22/06/2014 Sunday Politics East


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Welfare reform is one of the government's most popular policies.


So Labour says it would be even tougher than the Tories.


We'll be asking the Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary if she's got


Even Labour supporters worry that Ed Miliband hasn't got what it takes


Labour grandees are increasingly vocal about their concerns.


Over 50% of Labour voters think they'd do better with a new leader.


And in the east, a shortage apparently "toxic" on the doorstep.


And in the east, a shortage of GPs leaving thousands


promised an electric car revolution, why so little progress?


Nick Watt, Helen Lewis and Janan Ganesh, the toxic tweeters


First, the deepening crisis in Iraq, where Sunni Islamists are now


largely in control of the Syrian-Iraq border, which means


they can now re-supply their forces in Iraq from their Syrian bases.


Rather than moving on Baghdad, they are for the moment consolidating


their grip on the towns and cities they've already taken.


They also seem to be in effective control of Iraq's


biggest oil refinery, which supplies the capital.


And there are reports they might now have taken the power


Iraqi politicians are now admitting that ISIS,


the name of the Sunni insurgents, is better trained, better equipped and


far more battle-hardened than the US-trained Iraqi army fighting it.


Which leaves the fate of Baghdad increasingly in the hands


No good news coming out of there, Janan. No good news and no good


options either. The West's best strategy is to decide how much


support to give to the Iraqi government. The US is sending over


about 275 military personnel. Do they go further and contemplate


their support? General Petraeus argued against it as it might be


seen as the US serving as the force of Shia Iraqis -- continue their


support. Do we contemplate breaking up Iraq? It won't be easy. The Sunni


and Shia Muslim populations don t and Shia Muslim populations don't


live in clearly bordered areas, but in the longer term, do we deal with


it in the same way we dealt with the break-up of the Ottoman empire over


100 years ago? In the short-term and long-term, completely confounding.


Quite humiliating. If ISIS take Baghdad I can't think of a bigger


ignominy for foreign policy since Suez. If Iraq is partitioned, it


won't be up to us. It will be what is happening because of what is


happening on the ground. Everything does point to partition, and that


border, which ISIS control, between Syria and Iraq, that has been there


since it was drawn during the First World War. That is gone as well. An


astonishingly humbling situation the West, and you can see the Kurds in


the North think this is a charge -- chance for authority. They think


this is the chance to get the autonomy they felt they deserved a


long time. Janan is right. We can't do much in the long term, but we


have to decide on the engagement. And the other people wish you'd be


talking turkey, because if there is some blowback and the fighters come


back, they are likely to come back from Turkey. Where is Iran in all of


this? There were reports last week that the Revolutionary guard, the


head of it, he was already in Baghdad with 67 advisers and there


might have been some brigades that have gone there as well. Where are


they? What has happened? I'm pretty sure the Prime Minister of Iraq is


putting more faith in Iran than the White House and the British. I think


they are running the show, in technical terms. John Kerry is


flying into Cairo this morning, and what is his message? It is twofold.


One is to Arab countries, do more to encourage an inclusive government in


Iraq, mainly Sunni Muslims in the government, and the Arab Gulf states


should stop funding insurgents in Iraq. You think, Iraq, it's


potentially going to break up, so this sounds a bit late in the day


and a bit weak. It gets fundamentally to the problem, what


can we do? Niall Ferguson has a big piece in the Sunday Times asking if


this is place where we cannot doing anything. He doesn't want to do


anything. By the way, that is what most Americans think. That is what


opinion polls are showing. You have George Osborne Michael Gold who


would love to get involved but they cannot because of the vote in


parliament on Syria lasted -- George Osborne and Michael Gove. This


government does not have the stomach for military intervention. We will


see how events unfold on the ground. All parties are agreed that


Britain's 60-year old multi-billion The Tory side of the Coalition think


their reforms are necessary and popular, though they haven't


always gone to time or to plan. In the eight months she's had since


she became Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Rachel Reeves


has talked the talk about getting people off benefits, into work and


lowering the overall welfare bill. her first interview


in the job she threatened "We would But Labour has opposed just


about every change the Coalition has proposed to cut the cost


and change the culture of welfare. Child benefit, housing benefit,


the ?26,000 benefit cap - They've been lukewarm about


the government's flagship Universal Credit scheme - which rolls six


benefit payments into one - and And Labour has set out only


two modest welfare cuts. This week, Labour said young people


must have skills or be in training That will save ?65 million,


says Labour, though the cost And cutting winter fuel payments


for richer pensioners which will Not a lot in a total welfare bill


of around ?200 billion. And with welfare cuts popular among


even Labour voters, they will soon have to start spelling out exactly


what Labour welfare reform means. Welcome. Good morning. Why do you


want to be tougher than the Tories? We want to be tough in getting the


welfare bill down. Under this government, the bill will be ?13


million more than the government set out in 2010 and I don't think that


is acceptable. We should try to control the cost of Social Security.


But the welfare bill under the next Labour government will fall? It will


be smaller when you end the first parliament than when you started? We


signed up to the capping welfare but that doesn't see social security


costs ball, it sees them go up in line with with inflation or average


earnings -- costs fall. So where flair will rise? We have signed up


to the cap -- welfare will rise? We have signed up to the cap. We will


get the costs under control and they haven't managed to achieve it. The


government is spending ?13 billion more on Social Security and the


reason they are doing it is because the minimum wage has not kept pace


with the cost of living so people are reliant on tax credits. They are


not building houses and people are relying on housing benefit. We have


a record number of people on zero hours contracts. I'm still not clear


if you will cut welfare if you get in power. Nobody is saying that the


cost of welfare is going to fall. The welfare cap sees that happening


gradually. That is a Tory cap. And you've accepted it. You're being the


same as the Tories, not to. If they had a welfare cap, they would have


breached it in every year of the parliament. Social Security will be


higher than the government set out because they failed to control it.


