirised by The

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Thick Of It. They are normal citizens but they have one specific

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quality that makes them like that. The quiet back people. The quiet

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that people? That is the general area we are looking at. Unlike the

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quiet at people are just about managing have been making a lot of

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noise politically during 2016. There is a huge body of people. They are

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overwhelmingly the people who chose to leave the EU. Their equivalents

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in the US voted for Donald Trump in large numbers. Who are in work. Few

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areas -- in areas which were once industrial and have now declined.

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They are struggling. They are trying very hard but not getting much of

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the social product. The desire on the part of the Theresa May

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government to try and twist the reward towards them a little is

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sincere. It is excruciatingly difficult to

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achieve. Next week's Autumn Statement is when

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we have been told that the government will start delivering for

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the JAMs. But it is expected the Chancellor will have to win out an

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extra ?100 billion of borrowing for the coming five years. So what could

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Philip Hammond do? The previous Chancellor has taken money out of in

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work benefits which go to working families. Lots of the just managing

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are on these benefits and restoring some of those cuts at a cost of

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around ?3 billion would be really targeted to the just managing. It

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would boost incomes around the bottom half of the distribution. For

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single parents after about ?3000 per year. Of things could be done for

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them in next week's Autumn Statement as well as the longer term things

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like infrastructure and investment which will really help them. Pumping

:20:04.:20:10.

up the just about managing in speeches is simple. After rule, jam

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tomorrow is the easiest political promise varies. But actually helping

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this group, especially these more difficult economic times, looks like

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a far stickier problem. And we have our own late-night

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quirk. I want to start with something

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dishonest reporting. We haven't had confirmation. But it is a freeze in

:20:41.:20:44.

fuel duty which was meant to come in next year. -- I want to start with

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something The Sun is reporting. I'm not surprised. Every time that has

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come up it is monumentally expensive, by the way, because the

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Treasury bills into their forecast that they will receive revenue that

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they will have to then freeze and not get. It is very unpopular and

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very expensive to raise fuel prices. People use it to get to work.

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Previous governments have wanted to do that and bowed out at the last

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minute thinking if we do that it will be immediate and unpopular so

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they don't. We know this group of people, whether they are the

:21:27.:21:30.

squeezed middle, the alarm clock Britain, we've been through the

:21:31.:21:33.

names, do you hear anything different this time? Is there

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something concrete you would change in this Autumn Statement? I don't

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think I'm hearing much difference. The political strategy seems to be

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the one that has gone before, which is slogans rather than actual

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solutions. So these just about managing people, two practical

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things I'd like to see happen in the Autumn Statement, which I think

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would help people, childcare is something which is a huge issue. The

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government hadn't been able to make good on their promise of 30 hours of

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childcare. I would like to see something tangible on that. As well

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as high-quality nursery supervision. And at the other rendered the family

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-- at the other end of the family spectrum, money needs to go to

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elderly care. Money has been cut from social care. These are

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practical things the government should be thinking about. They are

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trying to position themselves away from Cameron. If I were them I

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wouldn't go ahead with this cut inheritance tax, either. It's a

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credible wish list. Essentially, is there any capacity, in a post Brexit

:22:41.:22:45.

vote world, with the OBR predictions as they are, to do anything? We are

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talking about what the state can do for those people. In the long term

:22:51.:22:54.

the only possible solution for the middle of the country cannot be

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redistribution. Because who will pay for that? It'll be the middle. They

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cannot redistribute money to themselves. They could use their

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priorities like the inheritance tax. You can have certain changes. At the

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margin you can do that. You want to try and lift the income of those

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people by helping them add value to the economy. That means you've got

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to make the industrial strategy work. You've got to make places

:23:20.:23:24.

outside London... Britain has one big city. If you have one big city

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the people in it will do OK. So that means growth not welfare? It does

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not mean I'm not in favour of welfare. I think the longer term

:23:34.:23:37.

drive needs to be about growth. Because they are a new

:23:38.:23:41.

Administration I think the tone is really important. Take the welfare

:23:42.:23:45.

issue. The cuts coming down the track on universal credit are going

:23:46.:23:49.

to hurt as the woman in your BT said. People who are really trying

:23:50.:23:54.

to do the right thing, you know, the hard-working families playing by the

:23:55.:24:01.

rules. -- in your VT. The Tories are really vulnerable on this. We cannot

:24:02.:24:06.

say at the same time, for me for example, an important issue for me

:24:07.:24:10.

is court 's rights. People having the right to take their case to

:24:11.:24:13.

court. We've also seen that the NHS is under strain. Also we cannot

:24:14.:24:20.

spend money on everything. It cannot be our solution to say each time

:24:21.:24:24.

this is too painful, we can't make it, because we are borrowing too

:24:25.:24:29.

much money. I think now after Brexit things will grow slower over the

:24:30.:24:33.

medium term to a point where we are borrowing even more money. Surely

:24:34.:24:37.

benefit is where the government is going to look most vulnerable. Do

:24:38.:24:41.

you want to represent a government that is cutting... The move towards

:24:42.:24:44.

increasing the living wage was the right thing to do. I don't think you

:24:45.:24:53.

can allow the welfare bill to keep increasing. Because we can't afford

:24:54.:24:55.

to do that. Otherwise we have to borrow too much. It's hard to know

:24:56.:24:58.

what you are in favour of. The Labour Party isn't -- is in a

:24:59.:25:06.

difficult position. The Conservatives have changed their

:25:07.:25:10.

economic strategy. They admit they have not hit their target on the

:25:11.:25:15.

deficit. Going back to the stuff we have heard tonight so far, you know,

:25:16.:25:21.

Trump, Brexit, the dissatisfaction that everyday people feel, that

:25:22.:25:25.

their lives are not getting any better, this is a new

:25:26.:25:28.

