09/03/2017 Question Time


09/03/2017

David Dimbleby chairs topical debate from Sunderland. On the panel are Karen Bradley MP, John McDonnell MP, Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh MP, Polly Toynbee and Fraser Nelson.


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The Culture Secretary, Karen Bradley.

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The Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell.

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Kezia Dugdale, leader of the Scottish Labour Party.

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The SNP's International Trade spokesperson, Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh.

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The Guardian columnist, Polly Toynbee.

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And the editor of The Spectator, Fraser Nelson.

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We are very grateful for Kezia Dugdale filling in for John who

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missed his flight. Let us have the first question tonight which comes

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from Graham McElderry, please. Is breaking the manifesto pledge

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justified when it's done in the name of science? Of silence? Fairness.

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Right. Is breaking a manifesto pledge justified when it's done in

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the name of fairness? Obviously referring to the self-employed and

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the increase that was allegedly not in the manifesto. Karen Bradley, is

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it justified to break a manifesto pledge? The first thing I would say

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is that the manifesto pledge was enacted in legislation in the tax

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lock, a piece of legislation that the Government passed in the summer

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of 2015. In that, we were very clear that it was the headline rate of

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national insurance paid by 85% of people in the country employed class

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1 national insurance which is at 12%. What was announced yesterday in

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the budget was measures to make or address the unfairness that there

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may be between the 85% of employed people and the 15% of self-employed

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people who pay lower national insurance. Even with those changes,

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that rate of national insurance will still not be as high as the rate

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paid by the employed. This funny line in your manifesto, we'll not

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raise VAT, national insurance contributions or income tax, should

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not have been read to mean we will not raise VAT, national insurance

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contributions... We were clear this was the rate of class one national

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insurance. Fraser Nelson's a Tory supporter and is shaking his head.

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The first page. I've got it here, the Conservative manifesto and I

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don't know if you can point us to the bit where it says class 1? We

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had a debate in Parliament. Questions were raised. This was the

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contract you guys made and you have broken it. It was agreed.

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APPLAUSE. .

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David Cameron tweeted that message out. That was the promise. This is

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the pledge. And right now, people are wondering, do Tory promises and

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tax mean anything. You are dodging the question, Fraser, because the

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question Graham asked is, is breaking a pledge justified when

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done in the name of fairness? He said silence, which is exactly what

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we have been getting over the pledge. Now, there are some signs

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that right now, for example, I would quite like the Conservatives to

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break their pledge on the pension credible lock, it's too expensive.

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You can go back and say, we made this promise but we are sorry, we'll

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have to change it. You need to be honest and level with the country

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about what you are doing and why. What we are getting now is, and

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Philip Hammond is sneaking it into a budget, and pretending he isn't some

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kind of Bill Clinton-style Jesuitical language that he hasn't

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broken his pledge when it was there in black-and-white. It's more than

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about bad economics, it's about hon city and politics and whether

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politicians should be believed. Polly Toynbee? I think the problem

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was, this was a ridiculous pledge to make in the first place and I hope

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that no party will go into another election ever locking themselves

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into things they can't be sure they are going to keep. It may be

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necessary to raise taxes. After all, when this manifesto was written, we

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didn't have Brexit, all sorts of things have happened. Who knows what

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may happen in the next few years related to the world economy or

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anything else. I don't think politicians should ever tie their

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hands particularly on tax. The reason it was done by George Osborne

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and David Cameron was to try to stick it to Labour by saying, look,

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we've got this pledge, now you'll have to follow that, knowing that

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Labour probably didn't want to spend more. I think that was a very, very

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bad reason for doing it. For good economic reasons. The Institute for

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Fiscal Studies has said so, lots of other experts have said, don't do

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this. Leave yourself some leeway. If you do break a promise, then be

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honest and apologise. I mean, this Jesuitical stuff about, well was it

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this clause or that clause, absolute nonsense. Who would be a minister,

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it's a hard job, you've got to beat the script and I feel very sorry for

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you. You'll have to repeat it, but how much easier it would have been

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for you to say, sorry, I got that wrong, it is a bad thing to break a

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pledge but it's even worse to make an economic mistake. We'll come back

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to you, Karen. You, Sir? Self-employed are paying less

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national insurance. What about the multi-millionaires not paying their

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tax? Please APPLAUSE.

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And you, Sir? Regardless of the fairness of it, it's another U-turn

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and I was reading yesterday that there was other Tories saying,

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quick, let's make a U-turn from this to get past this so we don't have

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another U-turn and this is the reason we have such a disconnect in

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the country between people and politicians, we cannot trust what

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people are saying because there are pledges and they get changed. People

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get sick of it. APPLAUSE.

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The woman there? Do you see a difference in this manifesto pledge

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break to the one of the increase in student fees? Why is it different

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and why is there less uproar. From the Lib Dems you mean? Yes.

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APPLAUSE. Tasmina act head Sheikh? Thank you.

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I think manifesto pledges are important because when a party are

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presents themselves to be elected to Government, all parties should stand

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and people should be able to rely on that. I agree with Polly, it would

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have been better to come clean and say we have made a mistake and

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changed our mind, rather than pretending that's not what they

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meant in the first place. To follow on the point about self-employed

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people and to have a level playing field. Self-employed people don't

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have access to parental leave benefits and holiday pay and other

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things and they're already finding it very difficult to keep their

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businesses going and indeed employ other people. If we are talking

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about fairness, I wonder why the Chancellor, if he wants to have a

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level playing field, why he didn't hear the voices of the WASPI women

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campaigning right outside the House of Commons chamber who wanted

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pension changes. APPLAUSE.

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Kezia Dugdale? It's very interesting, Tasmina's answer

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because of course in Scotland the SNP have promised to scrap the

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council tax the last ten years, won two elections on it and failed to do

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it. I wish colleagues would take their pledges as seriously as you

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do. This is a question that was fundamentally about fairness. I

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agree that what the Government were trying to say, self-employed people

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pay less tax than people who work for the Government because they

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don't get the same rights, so if you are going to increase the tax level,

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you should increase their rights as well, give them paternity leave and

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sick leave. The important point is, what is happening here, is that the

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Tories are forcing low-income and middle-income people in this country

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to pay the price of Brexit. There is a simple bit of maths we can do. The

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tax increase on businesses will generate ?2 billion of additional

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revenue to spend on schools and hospitals. At the same time, the

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Tories are going to spend ?70 billion by the end of this

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Parliament giving tax cuts for the richest most well-off people in this

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country. That's unfair and that's what we must challenge every step of

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the way. APPLAUSE.

