21/05/2017 Sunday Politics East


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It's Sunday Morning, and this is the Sunday Politics.


Labour attacks Conservative plans for social care and to means-test


So can Jeremy Corbyn eat into the Tory lead


Theresa May says her party's manifesto is all about fairness.


We'll be speaking to a Conservative cabinet minister about the plans.


The polls have always shown healthy leads for the Conservatives.


But, now we've seen the manifestos, is Labour narrowing the gap?


Here in the east, what will small businesses be looking


And pensioners worried about manifesto plans


And with me - as always - the best and the brightest political


panel in the business: Sam Coates, Isabel Oakeshott


and Steve Richards - they'll be tweeting throughout


the programme, and you can get involved by using


Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says pensioners will be up to ?330 a year


worse off under plans outlined in the Conservative manifesto.


The Work Pensions Secretary Damian Green has said his party will not


rethink their plans to fund social care in England. Under the plans in


the Conservative manifesto, nobody with assets of less than ?100,000,


would have to pay for care. Labour has attacked the proposal, and John


McDonnell, Labour's Shadow Chancellor, said this morning that


there needs to be more cross-party consensus.


That's why we supported Dilnot, but we also supported


Because we've got to have something sustainable over generations,


so that's why we've said to the Conservative Party,


Let's go back to that cross-party approach that actually


I just feel we've all been let down by what's come


Sam, is Labour beginning to get their argument across? What we had


last week was bluntly what felt like not very Lynton Crosby approved


Conservative manifesto. What I mean by that is that it looks like there


are things that will cause political difficulties for the party over this


campaign. I've been talking to MPs and ministers who acknowledge that


the social care plan is coming up on the doorstep. It has cut through


very quickly, and it is worrying and deterring some voters. Not just


pensioners, that people who are looking to inherit in the future.


They are all asking how much they could lose that they wouldn't have


lost before. A difficult question for the party to answer, given that


they don't want to give too much away now. Was this a mistake, or a


sign of the Conservatives' confidence? It has the hallmarks of


something that has been cobbled together in a very unnaturally short


time frame for putting a manifesto together. We have had mixed messages


from the Tory MPs who have been out on the airwaves this morning as to


whether they will consult on it whether it is just a starting point.


That said, there is still three weeks to go, and most of the Tory


party this morning feel this is a little light turbulence rather than


anything that leaves the destination of victory in doubt. It it flips the


normal politics. The Tories are going to make people who have a


reasonable amount of assets pay for their social care. What is wrong


with that? First, total credit for them for not pretending that all


this can be done by magic, which is what normally happens in an


election. The party will say, we will review this for the 95th time


in the following Parliament, so they have no mandate to do anything and


so do not do anything. It is courageous to do it. It is


electorally risky, for the reasons that you suggest, that they pass the


target their own natural supporter. And there is a sense that this is


rushed through, in the frenzy to get it done in time. I think the ending


of the pooling of risk and putting the entire burden on in inverted


commas the victim, because you cannot insure Fritz, is against the


spirit of a lot of the rest of the manifesto, and will give them huge


problems if they try to implement it in the next Parliament. Let's have a


look at the polls. Nearly five weeks ago, on Tuesday the 18th of April,


Theresa May called the election. At that point, this was the median


average of the recent polls. The Conservatives had an 18 point lead


over Labour on 25%. Ukip and the Liberal Democrats were both on 18%.


