19/04/2017 Prime Minister's Questions

Download Subtitles




Coverage of questions in the House of Commons to prime minister Theresa May from Wednesday 19 April.

Similar Content

Browse content similar to 19/04/2017. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



made it clear that her stands fully to stand up for Scotland's


membership of the United Kingdom and against a device of second


independence referendum. Mr Speaker, I am sure that members


across the house will wish to join me in offering our condolences to


the families and friends of Andrea Christie, who died following the


London attack, and Chris Bevington, who was among those killed in the


terrorist attack in Sweden, and our thoughts are also with the Army and


friends often -- of Hannah Bladon, murdered in Jerusalem last week.


This week, I had meetings with colleagues and others. I shall have


further such meetings later today. I would also like to join the Prime


Minister in offering the condolences of the people of south C and myself


to the individuals and their families. -- South Leicestershire.


Strong countries need strong economies. Strong countries need


strong defences. Strong countries need strong leaders. As the nation


prepares to go to the polls, as the nation prepares to go to the polls,


apart from my right honourable friend, who else in this house can


provide the leadership that is needed at this time?


My honourable friend is absolutely right. There are three things that a


country needs, a strong economy, strong defence and strong, stable


leadership. That is what our plans for Brexit and our plans for a


stronger Britain will deliver, and that's what the Conservative Party


will be offering at this election, and we will be out there, fighting


for every vote. Whereas the right honourable gentleman opposite would


bankrupt our economy, would weaken our defences and is simply not fit


to lead. Thank you, Mr Speaker. Thank you, Mr Speaker. I concur with


the condolences the Prime Minister just sent to the families of those


three people who so sadly and needlessly died, and it's important


we recognise that as a cross-party proposal today. I think the Prime


Minister for that. We welcome the general election. But... But this...


But this is a Prime Minister who promised there would be one. --


there would not be won. A Prime Minister cannot be trusted. She says


it is about leadership, yet he is refusing to defend her record in


television debates. -- yet she is refusing. And it's not hard to see


why. The Prime Minister says we have a stronger economy. Yet... Yet she


can't explain why people's wages are lower today than they were ten years


ago, or why more households are in debt, 6 million people earning less


than the living wage, child poverty is up, pensioner poverty is up, so


why are so many people getting poorer? Well, I can assure the right


honourable gentleman, first of all, I would point out to the honourable


gentleman that I have been answering his questions and debating these


answers -- debating these matters every Wednesday that Parliament has


been sitting since I became Prime Minister, and I will be taking out


to the country in this campaign a proud record of a Conservative


government. A stronger, -- a stronger economy, and economy with


the deficit down, 30 million people with a tax cut, 4 million people


taking out an income tax altogether, record levels of employment and


?1250 more per year for pensioners. That's a record we can be proud of.


Mr Speaker, if she is so proud of her record, why won't she debate it?


Wages... Wages are falling. More children are in poverty but in the


last Tory manifesto, page 28, it said, we will work to eliminate


child poverty. They only eliminated the child poverty targets, not child


poverty. In 2010, they promised to eradicate the deficit by 2015. In


2015, they promised to eradicate the deficit by 2020. Austerity has


failed. So does the Prime Minister know which year the deficit will now


be eradicated? The right honourable gentleman, I know that it's taken...


I know that it's taken the right honourable gentleman a little time


to get the hang of these Prime Minister's Questions, but I have to


say to him that week in, week out, he stands up and asks me questions


and I respond to those questions, and what... Order, order. The Leader


of the Opposition must be heard and the Prime Minister must be heard.


Prime Minister. A stronger economy with a deficit two thirds down, but


people will have a real choice at this election. They will have a


choice between a Conservative government that has shown we can


build a stronger economy and a Labour Party whose economic policy


would bankrupt this country but what voters know is that, under Labour,


its ordinary working people who paid the price of the Labour Party. They


hate it with their taxes, -- they pay it with their taxes, with their


jobs and their children's futures. Only this year, the new Chancellor


pledged to eradicate the deficit by 2022. I do admire Tory consistency


but it's always five years in the future. Another Tory broken promise.