You read the polls, and the party does lots of its own polling, and


you're scared of being seen as the welfare party. You don't really


believe all of this anti-welfare stuff? We are the party of work, not


welfare. The Labour Party was set up in the first place because we


believe in the dignity of work and we believe that work should pay


wages can afford to live on. I make no apologies for being the party of


work. We are not the welfare party, we are the party of work. Even your


confidential strategy document admits that voters don't trust you


on immigration, the economy, this is your own people, and welfare. You


are not trusted on it. The most recent poll showed Labour slightly


ahead of the Conservative Party on Social Security, probably because


they have seen the incompetence and chaos at the Department for Work and


Pensions under Iain Duncan Smith. Your own internal document means


that the voters don't trust you on welfare reform. That is why we have


shown some of this tough things we will do like the announcement that


Ed Miliband made earlier this week, that young people without basic


qualifications won't be entitled to just sign on for benefits, they have


to sign up for training in order to receive support. That is the right


thing to do by that group of young people, because they need skills to


progress. We will, once that. -- we progress. We will, once that. - we


will, onto that. You say you criticise the government that it had


a cap and wouldn't have met it, but every money-saving welfare reform,


you voted against it. How is that being tougher? The most recent bout


was the cap on overall welfare expenditure, and we went through the


lobbies and voted for the Tories. You voted against the benefit cap,


welfare rating, you voted against, child benefit schemes, you voted


against. You can't say we voted against everything when we voted


with the Conservatives in the most recent bill with a cap on Social


Security. It's just not correct to say. The last time we voted, we


walked through the lobby with them. You voted on the principle of the


cap. You voted on every step that would allow the cap to be met. Every


single one. The most recent vote was not on the principle of the cap it


was on a cap of Social Security in the next Parliament and we signed up


for that. It was Ed Miliband who called her that earlier on. Which


welfare reform did you vote for We welfare reform did you vote for? We


voted for the cap. Other than that? We have supported universal credit.


You voted against it in the third reading. We voted against some of


the specifics. If you look at universal credit, they have had to


write off nearly ?900 million of spending. I'm not on the rights and


wrongs, I'm trying to work out what you voted for. Some of the things we


are going to go further than the government with. For example,


cutting benefits for young people who don't sign of the training. The


government had introduced that. For example, saying that the richest


pensioners should not get the winter fuel allowance, that is something


the government haven't signed up. You would get that under Labour and


this government haven't signed up for it. ?100 million on the winter


fuel allowance and ?65 million on youth training. ?165 million. How


big is the welfare budget? The cap would apply to ?120 billion. And


you've saved 125 -- 165 million Those are cuts that we said we would


do in government. If you look at the real prize from the changes Ed


Miliband announced in the youth allowance, it's not the short-term


savings, it's the fact that each of these young people, who are


currently on unemployment benefits without the skills we know they need


to succeed in life, they will cost the taxpayer ?2000 per year. I will


come onto that. You mentioned universal credit, which the


government regards as the flagship reform. It's had lots of troubles


with it and it merges six benefits into one. You voted against it in


the third reading and given lukewarm support in the past. We have not


said he would abandon it, but now you say you are for it. You are all


over the place. We set up the rescue committee in autumn of last year


because we have seen from the National Audit Office and the Public


Accounts Committee, report after report showing that the project is


massively overbudget and is not going to be delivered according to


the government timetable. We set up the committee because we believe in


the principle of universal credit and think it is the right thing to


do. Can you tell us now if you will keep it or not? Because there is no


transparency and we have no idea. We are awash with information. We are


not. The government, in the most recent National audit Forest --


National Audit Office statement said it was a reset project. This is


really important. This is a flagship government programme, and it's going


to cost ?12.8 billion to deliver, and we don't know what sort of state


it is in, so we have said that if we win at the next election, we will


pause that for three months and calling... Will you stop the pilots?


We don't know what status they will have. We would stop the build of the


system for three months, calling the National Audit Office to do awards


and all report. The government don't need to do this until the next


general election, they could do it today. Stop throwing good money


after bad and get a grip of this incredibly important programme. You


said you don't know enough to a view now. So when you were invited to a


job centre where universal credit is being rolled out to see how it was


working, you refused to go. Why We asked were a meeting with Iain


Duncan Smith and he cancelled the meeting is three times. I'm talking


about the visit when you were offered to go to a job centre and


you refused. We had an appointment to meet Iain Duncan Smith at the


Department for Work and Pensions and said he cancelled and was not


available, but he wanted us to go to the job centre. We wanted to talk to


him and his officials, which she did. Would it be more useful to go


to the job centre and find out how it was working. He's going to tell


you it's working fine. Advice Bureau in Hammersmith, they


are working to help the people trying to claim universal credit.


Iain Duncan Smith cancelled three meetings. That is another issue,


Iain Duncan Smith cancelled three meetings. That is another issue I


was asking about the job centre. It is not another issue because Iain


Duncan Smith fogged us off. This week you said that jobless


youngsters who won't take training will lose their welfare payments.