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The man in the checked shirt in the second row? I think the problem here

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is, and what we are learning, is that manifestos aren't really worth

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the paper they're written on these days.

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APPLAUSE. So if we go back to 2010 and the

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debacle over the tuition fees and now this, and then what was alluded

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to before with the SNP wanting to scrap council tax, was it? Yes Then

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how could we possibly believe any political party and what they say in

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a manifesto, should a manifesto come with small print attached?

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APPLAUSE. OK. You, Sir?

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2015 feels like a decade ago. I feel like people are making a big deal

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out of nothing. I'm not really bothered, give them some wriggle

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room. So you think it's a trivial matter really? It seems like a

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farce, I'm not really bothered. So you are a friend of Karen Bradley? I

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wouldn't say that, no. Briefly Karen, do you want to answer? You

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have been told by Polly that it should never have been there in the

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first place? . There are many, many points I could make. There are, but

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do you think it's right - the point is, is it right for a Chancellor's

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hands to be tied on an issue like national insurance and tax in a

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manifesto because there is a thing, it was put in at the last moment,

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they couldn't think of anything to say, stick it in, isn't that right?

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The Tories never thought they would win a majority, they thought, it

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doesn't matter what is in the manifesto, we'll go into a

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coalition. Like the referendum indeed. Unfortunately they ended up

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winning power. Theresa May can say, I didn't write

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this manifesto. There is a case to be made for doing this. It was

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tweeted about. Briefly from you? Karen Bradley said it was made

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perfectly clear that the promise applied to 85%. Can you tell us how

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it was made clear? Well, when we legislated for the tax lock, we

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legislated that we would not increase the rate of national

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insurance that's paid by 85% of employed people, class 1 national

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insurance, 12%. I wanted to pick up on Fraser's point that he said, we

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sneaked this out. This wasn't sneaked out, it was a budget where

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the Chancellor stood up and said, we know we need to pay for skills,

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schools and social care, these are things we need the pay for. We don't

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want to burden our children with this. It was very open about that.

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There were tax cuts for the richest people in society. Why force that

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extra pressure on to low-income people. The point about the changes

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is that actually, you have to have taxable profits at over ?32,000

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before you'll be paying more tax. It's ?16,000. No, no, the overall

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picture, you have to look at the budget in the whole. It's over

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?32,000 so actually we are protecting the lower and middle

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incomes. People in Sunderland who're working for themselves are people

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who're going to be paying the tax. Not the people who work in the City

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of London. APPLAUSE.

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Jean Hellens? Is the extra ?2 billion funding over the next three

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years for social care too little too late?

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APPLAUSE. Polly Toynbee? Social care crisis is

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quite appalling and the way it's tipping over into the NHS filling up

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A departments, unable to get people into beds because other

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people are stuck in beds because there are no social care places for

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them and no care packages at home, the ?2 billion is over three years.

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What the King's Fund says, who're the main auditors of this, they say

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we need ?2 billion a year. What this might do is just about hold it as it

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is, but as it is, between half a million and a million old people,

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frail people, are not getting the care they would have had five years

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ago. The crisis is in people's front

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rooms, behind closed doors where people can't see it, people not

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getting care who really need it, as well as the crisis that we can see

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in the NHS and for there to be no money for the NHS is extraordinary.

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We have been through six years where never before since the NHS was

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founded in 1948 has it ever had such a low settlement. No wonder it's

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bursting at if seems -- the seems. The wonder is how the incredible

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people in the NHS all the way through have just about kept it on

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the road. But it's not going to last and may not last until the end of

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this year without us seeing many more people waiting on trolleys,

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some who've already been dying in hospital corridors. I think this

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Government is extraordinary that in this budget, ?9 billion were taken

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off corporation tax for corporations and just think what that money would

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have done for the NHS and social care.

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APPLAUSE. Fraser Nelson. Because the economy

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is going a lot better than people thought this time last year, there

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is ?2 billion more to give to help solve the care crisis, but that is a

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sticking plaster, only therefore three years. We will have a huge

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problem though one has come up with a solution for. The Government has

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said it is thinking radically about this and it has to because nothing

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seems to be working right now. My hunch is that what you will have to

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do is look carefully. For example, the Government has said nobody

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should have to sell their homes to pay for their care, but you do get

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some people who get care who basically could borrow against the

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value of their house. You get people who have greater assets that are not

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counted when it comes to what they qualify for. For example, in the

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NHS, I do not see that I should get a free GP appointment if I can

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afford to pay for it, nor subsidised medicine. So you would have a means

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tested NHS? More than right now. The NHS' needs are huge and the

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Government's ability to fund it is running out. Those who can afford to

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pay more should be asked to and would be happy to. I don't see why

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people like me are funded by the NHS, when we can afford to pay ?10

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for the NHS. The end of a free at point of use NHS is the end of the

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principal. Karen Bradley, Fraser just said nothing is working right

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just now. Do you agree? I am not sure I agree on paying for services

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on the NHS, which is free at the point of need and the point of

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delivery and will remain so. Just to pick up, why do you object to what

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he says, that rich people could help the NHS by paying? I agree with

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Polly that it would be the end of the NHS because that would be a

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fundamental change to the way the NHS works, which I want to protect.

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On social care, some areas get this right but 50% of all discharges from

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hospital are down to 24 local authority areas. So we know there

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are places this is working, places this is right, but there are places

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where it is not. The Chancellor has announced ?1 billion up front so

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that care packages can be put in place and we can make sure we get

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this right so we do not have a crisis next winter. Also over the

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summer we will look at what we need to do, fundamental reform, so we can

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look at where this is working and replicate that in those places it

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simply isn't. In the second row from the back. Why has the Government

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decided to stop nursing bursaries? Who is going to deliver this social

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care? APPLAUSE

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Do you want to take that point? We want to professionalise nursing

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and have it with the same degree courses as other students. But it is

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very, very important to make sure we get social care right. Police said

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there was no money for the NHS. There was. There was money for GP

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triage at A, and there was money for the sustainability and

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transformation plans, so we can get those right, too. Well, it's not

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enough money. Last weekend we saw over 200,000 people marching to save

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our NHS in England, because the system is in disarray. Fraser speaks

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about a lack of money. It is about priorities. The Government has money

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to spend and it is up to them to decide what is most important of

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them. I believe a National Health Service, social care packages are

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part of the social contract that government has with its people. You

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are all paying into it, we are all paying into it, so we need it and it

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should be there. Today we have the A times which have been released,

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which show massive problems in the NHS, and the NHS needs to be saved

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but that does not seem to be a priority. In terms of the Budget,

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how are people feeling about this Budget? If you are in receipt of

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benefits, if you are having ?30 cut each week, do you feel better off

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after this Government's decisions? A Budget and Chancellor that does not

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mention Brexit when this is what it is all about? We know that the

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Chancellor is amassing what has been called a war chest of money to

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protect from the impact of Brexit. What the Chancellor should be doing

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is spending on the people of this country in need, who need that

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support now. That is his responsibility, and he is letting

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the country down. APPLAUSE

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You, sir, in the fourth row. Until we take politics out of the

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National Health Service, we will never find an answer.

