26/10/2017 Question Time


26/10/2017

David Dimbleby presents topical debate from Portsmouth. Panellists include Jacob Rees-Mogg, Shami Chakrabarti, Alex Salmond, Germaine Greer and Camilla Tominey.


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Transcript


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We are in Portsmouth tonight,

and this is Question Time.

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With us tonight, the Conservative

MP Jacob Rees-Mogg.

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Shami Chakrabarti, a member

of Jeremy Corbyn's top team,

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as Shadow Attorney General.

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The SNP's former First Minister

for Scotland, who led the campaign

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for Scottish independence in 2014,

Alex Salmond.

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The Political Editor of the Sunday

express, Camilla Tominey.

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And the feminist academic

and author, Germaine Greer.

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Thanks very much, and remember,

as always, you can join the argument

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from home using our hashtag, BBCQT,

on Twitter, Facebook.

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Text 83981.

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Push the red button and see

what others are saying.

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Our first question tonight

comes from Lisa Wheeler.

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Following Jared O'Mara's rightful

suspension by the Labour Party,

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is a public figure allowed a past?

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Is a public figure allowed a past?

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Jared O'Mara, of course,

was suspended the day before

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yesterday, or yesterday.

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Germaine Greer.

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Well, it's not just a past,

I think, in his case.

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It's creeping up

on him all the time.

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The assumption seems to be

that he was dreadful

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when he was younger and he's

getting all right now.

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In my experience, it's generally

the other way around.

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The younger are nicer

than the embittered eld,

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like me, whose tongues get

sharper and sharper.

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They never get my joke

at the airport when they say,

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"Have you got anything sharp

in your luggage", and I say,

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"Just my tongue".

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They never laugh!

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It's really irritating.

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I'm confused about

Jared O'Mara altogether.

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I'd like to know a bit more

about who else was in the running

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to stand as the candidate

in that seat.

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It seems to me a kind

of kamikaze operation.

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And I guess I hope he can

talk his way out of this.

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What, standing against

Nick Clegg was kamikaze?

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I used to vote Lib Dem,

in the days when I voted,

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and when there was a Lib Dem

to vote for.

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So don't be mean about Nick Clegg.

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But it was he who he

was standing against.

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Yes, I know, but I want to know

who the other people

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were who could have been nominated

for that seat.

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I mean, it's not as if it hasn't got

a pretty decent Labour history.

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I thought you said it was kamikaze.

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On the part of the party.

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Oh, what, to put him in?

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Would you think he would last,

judging from the way he has handled

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this little contretemps?

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I have no idea.

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Me either.

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Camilla Tominey.

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Well, apparently the party

didn't interview him

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for selection, and equally

there was some initial backtracking.

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Jeremy Corbyn supported his

continued membership on the Women

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and Equalities Committee,

which seemed absolutely nonsensical.

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These weren't just remarks that

were misogynistic, but also remarks

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that were homophobic.

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He's justified them in part

by saying they happened a long time

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ago, and his supporters have said,

"Look, he was a young man".

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He was in his 20s.

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He wasn't a teenager.

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Equally, some of the remarks that

have been reported in the blog,

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Guido Fawkes has led the way

with this expose, it's been

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suggested, and again it's

subject to investigation,

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that he made some very disparaging

remarks towards somebody

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in a nightclub just

eight months ago.

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So, no, I don't think

it is appropriate for him

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to remain in the party.

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He's been suspended pending

this investigation.

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But it does cast a new light

on the influence of people like this

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in the Labour Party,

the notion that there are some nasty

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elements that need to be rooted out.

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APPLAUSE

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Shami Chakrabarti.

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So Jared O'Mara has clearly done

some very bad things.

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He's made some appalling

remarks and there's no

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running away from that.

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But in relation to the question,

yes, public figures should be

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allowed to have a past.

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But the question is,

has this public figure changed?

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Now, my understanding

of the situation is that initial

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revelations were historic.

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They went back 15-odd years,

and he apologised fulsomely

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to the entire Parliamentary Labour

Party in person.

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And on that basis, on that

basis his apology was accepted and,

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you know, he was given

a second chance.

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Then new revelations

which are more recent

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and potentially more serious,

and so then, rightly,

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he has been suspended

pending an investigation.

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And just one final point, Camilla.

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There was no backtracking.

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I know it's been reported that

Jeremy Corbyn said he shouldn't

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resign from the Women

and Equalities Committee,

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but that's not true,

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and of course he did,

quite rightly, resign.

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Hang on, just clarify one thing.

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How long was it between the moment

when you found out about the latest

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allegations and the moment

when he was suspended

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from the Labour Party?

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I believe that was very fast.

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It's one thing to say,

"I was a troubled young man.

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"It was 15 years ago.

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"I'm very, very sorry.

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"It was a long time ago".

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That's fine.

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But have you really changed?

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And, of course, subsequent

revelations and allegations

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are more recent.

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So that's why he's suspended.

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Is he now out of the party for good?

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No, he is under investigation

in relation to...

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And can he work his

way back, or not?

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Well, there's got to be due process.

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I believe in being firm but I also

think we have to be fair.

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He's as out of the party

as Ken Livingstone is at the moment,

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which is suspended but not expelled.

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No, no, no, that's not true.

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I'm sorry but I am the Shadow

Attorney and that's not the same,

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because Jared O'Mara is currently

under investigation,

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and therefore these charges

have to be investigated.

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He's got to be looked at fairly.

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That's what we should do.

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OK.

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You, in the front, sir.

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I think the problem is,

with the rise of Momentum,

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we're going to get a lot

more of this.

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I think the Labour Party as we know

it should be frightened,

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because at the next election these

people are going to be dropped

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into seats without any selection,

and it could be the end of democracy

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as we know it.

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You're saying he got in without due

process, wasn't checked?

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Yes, yes.

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The woman, there.

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I was going to say that actually

the point of the question

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wasn't about selection,

although that obviously is a point.

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It wasn't about Momentum

and the Labour Party generally.

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It was a more general question

about whether or not people

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in the public figures and the public

face of society, politicians

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of all walks of life,

would be entitled to a past.

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It's not a singling out

of the Labour Party.

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No, fair enough.

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What's your view?

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Because you asked the question.

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My view, I agree with what Shami

says, actually he has a number

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of things he's done in the past,

and actually I think that we've

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all done things in our past

that we probably regret.

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Unless I'm on my own,

which I doubt it.

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But the question is, some

of the things he's done recently,

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the allegations that have been made

recently, I think I should

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be clear about that,

are actually quite worrying.

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And I think that that's the thing

that needs to be dealt with.

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Alex Salmond.

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I agree with the

questioner, absolutely.

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Probably the only thing that

George Bush Junior memorably ever

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said sensibly was when he was asked

about alcoholism and drugs.

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He said, "When I was young and

foolish, I was young and foolish".

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And that was a good reply.

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If this had just been Mr O'Mara's

past, as 21, online,

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I don't think we would be having it

as a question tonight.

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The more worrying

things are twofold.

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One, that the tweets and texts

are pretty nasty stuff, misogynist,

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anti-gay, homophobic.

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And they are not in the past.

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It's the present which is

catching up with Mr O'Mara.

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Another aspect is of course

what the gentleman raised about

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was he ever vetted,

because the suggestion seems

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that he didn't actually go

before a vetting panel,

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perhaps because that wasn't a seat

that Labour expected to win

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when they were selecting candidates

in a surprise election.

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But nonetheless, it's the sort

of thing you would expect a normal

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vetting panel to uncover.

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Where I disagree with the gentleman,

if I can, is I don't think this

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is about the Labour Party

or Momentum or any party.

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One of the most depressing things

about this sort of stuff

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is what I call the what-aboutery.

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Someone says something wrong

in one party and they say,

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"What about so-and-so

who said such and such,

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and this one said that..."

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Sexism is pretty endemic in society.

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We should recognise that.

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And once we recognise that

and recognise it's not a particular

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problem for a particular group

in a particular party,

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then I think it might help the

debate.

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But I do agree that Mr O'Mara has

the right to defend himself.

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He has the right to go in front

of the party enquiry.

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You know, he shouldn't be lynched

by a combination of Guido Fawkes,

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the Daily Mail, the Sunday express,

the Daily Express...

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APPLAUSE

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The Sun is lecturing

people on sexism.

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This is a substantial move forward.

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Had he been a Tory MP,

he would have been lynched

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by the Guardian, the Independent...

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APPLAUSE

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All right, Jacob Rees-Mogg.

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I agree with a lot of

what's been said before.

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I think Mr O'Mara is

entitled to due process.

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I think that politicians are allowed

to have done things in their youth

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that they wouldn't wish

to repeat now.

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But there must be limits.

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There must be some things

that we feel are so beyond the pale,

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and so indicative of a political

belief that they become inexcusable.

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And I would go further.

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I think we should be really worried,

as a society, with online abuse.

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And this is a particular

problem for female MPs.

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They get a level of abuse that

as a male MP I don't get,

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and I'm not entirely free

from controversy from time to time.

