Andrew Neil and Marie Ashby are joined by Labour's shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon and Ukip's Neil Hamilton to discuss the local election results.
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It's Sunday morning and this is the Sunday Politics.
The local election results made grim reading for Labour.
With just a month to go until the general election,
will promising to rule out tax rises for all but the well off help
The Conservatives have their own announcement on mental health,
as they strain every sinew to insist they don't think they've got
But is there still really all to play for?
And tonight we will find out who is the next
President of France - Emmanuel Macron or Marine Le Pen -
In the East Midlands: ended with a hack attack
Our county councils turn blue as the Conservatives sweep the board.
And in the general election, the big guns target the region.
potential impact in marginals next month. If Ukip support continues to
evaporate... And joining me for all of that,
three journalists ready to analyse the week's politics
with all the forensic focus of Diane Abbott
preparing for an interview, and all the relaxed,
slogan-free banter of Theresa May It's Janan Ganesh, Isabel Oakeshott
and Steve Richards. So, the Conservatives are promising,
if re-elected, to change mental health laws in England and Wales
to tackle discrimination, and they're promising 10,000 more
staff working in NHS mental health treatment in England by 2020 -
although how that's to be Here's Health Secretary
Jeremy Hunt speaking There is a lot of new
money going into it. In January, we said we were going
to put an extra ?1 billion Does this come from other parts
of the NHS, or is it No, it is new money
going into the NHS It's not just of course money,
it's having the people who deliver these jobs,
which is why we need Well, we're joined now from Norwich
by the Liberal Democrat health This weekend, they've launched
their own health announcement, promising a 1% rise on every income
tax band to fund the NHS. Do you welcome the Conservatives
putting mental health onto the campaign agenda in the way that they
have? I welcome it being on the campaign agenda but I do fear that
the announcement is built on thin air. You raised the issue at the
start about the 10,000 extra staff, and questions surrounding how it
would be paid for. There is no additional money on what they have
already announced for the NHS. We know it falls massively short on the
expectation of the funding gap which, by 2020, is likely to be
about 30 billion. That is not disputed now. Anyone outside of the
government, wherever you are on the political spectrum, knows the money
going in is simply not enough. So, rather like the claim that they
would add 5000 GPs to the workforce by 2020, that is not on target.
Latest figures show a fall in the number of GPs. They make these
claims, but I'm afraid they are without substance, unless they are
prepared to put money behind it. Your party's solution to the money
problem is to put a 1% percentage point on all of the bands of income
tax to raise more money 20-45. Is that unfair? Most pensioners who
consume 40% of NHS spending, but over 65s only pay about 20% of
income tax. Are you penalising the younger generations for the health
care of an older generation? It is the first step in what we are
describing as a 5-point recovery plan for the NHS and care system.
So, for what is available to us now, it seems to be the fairest way of
bringing in extra resources, income tax is progressive, and is based on
your ability to pay for your average British worker. It would be ?3 per
week which is the cost of less than two cups of coffee per week. In the
longer run, we say that by the end of the next Parliament, we would be
able to introduce a dedicated NHS and care tax. Based, probably,
around a reformed national insurance system, so it becomes a dedicated
NHS and care tax. Interestingly, the former permanent secretary of the
Treasury, Nick MacPherson, said clearly that this idea merits
further consideration which is the first time anyone for the Treasury
has bought into the idea of this. Let me ask you this. You say it is a
small amount of tax that people on average incomes will have to pay
extra. We are talking about people who have seen no real increases to
their income since 2007. They have been struggling to stand still in
terms of their own pay, but you are going to add to their tax, and as I
said earlier, most of the health care money will then go to
pensioners whose incomes have risen by 15%. I'm interested in the
fairness of this redistribution? Bearing in mind first of all,
Andrew, that the raising of the tax threshold that the Liberal Democrats
pushed through in the coalition increased the effective pay in your
pocket for basic rate taxpayers by about ?1000. We are talking about a
tiny fraction of that. I suppose that you do have to ask, all of us
in this country need to ask ourselves this question... Are we
prepared to pay, in terms of the average worker, about ?3 extra per
week to give us a guarantee that when our loved ones need that care,
in their hour of need, perhaps suspected cancer, that care will be
available for them? I have heard two cases recently brought my attention.
An elderly couple, the wife has a very bad hip. They could not allow
the weight to continue. She was told that she would need to wait 26
weeks, she was in acute pain. They then deduct paying ?20,000 for
private treatment to circumvent waiting time. They hated doing it,
because they did not want to jump the queue. But that is what is
increasingly happening. Sorry to interrupt, Norman Lamb comedy make
very good points but we are short on time today. One final question, it
looks like you might have the chance to do any of this, I'm told the best
you can hope to do internally is to double the number of seats you have,
which would only take you to 18. Do you think that promising to raise
people's income tax, even those on average earnings, is a vote winner?
I think the people in this country are crying out for politicians to be
straight and tenet as it is. At the moment we heading towards a
Conservative landslide... -- tell it as it is. But do we want a 1-party
state? We are electing a government not only to deal with the crucial
Brexit negotiations, but oversee the stewardship of the NHS and funding
of our schools, all of these critical issues. We need an
effective opposition and with the Labour Party having taken itself off
stage, the Liberal Democrats need to provide an effective opposition.
Norman Lamb, thank you for joining us this morning. Thank you.
Labour and Tories are anxious to stress the general election
result is not a foregone conclusion, whatever the polls say.
Order you just heard Norman Lamb say there that he thought the
Conservatives were heading for a landslide...
But did Thursday's dramatic set of local election results
in England, Scotland and Wales give us a better idea of how the country
Here's Emma Vardy with a behind-the-scenes look at how
Good morning, it's seven o'clock on Friday, May 5th...
The dawn of another results day. Anticipation hung in the air.
Early results from the local elections in England suggest
there's been a substantial swing from Labour to the Conservatives.
While the pros did their thing, I needed breakfast.
Don't tell anyone, but I'm going to pinch a sausage.
The overnight counts had delivered successes for the Tories.
But with most councils only getting started,
there was plenty of action still to come.
It's not quite the night of Labour's nightmares.
There's enough mixed news in Wales, for example -
looks like they're about to hold Cardiff - that they'll try and put
But in really simple terms, four weeks from a general election,
the Tories are going forward and Labour are going backwards.