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APPLAUSE We need some fresh ideas.

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I totally agree that at some point, somewhere, we will have to start

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paying for the service we get. It is a fantastic service but we need to

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be real and take the politics out of it and get it sorted out. What do

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you mean exactly, that politicians can't solve it? It is like tennis,

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from one side of the court to the other. We need to take the politics

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out and have a proper, grown-up talk.

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The ?2 billion for social care is less than they spend treating

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illnesses caused by obesity. Because people are too reliant on the NHS,

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does that add unnecessary stress to an already overcrowded service?

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Kezia Dugdale. That last point is about preventative spending, what

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can we do to reduce demand on the NHS. To answer the original

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question, ?2 billion is welcome but not nearly enough. Over the last

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parliament, the Tories cut 4.6 billion out of social care. They are

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putting back in half of what they took out previously. The fundamental

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tragedy about this is how short term it is in its thinking. We are

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talking about the money that we spend helping largely elderly people

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living in their own homes safely for as long as they possibly can, to

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keep them out of hospital. When we get a bit scrimping with this cash

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and do not put enough in, we are putting more pressure on the NHS. It

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means an elderly person is more likely to get ill, to sit in A and

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wards for weeks on end. Investing is actually saving our NHS money and

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that is what is so wrong with the Tory attack on social care. Karen, I

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work in the NHS, I look after old people, have done for 20 years.

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Everyday I the effects of your government's cuts on the service

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that we so desperately wants to deliver for our older persons.

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Hospitals should be able to admit older persons straight and welcome

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them, not have them waiting for 14 hours on trolleys like your

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government does. When it's time for them to be discharged from hospital,

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we should be able to do that safely. Your government doesn't get it.

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Elderly people, care of the elderly need more resources.

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APPLAUSE I don't think anybody in the

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government has said we don't need to address this problem.

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That's why the money was put in in the Budget. We do need to make sure

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we get this right but it's not just about money. When we know that 50%

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of delayed discharges are down to 24 local authority areas, we know there

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are places getting this right. We need to learn from them and get it

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right across the board. Because I agree with you and I want this for

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my constituents, too, that when they leave hospital... First, frail and

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elderly can go into hospital and be admitted quickly and appropriately.

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That is why GP triage at A will make such a difference. But also

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that there are care packages and places for them, because nobody

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wants to be in hospital longer than they have to be. Which of these

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councils are you referring to? 24 councils are responsible for 50% of

:23:18.:23:22.

delayed discharges. And yet councils have all had their budgets cut by

:23:23.:23:25.

40% on average. APPLAUSE

:23:26.:23:29.

Some councils, we are seeing this working, for example in Salford.

:23:30.:23:35.

It is working because health and social are working together. We know

:23:36.:23:38.

it can be done and we can get it right. The situation is very

:23:39.:23:44.

different in different parts of the country, different in terms of the

:23:45.:23:47.

consideration of the NHS and in terms of the councils. It is not

:23:48.:23:51.

just a question of some councils are wonderful. 40% cuts to councils,

:23:52.:23:56.

another 20% cuts to councils in this Budget. And today, figures revealed

:23:57.:24:06.

devastating delays in April waiting for cancer care, the longest delays

:24:07.:24:09.

for most people since the targets were first put there. I would like

:24:10.:24:13.

to take up that point, why can't we take politics out of the NHS? The

:24:14.:24:19.

thing is, the NHS is at the heart of politics. There are a lot of

:24:20.:24:23.

Conservatives, maybe not Karen, but maybe Fraser, there are a lot who

:24:24.:24:26.

really don't believe in it, who think people should pay for

:24:27.:24:32.

themselves. Because we want to reform it? Reform always means

:24:33.:24:36.

privatisation, insurance systems, going the American way. So it is

:24:37.:24:40.

political and we have to fight for it very hard to keep it as it is, as

:24:41.:24:45.

it was founded. And we know, because when Labour was in power they did

:24:46.:24:49.

manage to get the funding right up to the level about equal to

:24:50.:24:53.

comparable countries in Europe, the results absolutely soared and

:24:54.:24:57.

waiting lists dropped. APPLAUSE

:24:58.:25:02.

Nathan Cinnamond, if you would stand by for your question.

:25:03.:25:07.

We're in Bognor Regis next week, the week after we'll be in Bangor.

:25:08.:25:11.

And for a Special Question Time on Brexit we'll be in Birmingham

:25:12.:25:14.

on Monday 27th March where our audience will be able

:25:15.:25:17.

to put their questions about what Brexit might mean

:25:18.:25:19.

for Britain to some of the leading politicians

:25:20.:25:21.

That's from 8.30 to 10pm on Monday March 27th.

:25:22.:25:33.

Come and join our audience for any of those programmes.

:25:34.:25:36.

Nathan Cinnamond, your question. Should a snap election be called to

:25:37.:25:55.

give the Government a Brexit date? What William Hague was calling for

:25:56.:25:59.

this week, to give the Government a mandate for Brexit. Kezia Dugdale.

:26:00.:26:05.

No. My reason for thinking that is that Brexit has caused a tremendous

:26:06.:26:08.

amount of instability and insecurity across the country. As I speak to

:26:09.:26:16.

people and businesses, what they want is a period of peace and calm,

:26:17.:26:18.

time to understand what is happening, to digestive and move on

:26:19.:26:22.

from there. If we had a general election now it would, dare I say

:26:23.:26:26.

it, bring out the worst in politics and politicians, back to manifesto

:26:27.:26:30.

drafting, not doing what was in the interests of the country. How do you

:26:31.:26:34.

think Labour would fare? Brilliantly. Is that why you are a

:26:35.:26:42.

bit off the idea? I wonder why you would think that, David. Honestly, I

:26:43.:26:47.

have gone through a Scottish parliament election and a Scottish

:26:48.:26:51.

general election in recent times and a referendum, too, so I do not fear

:26:52.:26:56.

elections. I have experienced them, and experienced bad results. That is

:26:57.:27:00.

not my motivation for being opposed. I think it is bad for the country,

:27:01.:27:05.

and I will do what I think is in the interests of working people and that

:27:06.:27:08.

is why I don't think it is time for a general election. Are you in

:27:09.:27:14.

favour of an election? Yes, I am a Labour supporter and the reason I

:27:15.:27:17.

want a general election is because it would get rid of Jeremy Corbyn.