A draft of Labour's manifesto was leaked to the press. In the


intervening weeks, support for the Conservatives and Labour had


increased, that it had decreased for the Lib Dems and Ukip. Last Tuesday


came the launch of the official Labour manifesto. By that time,


Labour support had gone up by another 2%. The Lib Dems and Ukip


had slipped back slightly. Later in the week came the manifestos from


the Lib Dems and the Conservatives. This morning, for more polls. This


is how the parties currently stand on average. Labour are now on 34%,


up 4% since the launch of their manifesto. The Conservatives are


down two points since last Tuesday. Ukip and the Lib Dems are both


unchanged on 8% and 5%. You can find this poll tracker on the BBC


website, see how it was calculated, and see the results of national


polls over the last two years. So Isabel, is this the Tories' wobbly


weekend or the start of the narrowing? This is still an


extremely healthy lead for the Tories. At the start of this


campaign, most commentators expected to things to happen. First, the Lib


Dems would have a significant surge. That hasn't happened. Second, Labour


would crash and plummet. Instead they are in the health of the low


30s. I wonder if that tells you something about the tribal nature of


the Labour vote, and the continuing problems with the Tory brand. I


would say that a lot of Tory MPs wouldn't be too unhappy if Labour's


result isn't quite as bad as has been anticipated. They don't want


Corbyn to go anywhere. If the latest polls were to be the result on June


the 8th, Mr Corbyn may not be in a rush to go anywhere. I still think


it depends on the number of seats. If there is a landslide win, I


think, one way or another, he will not stay. If it is much narrower, he


has grounds for arguing he has done better than anticipated. The polls


are very interesting. People compare this with 83. In 83, the Tory lead


widened consistently throughout the campaign. There was the SDP -


Liberal Alliance doing well in the polls. Here, the Lib Dems don't seem


to be doing that. So the parallels with 83 don't really stack up. But


let's see what happens. Still early days for the a lot of people are


saying this is the result of the social care policy. We don't really


know that. How do you beat them? In the last week or so, there's been


the decision by some to hold their nose and vote Labour, who haven't


done so before. Probably the biggest thing in this election is how the


Right has reunited behind Theresa May. That figure for Ukip is


incredibly small. She has brought those Ukip voters behind her, and


that could be the decisive factor in many seats, rather than the Labour


share of the boat picking up a bit or down a bit, depending on how


turbulent the Tory manifesto makes it. Thank you for that.


We've finally got our hands on the manifestos of the two main


parties and, for once, voters can hardly complain that


So, just how big is the choice on offer to the public?


Since the Liberal Democrats and SNP have ruled out


coalitions after June 8th, Adam Fleming compares the Labour


Welcome to the BBC's election centre.


Four minutes from now, when Big Ben strikes 10.00,


we can legally reveal the contents of this, our exit poll.


18 days to go, and the BBC's election night studio


This is where David Dimbleby will sit, although there is no chair yet.


The parties' policies are now the finished product.


In Bradford, Jeremy Corbyn vowed a bigger state,


the end of austerity, no more tuition fees.


The Tory campaign, by contrast, is built on one word - fear.


Down the road in Halifax, Theresa May kept a promise to get


immigration down to the tens of thousands, and talked


of leadership and tough choices in uncertain times.


Strengthen my hand as I fight for Britain, and stand with me


And, with confidence in ourselves and a unity


of purpose in our country, let us go forward together.


Let's look at the Labour and Conservative


On tax, Labour would introduce a 50p rate for top earners.


The Conservatives ditched their triple lock, giving them


freedom to put up income tax and national insurance,


although they want to keep the overall tax burden the same.


Labour offered a major overhaul of the country's wiring,


with a pledge to renationalise infrastructure, like power,


The Conservatives said that would cost a fortune,


but provided few details for the cost of their policies.


Labour have simply become a shambles, and, as yesterday's


manifesto showed, their numbers simply do not add up.


What have they got planned for health and social care?


The Conservatives offered more cash for the NHS,


reaching an extra ?8 billion a year by the end of the parliament.


Labour promised an extra ?30 billion over the course of the same period,


plus free hospital parking and more pay for staff.


The Conservatives would increase the value of assets you could


protect from the cost of social care to ?100,000, but your home would be


added to the assessment of your wealth,


There was a focus on one group of voters in particular


Labour would keep the triple lock, which guarantees that pensions go up


The Tories would keep the increase in line


with inflation or earnings, a double lock.


The Conservatives would end of winter fuel payments


for the richest, although we don't know exactly who that would be,


This is a savage attack on vulnerable pensioners,


particularly those who are just about managing.


It is disgraceful, and we are calling upon the Conservative Party


When it comes to leaving the European Union, Labour say


they'd sweep away the government's negotiating strategy,


secure a better deal and straightaway guaranteed the rights


The Tories say a big majority would remove political uncertainty


Jeremy Vine's due here in two and a half weeks.


I'm joined now by David Gauke, who is Chief Secretary to the Treasury.


Welcome back to the programme. The Tories once promised a cap on social


care costs. Why have you abandoned that? We've looked at it, and there


are couple of proposals with the Dilnot proposal. Much of the benefit


would go to those inheriting larger estates. The second point was it was


hoped that a cap would stimulate the larger insurance products that would


fill the gap, but there is no sign that those products are emerging.


Without a cap, you will not get one. We have come forward with a new


proposal which we think is fairer, provide more money for social care,


which is very important and is one of the big issues we face as a


country. It is right that we face those big issues. Social care is


one, getting a good Brexit deal is another. This demonstrates that


Theresa May has an ambition to lead a government that addresses those


big long-term issues. Looking at social care. If you have assets,


including your home, of over ?100,000, you have to pay for all


your social care costs. Is that fair? It is right that for the


services that are provided to you, that that is paid out of your


assets, subject to two really important qualifications. First, you


shouldn't have your entire estate wiped out. At the moment, if you are


in residential care, it can be wiped out ?223,000. If you are in


domiciliary care, it can be out to ?23,000, plus you're domiciliary.