How does it compare being in here to doing the telly?
Huw, how do you prepare yourself for a long day of results, then?
We're not even on air yet, as you can see, and already
in Tory HQ this morning, there's a kind of, "Oh,
I'm scared this will make people think the election's just
I think leave it like that - perfect.
I want the Laura look. This is really good, isn't it?
Usually, we're in here for the Daily Politics.
But it's been transformed for the Election Results programme.
But hours went by without Ukip winning a single seat.
The joke going around Lincolnshire County Council today
from the Conservatives is that the Tories have eaten
We will rebrand and come back strong.
Morale, I think, is inevitably going to take a bit of a tumble.
Particularly if Theresa May starts backsliding on Brexit.
And then I think we will be totally reinvigorated.
There are a lot of good people in Ukip and I wouldn't
want to say anything unkind, but we all know it's over.
Ukip press officer. Difficult job.
Ukip weren't the only ones putting a brave face on it.
Labour were experiencing their own disaster day too,
losing hundreds of seats and seven councils.
If the result is what these results appear to indicate,
Can we have a quick word for the Sunday Politics?
A quick question for Sunday Politics - how are you feeling?
Downhearted or fired up for June? Fired up, absolutely fired up.
He's fired up. We're going to go out there...
We cannot go on with another five years of this.
How's it been for you today? Tiring.
It always is, but I love elections, I really enjoy them.
Yes, you know, obviously we're disappointed at some of the results,
it's been a mixed bag, but some opinion polls
and commentators predicted we'd be wiped out - we haven't.
As for the Lib Dems, not the resurgence they hoped for,
After a dead heat in Northumberland, the control of a whole council came
The section of England in which we had elections yesterday
was the section of England that was most likely to vote Leave.
When you go to sleep at night, do you just have election results
The answer is if that's still happening, I don't get to sleep.
There we go. Maybe practice some yoga...
Thank you very much but I have one here.
With the introduction of six regional mayors,
Labour's Andy Burnham became Mr Manchester.
But by the time Corbyn came to celebrate, the new mayor
We want you to stay for a second because I've got some
I used to present news, as you probably know.
I used to present BBC Breakfast in the morning.
The SNP had notable successes, ending 40 years of Labour
What did you prefer - presenting or politics?
And it certainly had been a hard day at the office for some.
Ukip's foothold in local government was all but wiped out,
leaving the Conservatives with their best local
So another election results day draws to a close.
But don't worry, we'll be doing it all again in five weeks' time.
For now, though, that's your lot. Off you go.
Now let's look at some of Thursday's results in a little more detail,
and what they might mean for the wider fortunes
In England, there were elections for 34 councils.
The Conservatives took control of ten of them,
gaining over 300 seats, while Labour sustained
While the Lib Dems lost 28 seats, Ukip came close to extinction,
and can now boast of only one councillor in the whole of England.
In Scotland, the big story was Labour losing
a third of their seats, and control of three councils -
while the Tories more than doubled their number of councillors.
In Wales, both the Conservatives and Plaid Cymru made gains,
There was some encouraging news for Jeremy Corbyn's party
after Liverpool and Manchester both elected Labour mayors,
although the Tories narrowly won the West Midlands mayoral race.
We're joined now by who else but elections expert John Curtice.
You saw him in Emma's film, he's now back in Glasgow.
In broad terms, what do these local election results tell us about the
general election result? First we have to remember what Theresa May
wants to achieve in the general election is a landslide, and winning
a landslide means you have to win big in terms of votes. The local
election results certainly suggest Theresa May is well on course to win
the general election, at least with four weeks to go, and of course
people could change their minds. We all agree the Conservatives were
double-digit figures ahead of Labour in these elections. However, whereas
the opinion polls on average at the moment suggest there is a 17 point
Conservative lead, and that definitely would deliver a
landslide, it seems the local election figures, at least in
England, are pointing to something close to an 11 point Conservative
lead. That increase would not necessarily deliver a landslide that
she wants. The truth is, the next four weeks are probably not about
who wins this election unless something dramatic changes, but
there is still a battle as to whether or not Theresa May achieves
her objective of winning a landslide. She has to win big. The
local elections as she is not sure to be there, and therefore she is
going to have to campaign hard. Equally, while Labour did have most
prospect of winning, they still at least at the goal of trying to keep
the conservative majority relatively low, and therefore the Parliamentary
Labour Party are alive and kicking. Interesting that the local election
results don't produce a landslide if replicated on June 8th, but when I
looked at when local elections had taken place a month before the
general election, it was in 1983 and 1987. The Tories did well in both
local elections in these years, but come the general election, they
added five points to their share of the vote. No reason it should happen
again, but if it did, that would take them into landslide territory.
Absolutely right, if they do five points better than the local
elections, they are in landslide territory. We have to remember, in
1983, the Labour Party ran an inept campaign and their support ballet.
In 1987, David Owen and David Steele could not keep to the same lines. --
their support fell away. That underlines how well the opposition
campaign in the next four weeks does potentially matter in terms of
Theresa May's ability to achieve their objective. It is worth
noticing in the opinion polls, two things have happened, first, Ukip
voters, a significant slice going to the Conservatives, which helped to
increase the Conservative leader in the bowels. But in the last week,
the Labour vote seems to have recovered. -- in the polls. So the
party is not that far short of what Ed Miliband got in 2015, so the
Conservative leader is back down to 16 or 17, as we started. So we
should not necessarily presume Labour are going to go backwards in
the way they did in 1983. I want to finish by asking if there are deeper
forces at work? Whether the referendum in this country is
producing a realignment in British politics. The Scottish referendum
has produced a kind of realignment in Scotland. And in a different way,
the Brexit referendum has produced a realignment in England and Wales. Do
you agree? You are quite right. Referendums are potentially
disruptive in Scotland, they helped to ensure the constitutional
question became the central issue, and the 45% who voted yes our been
faithful to the SNP since. Although the SNP put in a relatively
disappointing performance in Scotland on Thursday. Equally, south
of the border, on the leave side, in the past 12 months and particularly
the last few weeks, the Conservatives have corralled the
leave vote, about two thirds of those who voted leave now say they
will vote Conservative. Last summer, the figure was only 50%. On the
remain side, the vote is still fragmented. The reason why Theresa
May is in the strong position she is is not simply because the leave vote
has been realigned, but the remain vote has not. Thank you for joining
us. You can go through polls and wonder who is up and down, but I
wonder whether the Scottish and Brexit referendums have produced
fundamental changes. In Scotland, the real division now is between the
centre-left Nationalist party and the centre-right Unionist party.