:27:18.:27:18.

APPLAUSE Who would you have instead?

:27:19.:27:26.

There are several leading... Chuka Umunna. I would love to see him as

:27:27.:27:30.

leader of the Labour Party. There are people out there that can offer

:27:31.:27:33.

credible opposition to the Conservative government, which it

:27:34.:27:40.

needs at the moment. Almost anyone. Yes, perhaps. Polly Toynbee. I find

:27:41.:27:45.

it extraordinary that Theresa May would not be very tempted, because

:27:46.:27:49.

if she had an election now, she would absolutely wipe the floor and

:27:50.:27:56.

get a stonking great majority. Labour is sadly 16 points behind.

:27:57.:28:00.

Worse than that, the underlying figures, a poll today, shows that

:28:01.:28:09.

John McDonnell and Jeremy Corbyn are 31 points behind on who do you most

:28:10.:28:14.

trust on the economy. As this Budget comes out, which is profoundly

:28:15.:28:18.

unfair to ordinary working families, who Theresa May is supposed to be

:28:19.:28:23.

supporting, despite the injustice of the Budget, despite the fact that

:28:24.:28:26.

there are lots of alternative ways of doing it better, even so, Corbyn

:28:27.:28:31.

and McDonnell, and I am sorry he is not here today because I intended to

:28:32.:28:35.

direct it at him, not at Kezia Dugdale, who did not support Corbyn

:28:36.:28:39.

in the last election, I think it is a tragedy. I think Labour has to

:28:40.:28:43.

come to its senses. When you look at the prospect of what would happen if

:28:44.:28:47.

there was an election now, you might get rid of Corbyn, but you would get

:28:48.:28:51.

rid of 100 Labour MPs, good people, at the same time. I agree it is a

:28:52.:28:57.

pity he is not here, but what is it that you have against Jeremy Corbyn

:28:58.:29:02.

and John McDonnell? Well, you know, he won with a great success in the

:29:03.:29:05.

beginning and a tremendous coterie of people who flocked to Labour, who

:29:06.:29:09.

were not really Labour people, and you thought, let's see if he can

:29:10.:29:15.

work his magic? Can it work? Can you affect a wider part of the

:29:16.:29:18.

population, enough voters to rally to his flag? He has had plenty of

:29:19.:29:27.

time to try, and after Copeland, after a by-election, a ward

:29:28.:29:32.

by-election here, lost to the Liberal Democrats... Are you taunted

:29:33.:29:38.

by your old SDP party and a revival of that? No, been there, done it and

:29:39.:29:44.

it didn't work. What do you make of William Hague and Andrew Lansley

:29:45.:29:46.

also said there should be an election? You can see why the Tories

:29:47.:29:51.

find it attractive because never have they been more confident of

:29:52.:29:54.

winning a general election. The polls suggest they would get a

:29:55.:29:58.

majority of over 100. It is difficult to think of the Labour

:29:59.:30:02.

Party getting any weaker, although Jeremy Corbyn always astonishes in

:30:03.:30:05.

his ability to make it worse. Theresa May said she wouldn't do it,

:30:06.:30:11.

and we know she keeps her promises. She says rightly that we need

:30:12.:30:15.

stability. She does not really need a bigger majority because right

:30:16.:30:20.

now... Hang on a second, the point William Hague is getting at is that

:30:21.:30:24.

she wasn't, I know we don't elect prime ministers, but she never had

:30:25.:30:28.

an election with her name as Prime Minister, and she has Brexit

:30:29.:30:30.

negotiations to conduct which will be tough. Those are his grounds, to

:30:31.:30:36.

give her a mandate to go to other countries and say, I have the conch.

:30:37.:30:46.

Her authority in Parliament is strong. Everybody knows she could

:30:47.:30:52.

put to the sword quite a few Labour MPs and Labour TSB had enough

:30:53.:30:55.

misery. It would be unfair to inflict more on it. The one thing

:30:56.:31:00.

that makes me change my mind on this, if the Tories are going to

:31:01.:31:04.

think we are not bound by the last manifesto, they are honour bound to

:31:05.:31:07.

get a new mandate. They are not going to be too happy about things

:31:08.:31:11.

in the document, so really under the system you need to be bound by a

:31:12.:31:14.

manifesto. If you don't want to be, you need to ask for a new mandate.

:31:15.:31:20.

Even even over the issue in the budget? If she thinks the last

:31:21.:31:24.

manifesto is rendered null and void by Brexit and her leadership and

:31:25.:31:28.

there's a fair argument for that, that doesn't make the case for get

:31:29.:31:31.

ago fresh mandate. Nathan what do you think? Are you in favour of an

:31:32.:31:38.

election? Political circumstances change and it's not the ideal

:31:39.:31:41.

situation but I think the Conservative Party did say, we will

:31:42.:31:45.

have a referendum, presumably with the intention of delivering on it

:31:46.:31:48.

soiful like we should continue as we are, let Jeremy Corbyn sap the soul

:31:49.:31:52.

out of the Labour Party and let those who believe in the will of the

:31:53.:31:55.

people continue. APPLAUSE.

:31:56.:32:00.

You on the gangway? In regards to the general election, I don't

:32:01.:32:03.

believe it should happen because the last thing we need is to split up

:32:04.:32:07.

the country again when we are going through a Brexit. We need to ensure

:32:08.:32:13.

that we are showing a united front for all of Europe and all of the

:32:14.:32:17.

rest of the world. Secondly in regards to Jeremy Corbyn, it's not

:32:18.:32:21.

such Jeremy but it was the ideas that he brought forward, he went

:32:22.:32:25.

back to the original reasons that the Labour Party was actually

:32:26.:32:30.

created to ensure that the working class people had a voice and that's

:32:31.:32:34.

what people went back for and voted for. It wasn't the man, it was the

:32:35.:32:36.

ideas. APPLAUSE.

:32:37.:32:42.