How many young people are not in work training or education? There


are 140,000 young people claiming benefits at the moment, but 850,000


young people who are not in work at the moment. This applies to around


100,000 young people. There are actually 975,000, 16-24 -year-olds,


not in work, training or education. Your proposal only applies to


100,000 of them, why? This is applying to young people who are


signing on for benefits rather than signing up for training. We want to


make sure that all young people .. Why only 100,000? They are the ones


currently getting job-seeker's allowance. We are saying you can not


just sign up to... Can I get you to respond to this, the number of


people not in work, training or education fell last year by more


than you are planning to help. Long turn -- long-term unemployment is an


entrenched problem... This issue about an entrenched group of young


people. Young people who haven't got skills and are not in training we


know are much less likely to get a job so there are 140,018-24


-year-olds signing onto benefits at the moment. This is about trying to


address that problem to make sure all young people have the skills


they need to get a job. Your policy is to take away part of the dole


unless young unemployed people agree to study for level three


qualifications, the equivalent of an AS-level or an NVQ but 40% of these


people have the literary skills of a nine-year-old. After all that failed


education, how are you going to train them to a level standard? We


are saying that anyone who doesn't have that a level or equivalent


qualification will be required to go back to college. We are not saying


that within a year they have to get up to that level but these are


exactly the sorts of people... These people have been failed by your


education system. These people are, for the last four years, have been


educated under a Conservative government. 18 - 21-year-olds, most


of them have their education under a Labour government during which


300,000 people left with no GCSEs whatsoever. I don't understand how


training for one year can do what 11 years in school did not. We are not


saying that within one year everybody will get up to a level


three qualifications, but if you are one of those people who enters the


Labour market age 18 with the reading skills of a nine-year-old,


they are the sorts of people that should not the left languishing I


should not the left languishing. I went to college in Hackney if you


you are -- a few weeks ago and there was a dyslexic boy studying painting


and decorating. In school they decided he was a troublemaker and


that he didn't want to learn. He went back to college because he


wanted to get the skills. He said that it wasn't until he went back to


college that he could pick up a newspaper and read it, it made a


huge difference but too many people are let down by the system. I am


wondering how the training will make up for an education system that


failed them but let's move on to your leader. Look at this graph of


Ed Miliband's popularity. This is the net satisfaction with him, it is


dreadful. The trend continues to climb since he became leader of the


Labour Party, why? What you have seen is another 2300 Labour


councillors since Ed Miliband became the leader of the Labour Party. You


saw in the elections a month ago that... Why is the satisfaction rate


falling? We can look at polls or actual election results and the fact


that we have got another 2000 Labour councillors, more people voting


Labour, the opinion polls today show that if there was a general election


today we would have a majority of more than 40, he must be doing


something right. Why do almost 0% of voters want to replace him as


leader? Why do 50% and more think that he is not up to the job? The


more people see Ed Miliband, the less impressed they are. The British


people seem to like him less. The election strategy I suggest that


follows from that is that you should keep Ed Miliband under wraps until


the election. Let's look at actually what happens when people get a


chance to vote, when they get that opportunity we have seen more Labour


councillors, more Labour members of the European Parliament...


Oppositions always get more. The opinion polls today, one of them


shows Labour four points ahead. You have not done that well in local


government elections or European elections. Why don't people like


him? I think we have done incredibly well in elections. People must like


a lot of the things Labour and Ed Miliband are doing because we are


winning back support across the country. We won local councils in


places like Hammersmith and Fulham, Crawley, Hastings, key places that


Labour need to win back at the general election next year. Even you


have said traditional Labour supporters are abandoning the party.


That is what Ed Miliband has said as well. We have got this real concern


about what has happened. If you look at the elections in May, 60% of


people didn't even bother going to vote. That is a profound issue not


just for Labour. You said traditional voters who perhaps at


times we took for granted are now being offered an alternative. Why


did you take them for granted? This is what Ed Miliband said. I am not


saying anything Ed Miliband himself has not said. When he ran for the


leadership he said that we took too many people for granted and we


needed to give people positive reasons to vote Labour, he has been


doing that. He has been there for four years and you are saying you


still take them for granted. Why? I am saying that for too long we have


taken them for granted. We are on track to win the general election


next year and that will defy all the odds. You are going to win... Ed


Miliband will win next year and make a great Prime Minister.


Now to the Liberal Democrats, at the risk of intruding into private


grief. The party is still smarting from dire results in the European


and Local Elections. The only poll Nick Clegg has won in recent times


is to be voted the most unpopular leader of a party in modern British


history. No surprise there have been calls for him to go, though that


still looks unlikely. Here's Eleanor.


Liberal Democrats celebrating, something we haven't seen for a


while. This victory back in 199 led while. This victory back in 1998 led


to a decade of power for the Lib Dems in Liverpool. What a contrast


to the city's political landscape today. At its height the party had


69 local councillors, now down to just three. The scale of the


challenge facing Nick Clegg and the Lib Dems is growing. The party is


rock bottom in the polls, consistently in single figures. It


was wiped out in the European elections losing all but one of its


12 MEPs and in the local elections it lost 42% of the seats that it was


defending. But on Merseyside, Nick Clegg was putting on a brave face.


We did badly in Liverpool, Manchester and London in particular,


we did well in other places. But you are right, we did badly in some of


those big cities and I have initiated a review, quite


naturally, to understand what went wrong, what went right. As Lib Dems


across the country get on with some serious soul-searching, there is an


admission that his is the leader of the party who is failing to hit the


right notes. Knocking on doors in Liverpool, I have to tell you that


Nick Clegg is not a popular person. Some might use the word toxic and I


find this very difficult because I know Nick very well and I see a


principal person who passionately believes in what he is doing and he


is a nice guy. As a result of his popularity, what has happened to the


core vote? In parts of the country, we are down to just three


councillors like Liverpool for example. You also lose the


deliverers and fundraisers and the organisers and the members of course


so all of that will have to be rebuilt. As they start fermenting


process, local parties across the country and here in Liverpool have


been voting on whether there should be a leadership contest. We had two


choices to flush out and have a go at Nick Clegg or to positively


decide we would sharpen up the campaign and get back on the


streets, and by four to one ratio we decided to get back on the streets.