The Prime Minister leaves a government that has increased


national debt by ?700 billion, more than every other Labour government


in history put together. Debt has risen every year that they have been


in office. We know that their economic plan was long-term. Does


the Prime Minister want to tell us how far into the long term it will


be before we get debt falling? The right honourable gentleman stand up


and he talks about debt. This is a Labour Party that will be going into


the election pledged to borrow an extra ?500 billion. And what does


that mean for ordinary working people? Well, I'll tell the right


honourable gentleman what it means that we know what Labour's lands


would entail, because we've been told either former Labour Shadow


Chancellor. -- Labour's plans. He said, if Labour were in power, you'd


have to double income tax, you'd have to double national insurance,


you'd have to double council tax and you'd have to double VAT as well


that Labour's plan for the economy. All that her government has


delivered, Mr Speaker, is more debt and less funding for schools and


hospitals. Schools funding has been cut for the first time in a


generation. The Prime Minister is cutting ?3 billion per year from


school budgets by 2020 fourth she says they have created a stronger


economy. So why are their tax giveaways to the richest


corporations, while our children's schools are starved of resources


that they need to educate our children for the future? He talks


about levels of funding into schools and the NHS. There are record levels


of funding going into schools and record levels of funding going into


the NHS. But let's just talk about schools, because it's not just a


question of funding, it's actually a question of the quality of education


provided in the schools. 1.8 million more children are in good or


outstanding schools under this Conservative government. That's 1.8


million more children with a better chance for their futures. What would


Labour give us? He same old, one size fits all, authority run


schools. No choice, good or bad, trust your luck. We don't trust to


luck and we won't trust the Labour Party. We will provide a good school


place for every child. Parents taking their children back to school


for the summer term, many will receive a letter from the school


begging for funds to buy books and to fund the school. The Conservative


manifesto promised the amount of money following your child into


school will be protected. It isn't. It's another Tory broken promise.


For the first time in its history, NHS funding per pupil, per patient


will fall this year. The NHS has been put into an all year round


crisis by this government. Why are more people waiting in pain, and


millions of elderly people not getting the care and the dignity


that they deserve? I'm proud of the record we have on the NHS. We see


more doctors, more nurses, more midwives, more GPs, more people


being treated in our National Health Service last year than ever before,


and record levels of funding going in the NHS. You only can do that


with a strong economy. What do we know we'd get from the Labour Party?


Bankruptcy and chaos. Mr Speaker, that's a very good reason why we


should have a debate about it. Because that is another Tory broken


promise, a broken promise of a Tory manifesto which said, they will


continue to spend more on the NHS in real terms say that to those waiting


in A departments, say that to those who can't leave hospital


because social care is not available. Mr Speaker, isn't the


truth that, over the last seven years, the Tories have broken every


promise on living standards, the deficit, yet, the National Health


Service and schools funding? -- debt, the NHS and schools funding.


Why should anyone believe a word they say over the next seven weeks?


I can assure the right honourable gentleman that I will be out


campaigning and taking to voters the message of the record of this


Conservative government, but crucially, of our plans to make


Brexit a success and to build a stronger Britain for the future, and


every vote for the Conservatives will make it harder for those who


want to stop me from getting the job done. Every vote for the


Conservatives will make me stronger when I negotiate for Britain with


the EU, and every vote for the Conservatives will mean that we can


stick out plan for a stronger Britain and take the right long-term


decisions for a more secure future for this country.