So you believe he should stay there and fight his corner whenever the

:32:43.:32:45.

election comes? I don't think we should have an election yet. Whether

:32:46.:32:49.

it's the time that he's there at that point, but we do need to change

:32:50.:32:54.

how Labour is working because the middle of the road doesn't work any

:32:55.:32:57.

more. OK. And you, Sir? You on the

:32:58.:33:11.

gangway? About Brexit, I can't understand when in 1973 when it was,

:33:12.:33:19.

we only voted for Common Market for trade. You look at it at the end of

:33:20.:33:25.

the day, why did the British people not get a vote on the other six

:33:26.:33:29.

treaties that was passed? Well they've had it now haven't they, the

:33:30.:33:33.

vote, and they're leaving, so it's all done and dusted.

:33:34.:33:36.

APPLAUSE. Let's go back to the election.

:33:37.:33:41.

Tasmina? I fail to see what the point of a snap election would be,

:33:42.:33:45.

apart from just to demonstrate the further arrogance of the Tory party,

:33:46.:33:51.

because I find it distasteful when the Chancellor at the despatch box

:33:52.:33:53.

talked about the last Labour Government as if there was never

:33:54.:33:57.

going to be another Labour Government ever in Consigning the

:33:58.:34:01.

Labour Party to history which of course isn't good for democracy. But

:34:02.:34:05.

clearly, those that want a snap election would want to install even

:34:06.:34:09.

more Tory MPs at Westminster and that's not good for the whole of the

:34:10.:34:14.

country. I think what the most disturbing thing out of all of this

:34:15.:34:18.

is, is that the Labour Party have allowed themselves to get into a

:34:19.:34:22.

position where the Conservative Party know they can do what they

:34:23.:34:26.

want now and conceivably for the next five years in advance of

:34:27.:34:30.

another election because there's no prospect of the Labour Party winning

:34:31.:34:34.

that election. That's not good in times right now when there needs to

:34:35.:34:38.

be a really strong and united opposition to stand up to the cuts

:34:39.:34:41.

that are coming from this Government and also to stand up in terms of the

:34:42.:34:46.

Brexit deal. Now, whilst I understand that the people of

:34:47.:34:50.

Sunderland voted to leave the European Union, the terms upon which

:34:51.:34:53.

you leave and ensuring that your jobs and your industries are

:34:54.:34:58.

protected once you leave should be of paramount importance to the

:34:59.:35:00.

Government. But what it appears to me to be the case, is that having a

:35:01.:35:06.

snap election or increasing the number of Tory MPs, is because, as

:35:07.:35:11.

is always the case, the Conservatives want to ride rough

:35:12.:35:14.

shot over everybody and get everything their own way without

:35:15.:35:18.

having to seek further recourse to the opposition. That's why those

:35:19.:35:23.

Brexiteers in the Tory party wanted Brexit in the first place because

:35:24.:35:27.

they didn't want anyone to have any involvement in all of their

:35:28.:35:31.

decisions. You say it's arrogant to want to win an election? It's

:35:32.:35:34.

arrogant to suggest there wouldn't be another Labour Government. He

:35:35.:35:44.

said at the despatch box, the last Labour Government. On the topic of

:35:45.:35:48.

should there be another snap election, there shouldn't be. There

:35:49.:35:57.

is work to be done on building a stronger country, and delivering the

:35:58.:36:00.

vote that the British people had last year and so decisively voted to

:36:01.:36:05.

leave the European Union. What about getting a mandate to negotiate in

:36:06.:36:09.

the way that Theresa May wants to negotiate because we don't know what

:36:10.:36:12.

she wants to do. We have that mandate. The people said they want

:36:13.:36:17.

to leave the European Union. But how to leave is another question. The

:36:18.:36:20.

British people said they want to leave the European Union. They

:36:21.:36:24.

didn't define how, and if there was a general election, she could

:36:25.:36:28.

explain how she wanted the relationship with the rest of the

:36:29.:36:32.

world to be. There is a process of negotiation and we have to get the

:36:33.:36:36.

best and right deal for Britain. But I think on elections and referendum,

:36:37.:36:40.

I think to be honest with you, we've all probably had enough of them and

:36:41.:36:43.

I could do with a little bit of time to get on with the job. No more

:36:44.:36:49.

elections. You, Sir? The fourth row? Just to the original question,

:36:50.:36:53.

surely the vote on the 23rd June was enough of a mandate that the people

:36:54.:36:57.

of the UK wanted to leave the European Union. But what if it

:36:58.:37:05.

doesn't come out the way, I mean you presumably have a view about how you

:37:06.:37:10.

wanted to come out, if it doesn't come out the way you want? The way

:37:11.:37:13.

that we want it, it's gone through the House of Commons where they've

:37:14.:37:16.

got the debate, they're trying to say there's going to be a vote after

:37:17.:37:22.

the negotiations, so that surely is enough for the elected members of

:37:23.:37:28.

Parliament. You, Sir, on the left? Just going back to the point on the

:37:29.:37:32.

Labour Party, as weak as the Labour Party is today, they also lost a lot

:37:33.:37:37.

of votes and a lot of seats during the back end of Tony Blair's reign,

:37:38.:37:41.

during the Brown years, the Miliband years. During the Miliband years, I

:37:42.:37:45.

remember leading up to the last general election, one of the pledges

:37:46.:37:49.

that they put out to try and inspire voters like me to try and

:37:50.:37:52.

differentiate themselves from the Tory party was, we are not going to

:37:53.:37:56.

keep university fees at ?9,000, instead we are going to lower them

:37:57.:38:01.

to ?6,000. That to me summed up the Labour Party at the time, they were

:38:02.:38:06.

an, I can't believe it's Tory, Tory light. We do need an opposition but

:38:07.:38:10.

we need an opposition that is different, OK, we need choices in

:38:11.:38:13.

the political spectrum in this country. You agree with the woman on

:38:14.:38:23.

the gangway? Absolutely. Even if not enough people are choosing it, what

:38:24.:38:27.

do you say? Tony Blair disillusioned a lot of people from politics, a lot

:38:28.:38:30.

of long time Labour voters. APPLAUSE.

:38:31.:38:37.

OK. A brief point from you, Sir, then another question? I think that

:38:38.:38:42.

the problem Jeremy Corbyn's got is, he's got to unite staunch remainers

:38:43.:38:48.

mainly down south and staunch levers, Brexiteers in the north and

:38:49.:38:52.

I just don't think any leader is capable of doing it for Labour.

:38:53.:39:00.

We have got a question, I'm tempted to come to this question in a

:39:01.:39:04.

moment. I think we might come to this question. Debra?

:39:05.:39:15.

Should Scotland be given a second referendum?

:39:16.:39:23.

