23/06/2017 Newsnight


23/06/2017

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


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Transcript


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I do not think it would be right for me to be the captain that steers our

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country to its next dexter nation. We are living through an important

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moment in our country's history. That is now statistically...

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Notification from Prime Minister Theresa May triggering Article 50.

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Mathematically they are... Every vote for the Conservatives will make

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me stronger. They don't have an overall majority at this stage, but

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the Leave campaign have won. This will go down in our history as our

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Independence Day! Not in terms of the way people voted, because all

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the we said it would be a close run thing, but in terms of the

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turnaround for British foreign policy, British policy towards the

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EU, the EU, the British people have spoken and the answer is we're out.

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The vote to leave happened in a single day.

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The moment of truth delivered one mesmerizing night.

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Yet if anyone believed that decision would shut down debate on Europe -

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A year on this country feels restless, febrile,

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In 12 months we've seen it all - a change of leader, a general

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election, attacks on our freedom and our way of life,

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and the kind of human tragedy that makes us question the very values

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When we voted for Brexit, we chose to steer this country

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in a different direction - to tear up, as George Orwell might

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say, the human mind and put it together in new shapes.

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Yet suddenly the trajectory seems anything but clear.

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So tonight we draw breath - we devote this evening,

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the Brexit anniversary, to asking if we are the same country

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And are we more or less divided on what we want?

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But before we reflect on the past 12 months,

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we assess the day - Mark Urban has followed

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Emily, I think there has been an element of, thank God, we are now

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moving on this. The move from Theresa May on citizens' rights was

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tabled just before this anniversary day and it at least started

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colouring what Britain means by Brexit, but overall it has not been

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a very positive reaction, summed up by the person who represents the 27

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governments, well, 28 in fact, but in this case, the 27, EU President

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Donald Tusk. My first impression is that the UK's

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offer is below our expectations and that it risks worsening

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the situation of citizens. But it will be for our negotiating

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team to analyse the offer line by As a matter of fact,

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Brexit got very little time We devoted most of our work

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to addressing people's concerns over security, illegal migration

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and uncontrolled globalisation. Well, there you have it. He is

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saying, well, it doesn't look like it will preserve the rights they

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have now, and you might say you do not expect that, if we are leaving

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the EU, for everything to be exactly the same, but actually it is the

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beginning of the negotiation, and he says we spent most of our time

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talking about other stuff, we get it, game on. Doesn't tell you

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anything about how negotiations are going in general? What it does tell

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you is these two key issues where the EU 27 are absolutely united and

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feel very strongly, Citizens' rights and the budget, where they are

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determined to see substantial progress, and that will be a tough

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initial negotiation. Some people in Downing Street are suggesting there

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might be sufficient progress, to use the term coined, on those two core

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issues, by October, to start addressing the bigger package, the

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future relationship. I think that is incredibly optimistic. I mean, we

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can see by the way they are now saying, let's pull apart this offer

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on Citizens' rights line by line, bound to happen in negotiations of

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this kind, the budget negotiations can be difficult, and all that is

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tough and is going to take time, many months I think. I think it will

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be a difficult process, a technical process, hard even sometimes to

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follow but each tiny twist and turn of negotiations logic will tell us.

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I am glad you said that, Mark. The Brexit referendum,

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everyone says, revealed It just revealed those divisions

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in statistical form. It is a year since

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we bought our Brexit. But our flat packed

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future did not come with any instructions as to how

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to put the thing together, or even what it should

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look like when it is So have we done little more

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in the last 12 months than lay all the bits out on the carpet

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and argue about what goes where? Everything that has happened

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since the referendum, I would suggest, has compounded

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those divides, rather We have just had a general

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election that has seen a big polarisation around age -

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we have seen youth turnout increase significantly, and we have seen

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the pro-Remain areas mobilise significantly, much in a way

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the pro-Leave areas mobilised, but the map of British politics now

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is I think one that looks far away from the map of a nation

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that is coming together. It is more like a map of a nation

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that is being pulled apart. It will strengthen my hand in those

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important Brexit negotiations. The fact that Theresa May didn't get

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a majority has emboldened those who campaigned to remain to believe