Thank you, Mr Speaker. For years, I have been campaigning for fairer


funding in Wiltshire schools. Will Prime Minister reaffirm her


commitment to this? And to a review of pupil premium to encompass other


forms of key disadvantage, such as being a health carer, mental health


problems and other bereavement? This way, we can create a country that


will work for everyone. My honourable friend raises an


important point. I know she has campaigned long and hard in her


constituency and worked hard on this and other issues. We want to ensure


young people irrespective of background at the opportunity to


make the most of their talents, and the point of our reforms is to end


the postcode lottery in school funding and support our plans for a


fairer society where success is based on merit not privilege. The


pupil premium is worth ?2.5 billion per year. It is an important part of


policy because it gives schools extra support for pupils from


disadvantaged backgrounds. But I think it is right that schools are


best placed to prioritise the needs of their pupils and can use their


funding to ensure they support any pupil facing disadvantage, financial


or otherwise. May I join in the condolences extended by the Prime


Minister and the leader of the Labour Party. Mr Speaker, the tone


and content of Democratic debates, including a general election, is


very important to all of us. Does the Prime Minister Trudeau political


opponents are not saboteurs, and all electric mainstream parties and


parliamentarians have a mandate, and that should be respected? -- elected


mainstream parties. In this House and in this Parliament, it is right


that we have proper debate and scrutiny of proposals put forward by


the Government, and that arguments on both sides of the House are


rightly challenged. And those discussions take place. But I said


to the right honourable gentleman that what the British able, the


people of the UK voted for last year, was for the UK to leave the


European Union. -- the British people. There is no turning back.


But it is clear from statements made by the Scottish Nationalists and


others that they do want to use this House to try to frustrate that


process. I will be asking the British people for a mandate to


complete Brexit and to make a success of it. It's disappointing


the Prime Minister didn't take the opportunity to condemn the


intemperate language when describing either Democratic politicians. There


is heckling from the other side and the Prime Minister should take the


opportunity to underline something we should all agree on, that


describing people in the way we have read in some daily newspapers by


leading politicians is not acceptable. Most people know that


the reason why we are having a general election is because of the


woeful state of the Labour Party. If the Prime Minister is so confident


that her hard Brexit pro austerity, anti-immigration case is right, she


should debate it with opposition leaders during the campaign. We look


forward to the straight fight between the SNP and the Tories, can


the Prime Minister tell the people why she is running scared of a


televised debate with Nicola Sturgeon? First of all, can I say to


the right honourable gentleman, one of the crucial thing is we have in


this country that underpins democracy is a free press. I believe


that is important and that people in this chamber should stand up for the


freedom of the press. As for the TV debates, I can assure the right


honourable gentleman that I will be out there, campaigning in every part


of the United Kingdom, taking our proud record of a Conservative


government that has delivered for every part of the United Kingdom.


And I might suggest to the Scottish Nationalists that actually now is


the time for them to put aside... Wait for it. Now is the time for


them to put aside their tunnel vision on independence. And actually


explain to the Scottish people why, under the SNP, they are not putting


as much money into the health service as they have been given from


the UK. They are not exercising the powers they have been given, and


Scottish education is getting worse. It's time they got back to their day


job. Thank you, Mr Speaker. I also


welcome the announcement from the Prime Minister yesterday and I look


forward to the general election, and taking my positive message to my


constituents. Over the last two years, I have pressed for


first-class transport infrastructure in Cheadle, and this week I launched


a transport survey so my constituents can have their say on


what is needed to keep them moving and for us to be at the heart of the


Northern Powerhouse. Does my right honourable friend agree that


residents in Cheadle need to vote Conservative on June 8th to continue


getting investment in transport and infrastructure, not only in Cheadle


but across the Northwest? I absolutely agree with my honourable


friend on that point. I know she has been working very hard for her


constituents in Cheadle on this transport issue and others. It is


under this government that we are investing ?290 million to improve


transport links to Manchester Airport through Cheadle, and ?2.1


million committed to improving walking and cycling routes around


the Cheadle Hume district centre. That is why the choice is clear. If


you want to see that funding into infrastructure, we need a strong


economy and only the Conservatives can deliver that strong economy.


Because of the Prime Minister'schanges to education


funding, every school in the country will face real terms cuts.