Tasmina you start this because it's tied up with Brexit? After the

:39:24.:39:29.

referendum vote, it's clear, Sunderland, the votes to leave are

:39:30.:39:33.

the same but in the opposite direction in terms of how Scotland

:39:34.:39:36.

voted to remain. The First Minister was were scleer that she wanted to

:39:37.:39:40.

discuss and agree with Theresa May as far as possible a solution that

:39:41.:39:44.

would make sure that the views and aspirations of the people of

:39:45.:39:47.

Scotland were also taken into account. So she presented a plan.

:39:48.:39:52.

Scotland's place in Europe to the Prime Minister. That included three

:39:53.:39:56.

points, first one being, could we all stay part of the single market

:39:57.:39:59.

because we think that's best for the whole of the UK. Helpfully, Fraser's

:40:00.:40:04.

brought the manifesto here which says yes to the single market. It's

:40:05.:40:09.

all in there in terms of what the Conservative Party were elected on.

:40:10.:40:12.

The second point and, as we all know, the Prime Minister's ruled

:40:13.:40:14.

that out, I don't think that was a particularly wise thing to do before

:40:15.:40:18.

going to the negotiating table at Brussels. The second point in the

:40:19.:40:23.

First Minister's plan was for there to be a differentiated agreement for

:40:24.:40:31.

Scotland much like you're hoping and anticipating that a differentiated

:40:32.:40:34.

agreement would be in place for Sunderland and your car

:40:35.:40:36.

manufacturers here also. We are waiting for the Prime Minister to

:40:37.:40:40.

confirm whether or not she's going to find such an arrangement

:40:41.:40:43.

acceptable, an arrangement which has the support of the Scottish

:40:44.:40:47.

Parliament. So hang on a second. You are not asking, as I thought your

:40:48.:40:50.

leader was, for a referendum next autumn? I'm just getting to the

:40:51.:41:01.

third point, David. Thank you. The third point is if the Prime Minister

:41:02.:41:05.

doesn't agree, the First Minister has a mandate to call another

:41:06.:41:08.

independence referendum because her manifesto detailed that if we were

:41:09.:41:12.

to be taken out of the EU against our will, that should be the case.

:41:13.:41:19.

The people of Scotland voted in their numbers, 62-38 to remain in

:41:20.:41:22.

the European Union and the Scottish Parliament also gave her a mandate

:41:23.:41:25.

to negotiate the best deal for Scotland. Polly Toynbee, do you

:41:26.:41:28.

think there should be a second referendum and do you think there

:41:29.:41:31.

will be one, more to the point. We were talking about a general

:41:32.:41:33.

election not being necessary? I think the Scots should be able to

:41:34.:41:36.

have referendums whenever they want them. Any old time? Why not? Until

:41:37.:41:43.

one side wins? Or until the SNP wins? Thai got their own Parliament.

:41:44.:41:48.

If the Scottish people feel they are having too many referendums, they'll

:41:49.:41:51.

start saying no. I think what is very depressing is the extent to

:41:52.:41:55.

which Theresa May has done so little to woo the Scots to keep them in the

:41:56.:42:00.

union. This is the Conservative and Unionist Party. She went the other

:42:01.:42:06.

day, it was very odd and said to them, it's senseless for you to want

:42:07.:42:09.

to leave your biggest market. You thought hang on a minute, she's just

:42:10.:42:15.

taking us out of her biggest market, out of the biggest single market.

:42:16.:42:18.

She doesn't have very good arguments. On the other hand, the

:42:19.:42:22.

Scots are saying, we want to stay in the EU, a good market, you know, and

:42:23.:42:25.

yet they're wrenching themselves away from us. All of this disunity

:42:26.:42:31.

is a terrible disaster for all of us. I desperately want Scotland to

:42:32.:42:35.

stay in the union and want Britain to stay as close to Europe as

:42:36.:42:39.

possible in the single market which is in your manifesto and in the

:42:40.:42:44.

customs union. Otherwise I fear disaster and for places like

:42:45.:42:48.

Sunderland, more than anywhere, more than the south, which is curby, it's

:42:49.:42:53.

here that we'll be hurt most if we go right out. There are many points.

:42:54.:42:59.

The gentleman up there said as if there was on the one kind of out,

:43:00.:43:03.

there are many. I think we should have a question on the deal she gets

:43:04.:43:07.

at the end as to whether we all agree with it.

:43:08.:43:14.

APPLAUSE. The woman there. In relation to the

:43:15.:43:19.

original question. Absolutely not should Scotland have another

:43:20.:43:22.

referendum. We opted as a United Kingdom to vote to leave or to stay

:43:23.:43:26.

with the European Union, so therefore we should all just deal

:43:27.:43:30.

with... No, Tasmina, you spoke at great length and I've got to crack

:43:31.:43:34.

the whip so we get fourthth further down the line. Fraser Nelson? There

:43:35.:43:39.

was appetite in Scotland for a referendum. Three in four Scots

:43:40.:43:46.

don't want it, something like that. Nicola Sturgeon does sign to be in a

:43:47.:43:54.

hurry, she saying 2018 -- does seem to be in a hurry. You would think

:43:55.:44:01.

you wanted to wait until at least we left the EU. The Prime Minister

:44:02.:44:08.

wants... Tasmina. We had a compromised document. We had that on

:44:09.:44:13.

agreed terms. You've had your stay, you've spoken at some length.

:44:14.:44:23.

I'mancing Fraser's point -- I'm answering Fraser's point. I suspect

:44:24.:44:30.

Nicola Sturgeon is in a hurry because her own rating is tanking

:44:31.:44:35.

her approval rating which is going down, she knows she might not get

:44:36.:44:38.

control of the next Scottish Parliament so she's only got a small

:44:39.:44:42.

window to play havoc with the union once again. Kezia Dugdale, as leader

:44:43.:44:46.

of the Labour Party in Scotland, would you welcome one? The question

:44:47.:44:50.

was should Scotland be given one. The question should be, does

:44:51.:44:53.

Scotland want one and Fraser's right. The country is divided

:44:54.:45:00.

enough, we do not want to be divided again. And can I say to you very

:45:01.:45:05.

clearly, I spent two-and-a-half years of my life campaigning for a

:45:06.:45:10.

no-vote and it was an active referendum, the talk of the pubs, on

:45:11.:45:15.

the buses, all the time for two-and-a-half year, 85% voted no,

:45:16.:45:18.

and I understand there are some people now who're angry at Brexit,

:45:19.:45:21.

angry at the Tories and think it's time to go again, but the harsh

:45:22.:45:25.

reality is this, the economic case for independence is weaker now than

:45:26.:45:29.

it was a few years ago and what the SNP are arguing for is false hope.

:45:30.:45:33.