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that we can end up, not staying in the EU,

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but with a very different I think that were Theresa

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May to have got the overwhelming majority

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that she hoped for, we would have known more or less

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what the UK position was and therefore what the final

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deal might be. I think the election puts

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everything into doubt. I think parliamentary arithmetic

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is not there for the kind of Brexit the Government was

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pursuing and I think it is all to I don't understand why

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people on the Remain side are feeling emboldened,

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because if you look at the parties who are talking about,

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for example, staying part of the single market

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or having a second referendum, parties

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like the Liberal Democrats, the Green Party, and the SNP, their vote

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share actually went down in the general election, so I don't think

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people on the Remain side should feel they have got any form

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of mandate from the election. Indeed, there is little

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evidence that the public have changed their minds on Brexit

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in the year since the referendum. One poll since the general

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election suggests a more or less even split between Remain

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and Leave supporters, but around half

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of Remain supporters, 26% of all voters,

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are now dubbed Re-Leavers,

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that is they think the Government now has a duty

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to deliver on the referendum result

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and that leaves just 21%, of so-called hard Remainers,

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who want a second I think one key reason why support

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from Brexit has gone from 52% last year to I would say

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70% now in the polls is because some of the people who are on the Remain

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side voted Remain because they feared for the economy, they

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believed the Project Fear that the Government was talking

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about and actually now they have seen that the economy

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is doing well and that Brexit has not led to a collapse in growth

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and an increase in unemployment, they are actually quite comfortable

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with the decision that So how can it be that

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Theresa May does not have a mandate for her Brexit plans

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but there is no evidence that the British people had

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changed their minds? Well, the answer seems to be

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in Labour's extremely nuanced The fascinating thing

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about Labour's performance in the election is that not only did

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they see their vote go up typically by around

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13 points in the most pro-Remain areas, but their vote

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also went up by about half that much in the Leave areas and that is what

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stopped Theresa May and her team from really converting all of that

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pro-Brexit Labour territory into Conservative gains that would

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otherwise offset their losses How on earth is that coalition

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going to be sustained Because inevitably Jeremy Corbyn is

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going to have to stand on the stage at some point and make a firm

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position on free movement, the single market,

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the customs union and so on. Brexit is not just being built

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by Britain alone, but with the other EU members with

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whom we are negotiating. Since our election, both

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the French President and the President of the European Council

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have suggested that the UK could in And they will have noticed comments

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this week by the Chancellor Philip Hammond who appeared to contradict

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Theresa May's assertion that no deal is better than a bad deal. He, it

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appears, has in mind a long transitional arrangement. I think

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the transition, and how we get to any final deal is really no in the

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frame. The Chancellor Philip Hammond -- really now in the frame. The

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Chancellor is saying, what do we want those arrangements to be? I

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think the length of that transition is also really interesting. It could

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be five years and some are saying up to ten years, making sure that the

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transition is smooth, not some knee jerk change. But might at long

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lingering goodbye to the EU risk a political backlash? I think a large

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portion of the electorate will walk away from this entire exercise

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feeling even more disillusioned and more frustrated, and I think and

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fear that that outcome would be the equivalent of pouring gasoline on a

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populist fire that is already raging. Hardly anyone is suggesting

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packing up on Brexit and reversing the decision of a year ago, but the

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29th of March 2019 is a date to keep in mind, that is when we leave and

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something substantial has to be built. That was David Crossman.

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Andrea Leadsom was one of the most prominent Leave campaigners -

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she ran for the Conservative leadership in the heady days

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after last year's referendum, only to be beaten by Theresa May.

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She's now Leader of the House of Commons.

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Earlier I spoke to her from her constituency

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I began by Haskin what she thought of Donald Tusk's allegation that

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Theresa May's proposal risk worsening the

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situation of EU citizens. I think it was a generous offer and I think it

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is also important that the EU Commission stick to their side of

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the negotiations. You would not really expect them to say, thanks

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very much, that's wonderful, so I think we will see a lot more of that

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in the days to come. Isn't it funny, though, when we have Donald Tusk

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saying it is not good enough, and you're the president of EU saying he

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hasn't got a clue what the UK wants from Brexit, doesn't that worry you?