That has had the consequence of squeezing out Labour in the
argument, never mind the Greens and the Lib Dems. In London, England,
Wales, the Brexit referendum seems to have produced a realignment of
the right to the Tories' advantage, and some trouble for the Labour blue
vote -- blue-collar vote. It works for the pro Brexit end of the
spectrum but not the other half. In the last century, we had people like
Roy Jenkins dreaming of and writing about the realignment of British
politics as though it could be consciously engineered, and in fact
what made it happen was just the calling of a referendum. It's not
something you can put about as a politician, it flows from below,
when the public begin to think of politics in terms of single issues,
dominant issues, such as leaving the European Union. Rather than a broad
spectrum designed by a political class. I wonder whether now Remain
have it in them to coalesce behind a single party. It doesn't look like
they can do it behind Labour. The Liberal Democrats are frankly too
small in Parliament to constitute that kind of force. The closest
thing to a powerful Remain party is the SNP which by definition has
limited appeal south of the border. It is hard. The realignment. We
don't know if it is permanent or how dramatic it will be, but there is
some kind of realignment going on. At the moment, it seems to be a
realignment that by and large is to the benefit of the Conservatives.
Without a doubt, and that can be directly attributed to the
disappearance of Ukip from the political landscape. I have been
saying since the referendum that I thought Ukip was finished. They
still seem to be staggering on under the illusion... Some people may have
picked up on Nigel Farage this morning saying that Ukip still had a
strong role to play until Brexit actually happens. But I think it's
very, very hard to convince the voters of that, because they feel
that, with the result of the referendum, that was Ukip's job
done. And those votes are not going to delay the party -- to the Labour
Party because of the flaws with Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, they are
shifting to the Tories. I agree. The key issue was the referendum. It has
produced a fundamental change that few predicted at the time it was
called. Most fundamental of all, it has brought about a unity in the
Conservative Party. With some exceptions, but they are now off
editing the Evening Standard and other things! This is now a party
united around Brexit. Since 1992, the Tories have been split over
Europe, at times fatally so. The referendum, in ways that David
Cameron did not anticipate, has brought about a united front for
this election. In a way, this is a sequel to the referendum, because
it's about Brexit but we still don't know what form Brexit is going to
take. By calling it early, Theresa May has in effect got another go at
a kind of Brexit referendum without knowing what Brexit is, with a
united Tory party behind her. We shall see if it is a blip or a
long-term trend in British politics. Now let's turn to Labour's big
campaign announcement today, and that was the promise of no
income tax rise for those earning less than ?80,000 -
which of course means those earning more than that could
face an increase. Here's Shadow Chancellor John
McDonell on the BBC earlier. What we are saying today, anyone
earning below ?80,000, we will guarantee you will not have an
increase in income tax, VAT or national insurance contributions.
For those above 80,000, we are asking them to pay a modest bit more
to fund our public services. A modest bit. You will see it will be
a modest increase. Talking about modest increases, so we can have a
society which we believe everyone shares the benefits of.
We're joined now by Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Burgon, in Leeds.
Mr McDonnell stressed that for those earning over 80,000, they would be
paying more but it would be modest. He used the word modest 45 times.
But there is only 1.2 million of them. -- 4-5 times. So that would
not raise much money. This is about the key part of this tax policy for
the many, not the few. We are saying that low earners and middle earners
won't be paying more tax under a Labour government, which is not a
policy the Conservatives have committed to yet. As John McDonnell
also said in his interview earlier, if there is a tax rise on the top 5%
of earners, earning over ?80,000, it would be a modest rise. I am trying
to work out what that would mean in terms of money. If it is too modest,
you don't raise much. What will happen is the Labour Party's
manifesto, published in the next couple of weeks, wilfully set out
and cost it. I can't make an announcement now. -- will fully set
out and cost it. Moving on to the local elections, Mr Corbyn says he
is closing the gap with the Tories. What evidence is there? John Curtis
just said there was an 11% gap in the results, Labour 11% behind. The
polls before that suggested Labour were anything up to 20% behind. Was
it a great day for Labour? Certainly not. Is there a lot to do between
now and June? Sure, but we are relishing every moment of that.
Comparing equivalent elections in 2013, the Tories increased their
share of the vote by 13%. You lost 2%. That's a net of 15%. In what way
is that closing the gap? We have gone down to 11 points behind. Am I
satisfied? Certainly not. Is Labour satisfied? Certainly not. A week is
a long time in politics, 4-5 weeks is even longer. The local elections
are over, the general election campaign is starting, and we want to
put out there the policies that will improve the lives of low and middle
income earners. And also many people looking to be well off as well. You
lost 133 seats in Scotland. Are you closing the gap in Scotland? The
journey back for Labour in Scotland, I always thought, wouldn't be an
easy one. Since the council election results and Scotland that we are
comparing this to, there has been an independence referendum and the
terrible results for Labour in the 2015 general election. So it is a
challenge, but one hundreds of thousands of Labour members are
determined to meet. That is why we're talking about bread and butter
policies to make people's lives better. These local elections took
place midtown. Normally mid-term was the worst time for a government. --
took place midterm. And the best for an opposition. That is a feature of
British politics. So why did you lose 382 councillors in a midterm
election? As Andy Burnham said when he gave his acceptance speech after
his terrific first ballot result win in Manchester, it was an evening of
mixed results for Labour. Generally bad, wasn't it? Why did you lose all
of these councillors midterm? It is not a welcome result for Labour, I
am not going to be deluded. But what I and the Labour Party are focused
on is the next four weeks. And how we are going to put across policies
like free school meals for primary school children, ?10 an hour minimum
wage, the pledge not to increase tax for low and middle earners, 95% of
earners in this country. And saving the NHS from privatisation and
funding it properly. These are just some of the policies, including by
the way a boost in carers' allowance, that will make the lives
of people in Britain better off. Labour are for the many, not for the
few. But people like from political parties aspiring to government is to
be united and to be singing from the same song sheet among the leaders.