They're saying to the poorest people in this country that it can be

:45:34.:45:38.

different. They'll be faced with a ?15 billion deficit if we were

:45:39.:45:43.

independent meaning less money for education and NHS, that's why I

:45:44.:45:45.

always oppose independence. APPLAUSE.

:45:46.:45:55.

As a member of the Conservative and unionist party, I want Scotland to

:45:56.:46:02.

remain part of the UK. Even though I will be at the England- Scotland

:46:03.:46:08.

Calcutta rugby match, I still want Scotland to be a very important part

:46:09.:46:14.

of the union. And I just think, in the same way that I respect the

:46:15.:46:18.

decision the British people made on June the 23rd, I respect the

:46:19.:46:23.

decision that Scottish people made to stay in the union. If Parliament

:46:24.:46:28.

asked for a referendum, would you think they should be given a second

:46:29.:46:32.

referendum? The people of Scotland do not want that. If the Scottish

:46:33.:46:39.

Parliament said they want a referendum, as suggested, do you

:46:40.:46:43.

think the British government should stand in the way? We should do what

:46:44.:46:47.

is right for Scotland and the UK. Let's get it clear... Your party, at

:46:48.:46:54.

the point when we are taking power back from Brussels and giving them

:46:55.:46:57.

to Westminster and Edinburgh, you want to... No, wait, let's not get

:46:58.:47:04.

into that argument. You just said you think if the Scottish Parliament

:47:05.:47:08.

asked for a referendum, the Westminster Parliament, under

:47:09.:47:11.

Theresa May, should deny them that right. The people of Scotland do not

:47:12.:47:16.

want another referendum and I respect that decision. This will

:47:17.:47:20.

rumble on. A question about education from David Russell. Why

:47:21.:47:26.

are so many politicians, mostly but not exclusively from the left, so

:47:27.:47:31.

violently opposed to grammar schools? Are you violently opposed

:47:32.:47:35.

to grammar schools? I am all for them. Fraser Nelson. I am going to

:47:36.:47:46.

let you down here, I am afraid, I am not a fan of grammar schools either.

:47:47.:47:51.

I am against academic selection. We have done some incredible things

:47:52.:47:56.

with education in England. Wider you think you are letting me down? The

:47:57.:48:06.

thing is that grammar schools, for a while they did really good at

:48:07.:48:11.

getting people from poorer backgrounds, bright people, into

:48:12.:48:14.

places they would otherwise not be. But now we have far better tools

:48:15.:48:17.

than that. We have academies, free schools. So many more devices to get

:48:18.:48:24.

people from all abilities and to put the resource into educating kids

:48:25.:48:28.

from all abilities. If you allow new schools to take the smartest kids,

:48:29.:48:31.

that's probably what they will do. They should not have that option. We

:48:32.:48:36.

should have all community schools. We are seeing new schools like Moss

:48:37.:48:41.

born Academy, once one of the worst schools in England, which is now one

:48:42.:48:44.

of the best performing in England. The Conservatives should build on

:48:45.:48:48.

their success, rather than go back to grammar schools, which I think is

:48:49.:48:52.

a bit of a trap. APPLAUSE

:48:53.:48:54.

The Chancellor said they were raising money for 148 new free

:48:55.:49:00.

schools, which would be free to select pupils based on academic

:49:01.:49:04.

ability, which is a grammar school, in effect.

:49:05.:49:07.

I think the point is that previously it has been against the law for

:49:08.:49:11.

selective schools to expand to open new free schools. I think we should

:49:12.:49:16.

have the maximum amount of choice in our education system. There is

:49:17.:49:19.

nothing wrong with wanting the best for our children and the most

:49:20.:49:23.

appropriate school place for them. That means some selective schools,

:49:24.:49:28.

but also faith schools, specialist mathematics schools, schools that

:49:29.:49:30.

specialise in the things that are right for our young people. Grammar

:49:31.:49:35.

schools is the question, not faith schools. The funding announced

:49:36.:49:39.

yesterday is for all schools, and we should have that choice. There is

:49:40.:49:44.

nothing wrong in my view in wanting to make sure that every child has

:49:45.:49:48.

the chance to have the best school place they possibly can. How can the

:49:49.:49:56.

government justify spending 320 million on new free schools, new

:49:57.:50:00.

grammar schools, when currently state schools are really struggling

:50:01.:50:06.

to make ends meet? Surely you are just papering over the cracks.

:50:07.:50:07.

APPLAUSE And you.

:50:08.:50:15.

Surely we should not be taking an elitist approach to this and should

:50:16.:50:19.

be funding schools on the whole, investing in children who don't have

:50:20.:50:22.

the opportunity to get to a grammar school. Do you think these 140 new

:50:23.:50:27.

schools will all turn into grammar schools, selective schools? We can't

:50:28.:50:32.

predict the future, but it's very likely. In Scotland, we do not have

:50:33.:50:41.

grammar schools, free schools or academies and we look at you in

:50:42.:50:48.

England and think you are a bit odd. White whose system works best? I am

:50:49.:50:54.

well up for debating that. Why are Scottish standards of education

:50:55.:51:01.

falling? That is the SNP's fault. Really! I could tell you why that is

:51:02.:51:08.

at great length, or I could just tell you the SNP have cut ?1.5

:51:09.:51:12.

billion from local services in five years, and if you do that local

:51:13.:51:16.

councils, schools will suffer as a consequence. Let's stick with the

:51:17.:51:21.

idea of grammar schools. The reason I am so opposed to grammar schools

:51:22.:51:25.

is that I can't stomach the fact that you might right of someone's

:51:26.:51:29.

life chances at the age of 11, or indeed the age of 14. -- you might

:51:30.:51:37.

write them off. Do you mind being a Standard Bearer? Like Kezia, I am

:51:38.:51:43.

Scottish so we never went through the grammar school thing. However,

:51:44.:51:49.

if you failed your 11 plus, you had years and years to catch up and move

:51:50.:51:56.

forward. I had a guy in my Scottish Highers class, who started in the

:51:57.:52:02.

medial and worked his way year. He was only able to do that because he

:52:03.:52:08.

was selected according to his ability. You are in favour of

:52:09.:52:11.

selection as it goes along. Absolutely. Karen talks about

:52:12.:52:17.

choice, but whose choice? The trouble with these 140 new schools

:52:18.:52:22.

is that it is the schools who will be choosing, not the parents

:52:23.:52:25.

choosing the schools. That seems the wrong way round. If you have a lot

:52:26.:52:30.

of selective schools, and a lot of faith schools are pretty selective,

:52:31.:52:34.

if you have a lot of selective schools and a lot of them

:52:35.:52:37.

increasingly under the Conservative government have become undercover

:52:38.:52:40.

selective schools, it means the schools next door becoming de facto

:52:41.:52:45.

secondary modern. Very few people choose the secondary modern. You

:52:46.:52:50.

might choose a compensate. So the mud -- the notion of choice seems

:52:51.:52:54.

wrong. And the question of money, exactly as you were saying, is that

:52:55.:53:00.