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Not at all. As I said, when you are in a negotiation you don't

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immediately jump around clapping your hands with glee at the first

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sign. You do the opposite in fact. You see, that is not enough, we need

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more, and that is what you would expect. But this should be a pretty

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simple place to start, and we are a Uronen, as you have said, from that

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vote, and they can't agree on the first thing they are trying to talk

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about. Do you think that is just politics? -- we are one year on, as

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you have said. Theresa May give her a very initial comments to the

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meeting of the EU Council to explain to them the generous offer that we

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will be making, which is right that we should do that. We want to do it.

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And of course EU negotiators will start off by saying, you know, we

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need to see the detail, it's a good start but... You would expect that.

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I think we will see a lot of the negotiations and the sort of

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handling of negotiations is going to be a challenging time, but we are

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determined to continue with a good relationship with our EU friends and

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colleagues. We are weaker than ever before. She has gone to the country,

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she didn't get the mandate she wanted and she does not have a

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strong position from which to negotiate. That is the blunt truth.

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Well, you know, Theresa May isn't of course satisfied with the majority

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that we managed to get at the last election, but we are the biggest

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party in government. It is not just our opportunity but it is also our

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duty to create a government, to take this country forward, to do

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everything we can to make a success of leaving the EU. We've done a huge

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amount of work on preparations for these negotiations, our hand is very

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strong. You've got a negotiating position

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which is completely unclear. You're hearing that from

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the president of the EU Parliament. We've got a political

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system which is unstable, many believe our economy is unfair,

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living standards are falling. What can you point to now

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and say, that's going well? European politicians are actually

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very keen we keep a strong relationship going for and that is

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what we going to do. And it's actually the elected

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politicians who are the important But come on, Miss Leadsom -

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you haven't even got a deal They're laughing at us and saying

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they can walk all over Well, that's blatantly

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not true, is it? Angela Merkel said it was

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an interesting start. We had Mark Rutte saying

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he was quite positive We had various different EU

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politicians, the elected politicians, saying it's

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a good start. Of course it's very

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early days, but... It has been a year and

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these crucial issues... It would be helpful if broadcasters

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were willing to be a bit patriotic - This government is

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determined to deliver... Are you accusing me of being

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unpatriotic for questioning how negotiations are going,

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questioning whether you have the position of strength

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that she said she wanted? I'm not accusing you

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of anything, Emily. I'm simply saying we all need

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to pull together as a country. We took a decision and year ago

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today to leave the European Union. You are now a minority Government

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but you're reading of the public mood is to push on with the same

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plans for Brexit that you always had. Is that right, nothing has

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changed in your mind? As the Prime Minister said, we are leaving the

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EU. We are not leading Europe. So our negotiation to deliver a strong

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deal that works for all of us remains absolutely at the heart of

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what we are doing. Do you regret that the election was called? I

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don't at all. Of course we don't have the numbers in Parliament, we

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accept that and of course we are disappointed about that, but what it

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means... The whole direction of Brexit is now up in the air. You

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know that. If I can just finished... You didn't get a huge majority. This

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was a sign from the country that they are questioning it. Over 85% of

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people voted for parties that were accepted the result of the

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referendum last year. What we actually now have is a government

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that will be listening so carefully across parties, hearing what other

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partiesparties' ideas are, working to try to get the legislation

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through... Angela M, thank you. -- Andrea Leadsom, thank you.

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Whether you took your numbers from the side of a bus,

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or read encyclopaedically from the Office for

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Budget Responsibility, the Brexit campaign was brashly

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and noisily centred around the economy.

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A year on the pound has slumped, manufacturing has jumped,

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the markets are up but so is inflation.

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So what exactly has the prospect of Brexit done to us?

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Our policy editor Chris Cook brings his numbers to it.

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The economic consequences of Brexit will take years to play out,

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but what can we say about what's happened so far?

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Now, it hasn't been terribly quick lately, and things have slowed

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down a little recently, but behaviour since June last year

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it is not markedly different to what went before.

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You get a similar pattern if you look at unemployment -

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it was drifting down before last June, it's drifting down now.

:16:58.:17:00.