Manchester is hit harder than anywhere outside London... With


Chorlton high school and another in my constituency each losing the


equivalent of over 30 teachers. So I asked the Prime Minister the same


question a head teacher asked me. What would the Prime Minister cut to


balance the books? What subjects which you choose to sack teachers


from? As the honourable gentleman knows, there are record levels of


funding going into our schools. Everybody across this House has


recognised for many years that the current funding formula is not fair


across the country. And it's necessary for us to look for a


fairer funding formula. We have consulted on that and will be


responding to that consultation. But I say to the honourable gentleman,


as he faces up to the election, I note that last year he failed to


back, he opposed the leader of his party... If he wasn't willing to


support him as leader of his party, why should his voters support him as


leader of the country? Thank you, Mr Speaker. The only way


to fund crucial infrastructure is with a strong economy. To that end,


does my right honourable friend agree that the St James link road in


Northampton would help with traffic flow in the town and on the


development in the enterprise zone, and will the next Conservative


government continue to support me as the MP in backing the scheme? My


honourable friend is absolutely right that you need to have a strong


economy to be able to fund that crucial infrastructure. That's why,


since 2015, we have increased annual investment in economic


infrastructure by almost 60%, ?22 billion by 2021, including ?2.6


billion for improvements in transport projects. I am happy to


see the link road proposal being put forward by his local LEP, which I


think will improve access to business and unlock development in


the area. My honourable friend has worked hard to see this happen and I


am sure he will continue to campaign on issues like that which matter so


much to his constituents. Recent changes to housing benefit


entitlement for 18-21 olds will affect 195 young people in Merthyr


Tydfil. The Government is constantly challenging people to leave benefits


for the world of work, but we are concerned these changes will be a


major barrier to learning and training for youngsters who do not


have a safe and secure environment at home. Does the Prime Minister


agree we should do everything we can to help young people in the job


market, including offering financial support for housing? And will she


pledged to strengthen the guidelines so no more young people risk falling


through the net and ending up on the streets? The principle behind what


is being done in terms of the change in housing benefit is right, which


is to say it's only fair that people who are not able to make decisions


when they are on benefits, that they wouldn't be able to make when they


are in work. But it is right that we ensure for those young people for


whom staying at home, for whom there is a particular difficulty are


supported through the system, so significant exceptions have taken


place, and we recognise that need. Closed question, Mr Philip


Hollobone. I would be happy to visit the Kettering constituency in future


if my diary allows. I suspect in the next few weeks I will be visiting


quite a few constituencies. Life for ordinary working families is harder


than many people at Westminster realise. You have a job but not


necessarily job security. You are just about managing but you are


worried about the cost of living and getting your kids into a good


school. You are doing your best and a Conservative government will do


all it can to make sure you have more control over your life. Mr


Speaker, these were the inspiring words of the Prime Minister when she


took office last July. Will the Prime Minister come to Kettering,


Britain's most average town, and repeat these, her core beliefs?


Because if she does so, I know she will be warmly and widely acclaimed


as the Prime Minister this country needs for the next five years.


Well, my honourable friend is absolutely right to highlight


ordinary working families who do rely on the Government to provide


stability and certainty for them. And that's what this Conservative


government has done. We have supported jobs through significant


new investment in skills. We have invested in public services like


childcare and the NHS. And we have enhanced consumer protections. I am


happy to repeat the words I said outside Downing Street on July 13th


last year, but it's Conservatives in government that have delivered


strong and stable leadership and that is the message I will take to


the country during this election. Does the Prime Minister support the


people of Darlington when they oppose the downgrading of their A


and maternity services? They want an answer they can trust, Prime


Minister. Is it yes or no? The proposals for the configuration of


health services in local areas is a matter that is being determined by


local permissions in the best interests of services in the local


area. But I am interested, the honourable lady refers to the views


of her constituents in Darlington. She has said, the Leader of the


Opposition, the leader of her party, my constituents in Darlington have


made it clear to me they cannot support the Labour Party under your


leadership. How can they possibly support him as leader of the


country? Thank you, Mr Speaker. Can I welcome


the fact that because the Conservatives have managed the


economy so well, there is record funding... In East Sussex, for


example, some of the best performing schools in the country, they are set


to receive an increase of 3%. However in Lewes in my constituency,


many small, normal primary schools are set to see a reduction. Could


the Prime Minister look at the issue of rural primary school funding so


we can even out fairer distribution of the money? She is absolute right


to point out the record levels of funding going into schools. It is


also the case, as I said earlier, that there has been over the years a


general acceptance across this House that the current system of funding


is not there in certain parts of the country. That is why we want to end


the postcode lottery and look at a system that is fairer and more


up-to-date. A system that will support our plan for a society where


progress is based on merit, not privilege. I am happy to look at the


concerns, I recognise small rural schools have particular issues and I


am happy to look at those two ensure we get funding right and we can


spread the money as fairly as possible. Every school in my area is


facing a massive budget cut. Why is a child there worth less than a


child in Tory heartlands in the South? We currently have a situation


where there are significant sums of money going into children in certain


schools, sometimes double the amount of money going to a child in another


school. We need to find a fairer system. We have consulted on that


system and we will be responding to that system. But I note from the


honourable gentleman about what he has said about his leader, the


leader of his party, the Leader of the Opposition. He said, he's not


fit to rule. The public see this is a man who doesn't take


responsibility serious lie. And he can't take the party forward other


than in a divisive way. -- serious and dry. If we can't take the party


forward, how can he hope to take Small businesses provide the lion's


share of jobs in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. The difficulties of