You mentioned Andy Burnham. Why did he not join Mr Corbyn when Jeremy
Corbyn went to the rally in Manchester on Friday to celebrate
his victory? First of all, Andy Burnham did a radio interview
straight after his great victory in which he said Jeremy Corbyn helped
him to win votes in that election. Why didn't he turn up? As to the
reason Andy Burnham wasn't there at the meeting Jeremy was doing in
Manchester, it was because, I understand, Andy was booked into
celebrate his victory with his family that night. I don't begrudge
him that and hopefully you don't. The leader has made the effort to
travel to Manchester to celebrate one of the few victories you enjoyed
on Thursday, surely you would join the leader and celebrate together?
Well, I don't regard, and I am sure you don't, Andy Burnham a nice time
with his family... -- I don't begrudge. He made it clear Jeremy
Corbyn assisted him. I can see you are not convinced yourself. I am
convinced. The outgoing Labour leader in Derbyshire lost his seat
on Thursday, you lost Derbyshire, which was a surprise in itself... He
said that genuine party supporters said they were not voting Labour
while you have Jeremy Corbyn as leader. Are you hearing that on the
doorstep too? I have been knocking on hundreds of doors this week in my
constituency and elsewhere. And of course, you never get every single
voter thinking the leader of any political party is the greatest
thing since sliced bread. But it's only on a minority of doorsteps that
people are criticising the Labour leader. Most people aren't even
talking about these questions. Most people are talking about Jeremy
Corbyn's policies, free primary school meals, ?10 an hour minimum
wage. Also policies such as paternity pay, maternity pay and
sickness pay for the self-employed, that have been hard-pressed under
this government. So I don't recognise that pitch of despondency,
but I understand that in different areas, in local elections,
perspectives are different. That was Derbyshire. The outgoing Labour
leader of Nottinghamshire County Council said there was concern on
the doorstep about whether Jeremy Corbyn was the right person to lead
the Labour Party, and even Rotherham, loyal to Mr Corbyn, won
the mail contest in Liverpool, he said that the Labour leader was more
might on the doorstep. -- the mayor contest. Does that explain some of
the performance on Thursday? I am confident that in the next four
weeks, when we get into coverage on television, that people will see
further the kind of open leadership Jeremy provides. In contrast to
Theresa May's refusal to meet ordinary people. She came to my
constituency and I don't think that a single person who lives here. And
also she is ducking the chance to debate with Jeremy Corbyn on TV. She
should do it and let the people decide. I don't know why she won't.
Finally, the Labour mantra is that you are the party of the ordinary
people, why is it the case that among what advertisers call C2s, D
and E', how can you on the pulse of that social group, how can you do
that? Our policy is to assist, protect and improve the living
standards of people in those groups and our policy is to protect the
living standards of the majority... They do not seem to be convinced? We
have four weeks to convince them and I believe that we will. Thank you
for coming onto the programme. But the wooden spoon from Thursday's
elections undoubtedly went to Ukip. Four years ago the party
won its best ever local government performance,
but this time its support just Ukip's share of the vote
plunging by as much as 18 points, most obviously
benefiting the Conservatives. So is it all over for
the self-styled people's army? Well we're joined now
by the party's leader in the Welsh Assembly,
Neil Hamilton, he's in Cardiff. Neil Hamilton, welcome. Ukip
finished local elections gaining the same number of councillors as the
Rubbish Party, one. That sums up your prospects, doesn't
it? Rubbish? We have been around a long time and seemed that I'd go
out, go in again, we will keep calm and carry on. We are in a phoney
war, negotiations on Brexit have not started but what we know from
Theresa May is that in seven years, as Home Secretary and Prime
Minister, she has completely failed to control immigration which was one
of the great driving forces behind the Brexit result. I'm not really
looking for any great success in immigration from the Tories, and a
lot of people who have previously voted for Ukip will be back in our
part of the field again. They don't seem to care about that at the
moment, your party lost 147 council seats. You gain one. It is time to
shut up shop, isn't it? You are right, the voters are not focusing
on other domestic issues at the moment. They have made up their
minds going into these negotiations in Brussels, Theresa May, as Prime
Minister, needs as much support as she can get. I think they are wrong
in this respect, it would be better to have a cohort of Ukip MPs to back
her up. She was greatly helped by the intervention of Mr Juncker last
week as well, the stupidity in how the European Commission has tried to
bully the British government, in those circumstances the British
people will react in one way going the opposite way to what the
Brussels establishment one. She has been fortunate as an acute tactician
in having the election now. I struggle to see the way back for
your party. You aren't a threat to the Tories in the south. Ukip voters
are flocking to the Tories in the south. You don't threaten Labour in
the north. It is the Tories who threaten Labour now in the north.
There is no room to progress, is there? The reality will be is that
once we are back on the domestic agenda again, and the Brexit
negotiations are concluded, we will know what the outcome is. And the
focus will be on bread and butter issues. We have all sorts of
policies in our programme which other parties cannot match us on.
The talk is putting up taxes to help the health service, we would scrap
the foreign aid budget and put another ?8 billion in the health
service, no other party says that. These policies would be popular with
the ordinary working person. Is Paul Nuttall to blame on the meltdown of
what happened, no matter who is leader? These are cosmic forces
beyond the control of any individual at the moment, it is certainly not
Paul Nuttall's .com he's been in the job for six months and in half that
time he was fighting a by-election -- certainly not Paul Nuttall's
fault. We have two become more professional than we have been
recently. It has not been a brilliant year for Ukip one way or
another, as you know, but there are prospects, in future, that are very
rosy. I do not believe that the Tories will deliver on other
promises that they are now making. The Welsh assembly elections are not
until 2021, you are a member of that, but at that point you will not
have any MEPs, because we will be out on the timetable. With this
current showing he will have no end', you could be Ukip's most
senior elected representative. That would be a turnout for the books! --
no elected MPs. The Tories are not promoting the policies that I
believe them. You will see that in the Ukip manifesto when it is
shortly publish... Leaders talk mainly about the male genital
mutilation and is -- female and burqas. No, when the manifesto
launched, we have a lot of policies, I spoke moments ago about it, but
also on foreign aid. Scrapping green taxes, to cut people's electricity
bills by ?300 per year on average. There are a lot of popular policies
that we have. We will hear more from that in the weeks to come.
Paul Nuttall said "If the price of written leaving the year is a Tory
advance after taking up this patriarch course, it is a price that
Ukip is prepared to pay". That sounds like a surrender statement?