The biggest economic consequence so far, though,

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Sterling dropped down a step in June last year,

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and despite recovering a little it remains 12.5% below the position

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it held in the month before the referendum.

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Cheaper sterling makes imports more expensive, so one consequence

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This is the annual rate of change in the consumer price index,

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which has shot up to nearly 3%, and that in turn has

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Once you take account of that inflation, this graph shows how fast

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wages have been growing, and in recent months

:17:39.:17:40.

we have returned to falling living standards.

:17:41.:17:45.

This is hardly unprecedented - in recent years sluggish or negative

:17:46.:17:48.

pay growth has been one of our top problems.

:17:49.:17:52.

The Brexit vote, though, seems to have rekindled

:17:53.:17:54.

So are we the same country that voted to leave 12 months ago.

:17:55.:18:06.

Is the optimism of the Brexiteers and the scepticism of

:18:07.:18:09.

Should we put those terms to bed once and for all?

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Joining me now, journalist Jonathan Freedland and Kerry Anne Mendoza -

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editor of the Canary - who voted remain.

:18:16.:18:17.

Tim Martin - Chairman of Wetherspoons and Robert Toombs

:18:18.:18:19.

the historian who voted to Leave the EU.

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It is a pleasure to have you all here. Tell you wrote frequently for

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Wetherspoon news and played as big a part as anyone in this debate. Do

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you think you lead your customers in the right direction? I would hope

:18:44.:18:48.

that we did. In the paper which is read by a couple of million people,

:18:49.:18:55.

we put the views of Remain and Leave and I think we presented it fairly

:18:56.:19:02.

and I would like to think that we decided the referendum and the

:19:03.:19:06.

election. Your editorial voice was very strong in bringing people with

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you on the road to Brexit? It is difficult to say how many are

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brought. A lot of people think about say something, they do the opposite.

:19:16.:19:21.

Do you see yourself now as a reliever or would you say that the

:19:22.:19:25.

defining question is no longer whether we are in or out, do you

:19:26.:19:30.

feel that we have moved on. We have bigger questions to answer. Theresa

:19:31.:19:34.

May call the election saying that she needed a mandate to conduct

:19:35.:19:38.

these negotiations and she has lost that mandate and he said that the

:19:39.:19:42.

alternative was a Coalition of chaos, that is another broken

:19:43.:19:48.

promise. Now we have the utter chaos, no Coalition. The

:19:49.:19:51.

Conservative government in recent years has delivered a zombie economy

:19:52.:19:57.

and now we have a zombie government clinging onto power. We are told by

:19:58.:20:00.

people around Theresa May that she has a profound sense of duty and I

:20:01.:20:04.

think if that is true, she needs to do the dutiful thing and resign.

:20:05.:20:11.

This, Jonathan, this has become a different debate, it is about values

:20:12.:20:15.

and austerity, not really about our connection to the EU any more. I

:20:16.:20:22.

think all roads come back to that. The fundamental question of our

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relationship with Europe. That will be the dominant question. We have of

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government committed to extricating us from the European Union on a

:20:32.:20:35.

timetable that now looks realistic. The climate of the country I think

:20:36.:20:40.

has changed. I can think of a couple of examples. One is the election of

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Donald Trump. If you imagine that choice now, leave the European Union

:20:47.:20:49.

and trade with America, that was one kind of argument when President

:20:50.:20:54.

Obama was in the White House, now it is a completely different argument.

:20:55.:20:59.

If you think it was the other way round, it would be a different

:21:00.:21:02.

answer? It is hypothetical. The climate would have been different.

:21:03.:21:06.

Young people. They turned out in big numbers and we know that last year

:21:07.:21:12.

they did not do it incomparable numbers. Had they, we know that

:21:13.:21:17.

their inclination was towards Remain. Those facts mean that the

:21:18.:21:23.

climate has changed. One of the most powerful things said was on the

:21:24.:21:26.