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But I simply do not get it.

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But people like Jess Phillips,

who is a friend of mine,

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is appallingly treated.

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She gets death threats,

she gets hate words

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addressed at her on Twitter.

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And so I think somebody

who is involved with that is doing

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something that is very

corrosive to society,

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and society needs to look

at itself and think,

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"How are we putting up with this

and how are we going to stop it"?

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Because if we don't stop

it, it will deter very

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good people from taking

up high-profile roles.

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APPLAUSE

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I will take our second question

from Zahid Khan, please.

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As Raqqa is recaptured

and freed from Isis,

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people who travelled from the UK

to fight for Isis will

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be looking to return.

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Should they be allowed back?

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All right, Jacob Rees-Mogg,

you start on this because it was

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a member of your party who made

remarks about this that

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were widely reported.

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Indeed, it was Rory Stewart

who made remarks about this.

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Again, I think people

are entitled to due process.

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I believe that one of

the fundamental freedoms

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that we have as Briton's

is that we have a rule

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of law and we are innocent

until proved guilty.

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And that should always apply.

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I think it's wrong to say that

people are guilty before

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you've got evidence.

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Rory Stewart said, let me just

quote him,

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"IS fighters are a

serious danger to us.

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"Unfortunately, the only way

of dealing with them will be,

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"in almost every

case, to kill them".

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I am not in favour of capital

punishment and I am certainly not

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in favour of the state taking life

without due process.

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APPLAUSE

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If you are at war,

people get killed, but we are not

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going to be fighting with these

people on a battlefield.

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To take them out using special

services, I think, would be illegal

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under UK and international law.

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But, we must make sure

that they are properly

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vetted when they get back.

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We must make sure that they have,

if they have committed

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crimes, that they are given

very long sentences.

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And if necessary, we must hold

them until we've had

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a chance to investigate,

which I would not

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normally be in favour of.

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But I think you can make

a reasonable guess that if you've

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gone out to fight for Isis,

you are a fairly undesirable person.

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You mean hold them indefinitely?

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Not indefinitely.

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Hold them for a limited time to try

and gather evidence so you can then

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bring them to trial.

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I think there's a reasonable

assumption that most people who have

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gone out there are likely

to have committed crimes

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whilst they are out there.

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But a reasonable assumption should

not deprive somebody

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of their liberty forever.

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OK, you, sir.

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Don't hold them anywhere. Don't let

them back in.

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Don't let them back in.

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And you, sir, in the front here.

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The moment they get on that plane

to go wherever they want to go,

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that's it, they lose all rights

as a British citizen.

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If they are going to kill,

potentially, British

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soldiers, then, no...

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They've lost their rights?

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They've lost it.

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Why should they?

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Germaine Greer.

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That's two people saying

they've lost their rights,

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don't let them back.

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Which doesn't mean that we can

simply murder them.

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Because illegal killing of people

is what's known as murder.

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But we don't know that

they did murder us.

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What we know is that they went

to fight for Isis.

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We don't know why they went

to fight for Isis.

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But we seem to believe that

if you go to fight for Isis,

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the outcome is that you'll be

loyal to Isis.

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This isn't actually

the evidence that we have had.

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The situation when they get

there is phantasmagoric.

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It's dreadful.

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And we need to debrief them.

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We need to know what's going on.

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They have to talk to us.

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APPLAUSE

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Shami Chakrabarti.

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This is slightly strange for me,

perhaps, because we are now

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about ten minutes into

Question Time and we are on to

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the second question,

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and once more I'm going

to completely agree

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with Jacob Rees-Mogg.

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Don't worry, don't worry.

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I'm not at all worried.

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It's no indictment.

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On this, Jacob is completely right.

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to

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We believe in the rule of law.

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We believe in fundamental rights

and freedoms and we do not take

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people out rather than arrest them

and put them on trial.

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So what Rory Stewart said...

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Sorry, just to go back

to Rory Stewart, what he said,

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you'd take issue with?

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You know, I don't know what exactly

he meant and I don't

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want to have a go at Rory Stewart,

but the point is -

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you can sometimes use lethal force.

0:15:120:15:13

As Jacob said, you can use

it on the battlefield.

0:15:130:15:17

You can even do it on the street

of your town in the UK,

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if it is strictly necessary

to save life.

0:15:200:15:22

That is lawful under

English criminal law

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and under international law,

but we are not Isis.

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We believe in the rule of law and,

do you know what else,

0:15:290:15:32

even from a sort of practical

national security and world

0:15:320:15:35

security point of view,

Jermaine's point is very important.

0:15:350:15:37

We need intelligence.

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We want to know why these people

went in the first place.

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We want to know what intelligence

they bring back about other people

0:15:430:15:46

who are at liberty in the UK.

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So there are all sorts of reasons

why you can't just look the other

0:15:490:15:52

way and pretend that it's good

riddance to bad rubbish because it

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doesn't work like that.

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APPLAUSE

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We go back to you, sir,

the man up there, at the back,

0:16:010:16:04

who said that they should just

simply not be allowed

0:16:040:16:07

back into the UK.

0:16:070:16:08

It's not very hard

why they went, is it?

0:16:080:16:10

It's not what?

0:16:100:16:11

They went for one reason.

0:16:110:16:12

They went to Syria for one reason,

to murder infidels, you know,

0:16:120:16:15

the local population.

0:16:150:16:16

There are people who may

have been brainwashed.

0:16:160:16:18

There may have been people who may

have gone as romantic Isis brides,

0:16:180:16:21

who then very quickly changed.

0:16:210:16:23

There are all sorts

of things at play here.

0:16:230:16:26

But the point is, the world is

shrinking and it's interconnected.

0:16:260:16:30

You know, people are a danger to us

over there as well as over

0:16:300:16:33

here and we cannot turn our back

on our responsibilities at law.

0:16:330:16:36

Camilla.

0:16:360:16:37

I was going to say, isn't one

of the problems and why there's

0:16:370:16:41

public frustration that's been

echoed here is that some

0:16:410:16:43

of the existing laws just don't seem

to be successful in bringing these

0:16:430:16:46

people to justice.

0:16:460:16:48

So temporary exclusion orders,

for instance, I think

0:16:480:16:50

only one's been used.

0:16:500:16:50

Equally, there are arguments that

counteract the efforts that

0:16:500:16:53

are being made to bring these

people to task.

0:16:530:16:57

There was a suggestion, in a Times

leader earlier in the week,

0:16:570:17:00

that we should reinvigorate the law

of treason and we should make

0:17:000:17:03

example of these people and say -

look, you've committed a crime

0:17:030:17:06

against everything that Britain

stands for, Britishness itself.

0:17:060:17:10

APPLAUSE

0:17:100:17:12

I don't agree with an eye

for an eye, I equally found

0:17:120:17:15

Rory Stewart's comments

uncomfortable because drone

0:17:150:17:17

strikes usually involve

some collateral damage.

0:17:170:17:22

We look at the recent killing

of the so-called 'White Widow',

0:17:220:17:25

Sally Jones, we still don't know

what's happened to

0:17:250:17:27

her 12-year-old son.

0:17:270:17:28

Quite.

0:17:280:17:29

Unfortunately, he may well have

been killed with her.

0:17:290:17:33

I'm sorry, but a 12-year-old doesn't

choose to be in that situation.

0:17:330:17:36

Of course his mother was culpable,

but I'm not comfortable

0:17:360:17:38

with the collateral damage that

could be children's deaths.

0:17:380:17:42

What Mr Khan was saying was, should

they be allowed back into the UK?

0:17:420:17:45

That was your question, wasn't it?

0:17:450:17:47

If they're allowed back, fine,

but let's actually try

0:17:470:17:49

them with something -

No, should they be allowed

0:17:490:17:51

back is the question?

0:17:510:17:52

They should be allowed back -

Under arrest protection.

0:17:520:17:54

They should be facing due process.

0:17:540:17:56

But what the Government needs

to sort out is, under what basis?

0:17:560:17:58

What are they being tried for?

0:17:580:18:00

OK, you sir.

0:18:000:18:02

They've aligned themselves with

a force that is against the West.

0:18:020:18:04

It's declared war on the West,

we are the West.

0:18:040:18:09

They've aligned themselves with that

force and I agree with you,

0:18:090:18:12

I agree with what you said,

that the laws around treachery

0:18:120:18:15

need to be rebooted.

0:18:150:18:16

You know, Tony Blair took

those away, they need

0:18:160:18:18

to be tried as traitors,

in my book.

0:18:180:18:21

A treason law which would mean that

whatever their reasons,

0:18:210:18:24

if they'd been shown to have joined

Isis, they would be imprisoned,

0:18:240:18:27

is that what you're saying?

0:18:270:18:28

Absolutely, yeah.

0:18:280:18:29

You would.

0:18:290:18:30

Alex Salmond.

0:18:300:18:32

It's not - if I can

say to the gentleman -

0:18:320:18:34

quite as simple as that.