It is a statement of fact, the main agenda is to get out of the EU and
have full Brexit. That is why Ukip came into existence 20 years ago.
When it is achieved, we go back to the normal political battle lines.
Niall Hamilton in Cardiff, thank you very much for joining us.
It's just gone 11.35am, you're watching the Sunday Politics.
We say goodbye to viewers in Scotland, who leave us now
Coming up here in 20 minutes - we'll be talking about the French
The results of one election are in, and it's a big win
for the Conservatives in the East Midlands with Labour
We fought a really good campaign on local issues and I think
We got our manifesto out early, we really hit the doorsteps,
we delivered thousands of leaflets, we talked to thousands of people...
And the general election steps up a gear as the big guns
The simple fact is that this election is a choice
between who becomes Prime Minister after the 8th of June,
and it is either going to be Theresa May or it is going to be
It is not a presidential election, we are a parliamentary system.
The only people who can vote for Theresa May are those who live
And I am at Westminster as two of our best-known MPs
Kay Cutts is the new leader of Nottinghamshire County Council
and Hardyal Dhindsa is Labour's Police and Crime
We're also joined for the first part of the programme by Alan Graves,
a Derby City councillor and the regional chairman of Ukip.
So first, let's take a closer look at those county council elections.
The Conservatives were the big winners in all four East Midlands
counties holding elections, gaining control of Lincolnshire and
In Nottinghamshire, they fell three seats
short of a majority, but the council will have
a Conservative leader, Kay Cutts, as the largest party.
The biggest turnover was in Derbyshire -
a majority of ten seats for Labour disappeared as the Conservatives
took control here too, regaining a council they'd
Kay Cutts, first, congratulations, on the face of it, good results for
the Conservatives but you did not get that all-important majority? No,
that was disappointing, I must admit that, but I have to tell you, it was
the fault of my colleagues because you could took the seat of a buzz
that we could have won in Gedling and that cost us the majority. But
we move on. You move on, you are the seats short of that supported
majority, what are your plans now? Will you run the council as a
largest party or will you have to draft in the help and support of
those independents and have some sort of coalition of chaos? It will
not be that, we do not do chaos in Nottinghamshire! Monday morning I am
eating with my senior colleagues and my party and we will make a decision
as to what we will do. We will be talking to both the Independent
parties and there is the Manse Road independents, four of them, and the
actual independents, six of those and one other independent who
belongs to no party. We have people to talk to. -- Mansfield. How do you
think it will turn out, as to bother you will rely on the independents?
We will not rely on them, if you run a coalition it will be parties
coming together, not to try to take the Tory whip. It would not be tied
to ransom a chaotic administration, I would not try to do that, it is
not fair to the electorate. Hardyal Dhindsa, it was a disappointing
result for Baber, particularly in the East Midlands, losing
Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire, the party must feel very demoralised at
the moment? It was a very disappointing result for Labour in
Derbyshire and the East Midlands. Devastating for many hard-working,
very committed councillors who have been doing a job very well for a
long time. However, the national picture and the mood has made
Derbyshire blue and the East Midlands, the Conservatives are in
control and that is where we are at. You are feeling bruised? Yes, it has
been a difficult few days but we adhere to represent the people of
Derbyshire and the East Midlands and we will do our best to make sure
that we challenge, scrutinise and hold to account Conservative
controlled councils. Alan Graves, you won one seat across the whole of
the country, known in the East Midlands, you lost your only two
seats in Leicestershire. Yes, we did. To be fair, the Conservatives
have capitalised on our 25 years of hard work and it is very undeserved
of our councillors who work very hard and have been working very
hard. But let us put things into clarity, this is the county council
elections, we have not lost all of our counsellors, we have over 300
and on the country and they will continue to hard. You have lost all
of them in Lincolnshire. We still have to stick Councillor Astaire.
Where does you can go from here? Are their conversations about the future
of the party or is it time to pack up? Theresa May has been good on
capitalising on our hard work and we have got a white paper... She has to
push through Brexit. There is a White Paper on leaving the EU, but
it is in name only, there is no substance for that. People voted for
something when they wanted to leave the European Union and I am not
convinced that Theresa May is the one that is going to bring us out
properly in the way that people wanted to be taken out. She has had
six years of trying to control immigration and... Is that your only
Jopp, to make sure it goes through now? We have a very big part to play
in politics because we need to make sure that we hold our feet to the
fire. The Labour Party are in complete disarray. Nobody trusts
Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party internally have a big problem, they
are controlled mainly by Momentum people who will keep people like
Jeremy Corbyn in power. What do you think went so badly wrong, Hardyal,
in the East Midlands? Your party warned that Conservative councils
would make bigger cuts and the voters were not listening to that.
That is the challenge for the Labour Party, the message is not getting
through at the national level, through the media and through our
own communication and we have to do something about that. The policies
that we have by all accounts are being positively received, but the
message nationally is not getting through. We have got to do much more
work and be working harder to communicate our policies and stop
this being a presidential election campaign, which in this country, it
parliamentary democracy. That is not parliamentary democracy. That is not
what is being out at the moment. What do you think the biggest
battles were in the success of the Tories in the East Midlands, Kay?
Theresa May was absolutely a strength and Jeremy Corbyn is not
playing well for the Labour Party, but the positive thing is that
people actually want Conservative policies, we know that we are party
that manage our fears properly and be a prudent with people's money.
Actually, they are frightening people. You might not agree with
that. We still have a core vote. that. We still have a core vote.
Others you might not agree with that, the fact is that people trust
the Conservative Party to manage their money properly. The proof of
the pudding is in the ballot box, people voted for the Conservatives
in droves because they knew that we were going to offer them what they
actually want. But we are waiting for those manifesto policies. Alan
Greaves, there are reports in the papers this morning that your party
leader Paul Nuttall will announce A1M, one heart immigration policy
that aims for a net migration target of zero and five years, is that the
way to win back voters and how on earth will this work? Well, we are
introducing migration as he city size every year, people do not want
that, I think, that can cause problems in our communities and
problems with our line. We are problems with our line. We are
taking a green spaces, were at the Conservatives going to put these
people? And problems with our line. We are taking a green spaces, were
at the Conservatives going to put these people? In my own Kay, tell us
what the first thing you will be doing now as the new leader? We will
meet our county pay its will. We were not rock the pockets of people
as the Labour Party have done for the last four years, I shall be
looking at the large infrastructure projects and working with the
Midlands engine. I will work with other leaders in our councils around
the area. Including the City Council of Nottingham, we have to work
together. Let me finish. What we need, in Nottinghamshire, but... I
am not Prime Minister yet, that might happen one day, but until I
am, I am dealing in Nottinghamshire and we shall start looking at the
infrastructure. We shall look at business parks, improving broadband,
we have to pay our way and earn our living. If we are going to get
inward investment we will offer people a really good offer like good
housing and schools and roads and housing and schools and roads and
am proud of in Nottinghamshire and am proud of in Nottinghamshire and
We will be it there for the moment. We will be it there for the moment.