Leave side, David Davis said our democracy has the right to change

:21:27.:21:31.

its mind, otherwise it is not a democracy. There are these impish

:21:32.:21:35.

overtures from European leaders saying that the door is still open,

:21:36.:21:40.

everyone, I can be a dreamer, are they trying to stir up trouble? Or

:21:41.:21:47.

are they saying, you can treat this still as a democracy and change your

:21:48.:21:52.

mind again? How do you read that? I think the EU leaders, are thoroughly

:21:53.:21:57.

committed to the EU as an idea and it is difficult for them to

:21:58.:22:00.

understand that we might not be. The EU has a record of getting countries

:22:01.:22:04.

to change their minds once they have voted and it is natural for them to

:22:05.:22:09.

think like -- that we like the Dutch, the French and the Danes

:22:10.:22:13.

might change our mind. They are also trying to weaken the bargaining

:22:14.:22:16.

position of the government. They will not offer us more than they

:22:17.:22:21.

have to. That is why I think the danger of our present situation is

:22:22.:22:25.

this appearance of uncertainty. If you are uncertain, then the people

:22:26.:22:28.

who disagree with you will take advantage. Do you think, Robert,

:22:29.:22:33.

that the key issue is that we have at a referendum on if we Brexit but

:22:34.:22:38.

no one has had a chance to vote on the Brexit that will happen? The

:22:39.:22:44.

negotiations have started, still with the British public completely

:22:45.:22:47.

in the dark about what Brexit looks like. Shouldn't there be another

:22:48.:22:50.

Democratic intervention down the line? The thing about another vote

:22:51.:23:01.

is, the decision was subcontracted to the people to say, do you want to

:23:02.:23:07.

stay or leave? They voted to leave. They could not have known the exact

:23:08.:23:11.

terms and the government today cannot know the exact terms. I think

:23:12.:23:15.

people make too much about what the exact terms will be. It is the

:23:16.:23:19.

difference between do you want to move house or do you want to move

:23:20.:23:24.

into this house. Once people decide who has, it is a decision but they

:23:25.:23:28.

would not buy the next hours without seeing it. They took that risk.

:23:29.:23:34.

People said, we have not seen the house but we are moving. What you're

:23:35.:23:38.

pointing to now is still this sense of division in the country and I am

:23:39.:23:43.

wondering if you think we're any closer to reconciliation now one

:23:44.:23:47.

year on whether you think post that election it feels wider than ever. I

:23:48.:23:54.

think it depends on getting decent terms. In that case, it seems to be

:23:55.:24:00.

that is the only thing that can bring about reconciliation. The

:24:01.:24:03.

number of people who are determined to stay in the EU is quite a small

:24:04.:24:09.

proportion of the population and the majority that were either for Leave

:24:10.:24:13.

or at least lukewarm about the EU and afraid of the economic

:24:14.:24:16.

consequences, if we get a solution that shows that the economic

:24:17.:24:20.

consequences are firmly OK, then I think that the fear and the

:24:21.:24:24.

rejection of the idea of Brexit were largely disappear. I think you're

:24:25.:24:29.

talking rationally but when you hear a politician aligning patriotism

:24:30.:24:34.

with support for Brexit negotiations, I am wondering, I

:24:35.:24:39.

don't know, what you feel? That was incredibly unhelpful. I think the

:24:40.:24:43.

whole language that this referendum has been conducted and has been

:24:44.:24:47.

appalling. You cannot call people who voted for Brexit ignorant bigots

:24:48.:24:55.

and the ones who voted Remain elitists and unpatriotic. There were

:24:56.:24:59.

legitimate reasons to vote each way and now all other should be working

:25:00.:25:05.

together. I agree but I want to say something about your reconciliation

:25:06.:25:08.

point because that was beginning to happen even on the Remain side.

:25:09.:25:13.

People budget was about to win a majority and she would negotiate

:25:14.:25:16.

hard Brexit, we were just going to have to get but the programme. Then

:25:17.:25:20.

there was the result of the election, she offered no other

:25:21.:25:24.

positive programme. She asked for the mandate and the country said no.

:25:25.:25:33.

85% of people voted for parties which were in favour of Brexit. You

:25:34.:25:40.

hear it as a soft Remainer -- Remainer vote. Labour's position was

:25:41.:25:49.

both at once. It was both Remain and Leave. That is one of the reasons

:25:50.:25:53.

they did well. That was the reading initially. Actually, only 18% of

:25:54.:26:03.

former Ukip voters went to Labour. Where was Ukip in the whole thing?