1 billion has been put into capital for schools but nearly all of it is

:53:01.:53:04.

going to this handful of hand-picked new free schools, and very little to

:53:05.:53:07.

schools that desperately need capital funding.

:53:08.:53:08.

APPLAUSE The woman in green.

:53:09.:53:18.

I am a school governor, and if the Government's position really is to

:53:19.:53:21.

give every child the best opportunity in education, why are we

:53:22.:53:25.

seeing such drastic cuts that are going to mean redundancies and

:53:26.:53:29.

bigger classes? It does not stack up. It doesn't. You have not spoken

:53:30.:53:37.

on this. Are you going to remove my gag for this question, David? I

:53:38.:53:44.

never tried to gag you. It is more than I could manage. Is that an

:53:45.:53:51.

invitation to speak. But not too long. Education is always a work in

:53:52.:53:56.

progress. Always we have to continue to work to improve our standards.

:53:57.:54:00.

Karen mentioned grammar schools gave every child a chance. They don't.

:54:01.:54:04.

They give a chance to those children whose parents can afford the tuition

:54:05.:54:08.

for the exams to get into those schools in the first place. I have

:54:09.:54:13.

to pick up on Kezia's point about the Scottish education system. Of

:54:14.:54:16.

course there is work to be done, we can agree on that. But we have

:54:17.:54:21.

record levels of attainment in Scotland. Not true. 93.3% of young

:54:22.:54:27.

people are going into education, training or employment when they

:54:28.:54:31.

leave school, and that is fantastic. 55% of young people are going to

:54:32.:54:35.

university, where we have free tuition. The rich and poor gap is

:54:36.:54:41.

absolutely disgraceful. There is work to be done on improving... You

:54:42.:54:47.

are less likely to get into university if you are poor and

:54:48.:54:54.

Scottish. The work is being done but we should not take away from the

:54:55.:54:57.

success of the education system, nor the fact that you give every child a

:54:58.:55:02.

chance by giving them access to free education, the pinnacle of Scottish

:55:03.:55:07.

education. We are in Sunderland, so let's go back to Sunderland and take

:55:08.:55:12.

a question from you, sir. I am all for grammar schools and it sounds

:55:13.:55:16.

like it is the left that is trying to bring everyone down while the

:55:17.:55:19.

government is trying to give everyone an opportunity to go to

:55:20.:55:24.

where they need to go. The left does not like school choice. They don't

:55:25.:55:31.

like toys in the NHS as well. Last question from Linda Wood. Should MPs

:55:32.:55:36.

be allowed to do paid work outside of Parliament? I suspect that was

:55:37.:55:45.

provoked by the news that the former Chancellor is getting ?650,000 a

:55:46.:55:50.

year, is that right, as an adviser to Blackrock, on top of his salary.

:55:51.:55:54.

Should that be allowed? Polly Toynbee, you first. No, and I think

:55:55.:55:59.

it has pretty much done in any chance he has for the future. That

:56:00.:56:05.

will be held against him. It is a huge political blunder. He says he

:56:06.:56:09.

is only doing four days a month. I would not have anybody investing in

:56:10.:56:14.

Blackrock if that is their idea of value for money. If you look at what

:56:15.:56:17.

he did to the economy, to the country, when he was in control

:56:18.:56:22.

himself, who would pay him that amount of money to advise anybody's

:56:23.:56:24.

company? APPLAUSE

:56:25.:56:31.

Karen Bradley, briefly, if you would.

:56:32.:56:37.

We should have people from all backgrounds and experiences in

:56:38.:56:40.

Parliament, and if that means they are earning additional money, as

:56:41.:56:43.

long as it is declared and the voters know about it, it is down to

:56:44.:56:47.

them and their voters at the election, as to whether the voters

:56:48.:56:53.

support them. And 650 grand, that is his affair. If it is declared and

:56:54.:56:58.

clear and open, we want people from all backgrounds. He is doing what?

:56:59.:57:07.

He is taking one day off work, isn't he? Kezia. I represent Edinburgh and

:57:08.:57:17.

the Lothians in the Scottish Parliament, 450,000 people I am

:57:18.:57:21.

supposed to give voice to. That is a full-time job. The Labour Party in

:57:22.:57:26.

Scotland is clearly opposed to second jobs, so much so that we are

:57:27.:57:29.

about to legislate against it. APPLAUSE

:57:30.:57:34.

Tasmina, are you in favour of legislation against second jobs?

:57:35.:57:43.

Our MP work is our primary job and I don't know how you could do your job

:57:44.:57:47.

properly if it was not a full-time job. Fraser Nelson. It is good to

:57:48.:57:54.

let politicians get out of it, but he is being paid as much as a

:57:55.:57:57.

premiership footballer. If he was one, that would be all right. Maybe

:57:58.:58:02.

you should cap it, you can't more than double your salary.

:58:03.:58:08.

And a reminder, we'll be in Birmingham for

:58:09.:58:18.

a Special Question Time on Monday March 27th,

:58:19.:58:21.

between 8.30 and 10pm, looking at Brexit when our audience

:58:22.:58:23.

will be able to put their questions on what Britain after Brexit might

:58:24.:58:26.

look like to some of the politicians at the heart of the process.

:58:27.:58:29.

To come and take part in our audience in Bognor Regis,

:58:30.:58:32.

Bangor or Birmingham go to our website, or

:58:33.:58:34.

If you are listening tonight on Radio 5 live, the debate goes

:58:35.:58:39.

Thanks to our panellists, particularly to Kezia, who nobly

:58:40.:58:58.

drove down from Edinburgh. We are grateful to you, and to all of you

:58:59.:59:02.

who came to Sunderland to take part. Until next Thursday, good night.

:59:03.:59:33.

The 24-year-old man has been charged with murder.

:59:34.:59:36.

You made sure an innocent man is charged!

:59:37.:59:39.

What gives you the right to say that he's innocent?

:59:40.:59:42.

David Dimbleby chairs topical debate from Sunderland.

On the panel are culture secretary Karen Bradley MP, shadow chancellor John McDonnell MP, SNP international trade spokesperson Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh MP, Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee, and Fraser Nelson, editor of The Spectator.


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