-- our market towns will appear the way.
Let's turn our attention now to the general election and two
of the big hitters have been in the East Midlands this weekend
Conservative Party chairman, Sir Patrick McLoughlin,
was in Mansfield and Jeremy Corbyn hit Leicester.
Our political editor Tony Roe spoke to both of them.
Not in living memory has Mansfield had anything but a Labour MP,
some might assume retired miners here are traditional Labour.
It is not that the people have fell out with the Labour Party so much,
I think, they have fell out with Corbyn, they just do not
And one or two more, Diane Abbott and that, like, you know.
For ordinary workers, he is a big problem.
It is going to be 50-50 whether it stops Labour or goes Tory and at one
You must understand, Labour have only got
a 5000 majority here, that can be taken out very quickly.
The Conservatives clearly think they can win here in Mansfield,
they have taken out a front page and a back page advert
But nowhere does it say "Conservative".
A former miner is now the Tory Party chairman in charge
He is here to open a new election office in an 18th-century bakers
These front page adverts you have in the local newspapers,
there has been some criticism that you do not actually say
"Conservative" anywhere on the front page, it is all about Theresa May.
Well, she is the leader of the Conservative Party,
The simple fact is that this election is a choice
between who becomes Prime Minister after the 8th of June,
and it is either going to be Theresa May or it is going to be
Jeremy Corbyn leading a coalition of chaos.
Leicester is a Labour city and party members, 800, they say,
packed into a function room at the Tiger's ground,
to hear from their leader, a leader they say is not
What is in the press and media, that is of no concern to me,
I listen to what is on offer and if I like it, I go with it.
Social media, I think, has a lot more to play than the main
media in elections and things like that because people can
post what they like, nothing is really censored as such
and the word gets out there a lot more, I think,
in terms of what Jeremy is doing for everyday people like me and him.
To blame him solely on what he has done is wrong, he has done
I think what has actually happened is that everyone,
the media does not like him because they are against
A rousing welcome, a speech constantly referencing
Work for the many, not the few, thank you very much.
So, how does he react to Conservatives who are unashamedly
pushing this campaign as a choice between the two leaders?
This is not a presidential election, we are a parliamentary system.
The only people who can vote for Theresa May are those who live
We are a team, we are a team that will deal with the health crisis
in Britain, we are a team that understands the problems of social
care, understands the issues of the National Health Service.
We are also a team that has the determination to build
an economy that works for all by investment.
Later in the day, the campaigning shifted to Derby North,
the Tory seat with the smallest majority, 41, and the Labour leader
was here to support his staunchly pro-Corbyn candidate who says
the election will be a test for Corbyn's politics.
Tony, a bit of the world with all of these leaders visiting us at the
moment. What is your sense as to how the party workers on the ground feel
right now? It is easy to detect confidence and uncertainty and it is
with the Conservatives, they see confidence but they are trying to
temper that confidence and say not to take things for granted.
Remember, the turnout in the local elections is was considered smaller
than a general election, so it is quite hard to play that through and
see what the result will finally be. Jeremy Corbyn made the point
yesterday, saying that he did not think it was as bad as the pundits
are saying, that the gap in the local elections was 11% but it is
considerably more in the opinion polls. Labour must still be reeling
from these results. The local election results, they are
particularly reeling in Derbyshire, where there was a big turnaround and
that is because the board of Ukip went to the Conservatives, as we
thought might happen. But in Nottinghamshire, you have to say,
Labour will look and think this is not as bad as it could have been,
you look at getting in particular, one of those parliamentary seats
where you would think that Vernon Coaker's majority would be washed
away, but they vote for Labour in getting seemed to hold up. It looks
like the biggest danger to the Conservatives right now is the
complacency, isn't it? Particularly at a local elections, people
complain about roads and services but if they do not turn out and
vote, that does not help us at all. I constantly talk to people and I am
sorry to say, a lot of young people have said they will not vote, they
cannot be bothered, they have never voted, that is such a shame. Our
democracy is precious and was hard fought for and won and I think we
should value our vote and I am so sorry when I see people not
exercising that. Opinion polls have said that your party has a big lead,
the Sunday Telegraph this morning has it that you are on course for
the biggest majority in 50 years. Has a central office said to you not
to celebrate too much right now, there is a sense that you are all
playing it down a little bit and do not want to over egg your position.