We are bruised and battered but we are still here, the orange flag is


still flying and one day it will fly over this building again, Liverpool


town hall. But do people want the Lib Dems back in charge in this


city? I certainly wouldn't vote for them. Their performance in


Government and the way they have left their promises down, I could


not vote for them again. I voted Lib Dem in the last election because of


the university tuition fees and I would never vote for them again


because they broke their promise. The Lib Dems are awful, broken


promises and what have you. I wouldn't vote for them. This is the


declaration of the results for the Northwest... Last month, as other


party celebrated in the north-west, the Lib Dems here lost their only


MEP, Chris Davies. Now there is concern the party doesn't know how


to turn its fortunes around. We don't have an answer to that, if we


did we would be grasping it with both hands. We will do our best to


hold onto the places where we still have seats but as for the rest of


the country where we have been hollowed out, we don't know how to


start again until the next general election is out of the way. After


their disastrous performance in the European elections, pressure is


growing for the party to shift its stance. I think there has to be a


lancing of the wound, there should in a referendum and the Liberal


Democrats should be calling it. The rest of Europe once this because


they are fed up with Britain being unable to make up its mind. The Lib


Dems are now suffering the effects of being in Government. The party's


problem, choosing the right course to regain political credibility.


to regain political credibility We can now speak to form a Lib Dems


leader Ming Campbell. Welcome back to the Sunday Politics. Even your


own activists say that Nick Clegg is toxic. How will that change between


now and the election? When you have had disappointing results, but you


have to do is to rebuild. You pick yourself up and start all over


again, and the reason why the Liberal Democrats got 57, 56 seats


in the House of Commons now is because we picked ourselves up, we


took every opportunity and we have rebuilt from the bottom up.


least popular leader in modern history and more unpopular than your


mate Gordon Brown. You are running out of time. No one believes that


being the leader of a modern political party in the UK is an easy


job. Both Ed Miliband and David Cameron must have had cause to


think, over breakfast this morning, when they saw the headlines in some


of the Sunday papers. Of course it is a difficult job but it was


pointed out a moment or two ago that Nick Clegg is a man of principle and


enormous resilience if you consider what he had to put up with, and in


my view, he is quite clearly the person best qualified to lead the


party between now and the general election and through the election


campaign, and beyond. So why don't people like him? We have had to take


some pretty difficult decisions, and, of course, people didn't expect


that. If you look back to the rather heady days of the rose garden behind


ten Downing St, people thought it was all going to be sweetness and


light, but the fact is, we didn't light, but the fact is, we didn t


know then what we know now, about the extent of the economic crisis we


win, and a lot of difficult decisions have had to be taken in


order to restore economic stability. Look around you. You will see we are


not there yet but we are a long way better off than in 2010. You are not


getting the credit for it, the Tories are. We will be a little more


assertive about taking the credit. For example, the fact that 23


million people have had a tax cut of ?800 per year and we have taken 2


million people out of paying tax altogether. Ming Campbell, your


people say that on every programme like this. Because it is true. That


might be the case, but you are at seven or 8% in the polls, and nobody


is listening, or they don't believe it. Once


is listening, or they don't believe doubt that what we have achieved


will be much more easily recognised, and there is no doubt,


for example, in some of the recent polls, like the Ashcroft Pole,


something like 30% of those polled said that as a result at the next


something like 30% of those polled general election, they would prepare


their to be a coalition involving the Liberal Democrats. So there is


no question that the whole notion of coalition is still very much a live


one, and one which we have made work in the public interest. The problem


is people don't think that. People see you trying to have your cake and


eat it. On the one hand you want to get your share of the credit for the


turnaround in the economy, on the other hand you can't stop yourself


from distancing yourself from the Tories and things that you did not


like happening. You are trying to face both ways at once. If you


remember our fellow Scotsman famously said you cannot ride both


remember our fellow Scotsman to the terms -- terms of the


remember our fellow Scotsman coalition agreement, which is what


we signed up to in 2010. In addition, in furtherance of that


agreement, we have created things like the pupil premium and the


others I mentioned and you were rather dismissive. I'm not


dismissive, I'm just saying they don't make a difference to what


people think of you. We will do everything in our power to change


that between now and May 2015. The interesting thing is, going back to


the Ashcroft result, it demonstrated clearly that in constituencies where


we have MPs and we are well dug in, we are doing everything that the


public expects of us, and we are doing very well indeed. You aren't


sure fellow Lib Dems have been saying this for you -- you and your


fellow Liberal Dems have been saying this for a year or 18 months, and


since then you have lost all of your MEPs apart from one, you lost your


deposit in a by-election, you lost 310 councillor, including everyone


in Manchester or Islington. Mr Clegg leading you into the next general


election will be the equivalent of the charge of the light Brigade.