attracting credit, rising operational costs and red tape make


running a small business increasingly difficult. What can the


Prime Minister do to help these small businesses so that they can


continue to be the engine of rural economies like west Cornwall's? My


honourable friend is absolutely right that small businesses are the


engine of the economy. I know he has been a champion for small businesses


in his constituency, and he recognises that, if we are going to


insure we can create those jobs, we want to encourage small businesses.


That is why at the budget the Chancellor provided ?435 million to


support businesses in England facing the steepest business rate


increases. It is why we have cut business rates by nearly ?9 million,


we will do over the next five years, and why we have listened to small


businesses and given an extra year to prepare for making tax discs --


making tax digital for over 3 million businesses. I recognised the


importance of small businesses in Cornwall and I look forward to


visiting Cornwall and being able to talk to him and others about the


importance of small businesses in there. Can I join with the Prime


Minister, with the expressions of condolence led by the Prime Minister


early on? This election can change the direction of our country, from


the consequences of potential hard Brexit outside the single market to


the future of our NHS and social care. Our schools and our


environment. The British public deserve to hear the party leaders


set out their plans and debate them publicly, but the Prime Minister has


refused to take part in televised leaders debates. The Prime Minister


and I, back in 1992, debated publicly, forcibly and amicably when


we were both candidates together. Indeed, Mr Speaker, the Prime


Minister called out the then incumbent, who didn't show up for


the debate. Why will she not debate those issues publicly now? What is


she scared of? I can assure the honourable gentleman that I will be


debating these issues publicly across the country, as well every


single member of the Conservative team. We will be taking a proud


record of the Conservative government but, more than that, we


will be taking our plans for the future of this country, for making


Brexit a success in delivering a stronger Britain. He talks about the


possibility of changing the future of this country. What do we know


that the leader of Labour, the Lib Dems and the Scottish Nationalists


have in common? Corbynite, Farron and sturgeon. They want to unite


together and divide our country and we will not let them do it. The


government wishes to pursue a national industrial strategy.


Cumbria has some specific strengths, such as tourism, agriculture,


nuclear among others, but also some weaknesses. In the next parliament


would the Prime Minister agree that any industrial strategy must take


into account regional and subregional factors, and would she


be receptive to a Cumbrian strategy that works within a national one? My


honourable friend 's body to an important part of our plans for the


future of Britain, the modern industrial strategy. We want an


economy that works for everyone, that delivers good, high skilled,


high-paid jobs and create conditions for a competitive, world leading


business to prosper in the UK. But he is right, as we look at that


industrial strategy, we need to look at the particular factors in parts


of the country. He has long been a champion not just for Carlisle but


for Cumbria, and I recognise the need, as does the business


department, as we look at that industrial strategy to tailor it


according to the needs of particular areas. The Prime Minister yesterday


said she was calling a general election because Parliament was


blocking Brexit but but three quarters of MPs and two thirds of


the laws voted for Article 50, so that isn't true, is it? A month ago,


she told her official spokesman to rule out an early general election,


and that wasn't true either, was it? She wants us to believe that she is


a woman of her word. Isn't the truth that we can't believe a single word?


Order, order. The house is rather overexcited. The question has been


heard. The answer will be heard. Prime Minister. This house and this


Parliament voted to trigger Article 50, but the Labour Party made it


clear that they were thinking of voting against the final deal. The


Scottish Nationalists... The Scottish... The Scottish


Nationalists... The Scottish Nationalists have said that they


will vote against the legislation necessary to leave the European


Union. The Liberal Democrats say they are going to grind government


to a standstill, and the House of Lords have threatened to stop us


every inch of the way I think is right now to ask the British people


to put their trust in me and the Conservative Party to deliver on


their vote last year, a Brexit plan that will make a successful this


country and deliver a stronger, fairer global Britain in the future.