0:18:340:18:36

One of the great mistakes I think

of many, many mistakes that has been

0:18:360:18:39

made in our Middle East policy

is that we're not giving sufficient

0:18:390:18:43

support to the Kurds,

who have been by far

0:18:430:18:45

the most reliable allies.

0:18:450:18:46

Who have the best track

record of having...

0:18:460:18:49

where they control having a society

which allows people of all religions

0:18:490:18:52

to co-exist peacefully.

0:18:520:18:56

Now, a Kurdish fighter,

there's volunteers who have gone

0:18:560:18:58

to fight for the Kurds,

some have been on television

0:18:580:19:00

over the last week.

0:19:000:19:01

These people already and,

almost certainly over

0:19:010:19:03

the next few months,

will be in conflict

0:19:030:19:09

with the UK-backed Iraqi government

because it's almost certain there's

0:19:090:19:12

going to be armed conflict

escalated between the Iraqi

0:19:120:19:14

government and the Kurds.

0:19:140:19:19

If one of the UK volunteers has gone

to fight for the Kurds against Isis

0:19:190:19:23

is then drawn into that conflict,

would he then be in the same -

0:19:230:19:26

He's not going to come back

and blow us up on a bus.

0:19:260:19:35

Well, but you were saying this

because they were taking

0:19:350:19:37

arms against our allies,

arms against the West.

0:19:370:19:39

This is not as simple.

0:19:390:19:40

Interestingly enough, nobody -

I don't know about the audience -

0:19:400:19:43

but certainly in the panel,

has agreed with Rory Stewart

0:19:430:19:46

they should just be killed.

0:19:460:19:47

For the very obvious

point, as Camilla made,

0:19:470:19:49

you don't just kill them,

you tend to kill other people

0:19:490:19:51

with them, like the 12-year-old

who may or may not be dead.

0:19:510:19:54

Which is quite an interesting thing

for us to think about.

0:19:540:19:57

We actually don't know

if an American drone,

0:19:570:19:59

but still approved by the UK,

killed a 12-year-old

0:19:590:20:01

British citizen.

0:20:010:20:02

The Prime Minister says -

oh, well, I can't talk about that.

0:20:020:20:05

Well, you know, I think

we have to talk about that.

0:20:050:20:08

APPLAUSE

0:20:080:20:09

If you ask in general,

what I think should happen,

0:20:090:20:11

is British citizens should be

brought back, they should be put

0:20:110:20:14

on trial and they should go

through due process of law

0:20:140:20:16

and we should establish that

so that we can say -

0:20:160:20:19

look, we operate under the rule

of law and a judicial system,

0:20:190:20:22

we don't just kill people

and we don't really,

0:20:220:20:24

Jacob, if I may say so -

and I'm sure you wouldn't if you're

0:20:240:20:27

elevated to these positions -

have Government ministers who block

0:20:270:20:30

that sort of thing out.

0:20:300:20:31

The woman there.

0:20:310:20:32

Yes, you say about allowing

them to come back in.

0:20:320:20:35

You know, they've been out,

they've been fighting for Isis.

0:20:350:20:37

Where are we going to detain these

individuals when they do come back?

0:20:370:20:40

We've already got a prison system

that's already overflowing.

0:20:400:20:43

We also had our detention centre,

which is locale to here, close.

0:20:430:20:47

So where would we put these people

while we wait on trial becase again,

0:20:470:20:51

as the panel were saying,

they've got human rights,

0:20:510:20:53

but they are coming over and back

here to come back and possibly

0:20:530:20:56

blow us up.

0:20:560:20:57

The man at the back.

0:20:570:20:59

Let's just hear more

members of the audience.

0:20:590:21:00

You, sir, with the spectacles

and then you in green.

0:21:000:21:03

Yes, the man at the very back there.

0:21:030:21:08

We're hearing about this

in the future tense,

0:21:080:21:09

but my understandin is that

all these people are already back.

0:21:090:21:13

So, where are they?

0:21:130:21:14

OK.

0:21:140:21:15

And you in green.

0:21:150:21:16

I don't understand why people

are making excuses for them.

0:21:160:21:18

They've joined a death

cult against us.

0:21:180:21:20

You've seen the videos.

0:21:200:21:21

Well, hopefully, you haven't seen

the videos when they slaughtered

0:21:210:21:24

and beheaded journalists.

0:21:240:21:25

They've supported that,

so why would you want people

0:21:250:21:27

supporting that group back

in the country?

0:21:270:21:32

APPLAUSE

0:21:320:21:34

So what would you do?

0:21:340:21:36

What would I do?

0:21:360:21:37

Yeah, just not let them back in.

0:21:370:21:40

They're not coming back,

you've made your decision.

0:21:400:21:43

OK.

0:21:430:21:44

Are they not dangerous

wherever they are?

0:21:440:21:46

Yeah -

Not to us.

0:21:460:21:49

They are to us.

0:21:490:21:50

Do you want the danger here?

0:21:500:21:52

Do you want them far away from us,

which the majority will.

0:21:520:21:55

Why would you want them back

when you've seen the atrocities that

0:21:550:21:58

have been caused by these people?

0:21:580:22:00

Because the world is tiny

and we have to take our

0:22:000:22:04

responsibility for our citizens,

however wicked they have

0:22:040:22:06

been in the world.

0:22:060:22:10

APPLAUSE

0:22:100:22:12

Briefly Jacob, just a last point.

0:22:120:22:14

Just two thoughts.

0:22:140:22:15

One is, that if we lower ourselves

to the level of Isis,

0:22:150:22:18

we destroy our own values more

effectively than

0:22:180:22:20

they can do it to us.

0:22:200:22:23

APPLAUSE

0:22:230:22:25

The second is, that we actively want

to get them back and lock them up.

0:22:250:22:30

I agree with Baroness Chakrabarti,

that we need to have them in British

0:22:300:22:33

prisons so they are out

of the ability to commit any

0:22:330:22:36

harm on the rest of us.

0:22:360:22:37

They are just as

radicalised in prisons.

0:22:370:22:39

At our expense.

0:22:390:22:40

They are at our expense

because they're British

0:22:400:22:42

to start with and therefore,

to some extent, it's

0:22:420:22:44

our responsibility.

0:22:440:22:46

But our country will be safer

if these people are in prison

0:22:460:22:56

and I want to see them

locked up for the crimes

0:22:570:22:59

that they have committed.

0:22:590:23:00

Yes, you.

0:23:000:23:01

What about the people that

have come back to this

0:23:010:23:04

country and have been lost

in the system and re-offended?

0:23:040:23:06

OK.

0:23:060:23:07

The audience makes

a good point as well

0:23:070:23:09

about radicalisation in prisons.

0:23:090:23:10

Yeah.

0:23:100:23:11

And the danger that that poses.

0:23:110:23:13

APPLAUSE

0:23:130:23:14

Our current detention system has

been largely criticised for causing

0:23:140:23:16

minor offenders to be,

you know, put into more serious

0:23:160:23:19

situations of crime.

0:23:190:23:22

Isn't that risk going to get higher

if they are mingling with people

0:23:220:23:25

who are possibly trained

Isis fighters?

0:23:250:23:28

We don't know, we haven't seen

what's happened over there.

0:23:280:23:31

You know, religiously radical.

0:23:310:23:34

We don't know what they're

saying in the prisons.

0:23:340:23:37

They could be radicalising even more

people who already have

0:23:370:23:40

criminal backgrounds.

0:23:400:23:41

All right, we will go on.

0:23:410:23:43

Have you had words with your

Foreign Office Minister

0:23:430:23:46

about what he said about killing -

I haven't spoken

0:23:460:23:48

to him recently, no.

0:23:480:23:49

What would you say to him

if you came across him?

0:23:490:23:52

Well, we might talk

about the weather, you never know!

0:23:520:23:54

I haven't discussed it with him.

0:23:540:23:56

I don't share his view.

0:23:560:23:59

I don't think the right approach

is for the British Government

0:23:590:24:01

to break our own law.

0:24:010:24:02

It's not lawful.

0:24:020:24:03

OK, we'll go on to another question.

0:24:030:24:06

Just before we do, we're going to be

in Kilmarnock next Thursday

0:24:060:24:09

and Croydon the week after that.

0:24:090:24:11

On the screen you can see

the details of how to come

0:24:110:24:14

and be in the audience.

0:24:140:24:15

But I want to go on to a question

from Sheena Brown, please.

0:24:150:24:18

Sheena Brown.

0:24:180:24:21

Should Mark Carney and the BBC admit

Brexit will happen and get

0:24:210:24:25

behind Britain instead

of deprecating our nation

0:24:250:24:28

and continually weakening

our bargaining stance?

0:24:280:24:29

Here, here.

0:24:290:24:35

APPLAUSE

0:24:350:24:43

Well, that admonition of course

comes from something that

0:24:430:24:51

Jacob Rees-Mogg himself said this

week when he called Mark Carney "one

0:24:510:24:54

of the enemies of Brexit.