Nothing like that, no messages have come down not to do that. We have
been around far too long to think or celebrating before it happens. We
must not be complacent and people will not turn out the mess they
think there is something to fight for. I can remember past elections
when people took things for granted, think about Neil Kinnock and when
they thought it was in the bag for the Labour Party. You have to fight
down to the wire. Temp Lee-mac, or pizza, Labour have to move on but
Hardyal Dhindsa. We do not, we have Hardyal Dhindsa. We do not, we have
to get our message across. In Derbyshire, the three areas that we
got parliamentary sitting MPs, they did better than Ruby did not have
MPs and the vote held up for them. Natascha Engel 's, Dennis Skinner,
Toby Perkins, two seats lost in those parliamentary areas and we
have to build on that. We have to see how we engage. It was pretty
clear from what we saw and we heard it in the film from poorly they are
the traditional working class voters in the East Midlands, certainly the
ones that only spoke to in Mansfield area, they do not like Jeremy Corbyn
and that looks like a problem for you here and nationally. They just
do not like him, that is what they told us. I think it is about
engaging with those people in Mansfield and other errors like
that, we have to hear their concerns that, we have to hear their concerns
and they think that is what we are doing, we are trying at the
grassroots to understand their concerns and then we have to
articulate them into our message. The policies that we are putting
forward are having a positive welcome. Tony Cottee about the
position of labour and where the Tories are looking ahead to the
election, other signs of the other parties making progress in the East
Midlands? If you look at the Lib Dems in the East Midlands, they have
gained another seat, the same thing gained another seat, the same thing
happened in Derbyshire, lost one seat, gained another, but going back
to what we have just said, what will be crucial and I think it is a local
thing really, the amount of legwork, the amount of doorknocking, the
amount of people that the party talks too, that makes a real
happening most, I think maybe that happening most, I think maybe that
up. That is going to be crucial and up. That is going to be crucial and
I do not think we should assume anything because local factors can
play a big part in the election. We saw that at the last general
election in the East Midlands. One thing that has clearly been
described as that traditional Labour voters went to Ukip because they
the Labour Party. Now they are going the Labour Party. Now they are going
to the Conservatives. We need to be listening to those people that are
giving the impression and actually giving the message that we are
concerned about them and we want to help them. For example, things like
hour, making sure that working class hour, making sure that working class
and lower paid people are not being taxed. The 80,000... Too many
messages going out? Yes, they are not listening to people, if you go
back to Mansfield which I know well and shop infrequently, the people
there have not been listened to voters and feel left behind. The
Labour Party have to have a good look at things. People are not
ambitious or taught to be ambitious. Very briefly, Tony, before you
leave, what is happening this week? We can expect more big hitters
coming to the East Midlands from all sides. Thank you, Tony. No doubt the
general election will bring in some new faces in Parliament.
But two of our familiar faces in the East Midlands are standing down.
Conservative Sir Edward Garnier and Labour's Graham Allen have more
than 50 years of service between them, but this
weekend they've been packing their bags in Westminster.
Our reporter, John Hess, caught up with them as they prepared
The MPs have gone, so have their advisers,
this place, Parliament, is in a state of hibernation
But two of our best-known politicians are still inside,
clearing their parliamentary offices for the last time.
Rolling up the years and his constituency map,
Sir Edward Garnier packs up his things after 25 years
The constituency achievement I am probably most proud of is the battle
against the Co-op new town, they wanted to build up to 20,000
new houses on farmland, which would have completely
destroyed rural Harborough, it would have turned
Market Harborough almost into a suburb of the
The former Solicitor General has held high-profile government roles,
but that recognition can backfire, as in a chance meeting
He said, "I was told you were part of a Dutch parliamentary delegation.
Whoever let you in should be taken out and shot."
And we had half an hour just chatting and in dealing
with a stranger who had just turned up on the off-chance, he could not
have been more charming, but also more inspiring.
That was one of the great moments of my life.
I'm now on my way to the parliamentary offices of another
one of our MPs who is standing down after 30 years, Nottingham
His staff help with the heavy lifting.
In these boxes, the story of this Labour MP's political battles,
won and lost and his continuing frustration with Parliament itself.
No, not really, I think it has let people down over the last 30 years
when I have been here, it has not raised the issues
I think the House of Commons is not fit for purpose.
It wasn't when I came in and it is not now and we have
seen how it has been rolled over by the government.
Two MPs from very contrasting political traditions.
So what advice would they give now to their successors?
I think it is really important to keep that core of integrity,
whatever else is going on around you, whatever else you need
to do with the media, however many compromises you need
to make in politics to make progress, what do you believe in?
As a politician you have to develop a pretty thick skin
because if you don't, you are in the wrong business.
The door is almost shut on a long parliamentary career,
as two of our senior politicians take a new destination out
It is interesting, isn't it, that Graham Allen who is stepping down
after 30 years seems very disillusioned as he leaves
Parliament. As politicians who work outside Westminster, do you share
that view? Absolutely not, I am extraordinarily proud of Parliament.
We had a referendum and then it all settle down. Where else does that
happen? No bloodshed, I am proud of our parliamentarians and our MPs. I
do not think he is saying that, he simply saying that he is
disillusioned. Do you share that view? He has been a great MP and has
been really committed to making social change and the early
intervention programme he was involved than that, so in that area
he did not see enough progress and I think that is where has this
appointment is. Personally, I think you have to be in there to keep
fighting for the things that you believe in and Graham Allen has been
doing that for 20, 30 years. Thank you for that.
That's the Sunday Politics in the East Midlands.
Thanks to Kay Cutts and Hardyal Dhindsa.
Next week, Graham Allen is our guest in the studio,
along with the former Conservative MP, Jessica Lee.
housing associations and investment, but we have run out of time, thank
you. Andrew. Four weeks to go until polling day
on the 8th of June, what will the party strategies be for the
remaining four weeks? Let's begin with the Conservatives. Do they just
try to continue to play it safe for four weeks? Yes, with this important
qualification. Theresa May Corp this election to get her own personal
mandate partly, partly because she thought she would win big but to get
her own personal mandate. Therefore, she needs to define it. In her own
interests and to do with accountability to the country. So
clearly, they will not take risks when they are so far ahead in the
polls. What they do say in the manifesto matters in
terms of the space that she has in the coming years to define her
leadership against David Cameron 's. She is a free figure, partly on the
basis of what she says as to how big she wins. They cannot just play it
safe and repeat their mantra of strong and stable leadership, if she
is going to claim her own mandate, they need the top policy? Yes, and
what is unusual about this is that the manifesto matters far more
because of what they need to do with it afterwards, than in terms of
whether it is going to win anybody over now. Clearly, the strategy is
yes, we do have two layout out a few things, there are interesting
debates as to whether, for example, they will still commit to this
ambition of reducing immigration to the tens of thousands, we do not
know the answer yet. It is a question on whether she is setting
herself up for difficulties later on. It will be a short manifesto, I
would venture to guess? It is in her interests to be as noncommittal as
possible, that argues for a short manifesto but what does strike me
about the Conservative campaign, aside from the ambiguity on policy,
is how personal it is. I think Theresa May, in her most recent
speech, referred to "My local candidates", rather than
Parliamentary candidates, very much framing it as a presidential
candidate in France or the USA. Not a rational on her part. Everything I
hear from the MPs on the ground and the focus groups being done by the
parties, is that a big chunk of the population personally identify with
her. If you can wrap up Middle England into a physical object and
embody it in a person, it would be her. Although Jeremy Corbyn's
unpopularity accounts for a big slice of her popularity, she has
done a good job of bonding with the public. We never saw that coming!