Mr Speaker, I see rats and fly-tipping as a result of beans


having not been emptied for up to three weeks across Lib Dem Ryan


Sutton. -- Lib Dem run Sutton. That follows a shambolic change to refuse


collections. Does my right honourable friend agree that


accepting greater delegated powers, elected councillors must plan


changes carefully and take full responsibility as accountable


representatives when things go wrong? I don't know about the


howling of derision coming from the opposition benches, because my


honourable friend raises an important point on an issue that


actually matters to people up and down the country, and it is our goal


to dues littering in England to make sure that our high streets and


villages, our parks and green places, that they are pleasant. We


have published the first ever national litter strategy for England


and we are supporting comprehensive and frequent bin collections, but


from what he says, that the Liberal Democrats run Sutton council is


doing, it shows that the Liberal Democrats charge the highest council


taxes but, under the Lib Dems, you pay more and you get less. Will the


Prime Minister join the Scottish Government, North Ayrshire Council


and all Ayrshire local authorities and pledge today to support the


Ayrshire growth deal, requiring ?250 billion of investment targeted to


regenerate Ayrshire and improve the lives and prospects of all the


people of Ayrshire? -- ?250 million. Is the honourable lady will know, we


have already shown our commitment to growth deals in Scotland from the


deals that have been agreed. I understand the Secretary of State


for Scotland has met with the Scottish Government to discuss the


growth deal for Ayrshire she has referred to, and we are in


discussion about it. We have already shown our commitment through the


deals that have already been struck, for example, for Aberdeen. As part


of Southend's celebrations as the alternative city of culture, on the


morning of Monday the eighth -- Monday the 1st of May, stilt walkers


will book nonstop from Southend to number ten Downing St to raise money


for the region -- the music meant project to help people with Downing


-- people with learning difficulties and a charity for child refugees.


Would my right honourable friend arranged on the morning of Tuesday


the 2nd of May for somebody on her behalf to receive the stilt walkers


and accept from Southend's town crier the proclamation that, in


this, the 125th anniversary of the founding of the borough, Southend be


declared a city? Can I say to my honourable friend that, when I first


heard this issue of the stilt walkers, I thought it sounded a bit


of a tall order myself. But I am sure they will be making great


strides as they approach Downing Street, and we will look carefully


at that. I am pleased to hear what he says about Southend's


celebrations but also the efforts being made to raise money for


important causes, and we will certainly look into what can be done


in Downing Street when they arrive. Will the Prime Minister give a


guarantee that no Tory MP who is under investigation by the police


and the legal authorities over election expenses in the last


general election be a candidate in this election because, if she won't


accept that, this is the most squalid election campaign that has


happened in my lifetime? I stand by all the Conservative MPs who are in


this house and who will be out there, standing again, campaigning,


campaigning for a Conservative government that will give a brighter


and better future for this country. I am proud that my party in


government has ensured that we fulfil in this country our


commitment to Nato, to spend 2% on defence, and our commitment to the


UN, to spend 0.7% of GDP on overseas aid. Will my right honourable friend


please omit a future Conservative government to do the same? -- please


commit. My right honourable friend is correct. We have committed to


meet our Nato pledge of 2% being spent on defence every year this


decade. We are to bring on it. We have a 36 billion defence budget,


rising to almost 40 billion by 20-21, the biggest in Europe and the


second-largest in Nato. We are meeting our commitment to spend 0.7%


of GM eye on overseas development assistance, and I can assure my


honourable friend that we remain committed as a Conservative Party to


ensuring that we ensure for the defence and security of this country


and work for a stronger world. Schools in Westchester already


underfunding by ?400 per pupil on average before the new fair funding


formula came in, and now every school in Chester is cutting staff


and racing class sizes. That is the education budget. Can she explained


the house why is it that the national fair funding formula


provides neither fairness nor funding? As I have said in this


chamber before, we need to look at the funding formula. We have


published proposals and consulted on them and, in due course, the


government will respond to those proposals for fair funding. I was


interested to see the honourable gentleman being interviewed


yesterday and being asked whether he would put a photograph of his leader


on the election literature, and he said that the only photo he wanted


on his literature was his own. He wasn't prepared to support the


leader of his party.