0:24:540:24:55

He's opposed it consistently"

and called the BBC "the Brexit

0:24:550:24:57

Bashing Corporation."

0:24:570:24:58

Alex Salmond, is that

how you see things?

0:24:580:25:00

No.

0:25:000:25:05

I disagree with the

question from the lady.

0:25:050:25:09

What weakened Britain's negotiating

stance was to invoke Article 50

0:25:090:25:16

and to go into a time-limited

negotiation where we couldn't

0:25:160:25:18

afford to have no deal.

0:25:180:25:20

As soon as we did that,

we placed every single card

0:25:200:25:25

in the hand of the other 27

European Union countries,

0:25:250:25:28

represented by Michel Barnier.

0:25:280:25:29

I don't think...

0:25:290:25:32

I mean, I think we could

have the Angel Gabriel negotiating

0:25:320:25:34

for us and we wouldn't get

a decent deal.

0:25:340:25:40

I actually rate David Davis rather

highly, I think he's able,

0:25:400:25:50

but his disagreement

with the Prime Minister this week

0:25:540:25:56

exemplified the problem he's got.

0:25:560:25:57

On the one hand, he has to say

and pretend that no deal is possible

0:25:570:26:01

or even semi attractive and then

he has to say it might go

0:26:010:26:04

down to the 59th minute

and second of the 59th hour,

0:26:040:26:07

or whatever it is.

0:26:070:26:08

And then he has to say,

well, of course we said

0:26:080:26:11

there was going to be a vote

in the House of Commons

0:26:110:26:13

before that happened,

which technically of course then

0:26:130:26:15

wouldn't be possible.

0:26:150:26:16

What it exemplifies is this

time-limited negotiation,

0:26:160:26:19

which we blundered into,

without securing a positional

0:26:190:26:21

deal at the end of it

because all of the time the clock

0:26:210:26:24

is working for the other 27.

0:26:240:26:26

That's what's weakened the UK's

negotiating position,

0:26:260:26:29

not anything that the Government

or the Bank of England has said.

0:26:290:26:32

And the BBC?

0:26:320:26:34

Well, I mean, of course

I always defend the BBC!

0:26:340:26:37

I don't remember that

during the Scottish referendum?

0:26:370:26:40

That's the whole point.

0:26:400:26:42

Did you defend the BBC

then, I don't think so?

0:26:420:26:45

Let me put this way,

if I can give you half a compliment.

0:26:450:26:49

I think the BBC were much less bias

during the Brexit referendum

0:26:490:26:52

than they were during the Scottish

referendum, there you go.

0:26:520:26:54

Right.

0:26:540:27:01

Shami Chakrabarti, you go next

and I'll come to you in a moment.

0:27:010:27:05

With respect to the questioner,

I do think that on this

0:27:050:27:07

one the Bank of England

and the BBC are a distraction

0:27:070:27:10

from the real problem here.

0:27:100:27:11

They are not responsible

for negotiating Brexit,

0:27:110:27:13

it's the Government and it's

the Government that is failing

0:27:130:27:15

in that responsibility.

0:27:150:27:17

APPLAUSE

0:27:170:27:19

Mark Carney...

0:27:190:27:22

We know that David Dimbleby

is all powerful, but he is not

0:27:220:27:25

negotiating Britain's exit

from the EU.

0:27:250:27:27

The Government is divided.

0:27:270:27:28

The Government is chaotic.

0:27:280:27:31

The Government has no plan,

and we are in jeopardy as a result.

0:27:310:27:35

Jacob Rees-Mogg.

0:27:350:27:36

Thank you.

0:27:360:27:39

Well, first of all, why I have

criticised the governor of the Bank

0:27:390:27:42

of England and continue to do so,

is that during the Brexit referendum

0:27:420:27:45

he made the Bank's views of Brexit

clear in a way that he never does

0:27:450:27:49

in a general election.

0:27:490:27:50

He didn't give his view earlier this

year on what Mr Corbyn's

0:27:500:27:53

economics plans would do

to the United Kingdom,

0:27:530:27:55

but he did express a view on Brexit.

0:27:550:27:57

That seemed to me to politicise

the Bank of England

0:27:570:28:00

and besmirch its reputation.

0:28:000:28:03

We trust the Bank of England to be

apolitical, to be independent,

0:28:030:28:06

not to be the creature of whoever

happens to be Chancellor.

0:28:060:28:09

What was it he said that

particularly offended you?

0:28:090:28:12

I mean, he said the risk to leave

could possibly include a technical

0:28:120:28:15

recession, didn't he?

0:28:150:28:16

That's right.

0:28:160:28:19

He warned that there would be

a technical recession,

0:28:190:28:21

but that is a recession.

0:28:210:28:22

A technical recession isn't

a recession, is it, actually?

0:28:220:28:25

It's a temporary recession,

I think, isn't it?

0:28:250:28:34

All recessions have so far been

temporary in the whole of history.

0:28:340:28:37

Well, it depends on the timescale.

0:28:370:28:38

A technical recession is two

quarters of GDP declining.

0:28:380:28:40

He said that, he was

completely wrong.

0:28:400:28:42

The Treasury was worse,

it said there would be

0:28:420:28:45

between 500,000 and 800,000 jobs

lost purely on a vote to leave,

0:28:450:28:48

not actually anything happening.

0:28:480:28:49

And the BBC?

0:28:490:28:50

Dear Old Auntie.

0:28:500:28:53

The BBC, how many times have

we heard "in spite of Brexit?"

0:28:530:28:56

In spite of Brexit, a record

three million jobs have

0:28:560:28:59

been created since 2010.

0:28:590:29:03

In spite of Brexit, unemployment

is at its lowest level since 1975.

0:29:030:29:05

What kind of jobs?

0:29:050:29:06

In spite of Brexit, England defeated

the West Indies at Lords.

0:29:060:29:09

I mean it is...

0:29:090:29:13

APPLAUSE

0:29:130:29:15

..it is again and again.

0:29:150:29:16

Sorry, can you actually specify

an occasion when you've heard that?

0:29:160:29:22

You say that, but have

you got a quotation?

0:29:220:29:24

I've got some other quotations

which I was going to get on to.

0:29:240:29:27

Have you got a quotation saying,

"in spite of Brexit?"

0:29:270:29:29

Well, you just have

to listen to the news.

0:29:290:29:31

That's a generalisation,

have you got a specific...

0:29:310:29:33

Well, no.

0:29:330:29:34

I think anyone who has listened

to the news recently

0:29:340:29:37

has heard the "in spite

of Brexit" terminology.

0:29:370:29:39

Are you sure?

0:29:390:29:40

I think the audience knows that.

0:29:400:29:41

Yes.

0:29:410:29:42

Of course they have.

0:29:420:29:43

Yes, the audience seems to agree.

0:29:430:29:45

No, they're shaking

their heads there.

0:29:450:29:46

You've found one!

0:29:460:29:49

The Sun carried out a survey...

0:29:490:29:51

Debate's over!

0:29:510:29:53

This is quite important

because the Andrew Marr Show has

0:29:530:29:55

had 84% of its people

on being anti-Brexit.

0:29:550:30:00

129 interviewees

against, 33 in favour.

0:30:000:30:05

The balance of the BBC

has been against.

0:30:050:30:08

And actually, I disagree

with something Alex Salmond said.

0:30:080:30:10

I think during the referendum

campaign the BBC behaved very well

0:30:100:30:13

and tried extremely hard

to be independent.

0:30:130:30:16

It got such a shock when we voted

to leave that since then I think it

0:30:160:30:20

has behaved very badly.

0:30:200:30:22

And I think that the situation

in terms of negotiations is exactly

0:30:220:30:27

what you would expect.

0:30:270:30:29

We have the two-year time limit,

which if we hadn't exercised Article

0:30:290:30:32

50, the vote would simply not

have been implemented.

0:30:320:30:34

The government had to exercise

Article 50 and is now

0:30:340:30:37

getting on with it.

0:30:370:30:38

And of course it's an argument.

0:30:380:30:39

That's the nature

of the negotiation.

0:30:390:30:40

The person there on the left, and

then I will come to you, Germaine.

0:30:400:30:45

You say about the Bank of England,

Mark Carney getting involved,

0:30:450:30:48

and how he shouldn't be involved.

0:30:480:30:50

But actually he wouldn't get

0:30:500:30:51

involved in a general election

because if we're not

0:30:510:30:53

happy with a government,

five years from now

0:30:530:30:55

we can vote them out.

0:30:550:30:56

With Brexit, this is

an entire lifetime.

0:30:560:30:58

It's going to take a lifetime to fix

this situation, however it goes.

0:30:580:31:01

Which makes it even more important

that he should have been impartial.

0:31:010:31:04

And the man up there.

0:31:040:31:08

With respect, I think the BBC have

been biased against Brexit.

0:31:080:31:10

I think that during the referendum

campaign what you often did

0:31:100:31:14

was you got someone very intelligent

to speak on behalf of Remain

0:31:140:31:18

and you managed to get

someone less intelligent

0:31:180:31:20

to speak on behalf of Leave.