election will be the equivalent of the charge of the light Brigade I


the charge of the light Brigade. I doubt that very much. The


implication behind that lit you rehearsed is that we should pack our


tents in the night and steal away. -- that litany. And if you heard in


that piece that preceded the discussion, people were saying, look


we have to start from the bottom and have to rebuild. That is exactly


what we will do. Nine months is a period of gestation. As you well


know. I wouldn't dismiss it quite so easily as that. I'm not here to say


we had a wonderful result or anything like it, but what I do say


is that the party is determined to turn it round, and that Nick Clegg


is the person best qualified to do it. Should your party adopt a


referendum about in or out on Europe? No, we should stick to the


coalition agreement. If there is any transfer of power from Westminster


to Brussels, that will be subject to a referendum. No change. And


finally, as a Lib Dem, you must be glad you are not fighting the next


election yourself? I've fought every election since 1974, so I've had a


few experiences, some good, some bad, but the one thing I have done


and the one thing a lot of other people have done is that they have


stuck to the task, and that is what will happen in May 2015. Ming


Campbell, thank you 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 East. Surgeons but no doctors,


patients who cannot get appointments and half empty training courses.


and half empty training courses This is probably the worst workforce


crisis in my years as a qualified doctor. The parliamentarians trying


to get their message across. I think politics really matters and can make


a real difference to people's lives and unless they are engaged they do


not worry to vote. Let's meet not worry to vote. Let's medt our


guests, former Minister of Labour's candidate for Northampton North. And


newly re`elected conservative MVP. I wanted to start with the environment


committee report into flooding which criticised the lack of routine


flight maintenance seeing it as our TB in a month. The tidal surge left


1400 homes flooded and many acres of land underwater. 130 defencd


projects needed repair. The main finding is that you must not cut


down on maintenance because you create extra capital costs further


down the line. This report says that not enough money is


prevent flooding and that is a false economy? If you look back at what


happened, the worst in 50 years, the Environment Agency did an


amazing job compared to 50 years ago, but absolutely


are changing and we need to make sure we are prepared and look at how


flood defences are performed, whether they need to be better


maintained. I am concerned about areas in the North claims and in


Somerset making sure that experience would not happen here. Let's look at


places where the defences h`ve held up well such as in


Northamptonshire. That is because there was very good investmdnt at


the time. ?7 million saved in any much more than that. The cost of the


last round was around about ?1 billion, so we need to see flood


defences and protection and essential infrastructure and


increase funding which has been cut. Jobs going at the Environment


Agency? Money has been put into environmental protection. If you


look at what has happened in some places, there are flood defences and


it is now time to be complacent when patterns changing and there is a


commitment money will go into this. We want to learn from what happened


in the West Country and that the needs to be more dredging we have to


look at that. We will have to leave it.


Staff shortages in doctors' surgeries. A struggle to recruit


enough doctors to cope with demand and one surgery is expected to close


later this year leaving 16,000 no family doctor and some GPs


the crisis could force the privatisation of the NHS. The


pressure is rising and the statistics tell a stark story.


Demand for medical services are going up and they are not enough GPs


to go around. This is probably the worst workforce crisis I have seen


in 30 years as a private doctor. David is something going wrong and


we need to change that. If xou have we need to change that. If you have


been to the doctor lately you will have seen a few changes. Surgeries


are high`tech places these days with a lot of Kier previously given by


hospitals taking place. People are living longer and people have


multiple diseases that are continuing to lead reasonably


healthy lives. The increased workload has made many established


doctors retired early and there is a significant shortage of GPs. I have


a great practice with 16,000 patients about to be short of six


doctors, and we will be down to two GPs within a few months. Thdy do not


think they can provide a safe service any more.


longer collect statistics btt we have learned the problem is not just


in Essex. In Suffolk, 14 of 66 are currently advertising


doctors and the Norfolk arotnd half have vacancies. This surgery in


have vacancies. This surgerx in mid`Norfolk has had to transfer 1500


to a nearby practice. It wouldn't be to a nearby practice. It wotldn t be


a natural thing to do. Changes to funding mean local subsidies are


also under financial pressure. GP surgeries like this account for 90%


of patient contact time but attract only 8% of the budget, and fill


every patient matters about 20p per day. Health education in England as


the body responsible for tr`ining doctors and aims to get 50% of all


graduates into general practice by 2016. It says the take`up in our


region is around 93%, a fall of 7% since 2010. The take`up is still


relatively high but we have been told by local medical committees


that GP training courses attached to hospitals in our region are only


half full. In Suffolk, the GP Federation aims to attract more


doctors to the county. One of the things we really want to do is


support general practices to make them a more attractive placd for


young doctors to come to. It is a great place and when people come


here they really `` do not often want to leave. I think Suffolk is a


great place to work and I h`ve really enjoyed it. There's a great


range of things work and been those great


diversity. Do you think you might come back? I would not say no. A


failure to solve the GP crisis could have far`reaching consequences. I


worry that we are seeing thd privatisation of primary care. We


would lose that personal care that the population has grown to


appreciate. Joining me from Ipswich, a practising doctor. What are you


going to do about this shortage You are right in saying that general


practice and community carers the engine room of the NHS. We need to


see more investment in the years ahead as they look after


with increasingly complex Kier needs. That is why the government is


increasing the funding available and that is happening across all the


Legion but we are also making sure we're increasing the number of GPs,


1000 than in 2010. `` 1000 lore The problem as it takes many years to


train a general practitioner, five years from leading medical school,


and that planning has to be in place many years in advance. Some of the


issues we are tackling are due to decisions made in 2007, 2008. It is


all very well blaming the previous incumbents but we heard from


patients and about one surgery in Essex which will close leaving


16,000 without any GPs. What will you do in the meantime? We've also


got to recognise that many general practices are small businesses in


their own right. That is the funding model for decades now. Therd's an


opportunity for general practice is to offer additional salary for new


GPs coming in and packages to attract people to the area, and as


you have hard in England, we are relatively well`off


people applying. Whilst it lay be people applying. Whilst it may be


that you have indicated 93% is the fill rate, because the number of


places has increased we are seeing more people choosing general


practice as the carrier and what we will be seen by 2016 is 50% of


doctors going into general practice, meaning a lot more effort and


attention going into it. If these are run on some sort of business


model, what happens if they effectively go bust? The model is


run `` has run very effectively for many years and the average GP is


paid a salary of ?110,000. Why aren't more people coming forward


for these vacancies we talkdd about? Half of surgeries in Norfolk


have vacancies with no applicants. have vacancies with no applhcants.