Administration, a clean sweep. And I think signals are important. Thus

:25:29.:25:35.

Philip Hammond have to be any thing other than boring? None of this

:25:36.:25:39.

creates new money. If we are borrowing a large sum of money at

:25:40.:25:42.

the end we will have to pay that back. We will have to reduce the

:25:43.:25:46.

amount we are borrowing by a certain amount each year. What is your

:25:47.:25:51.

opinion? If we depart from that path it'll only be for a short period and

:25:52.:25:55.

we will have to get back to it... You have Brexit as a backdrop. Even

:25:56.:25:59.

Philip Hammond said nobody voted to be poor. They have to care about

:26:00.:26:03.

those people and make sure they do not send the wrong message. Thank

:26:04.:26:05.

you both very much. Let's go back to the election

:26:06.:26:07.

of Donald Trump now. Historians will try and deconstruct

:26:08.:26:10.

this moment of 2016 But when they look at Trump's

:26:11.:26:12.

successful campaign A builder convinced

:26:13.:26:15.

he was a man of the people? Or a celebrity who harnessed his

:26:16.:26:19.

fame to win the ultimate Perhaps when the dust has settled

:26:20.:26:23.

we will realise something as phenomenal as it is shocking,

:26:24.:26:27.

that in 2016 celebrity finally became the most

:26:28.:26:29.

powerful tool of all. Prized above experience,

:26:30.:26:33.

prized above competence, prized above just about everything

:26:34.:26:34.

you can imagine. Donald Trump harnessed reality TV

:26:35.:26:41.

and then the media - And through that,

:26:42.:26:43.

the White House itself. Stephen Smith has been off

:26:44.:26:46.

to question the very model # I love the looks of you

:26:47.:27:07.

# I'd love to make a... #. They are getting the President-elect

:27:08.:27:10.

ready for his close-up at Madame Tussaud's. Fun fact, his luxurious

:27:11.:27:24.

hair is sourced from yak's hair. We like celebrities so much we will

:27:25.:27:28.

queue in the cold just for a selfie with their effigies. Like the tasty

:27:29.:27:38.

snacks in a gift shop, Donald Trump was the guilty pleasure boaters

:27:39.:27:45.

could not say no to. -- voters. When it came to celebrities, Donald Trump

:27:46.:27:48.

made a virtue of the fact that hardly anybody wants to be seen with

:27:49.:27:54.

him. Did he even get his chauffeur's vote? I'm Donald Trump and I'm

:27:55.:27:58.

always on the lookout for talented people. I'm looking for someone who

:27:59.:28:04.

is a natural leader. Perhaps the -- he clinched victory through TV. The

:28:05.:28:11.

celebrity reckoned it helped. Why do you think he won? The assumption was

:28:12.:28:15.

he probably wouldn't in the end. Hillary Clinton had all of the

:28:16.:28:20.

experience, she had all of the various celebrities backing her for

:28:21.:28:24.

what that's worth. I can comment on something I am sort of an expert at.

:28:25.:28:28.

Donald Trump is much better on camera. He is really good at

:28:29.:28:32.

delivering lines. I supported Hillary. But she is not as talented

:28:33.:28:40.

a performer. You think that was decisive? I think actually every

:28:41.:28:43.

time in the presidential elections the winner is whoever is best at

:28:44.:28:49.

delivering lines on camera. So it probably wasn't as much of a

:28:50.:28:54.

surprise to you than it was to other people? It was a surprise. I thought

:28:55.:29:00.

something would break this time. Ladies and gentlemen, the next, and

:29:01.:29:06.

first female president of the United States, Hillary Clinton! No, there

:29:07.:29:13.

has not been a recount, why didn't Mrs Clinton's Star supporters like

:29:14.:29:18.

Jennifer Lopez help her over the line? Academics are doubtful about

:29:19.:29:23.

the impact of celebrity endorsement. Even though Mrs Clinton did trot out

:29:24.:29:27.

all of those celebrities, they were essentially windowdressing for her

:29:28.:29:31.

campaign. They were not going to be the ones who were actually in

:29:32.:29:36.

contention to run the government. So I think when all said and done,

:29:37.:29:41.

Donald found himself acting as if he was in the ultimate reality TV show.

:29:42.:29:46.

And using all of the techniques he has honed over the years on all of

:29:47.:29:53.

those years on The Apprentice. At Madame Tussaud's and they keep their

:29:54.:29:58.

TV stores that their outpost in Blackpool and their world leaders

:29:59.:30:02.

and politicians here in London. While they might need to review

:30:03.:30:07.

their display criteria now Donald Trump is waxed spectacular.

:30:08.:30:10.

Stephen Smith - and his full interview with actor

:30:11.:30:12.

Joseph Gordon Levitt, talking about the film Snowden

:30:13.:30:14.

That's just about it from us tonight, save for the fact that

:30:15.:30:20.

today marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the Battle

:30:21.:30:23.

of the Somme, the six month inferno which was bloodier for British

:30:24.:30:25.

troops than any other of the First World War.

:30:26.:30:29.

By its end more than 420,000 British soldiers lay dead, wounded

:30:30.:30:32.

or missing with only six miles of land seized from the enemy.

:30:33.:30:37.

In 2014 a treasure trove of photographs, taken of troops

:30:38.:30:40.

on their days off at a local town, was discovered.

:30:41.:30:43.

There they paid a few Francs to send a photo home to their loved ones,

:30:44.:30:46.

documented in Ross Coulthard's "The Lost Tommies".

:30:47.:30:50.

We leave you with just a few of those images.

:30:51.:30:54.

In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Emily Maitlis.

Donald Trump's cabinet picks, are Theresa May's Jams (just about managing) anything new, and was celebrity a factor in Trump's victory?


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