0:31:200:31:22

I personally believe...

0:31:220:31:24

LAUGHTER

0:31:240:31:28

Not you, Jacob!

0:31:280:31:29

Germaine Greer.

0:31:290:31:36

Well, it's a funny old world,

as Mrs Thatcher said.

0:31:360:31:39

We don't really like

bankers very much.

0:31:390:31:42

They seem to have got us

into a terrible mess,

0:31:420:31:44

and by way of getting us out of it,

they got us to pay for it,

0:31:440:31:48

and it's going on like this.

0:31:480:31:50

We don't seem to have enough

money to do any thing.

0:31:500:31:52

But the crowning glory comes

when we can't find a citizen to run

0:31:520:31:56

the bloody Bank of England,

we have to go to Canada.

0:31:560:31:58

Now, why did we do that?

0:31:580:32:00

Why didn't you get the job?

0:32:000:32:02

LAUGHTER

0:32:020:32:05

As the gentleman at the back said,

I'm not intelligent enough.

0:32:050:32:07

LAUGHTER

0:32:070:32:11

I said you are intelligent.

0:32:110:32:12

Camilla Tominey.

0:32:120:32:17

On Mark Carney, I think the main

criticism is he got his economic

0:32:170:32:20

forecasting on Brexit wrong.

0:32:200:32:21

He talked about the recession,

regardless of whether it was

0:32:210:32:23

technical or actual,

and in fact there's been five

0:32:230:32:25

consecutive periods of growth.

0:32:250:32:29

I think growth is up 1.9%,

which was not what the Project Fear

0:32:290:32:32

brigade were predicting.

0:32:320:32:33

On Brexit in general, BBC bias,

I think there's two Brexiters

0:32:330:32:36

on this panel and three Remainers.

0:32:360:32:38

I don't know whether you've had

a panel that's been majority

0:32:380:32:40

Brexiters, have you, David?

0:32:400:32:45

We have.

0:32:450:32:46

How about the average intelligence?

0:32:460:32:47

Average intelligence,

I can't comment on at all,

0:32:470:32:49

being a lowly journalist,

rather than a lofty politician.

0:32:490:32:51

But I would suggest that actually

when we speak to our readers on both

0:32:510:32:54

sides of the democratic divide,

mostly people just say,

0:32:540:32:57

"Will you get on with it.

0:32:570:32:58

"Just get on with Brexit.

0:32:580:33:01

"Stop posturing, stop fighting

between yourselves".

0:33:010:33:04

APPLAUSE

0:33:040:33:08

The notion of it being

a minority as well, overwhelmingly

0:33:080:33:11

in Parliament people voted

to have the referendum

0:33:110:33:13

in the first place.

0:33:130:33:15

Overwhelmingly in Parliament,

people voted to trigger Article 50.

0:33:150:33:17

Overwhelmingly.

0:33:170:33:18

80% or more of the electorate voted

for parties that supported Brexit.

0:33:180:33:21

So just do it.

0:33:210:33:27

But the government has to just do

it, not Mark Carney and not the BBC.

0:33:270:33:31

It's not just the government,

is it, Shami?

0:33:310:33:33

It's also the EU, who,

despite this conciliatory offer

0:33:330:33:35

from the Florence speech are digging

in their heels.

0:33:350:33:37

Even though a deal for them

is mutually beneficial.

0:33:370:33:39

This is what is lost

in a lot of the rhetoric.

0:33:390:33:42

Do the German car industry seriously

want to shoot themselves

0:33:420:33:44

in their own feet by not having

a free-trade agreement with the UK?

0:33:440:33:47

That would cost the German car

industry alone 29,000 jobs.

0:33:470:33:51

APPLAUSE

0:33:510:33:58

The trouble is, the Remain argument,

I'm afraid, it fails,

0:33:580:34:00

because everybody knows deep down

that if we do get this cake

0:34:000:34:03

and eat it scenario,

we can have free trade with Europe

0:34:030:34:06

and we can have free trade

with the rest of the world.

0:34:060:34:09

That is infinitely better.

0:34:090:34:10

But it's your Chancellor

of the Exchequer, isn't it,

0:34:100:34:12

who says a cloud of uncertainty over

the current negotiations acts

0:34:120:34:15

as a dampener on the economy?

0:34:150:34:18

This is such an opportunity.

0:34:180:34:19

When we leave, we can

set our own tariffs.

0:34:190:34:22

Tariffs set at the European

level make food, clothing

0:34:220:34:24

and footwear more expensive.

0:34:240:34:26

They are the highest

proportion of the poorest

0:34:260:34:28

in society's expenditure.

0:34:280:34:30

If we can get rid of those tariffs,

we help the worst off in society.

0:34:300:34:34

That is a real benefit.

0:34:340:34:37

So why does your Chancellor

of the Exchequer not accept this

0:34:370:34:40

and sound so gloomy?

0:34:400:34:40

Because all the Treasury forecasts

assume that instead of cutting

0:34:400:34:43

tariffs on the rest of the world,

we raise tariffs against the EU.

0:34:430:34:46

That is completely insane.

0:34:460:34:48

The Treasury's forecasts are even

worse than the Bank of England.

0:34:480:34:50

Yes, you, sir.

0:34:500:34:54

Can I just say to Mr Salmond, you

are being deliberately disingenuous.

0:34:540:34:57

You say we should have gone

to the EU and sorted something out

0:34:570:35:00

before we activated Article 50.

0:35:000:35:02

You know as well as I do

that we weren't in a position

0:35:020:35:05

to negotiate until Article

50 was activated.

0:35:050:35:06

Yes.

0:35:060:35:07

I think at that stage,

this is earlier this year,

0:35:070:35:10

the EU were desperate to have

Article 50 invoked.

0:35:100:35:12

There's no reason for

the government to do it.

0:35:120:35:14

The government should not

have invoked Article 50

0:35:140:35:16

until the transitional

period was agreed.

0:35:160:35:18

But we couldn't do anything

with Europe until we

0:35:180:35:20

activated Article 50.

0:35:200:35:21

It's like who blinks first.

0:35:210:35:23

And unfortunately it

was the UK Government.

0:35:230:35:25

Why did they do it?

0:35:250:35:26

They didn't have

to invoke Article 50.

0:35:260:35:29

All right.

0:35:290:35:30

I voted to trigger Article 50.

0:35:300:35:32

They voted precisely

for that reason.

0:35:320:35:35

Let's not go back over that ground.

0:35:350:35:37

Let's go to another

subject from Alice Moore.

0:35:370:35:39

Your question, please.

0:35:390:35:41

Who should be held accountable

for low and decreasing numbers

0:35:410:35:45

of poor and non-white students

at Oxford and Cambridge?

0:35:450:35:48

Who should be held responsible?

0:35:480:35:49

We got the figures the other day,

decreasing numbers of poor

0:35:490:35:52

and non-white students

at Oxford and Cambridge.

0:35:520:35:56

Germaine Greer.

0:35:560:35:58

This is a really difficult question.

0:35:580:36:02

I mean, the very suggestion

that we've had to heed,

0:36:020:36:05

that we could lower the points

required at A level in order

0:36:050:36:09

to allow poorer students to attend

the elite universities is insulting

0:36:090:36:12

to them, apart from anything else.

0:36:120:36:18

That is not the problem there.

0:36:180:36:20

Part of the problem is that these

universities are not actually

0:36:200:36:23

particularly merciful to people

who come from a different social

0:36:230:36:27

class to the middle-class

that they are at ease with.

0:36:270:36:30

I mean, we've all heard the stories

of the girl who came to Newnham

0:36:300:36:36

who didn't know how to sit

in the bath.

0:36:360:36:40

She sat with her back at the tap end

and everybody sneered

0:36:400:36:43

at her because she didn't

have a bath at home.

0:36:430:36:46

They didn't go skiing

on their holidays, she had never

0:36:460:36:50

been abroad, and all that

sort of thing.

0:36:500:36:52

They are very snobbish places.

0:36:520:36:53

But you can still crack it.

0:36:530:36:55

I mean, our real problem here,

I think, is that we don't have

0:36:550:36:58

enough scholarships.

0:36:580:37:02

For the last 40 years,

when I was still a fellow

0:37:020:37:05

at Newnham, I was saying,

0:37:050:37:06

"There's only one way we'll get

the right students".

0:37:060:37:08

We have to do what we have to do

with everything else.

0:37:080:37:11

We have to buy them.

0:37:110:37:12

And we have to give them

a deal that is wonderful,

0:37:120:37:15

where their fees are paid,

they are well housed,

0:37:150:37:17

have travel allowances,

they have books, and we actually get

0:37:170:37:20

the best out of them.

0:37:200:37:21

Instead, they struggle.

0:37:210:37:23

They struggle against trying

to read the encoded social

0:37:230:37:26

language of the institution.

0:37:260:37:29

And the institution is probably not

the thing you think it is.