But you may well be right. That is happening now. Labour say it wants
the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell to play a more prominent role in the
Labour campaign, he was on The Andrew Marr Show this morning and he
was asked if he was a Marxist, he denied that he was. It surprised me
as I had seen tape from before saying that he was proud of it.
Let's look now and then. Are you a Marxist? I believe that there is a
lot to learn... Yes or no? I believe that there is a lot to learn from
reading capital, that is recommended not only by me but measuring
economists as well. I also believe that in the long tradition of the
Labour Party... We need to demand systemic change. I am a Marxist.
This is a classic crisis of the economy. A capitalist crisis. I've
been waiting for this for a generation! That was from about four
years ago. No, I'm not a Marxist, yes, I am a Marxist... I've been
waiting for the Marxist revolution my whole life... Does this kind of
thing matter? Yes, but in fairness, I think he is a really good
interviewee. The Shadow Cabinet have untested figures in a national
campaign. None have ever been exposed at any level to a national
media campaign that they are about to experience. He is the best
interviewee. In fairness to him, when he gave that clip four years
ago, I bet he never dream that he would be in a senior front bench
position. But the background is clear. They are of the left, and I
think they would all have described it. Jeremy Corbyn would have done,
he is close to being like Tony Benn. There are about four Labour campaign
is being fought in this election. Their campaign, the old Shadow
Cabinet, campaigning in constituencies, but not identifying
with that campaign. There is the former Labour leader Tony Blair. Is
it damaging? I think so, if they could be damaged any further, I
could see all of the Labour MPs with their heads in their hands. What I
am hearing from Labour MPs is that there is not one of them who do not
feel that they have a horrendous battle on their hands. These will be
very individual local campaigns, where local MPs are winning despite
the party leadership and not because of it. Already, talk is turning to
what happens next. Is there anyway that Jeremy Corbyn, giving a
horrendous set of general election results as many anticipate, may stay
on all the same? It is not clear that even if the polls are right,
that Mr Corbyn will go? John McDonnell implied it might not be
the case but previously, he said it would be. What do you make of
reports that the Labour strategy is not, I cannot quite believe I am
saying this, not to win seats but maximise a share of the vote. If
they do better than Ed Miliband with 30.5% of the vote, they believe they
live to fight another day? Yes, it reminded me of Tony Benn's speech
after the 1983 election where they said as bad as the Parliamentary
defeat was there were 8 million votes for socialism. A big section
of public opinion voted for that manifesto. I wonder whether that is
Corbyn's supporters best chance of holding onto power. Whether they can
say that those votes are a platform on which we can build. That said,
even moderate Labour MPs and desperate for a quick leadership
contest. I hear a lot of them say that they would like to leave it for
one year. Maybe have Tom Watson as an acting Labour leader. He would
still have a mandate. Give the top party a chance to regroup and get
rid of some of its problems and decide where it stands on policy.
Most importantly, for potential candidates to show what they are
made of, rather than lurching straight into an Yvette Cooper
Coronation. 30 seconds on the Liberal Democrats, their strategy
was to mop up the Remain vote. Uncertain about the Brexit party in
demise. Ukip. The remain as have a dilemma, the little Democrats are
not a strong enough vessel with 89 MPs to risk all ongoing for them --
the Liberal Democrats. Labour do not know where they stand on Brexit.
There is not a robust alternative vessel for what is now a pro-Brexit
Conservative Party. At the moment. Four weeks to go, but not for
France... France has been voting since early
this morning, and we should get a first estimate of who will be
the country's next President Just to warn you there are some
flashing images coming up. The choice in France
is between a centre-left liberal reformer Emmanuel Macron
and a right-wing nationalist Marine Le Pen - both have been
casting their votes this morning. The two candidates topped
a field of 11 presidential hopefuls in the first
round of elections last month. The campaign has been marked
by its unpredictability, and in a final twist on Friday
evening, just before campaigning officially ended,
Mr Macron's En Marche! group said it had been the victim
of a "massive" hack, with a trove of documents
released online. The Macron team said real documents
were mixed up with fake ones, and electoral authorities warned
media and the public that spreading details of the leaks would breach
strict election rules. I'm joined now from
Paris by the journalist As I left Paris recently, everybody
told me that there was the consensus that Mr Macron would win, and win
pretty comfortable you. Is there any reason to doubt that? -- pretty
comfortably. I don't think so, there have been so many people left and
right, former candidates who have decided that it was more important
to vote for Macron, even if it was agreed with him, then run the risk
of having Marine Le Pen as president. I think the spread is now
20 points, 60% to Macron, 40% to Le Pen. So outside of the margin of
error that it would take something huge for this to be observed. If the
polls are right and Mr Macron wins, he has to put together a government,
and in May there is a Coronation, then he faces parliamentary
elections in June and could face a fractured parliament where he does
not have a clear majority for his reforms. He could then faced
difficulties in getting his programme through? I think that
right now, with how things are looking, considering you have one
half of the Republican party, the Conservative Party, they are making
clear sides, not only that they want to support Macron but are supporting
him actively. It means looking at the equivalent of the German party,
the great coalition. Depending on how many seats established parties
keep in the house committee may very well have a Republican Prime
Minister, rather than having an adversarial MP, he may have someone
who is relatively unknown outside of France, and a young woman. Contended
that lost the Parez mayorship three years ago. She is a scientist and
has been secretary of state. She would be an interesting coalition
Prime Minister. Finally, Marine Le Pen, if she goes down to defeat a
night, does she have the stomach and ambition, and the energy, to try it
all again in 2022? She has all of that. The question is, would they
let her? How badly would she lose? Her niece, now 27, a hard-working
and steady person, unlike Marine Le Pen, who flunked her do paid --
debate, her niece may decide that 2022 is her turn. Yet another Le
Pen! All right, we will see. Just five years to wait, but only a few
hours until the results of the election tonight.
And we will get the exit polls here on the BBC. Given the exit polls
will give as a pretty fair indication of what the result is
going to be tonight. That will be on BBC news. That's all for today.
The Daily Politics will cover every turn of this election campaign,
And we're back here on BBC One at our usual time Next Sunday.
Remember - if it's Sunday, it's the Sunday Politics.
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Andrew Neil and Marie Ashby are joined by Labour's shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon and Ukip's Neil Hamilton to discuss the local election results. On the political panel are Isabel Oakeshott, Steve Richards and Janan Ganesh.