There is a duty to those GPs as they run the small business to make sure


they put together attractivd packages for new GPs coming into


work and those practices in the future. It is incorrect


there's a lack of people choosing general practice because we now have


1000 more GPs than the work in 010. It is an attractive career and we


need to see more people choosing but it is not just about delivering


GPs and right technology and enabling


practices to work health problems to cope and look


after themselves. investing in important work for


district nurses as well and making sure we have enough to support


people with long`term conditions. Thank you for the moment. Do you


think people have to expect less from GPs in the future? No, but I


think you have to have experienced and properly trained GPs and Daz was


just pointed out, you cannot train AGP overnight.


the last few years of the L`bour government when they


medical careers and I remember warning


brightest would leave the country as a result.


heard more money is going into GP training and


GP practices is excellent. We also need to remember that the job is


also changing, we are living longer and care of the elderly is


important, so we want well`trained proper GPs. Do you think people are


on the other hand expecting too much? They should not expect 24


hours a day service. I do not think people are expecting too much and


they would dispute some of figures because many of the people


would have started under the Labour Government. My


understanding is that while you have 93% take`up of training in the East


Midlands, it is 62%, which is very serious. There's a 3% reduction in


the number of GPs and people are waiting and you hear people talking


about it. What needs to happen? There needs to be more investment


GP training and attracting people into the profession. The government


took their eye off the ball with their top`down


wasted time and money and goodwill, and I think they need to look again


at exactly how the services are configured, so that GPs can


offer... I want to come back to Doctor Poulter. Are you resting on


your laurels are busy work still to be done? Not at all. The 3% decrease


in GP numbers is fully qualhfied GP and that is a direct legacy of the


lack of investment towards the end of the Labour Government. The


increase has mostly come from GP registers coming towards the end of


their training who are about to become fully qualified GPs which


shows we are investing in more GPs sure we have the workforce to look


after people. There has been a lot of talk in


recent weeks about the publhc feeling


and in particular with the main parties. It probably explains why


turnout in local elections is often so long. He recent survey found only


49% were likely to vote and 67% believe politicians don't understand


their daily lives. The Housds of Parliament recently launched an


outreach service to explain how politics works. I think polhtics


really matters and can make a difference to people's lives and


unless people are engaged, I actually worry they do not have


rights to complain. You are facing an uphill struggle? UKIP is a signal


because a lot of the support seems to come from people who do not


normally bought slaughters `n angry voice. One area of concern hs young


walkers with less than one third under 24 saying they are interested.


`` young voters. She has called on her party to do more to engage


her party to do more to eng`ge with young voters. They may be voting


less than older people, that is extremely clear, and they are voting


less than previous generations. That is also an important point


does not mean they are not doing politics.


projects and getting results. That is politics, but there is perhaps a


different language around it. I was speaking to another MP from our


region who said we live in a world of instant


particularly young voters expect things to be solved instantly. Is


that one of the problems? I am sure it is in there but I do not see us


as a problem, just the way the world doubts. It is an opportunity for


politicians to do things differently and to serve the people we are there


to serve. This is just the way my generation and those behind us will


be like. How do you win thel back? You want to get the message out in


the right way. should have been doing this for


years? Of course and good ones have. It has not worked! Things kdep


moving on and a particularly obvious changes the coming of the intranet.


That affects all generations because we lived through, but my generation


and those even younger have grown with the intranet and that changes


politics and radically. Politicians need to change the game? Politicians


need to respond to the Newm`rket. What business Woods failed to sell


to new customers? Do you thhnk this is an opportunity to reject any


newly to young people? `` in a new way? The big crisis coming is


individual voter registration which will result in a lots young people


disappearing off the electoral roll and it'll be a huge challenge


make sure they are able to vote and actually use it.


question of changing the message, we have to


traditional and conventional politics as a way to change their


lives. Do you agree, do they do it better elsewhere in Europe? Not


necessarily because in the Duropean elections about one in the UK


elections about one in the TK voted, about the same as five years ago,


and the Conservative vote in the East of England held up


you predicted. It is important that we engage, but if you look


elsewhere, Slovakia was the worst at 13%. We are not the worst in terms


of water turnout. In terms of using the Internet it is important we look


at what people are saying and it is not just young people who are


contacting us through the Internet, you have to use new media. TKIP


brought in new voters, what are they doing right? And quite a lot of


older voters. I had more active young campaigners knocking on doors


campaigning with me than at any point in the last ten years. Your


party is losing votes to UKHP, what are they doing you are not? We lost


some and we probably lost fdwer than others. Why isn't labour and


engaging as much? It was voting like a free kick at the traditional


parties. We need to change the way we do politics and speak to people


and over the coming year we will have to make sure that young people


are on the register to vote. We must move on. Now to our politic`l


round`up of the week and it seems the only way is Essex even hf the


trends do not run. `` trains.