0:37:290:37:32

You know, Cambridge is,

what, the second research

0:37:320:37:34

university in the world?

0:37:340:37:38

But that doesn't reflect

the undergraduate body at all.

0:37:380:37:42

And it certainly doesn't

reflect the teaching.

0:37:420:37:44

One of the things that drives me

crazy is when you go to university,

0:37:440:37:48

you don't get taught by the people

you've heard about who teach

0:37:480:37:51

at that university.

0:37:510:37:52

You get taught by

a graduate student.

0:37:520:37:53

This is not the deal.

0:37:530:37:55

This doesn't justify the enormous

amount of money that we have

0:37:550:37:57

to spend on the Russell Group.

0:37:570:38:01

There's one other thing.

0:38:010:38:02

Is it the case that some secondary,

state secondary schools

0:38:020:38:04

are pessimistic about getting

their pupils into the Russell Group

0:38:040:38:07

universities and Oxford

and Cambridge, and don't actually

0:38:070:38:12

push them, don't offer them

that as an opportunity,

0:38:120:38:15

but say, that's not

for you, for the reasons

0:38:150:38:17

you've been describing.

0:38:170:38:20

Look, that may be the case.

0:38:200:38:21

But I think they're also quite

likely to know that the students

0:38:210:38:24

in question would be

happier somewhere else.

0:38:240:38:26

There are other universities that

are more encouraging.

0:38:260:38:29

Cambridge can be

profoundly dismissive.

0:38:290:38:33

If you haven't read the right books,

if your family doesn't have books

0:38:330:38:36

in the house and so forth,

you can gradually feel that

0:38:360:38:39

you are permanently disadvantaged.

0:38:390:38:44

And that is true now,

is it, still true now?

0:38:440:38:46

Well, I haven't taught at Cambridge

for a while and I didn't teach

0:38:460:38:49

that way when I did.

0:38:490:38:50

But I was pretty well aware of it.

0:38:500:38:52

What's happening now,

I think if we did have a healthy

0:38:520:38:55

scholarship system, where students

could actually correctly

0:38:550:38:58

choose the university...

0:38:580:39:03

Now, they're not all going to be

happy doing the Tripos.

0:39:030:39:06

And the Tripos' usefulness

could be challenged.

0:39:060:39:08

There are other things that might

be much more worthy.

0:39:080:39:12

Camilla Tominey.

0:39:120:39:18

I think, as well, the problem starts

at primary and secondary education.

0:39:180:39:21

We are in a two-tier system.

0:39:210:39:23

We don't have grammar schools

any more but we have

0:39:230:39:25

selective schools where, really,

you can only get your children

0:39:250:39:28

in if you tutor them.

0:39:280:39:29

And that costs money.

0:39:290:39:30

And that then means that poorer

families who have got bright

0:39:300:39:32

kids can't get them in,

because they haven't had somebody

0:39:320:39:35

who they are paying every Sunday

morning to teach their children

0:39:350:39:38

verbal and nonverbal reasoning.

0:39:380:39:40

Whether that's a skill that judges

children on their academic ability

0:39:400:39:44

or not is up to teachers to decide.

0:39:440:39:46

I equally think as well,

when it comes to bursaries,

0:39:460:39:50

that a lot of poorer families just

don't think that's for them.

0:39:500:39:53

Interestingly, now that the grammar

schools revolution has been

0:39:530:39:55

put on the back burner,

free schools are having a lot

0:39:550:39:57

of success in deprived areas.

0:39:570:39:59

During the Tory party conference

I spoke to Toby Young,

0:39:590:40:02

who has obviously been heavily

involved in that movement.

0:40:020:40:04

And at the school in Newham,

which was started seven years ago,

0:40:040:40:07

so it's now coming to fruition

and some of these children

0:40:070:40:09

are making university applications,

15 of these kids have

0:40:090:40:12

got into Oxbridge.

0:40:120:40:15

That would have been unthinkable

with the previous system

0:40:150:40:17

and without this free school.

0:40:170:40:18

So clearly, more needs to be done.

0:40:180:40:24

You.

0:40:240:40:25

I disagree that it's

the secondary school,

0:40:250:40:27

because I went to a state secondary

school and they, if anything,

0:40:270:40:30

encouraged you to apply to go

to the higher universities.

0:40:300:40:33

They pushed you towards that,

and I managed to get good results

0:40:330:40:36

at my GCSEs and that's not

putting me off trying to apply

0:40:360:40:39

to Oxford or Cambridge.

0:40:390:40:42

And you're doing that now, are you?

0:40:420:40:44

I will next year be applying

to those universities.

0:40:440:40:46

Alex Salmond.

0:40:460:40:48

I wish the young lady every success.

0:40:480:40:50

But I think the responsibility

does lie with Oxbridge.

0:40:500:40:52

If you have it just

on qualifications, most state school

0:40:520:40:56

pupils will be at a disadvantage

compared to most private school

0:40:560:40:59

pupils, because public schools

in England will teach not just

0:40:590:41:04

for the exams, but they will teach

for the entrance requirements.

0:41:040:41:08

And therefore, if it's only

grade against grade,

0:41:080:41:10

you'll get the situation

of a substantial social disparity.

0:41:100:41:13

There's also a responsibility

for the government, in fees

0:41:130:41:17

which are totally and utterly

outrageous in England,

0:41:170:41:20

being a big disincentive

for lower-income families

0:41:200:41:24

than for higher income

families, obviously.

0:41:240:41:25

Being 40, 50, £60,000 in debt

is a big disincentive,

0:41:250:41:32

and you should do something

about English politicians who try

0:41:320:41:34

to retain such an unequal system.

0:41:340:41:37

But lastly, because we still

have a problem in Scotland with,

0:41:370:41:40

like Saint Andrews, for example,

not on a racial basis

0:41:400:41:42

but on a working class basis.

0:41:420:41:46

I've come to the conclusion

that the only way you can actually

0:41:460:41:49

tackle this and do it

so as people don't say,

0:41:490:41:51

"I had so many As and I didn't get

in when someone else got

0:41:510:41:55

"in with lower grades",

is to have a system of a certain

0:41:550:41:58

number of entries outwith the

examination system.

0:41:580:41:59

I think people

should qualify through the Duke

0:41:590:42:02

of Edinburgh award scheme,

through voluntary work,

0:42:020:42:05

something like that.

0:42:050:42:07

They should be taken to these

universities for a summer school,

0:42:070:42:10

over a period of perhaps six weeks,

assessed over that period,

0:42:100:42:13

and that could be a form of entry,

along with the scholarship system

0:42:130:42:16

Germaine said.

0:42:160:42:22

And the reason I hope that

such a system might be

0:42:220:42:25

introduced in Scotland,

and I would commend such

0:42:250:42:27

a system for Oxbridge to try

and have the social diversity

0:42:270:42:30

that this nation of England should

demand from its top universities.

0:42:300:42:33

APPLAUSE

0:42:330:42:42

What do you think?

0:42:430:42:44

As a former teacher,

I agree with the young lady that

0:42:440:42:47

it's not about poverty

of aspirations at schools at all.

0:42:470:42:49

We encourage our students to aim

as highly as they can.

0:42:490:42:52

I think what Germaine said

about the social playing field,

0:42:520:42:54

it's completely uneven.

0:42:540:42:56

If you don't see anyone around you,

if you don't have anyone

0:42:560:42:59

in your family that's been to these

kind of places, it's

0:42:590:43:01

just such an unfamiliar,

the culture and expectations

0:43:010:43:03

so unfamiliar to you and I

think it's off-putting.

0:43:030:43:07

So what do you think should be done?

0:43:070:43:09

It's not my job to decide.

0:43:090:43:11

Shami Chakrabarti, what do

you think should be done?

0:43:110:43:15

I think there is a greater

responsibility on the so-called

0:43:150:43:18

elite universities to demonstrate

that they are for everyone,

0:43:180:43:20

and they need to take

more positive steps.

0:43:200:43:24

The sorts of things

you have been mooting.

0:43:240:43:27

But they should be

actively recruiting.

0:43:270:43:28

They should be actively sending

staff and recruiters and people

0:43:280:43:32

to go and speak in state schools,

in poorer parts of the country,

0:43:320:43:36

to try and bust this idea that

you're not welcome here.

0:43:360:43:39

But I do think that the government

has responsibility, too.

0:43:390:43:42

I went to the London School

of Economics in the late 80s

0:43:420:43:45

and did a law degree,

without which I wouldn't

0:43:450:43:48

be here tonight.

0:43:480:43:50

My parents did not have any money,

but I had a full maintenance grant

0:43:500:43:54

and zero tuition fees.

0:43:540:43:57

That made a world of difference

to me in my life chances.

0:43:570:44:02

Would I take on the kind of debt

that would be required for me

0:44:020:44:06

to have that same education today,

knowing that my parents

0:44:060:44:08

couldn't afford to help?

0:44:080:44:10

I'm not convinced that I would.