:26:04.:26:11.

Both the main parties said we are in favour of Brexit and 85% of people

:26:12.:26:14.

voted for them and you cannot turn around now and say there is doubt

:26:15.:26:19.

about whether the country is in favour of Brexit. Maybe there is an

:26:20.:26:25.

element of hypocrisy on both side... You're being very consolatory

:26:26.:26:30.

tonight. Contrary to popular opinion. The whole Brexit argument

:26:31.:26:38.

was predicated on the idea of democracy, about taking back

:26:39.:26:41.

control, but the British public having their say and they do not

:26:42.:26:47.

think we can then say, it is somehow anti-democratic to give the public

:26:48.:26:51.

another say... Did Remainers feel they were pulling against the

:26:52.:26:56.

national mood, was there an embarrassment before the election

:26:57.:26:59.

that has now changed? You would have been quiet about the fact, maybe not

:27:00.:27:05.

quite, but Remainers would not felt comfortable saying that they still

:27:06.:27:08.

disagree. It would sound as if you are trying to turn the clock. The

:27:09.:27:14.

election shows that everything is up for grabs. You have seen the

:27:15.:27:20.

trajectory of history. Do you see this as another turning point? Yes.

:27:21.:27:25.

A sort of turning point or it could be. The problem is of uncertainty.

:27:26.:27:32.

Democracy is a wonderful thing. Thinking practice of what would

:27:33.:27:36.

happen if you were to have a second vote. All of our partners in the EU

:27:37.:27:40.

would say these people do not know what they want, give them a hard

:27:41.:27:44.

deal and they will vote to stay in. We do not control the terms of the

:27:45.:27:48.

outcome and to start saying, we have devoted on the outcome means that we

:27:49.:27:52.

will almost certainly get a bad outcome. What is the alternative. We

:27:53.:27:57.

will get a terrible deal and we will have to swallow it. There is no

:27:58.:28:01.

terrible deal we can get, the worst deal you can get is to trade on

:28:02.:28:06.

World Trade Organisation. It is not a bad deal. We trade with America,

:28:07.:28:14.

China, India... 44% of our experts do not rely on America. This is

:28:15.:28:20.

almost the impossible one. I want to come back to a sense of national

:28:21.:28:24.

mood. We are in a place now where it feels like wave after wave, a period

:28:25.:28:29.

of national sharks whether it is political earthquakes or security

:28:30.:28:34.

scares off human disasters, leaving many questioning our values now. Do

:28:35.:28:38.

you feel as you sit here tonight that there is a bright future for

:28:39.:28:42.

this country, a sort of cohesive place that we are going? Briefly.

:28:43.:28:48.

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. There is no reason to

:28:49.:28:51.

think that the country is in a long-term crisis. I agree with Jim,

:28:52.:28:56.

there is no reason to think that the outcome will be economically

:28:57.:29:00.

damaging. If we stick to our guns, perhaps that is to military a

:29:01.:29:05.

metaphor, if we follow a sensible and decent negotiating strategy

:29:06.:29:08.

there is no reason to think we should not have a good outcome. One

:29:09.:29:13.

of the big arguments after the referendum and during it was the

:29:14.:29:17.

notion that there were two tribes in this country, there were the urban

:29:18.:29:20.

and cosmopolitan people and then there were those who still had

:29:21.:29:23.

British values of community. We have seen in areas that would have been

:29:24.:29:28.

labelled classic urban and cosmopolitan areas, we saw them

:29:29.:29:34.

those are real communities were people really pulled together, there

:29:35.:29:39.

is no monopoly on patriotism and reddish values on either side. On

:29:40.:29:41.

that note, we must end. But before we go, legendary cricket

:29:42.:29:44.

commentator Henry Blofeld today After the exceptional heat, things

:29:45.:30:08.

have gone back to normal. Just in time for the Wigan. Quite a mixed

:30:09.:30:12.

picture. Across England and Wales there will be large areas of cloud.

:30:13.:30:16.

Some patchy rain at times, some

:30:17.:30:18.

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