A plea from Essex MP. Will he commend Essex businesses and support


their efforts to export mord by looking favourably upon our plans to


upgrade our infrastructure? As I have said before, where Essex leads


the rest of the country follows. But nobody followed anybody into Essex


as right on cue services and to call Chesterfield. And the need for a new


road junction was argued in Westminster. But it was the plans


for Rushden late's leisure complex that prompted an argument bdtween


two Northamptonshire MPs. He should be getting the splinters out of his


backside for sitting on the fence so long over this matter. A cl`im that


was strongly refuted. What about the new a 14 junction? It


is really important, infrastructure and investing in skills. And train


chaos, is it time some of these franchises were handed back? We need


more investment in infrastructure and we have started


that. We have been campaignhng that. We have been campaigning for


better railway infrastructure and have some improvements. We need a


vibrant economy in order to deliver the cash and I agree we need that on


broadband as well. Franchisds handed back to the government? If xou fail


to deliver you should not bd doing it. Thank


information, you can apply to them and they will be obliged to tell


you. Thanks for joining us. Andrew, back to you.


think you'd want to. Labour grandees are not queueing up to sing his


praises. Look at this. In my view, he is the leader we have and he is


the leader I support and he is somebody capable of leading the


party to victory. Ed Miliband will leave this to victory, and I believe


he can. If he doesn't, what would happen to the Labour Party? We could


be in the wilderness for 15 years. At the moment he has to convince


people he has the capacity to lead the country. That's not my view,


people he has the capacity to lead the country. That's not my view but


people don't believe that. We had a leader of the Labour Party was


publicly embarrassed, because whoever was in charge of press


letting go through a process where we have councillors in Merseyside


resigning. It was a schoolboy error. Having policies without them being


drawn together into a convincing and vivid narrative and with what you do


the people in the country. You have to draw together, connect the


policies, link them back to the leader and give people a real sense


of where you are going. Somehow he has never quite managed to be


himself and create that identity with the public. And we are joined


by the president of you girls, Peter Kellner. Welcome to the Sunday


politics. -- YouGov. The Labour Party is six points ahead in your


poll this morning. So what is the problem? On this basis he will win


the next election. If the election were today and the figures held up,


you would have a Labour government with a narrow overall majority. One


should not forget that. Let me make three points. The first is, in past


parliaments, opposition normally lose ground and governments gain


ground in the final few months. The opposition should be further ahead


than this. I don't think six is enough. Secondly, Ed Miliband is


behind David Cameron when people are asked who they want as Prime


Minister and Labour is behind the Conservatives went people are asked


who they trust on the economy. There have been elections when the party


has won by being behind on leadership and other elections where


they have won by being behind on the economy. No party has ever won an


election when it has been clearly behind on both leadership and the


economy. Let me have another go. The economy. Let me have another go The


Labour Party brand is a strong brand. The Tory Bramleys week. The


Labour brand is stronger. That is a blast -- the Labour -- the Tory


Bramleys week. A lot of the Tories -- the Tory brand is weak. Cant you


win on policies and a strong party brand? If you have those too, you


need the third factor which isn t there. People believing that you


have what it takes, competent skills, determination,


determination, whatever makes to carry through. -- whatever mix. A


lot of Ed Miliband policies, on the banks, energy prices, Brent


controls, people like them. But in government, would they carry them


through? They think they are not up to it. -- rent controls. If people


think you won't deliver what you say, even if they like it, they were


necessarily vote for you. That is the missing third element. There is


a strong Labour brand, but it's not strong enough to overcome the


feeling that the Labour leadership is not up to it. Nick, you had some


senior Labour figure telling you that if Mr Miliband losing the next


election he will have to resign immediately and cannot fight another


election the way Neil Kinnock did after 1987. What was remarkable to


me was that people were even thinking along these lines, and even


more remarkable that they would tell you they were thinking along these


lines? What is the problem? The problem is, is that Ed Miliband says


it would be unprecedented to win the general election after the second


worst result since 1918. They are concerned about is the start of a


script that he would say on the day after losing the general election.


Essentially what the people are trying to do is get their argument


in first and to say, you cannot do what Neil Kinnock did in 1987. Don't


forget that Neil Kinnock in 1987 what Neil Kinnock did in 1987. Don't


forget that Neil Kinnock in 198 was forget that Neil Kinnock in 1987 was


in the middle of a very brave process of modernisation and had one


and fought a very campaign that was professional but he lost again in


1992, and they wanted to get their line in first. What some people are


saying is that this is an election that the Labour Party should be


winning because the coalition is so unpopular. If you don't win, I'm


afraid to say, there is something wrong with you. Don't you find it


remarkable that people are prepared to think along these lines at this


stage, when Labour are ahead in the polls, still the bookies favourite


to win, and you start to speak publicly, or in private to the


public print, but we might have to get rid of him if he doesn't win.


Everything you say about labour in this situation has been said about


the Tories. We wondered whether Boris Johnson would tie himself to


the mask and he is the next leader in waiting if Cameron goes. It's a


mirror image of that. We talk about things being unprecedented. It's


unprecedented for a government to gain seats. All the things you say


about labour, you could say it the Conservatives. That's what makes the


next election so interesting. But in the aftermath of the European


elections and the local government elections, in which the


Conservatives did not do that well, the issue was not Mr Cameron or the


Tories doing well, the issue was the Labour Party and how they had not


done as well as they should have done, and that conversation was


fuelled by the kind of people who have been speaking to nick from the


Labour Party. Rachel Reeves cited their real-life performance in


elections as a reason for optimism. When in fact their performance in


the Europeans and locals was disappointing for an opposition one


year away from a general election. What alarms me about labour is the


way they react to criticisms about Ed Miliband. Two years ago when he


was attacked, they said they were 15 points ahead, and then a year ago


there were saying they were nine or ten ahead, and now they are saying


we are still five or six ahead. The trend is alarming. It points to a


smaller Labour lead. Am I right in detecting a bit of a class war going


on in the Labour Party? There are a lot of northern Labour MPs who think


that Ed Miliband is to north London, and there are too many metropolitan


cronies around him must I think that is right, Andrew. What I think is,


being a pessimist in terms of their prospects, I do think the Labour


Party could win the next election. I just don't think they can as they


are going at the moment. But the positioning for a possible defeat,


what they should be talking about is what do we need to change in the


party and the way Ed Miliband performs in order to secure victory.