0:44:100:44:12

So I think government has

responsibility, and these so-called

0:44:120:44:16

elite universities have a massive

responsibility and

0:44:160:44:17

ethical duty as well.

0:44:170:44:22

APPLAUSE

0:44:220:44:30

Yes, the woman there

in the fourth row from the front.

0:44:300:44:32

Four from the front.

0:44:320:44:33

I think that equality is such

a complex issue and one of the main

0:44:330:44:37

things we need to focus

on is whether we are talking

0:44:370:44:39

about equality of outcome

or equality of opportunity.

0:44:390:44:41

Because equality of opportunity

won't necessarily produce

0:44:410:44:43

equality of outcome.

0:44:430:44:46

So for example, if you have,

if you are striving for equality

0:44:460:44:50

of outcome, if you have 50% women,

50% men, but equality of opportunity

0:44:500:44:55

means everyone gets the same

starting position but it doesn't

0:44:550:44:59

mean they'll all reach

the same place.

0:44:590:45:00

So it's much more complex

than saying we should

0:45:000:45:03

strive for equality.

0:45:030:45:05

You need to really think

about what equality means.

0:45:050:45:11

APPLAUSE

0:45:110:45:12

Yes.

0:45:120:45:14

But the question was about

the numbers going of poor

0:45:140:45:16

and non-white students.

0:45:160:45:18

Jacob Rees-Mogg.

0:45:180:45:20

Well, I actually agree

with what the lady has just said.

0:45:200:45:23

I think that you want

to have an equality of opportunity,

0:45:230:45:26

but that may mean that you need

to help people to get that

0:45:260:45:29

opportunity in the first place.

0:45:290:45:39

It's worth noting on loans,

student loans, they have actually

0:45:390:45:41

led to a very large increase

in the number of people

0:45:410:45:44

going to university

from the poorest decile of income.

0:45:440:45:46

And that's quite interesting

because it's not necessarily

0:45:460:45:48

what you would expect,

but it's encouraged the poorest

0:45:480:45:50

to go to university.

0:45:500:45:51

I very much agree with

Jermaine Greer that I think having

0:45:510:45:54

bursaries and scholarships,

so that people will really

0:45:540:45:58

be incentivized to go

through university and I think,

0:45:580:46:05

dare I say it, that people who've

had the good fortune that I've had

0:46:050:46:08

and go to schools like Eton,

where I was with your son,

0:46:080:46:11

as I think many people know.

0:46:110:46:13

When you've had that great

advantage, it is not unreasonable

0:46:130:46:16

for the people examining

you when you get to Oxford

0:46:160:46:19

and Cambridge to recognise that

you have had every possible

0:46:190:46:22

advantage and somebody who hasn't

had so many advantages,

0:46:220:46:29

but who may have well done less well

in the exam, may

0:46:290:46:33

actually be cleverer

and more able and I think it's

0:46:330:46:38

perfectly fair to maintain equality

of opportunity by recognising

0:46:380:46:41

that there have been inequalities

in the early stages.

0:46:410:46:43

But there a distinction, isn't

there, between the number of people,

0:46:430:46:46

the percentage of people

from the lowest financial

0:46:460:46:48

decile, economic decile,

going to university and the numbers

0:46:480:46:50

going to Oxford and Cambridge.

0:46:500:46:51

That's absolutely true.

0:46:510:46:52

Is it important, in your view,

that the entry to Oxford

0:46:520:46:55

and Cambridge should be opening up

in the same way as all

0:46:550:46:58

the other universities?

0:46:580:46:59

Absolutely.

0:46:590:47:00

It's very important that Oxford

and Cambridge maintain their world

0:47:000:47:02

beating standard and therefore

they should not take quotas,

0:47:020:47:06

but what they should do is make it

as easy as possible for clever

0:47:060:47:09

people from disadvantaged

backgrounds to get in

0:47:090:47:12

and going out to schools.

0:47:120:47:15

It's brilliant to hear that schools

are encouraging people to apply

0:47:150:47:24

because certainly anecdotally one's

heard the reverse and that

0:47:240:47:26

some pupils are told,

don't try for Oxford and Cambridge,

0:47:260:47:28

it won't suit you.

0:47:280:47:29

That really shouldn't happen.

0:47:290:47:30

That should be strongly discouraged

and schools should work

0:47:300:47:32

with the universities to encourage

bright people to go.

0:47:320:47:35

Not just because that's the right

thing to do for the individuals,

0:47:350:47:37

but it's also very good

for the country.

0:47:370:47:39

That if our brightest people

get the best education,

0:47:390:47:42

that is going to be very good

for the country over

0:47:420:47:44

the next generation.

0:47:440:47:45

Be able to have a UK Bank of England

bloke to run the Bank.

0:47:450:47:49

I'm just muttering to myself.

0:47:490:47:51

You in the black dress there.

0:47:510:47:53

Yes you, on the gangway.

0:47:530:47:54

The woman on the gangway.

0:47:540:47:55

Come on!

0:47:550:47:56

There, thank you.

0:47:560:47:59

But if we only have a small

tokenistic amount of places opened

0:47:590:48:03

up, the culture and the support

that's available to them

0:48:030:48:07

when they arrive at Oxford

and and maybe are are mixing

0:48:070:48:10

with the elitists from the public

schools, it gives that impression

0:48:100:48:13

of them feeling different

and as if they're

0:48:130:48:15

being a worthy cause.

0:48:150:48:18

We need to really challenge

the culture and the support in these

0:48:180:48:21

universities that make it

an accepting and welcoming

0:48:210:48:24

place for a more diverse

range of students to go.

0:48:240:48:26

OK.

0:48:260:48:27

The woman behind you,

in the row behind there.

0:48:270:48:29

Yes.

0:48:290:48:32

I'd like to suggest

a civilian form of national

0:48:320:48:34

service for 18-year-olds.

0:48:340:48:39

About a third of the time the work

that they would do would be

0:48:390:48:42

some form of education,

they would also do work and sport

0:48:420:48:46

and the people in charge of national

service would be able to assess.

0:48:460:48:50

I loved what Alex suggested

about other routes besides

0:48:500:48:52

educational qualifications.

0:48:520:48:55

That would assess character,

leadership and it would also

0:48:550:48:58

have people of different

classes mixing together.

0:48:580:49:00

So compulsory national service?

0:49:000:49:01

Yes.

0:49:010:49:04

Can you go along the row

to the second person

0:49:040:49:06

from the end there.

0:49:060:49:09

You, yes.

0:49:090:49:11

I think we need to stop skirting

around the issue, really.

0:49:110:49:14

If you're a child and your

in a class of 34 students,

0:49:140:49:17

your TA is no longer

there because of budget cuts,

0:49:170:49:19

how are you going to have the same

opportunities, the same quality

0:49:190:49:22

of teaching as those in private

schools in a class of ten?

0:49:220:49:25

Absolutely.

0:49:250:49:26

OK.

0:49:260:49:27

APPLAUSE

0:49:270:49:30

Yes, the woman here.

0:49:300:49:33

Actually, I think that already

Oxford is doing a lot of the things

0:49:330:49:36

that Alex Salmond mentioned.

0:49:360:49:41

There is such a thing called

contextual admissions,

0:49:410:49:43

where things are taken into account

such as the sort of school one went

0:49:430:49:47

to and therefore how likely

it is that one would have got good

0:49:470:49:52

A-levels and also I feel,

and I work here at the University

0:49:520:49:55

of Portsmouth, that it is a case

that students should be choosing

0:49:550:49:58

the university that gives them

the education that they need,

0:49:580:50:08

and here a lot of that is applied

real-life professional practice.

0:50:080:50:11

Last word from you.

0:50:110:50:12

Yes.

0:50:120:50:13

I agree with the questioner that

it's a societal problem rather

0:50:130:50:16

than an elitist problem.

0:50:160:50:17

My father was actually

the admissions tutor

0:50:170:50:21

at St Peter's College,

Oxford, when he retired and the bain

0:50:210:50:24

of his life was quotas for different

ethnic minority students.

0:50:240:50:33

He frequently told me that he had

to choose less academically able

0:50:330:50:40

students just because of the places

and the backgrounds that they come

0:50:400:50:43

from and, at the end of the day,

Oxford and Cambridge are centres

0:50:430:50:47

of academic excellence,

and that should be

0:50:470:50:49

championed above...

0:50:490:50:50

Can I give you a case study.

0:50:500:50:52

Glasgow University and

St Andrews University,

0:50:520:50:55

I've an interest in both,

I'm a doctor of Glasgow University,

0:50:550:50:57

I was a student at St Andrews.

0:50:570:51:00

Now they're both highly rated,

internationally orientated

0:51:000:51:02

universities, but Glasgow has a huge

social mix in its student

0:51:020:51:05

population, St Andrews doesn't.

0:51:050:51:10

I think the idea that you maintain

excellence by having a fairly

0:51:100:51:13

exclusive social mix

is entirely wrong headed.

0:51:130:51:14

It's entirely mistaken.

0:51:140:51:15

Absolutely.

0:51:150:51:18

I think these two examples of two

outstanding universities,

0:51:180:51:23

but one of which I think

fulfils its duty to the population

0:51:230:51:26

as a whole by educating people

across the social spectrum

0:51:260:51:29

and the other, I'm afraid, does not.

0:51:290:51:30

Quite.

0:51:300:51:33

APPLAUSE

0:51:330:51:34

OK, very briefly, very briefly.

0:51:340:51:36

I disagree entirely with that.

0:51:360:51:41

At the end of the day,

Glasgow isn't as sought

0:51:410:51:43

after a place as St Andrews.

0:51:430:51:45

All right, well...

0:51:450:51:47

I wouldn't go down that

road with him here!

0:51:470:51:51

OK, I think we'll leave it.

0:51:510:51:53

Thank you for the point there.

0:51:530:51:56

We will be in Scotland next week,

you can discuss it then.

0:51:560:51:59

Very, very brief.

0:51:590:52:06

Jermaine, very brief if you would.

0:52:060:52:12

I'd just like to make

one simple point.

0:52:120:52:14

I have taught all my life and I've

taught people who came from the same

0:52:140:52:18

sort of background that I did

for whom, for example, Cambridge

0:52:180:52:20

was a terrible environment.

0:52:200:52:21

They were absolutely miserable.

0:52:210:52:22

The last thing you'd want to do

is waste those precious three years

0:52:220:52:25

of a young person's life by having

them being miserable

0:52:250:52:28

at a place like Cambridge.

0:52:280:52:30

What used to happen is that they

would identify with the town kids.

0:52:300:52:33

They would hang out with the bikies,

they would get into trouble

0:52:330:52:39

and the wastage amongst that

precious group of

0:52:390:52:41

students was very high.

0:52:410:52:45

Now, we shouldn't be supposing

we can drop them into that rather

0:52:450:52:47

complicated social situation

and they will have the skills

0:52:470:52:57

to avoid damage because I think

the damage, in at least two

0:52:570:53:01

cases that I know of,

both brilliant young woman,

0:53:010:53:03

they abandoned their education

altogether, and I can't tell

0:53:030:53:05

you what became of them.

0:53:050:53:06

All right, thank you.

0:53:060:53:07

Paul Pritchard, let's

have a last question from you.

0:53:070:53:10

Should congestion charging be

introduced in all cities

0:53:100:53:11

to improve air quality?

0:53:110:53:19

Well, London has now

introduced a congestion charge

0:53:190:53:21

of £10 for old vehicles,

old diesel vehicles and all that.

0:53:210:53:24

Oxford is suggesting clearing

its centre for cars completely

0:53:240:53:26

and just having electric cars.

0:53:260:53:27

Should congestion charging,

this is our question

0:53:270:53:29

about the environment,

which we're duty-bound to do.

0:53:290:53:31

Camilla Tominey, what do you think?

0:53:310:53:35

Well, I drive a diesel,

so I'm now persona non grata...

0:53:350:53:38

Shame on you.

0:53:380:53:39

..in the environmental world.

0:53:390:53:41

Having been encouraged

to buy a diesel of course

0:53:410:53:46

because I was told that it was more

fuel efficient and that it was

0:53:460:53:49

better for the environment

until all of that scientific

0:53:490:53:51

evidence that was presented

by Labour was roundly debunked.

0:53:510:53:54

APPLAUSE

0:53:540:54:01

So now I'm saddled with

a diesel that I don't

0:54:010:54:07

have to pay the T-charge

for because it's a post-2006 car.

0:54:070:54:10

I don't want to scrap it

because it's a good car and I think

0:54:100:54:13

that would be added wastage.

0:54:130:54:14

I'm interested in buying a hybrid

or an electric car and I want to see

0:54:140:54:18

the technology come on,

but they are very expensive and I'm

0:54:180:54:20

not really in the market

to replace my perfectly decent car.

0:54:200:54:23

What's your answer to the question?

0:54:230:54:25

I mean, your personal

history is fascinating,

0:54:250:54:26

but what is the answer

to the question?

0:54:260:54:28

Thank you, David.

0:54:280:54:29

APPLAUSE

0:54:290:54:30

Well, we do have to take a personal

issue on some of these questions

0:54:300:54:34

because as a diesel driver it does

make a difference.

0:54:340:54:36

My answer to the question is this.

0:54:360:54:38

If transport links are good enough,

there should be no reason why

0:54:380:54:41

we need as ordinary citizens

to drive into cities.

0:54:410:54:43

However, if you're white van man

or a courier or a delivery driver,

0:54:430:54:46

I don't see why you should be

penalised for doing your

0:54:460:54:48

job in a town centre.

0:54:480:54:50

APPLAUSE

0:54:500:54:51

We only have two or

three minutes left.

0:54:510:54:53

Jacob Rees-Mogg.

0:54:530:54:54

OK.

0:54:540:54:56

In London, the congestion is worse

even though there are fewer cars

0:54:560:54:58

on the road and that's

because they've narrowed half

0:54:580:55:01

the road and you can't get anywhere.

0:55:010:55:02

I don't believe that government

should make people's lives more

0:55:020:55:05

difficult and diesel is one

of the real scandals of government

0:55:050:55:09

policy of the last 20 years.

0:55:090:55:12

As Camilla was saying,

people were encouraged to buy

0:55:120:55:14

diesels because of worries

about carbon dioxide,

0:55:140:55:16

ignoring the nitrous oxides

0:55:160:55:17

and the particulates from diesel,

which have killed people.

0:55:170:55:19

Have meant people have died younger

than they should have done.

0:55:190:55:22

This is a real scandal

of public policy and no

0:55:220:55:24

I don't think the answer

is penalising the motorist.

0:55:240:55:28

Most of us actually want to drive

into cities particularly,

0:55:280:55:31

if you represent a rural

constituency like mine, people

0:55:310:55:33

want to go into Bath or Bristol.

0:55:330:55:35

They want to drive in.

0:55:350:55:36

It would take them

all week to get a bus.

0:55:360:55:38

They'd have to devote their whole

life to plotting the bus route. They

0:55:380:55:41

want to drive in and out. I think

politics is about making life easier

0:55:410:55:45

for people, allowing them to do what

they want to do and taking obstacles

0:55:450:55:51

out of thafr way, not ordering them

about how they should lead their

0:55:510:55:54

lives. Definitely not.

Shami

Chakrabarti. Congesting charges in

0:55:540:56:00

all cities to improve air quality?

There is a role for congestion

0:56:000:56:05

charging if it's matched with cheap

accessible public transport.

0:56:050:56:10

APPLAUSE

We do not, we do not have that in

0:56:100:56:15

large parts of this country.

The

Mayor of London was wrong to

0:56:150:56:20

introduce this new extra charge? Is

No, not at You think there all.

Is

0:56:200:56:24

adequate...

There is a role for

congestion charging, but, it - the

0:56:240:56:31

double whammy is if it costs too

much to drive and you have no access

0:56:310:56:36

to affordable transport.

Alex

Salmond.

I was liszening to Jacob,

0:56:360:56:42

he onced campaigned in a Bentley in

central Fife. There were no

0:56:420:56:49

congestion charging at the time!

APPLAUSE

0:56:490:56:53

I agree they are fine if there are

options. Either public transport or

0:56:530:56:58

a move to Lek tri. 1100 years ago

there were Lek tritaxis in the north

0:56:580:57:06

of Scotland. That technology didn't

come on because the edge inruled and

0:57:060:57:13

we should go full stilt and give

people the cheap openings option

0:57:130:57:17

that even Camilla could We have a

afford.

Minute. Jermaine Greer you

0:57:170:57:21

have half a minute as a result of

Alex.

Looking taking money off

0:57:210:57:25

people makes no difference to air

quality whatsoever.

0:57:250:57:30

APPLAUSE?

There is no connection.

Thank you Jermaine. Le I was hoping

0:57:300:57:35

you might take the question which

you will understand about how you

0:57:350:57:39

felt about recovering from an

operation in the home of a stranger,

0:57:390:57:44

which was this proposal for, Air

B&B. We can't get to it.

Shame.

Next

0:57:440:57:51

Thursday we are going to be in

Kilmarnock. We have Owen Jones,

0:57:510:57:57

Daniel Hanlon on our panel. The week

we are in Croydon. Call if you want

0:57:570:58:02

to be in either audience. Go to our

website, the address is on the

0:58:020:58:06

screen. Follow the instructions

there. On BBC 5 Live it's Question

0:58:060:58:12

Time Extra Time discussing the

issues we have been talk about.

0:58:120:58:15

Thank you to my panel and all who

came to Portsmouth to take part. But

0:58:150:58:25

until next time, good night.

0:58:250:58:32

David Dimbleby presents topical debate from Portsmouth.

Panellists include Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, Labour's shadow attorney general Shami Chakrabarti, SNP's former first minister of Scotland Alex Salmond, feminist writer Germaine Greer and political editor of the Sunday Express Camilla Tominey.


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