That is a debate they could have, and they could make the changes. I


find it odd that they are being so defeatist. Don't go away. Peter is a


boffin when it comes to polls. That is why we have a mod for the


election prediction swings and roundabouts. He is looking for what


he calls the incumbency effect. Don't know what is a back-up -- what


that's about question don't worry, here is an. Being in office is bad


for your health. Political folk wisdom has it that incumbency


favours one party in particular, the Liberal Democrats. That is because


their MPs have a reputation as ferociously good local campaigners


who do really well at holding on to their seats. However, this time


round, several big-name long serving Liberal Democrats like Ming


Campbell, David Heath and Don Foster are standing down. Does that mean


the incumbency effect disappears like a puff of smoke? Then there is


another theory, called the sophomore surge. It might sound like a movie


about US college kids, but it goes like this. New MPs tend to do better


in their second election than they did in their first. That could


favour the Tories because they have lots of first-time MPs. The big


question is, what does this mean for the 7th of May 2015, the date of the


next general election? The answer is, who knows? I know a man who


knows. Peter. What does it all mean? You can go onto your PC now and draw


down programmes which say that these are the voting figures from a


national poll, so what will the seats look like? This is based on


uniform swing. Every seat moving up and down across the country in the


same way. Historically, that's been a pretty good guide. I think that's


going to completely break down next year, because the Lib Dems will


probably hold on to more seats than we predict from the national figures


and I think fewer Tory seats will go to the Labour Party than you would


predict from the national figures. The precise numbers, I'm not going


to be too precise, but I would be surprised, sorry, I would not be


surprised if Labour fell 20 or 5 seats short on what we would expect


on the uniform swing prediction Next year's election will be tight.


Falling 20 seats short could well mean the difference between victory


and defeat. What you make of that, Helen? I think you're right,


especially taking into account the UKIP effect. We have no idea about


that. The conventional wisdom is that will drain away back to the


Conservatives, but nobody knows, that will drain away back to the


Conservatives, but nobody knows and Conservatives, but nobody knows, and


it makes the next election almost impossible to call. It means it is a


great target the people like Lord Ashcroft with marginal polling,


because people have never been so interested. It is for party politics


and we all assume that UKIP should be well next year, but their vote


went up from 17 up to 27%. Then that 17% went down to 3%, so they might


only be five or 6% in the general election, so they might not have the


threat of depriving Conservatives of their seats. Where the incumbency


thing has an effect is the Liberal Democrats. They have fortress seats


where between 1992 and 1997 Liberal Democrats seats fell, but their


percentage went up. They are losing the local government base though.


True, but having people like Ming Campbell standing down means they


will struggle. We are used to incumbency being an important factor


in American politics. It's hard to get rid of an incumbent unless it is


a primary election, like we saw in Virginia, but is it now becoming an


important factor in British politics, that if you own the seat


you're more likely to hold on to it than not? If it is, that's a


remarkable thing. It's hard to be a carpetbagger in America, but it is


normal in British Parliamentary constituencies to be represented by


someone who did not grow up locally. It is a special kind of achievement


to have an incumbency effect where you don't have deep roots in the


constituency. I was going to ask about the Lib Dems. If we are wrong,


and they collapse in Parliamentary representation as much as the share


in vote collapses, is that not good news is that the Conservatives? They


would be in second place in the majority of existing Lib Dems seats.


For every seat where Labour are second to the Lib Dems, there are


two where the Conservatives are second. If the Lib Dem


representation collapses, that helps the Conservatives. I'm assuming the


Tories will gain about ten seats. If they gain 20, if they'd had 20 more


seats last time, they would have had a majority government, just about.


So 20 seats off the Lib Dem, do the maths, as they say in America, and


they could lose a handful to labour and still be able to run a one


party, minority government. The fate of the Lib Dems could be crucial to


the outcome to the politics of light. On the 8th of May, it will be


VE Day and victory in election day as well as Europe. The Lib Dems will


be apoplectic if they lose all of the seats to their coalition


partners. The great quote by Angela Merkel, the little party always gets


crushed. It's a well-established idea that coalition politics. They


can't take credit for the things people like you may get lumbered


with the ones they don't. They have contributed most of this terrible


idea that seized politics where you say it, but you don't deliver it.


Tuition fees is the classic example of this Parliament. Why should you


believe any promise you make? And Ed Miliband is feeling that as well.


But in 1974 the liberal Democrats barely had any MPs but there were


reporters outside Jeremy Thorpe's home because they potentially held


not the balance of power, but were significantly in fourth. Bringing


back memories Jeremy Thorpe, and we will leave it there. Thanks to the


panel. We are tomorrow on BBC Two. At the earlier time of 11am because


of Wimbledon. Yes, it's that time of year again already. I will be back


here at 11 o'clock next week. Remember, if it is Sunday, it is the


Sunday Politics.


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