Nobody should be forced to sell their house in their lifetime if


they or their spouse needs long-term care. Again, we have protected that


in the proposals we set out. But the state will basically take a


chunk of your house when you die and they sell. In an essence it is a


stealth inheritance tax on everything above ?100,000. But we


have those two important protections. I am including that. It


is a stealth inheritance tax. We have to face up to the fact that


there are significant costs that we face as a country in terms of health


and social careful. Traditionally, politicians don't address those


issues, particularly during election campaigns. I think it is too Theresa


May's credit that we are being straightforward with the British


people and saying that we face this long-term challenge. Our manifesto


was about the big challenges that we face, one of which was


intergenerational fairness and one of which was delivering a strong


economy and making sure that we can do that. But in the end, someone is


going to have to pay for this. It is going to have to be a balance


between the general taxpayer and those receiving the services. We


think we have struck the right balance with this proposal. But it


is entirely on the individual. People watching this programme, if


they have a fair amount of assets, not massive, including the home,


they will need to pay for everything themselves until their assets are


reduced to ?100,000. It is not a balance, you're putting everything


on the original two individual. At the moment, for those in residential


care, they have to pay everything until 20 3000. -- everything on the


individual. But now they will face more. Those in individual care are


seeing their protection going up by four times as much, so that is


eliminating unfairness. Why should those in residential care be in a


worse position than those receiving domiciliary care? But as I say, that


money has to come from somewhere and we are sitting at a proper plan for


it. While also made the point that we are more likely to be able to


have a properly functioning social care market if we have a strong


economy, and to have a strong economy we need to deliver a good


deal on Brexit and I think Theresa May is capable of doing that. You


have said that before. But if you have a heart attack in old age, the


NHS will take care of you. If you have dementia, you now have to pay


for the care of yourself. Is that they are? It is already the case


that if you have long-term care costs come up as I say, if you are


in residential care you pay for all of it until the last ?23,000, but if


you are in domiciliary care, excluding your housing assets, but


all of your other assets get used up until you are down to ?23,000 a


year. And I think it is right at this point that a party that aspires


to run this country for the long-term, to address the long-term


challenges we have is a country, for us to be clear that we need to


deliver this. Because if it is not paid for it this way, if it goes and


falls on the general taxpayer, the people who feel hard pressed by the


amount of income tax and VAT they pay, frankly we have to say to them,


those taxes will go up if we do not address it. But they might go up


anyway. The average house price in your part of the country is just shy


of ?430,000, so if you told your own constituents that they might have to


spend ?300,000 of their assets on social care before the state steps


in to help...? As I said earlier, nobody will be forced to pay during


their lifetime. Nobody will be forced to sell their houses. We are


providing that protection because of the third premium. Which makes it a


kind of death tax, doesn't it? Which is what you use to rail against.


What it is people paying for the services they have paid out of their


assets. But with that very important protection that nobody is going to


be wiped out in the way that has happened up until now, down to the


last three years. But when Labour propose this, George Osborne called


it a death tax and you are now proposing a stealth death tax


inheritance tax. Labour's proposals were very different. It is the same


effect. Labour's were hitting everyone with an inheritance tax. We


are saying that there are -- that there is a state contribution but


the public receiving the services will have to pay for it out of


assets, which have grown substantially. And which they might


now lose to social care. But I would say that people in Hertfordshire pay


a lot in income tracks, national insurance and VAT, and this is my


bet is going to have to come from somewhere. Well, they are now going


to pay a lot of tax and pay for social care. Turning to immigration,


you promised to get net migration down to 100,020 ten. You failed. You


promised again in 2015 and you are feeling again. Why should voters


trust you a third time? It is very clear that only the Conservative


Party has an ambition to control immigration and to bring it down. An


ambition you have failed to deliver. There are, of course, factors that


come into play. For example a couple of years ago we were going through a


period when the UK was creating huge numbers of jobs but none of our


European neighbours were doing anything like it. Not surprisingly,


that feeds through into the immigration numbers that we see. But


it is right that we have that ambition because I do not believe it


is sustainable to have hundreds of thousands net migration, you're


after year after year, and only Theresa May of the Conservative


Party is willing to address that. It has gone from being a target to an


ambition, and I am pretty sure in a couple of years it will become an


untimed aspiration. Is net migration now higher or lower than when you


came to power in 2010? I think it is higher at the moment. Let's look at


the figures. And there they are. You are right, it is higher, so after


six years in power, promising to get it down to 100,000, it is higher. So


if that is an ambition and you have not succeeded. We have to accept


that there are a number of factors. It continues to be the case that the


UK economy is growing and creating a lot of jobs, which is undoubtedly


drawing people. But you made the promise on the basis that would not


happen? We are certainly outperforming other countries in a


way that we could not have predicted in 2010. That is one of the factors.


But if you look at a lot of the steps that we have taken over the


course of the last seven years, dealing with bogus students, for


example, tightening up a lot of the rules. You can say all that but it


has made no difference to the headline figure. Clearly it would


have gone up by much more and we not taken the steps. But as I say, we


cannot for ever, it seems to me, have net migration numbers in the


hundreds of thousands. If we get that good Brexit deal, one of the


things we can do is tighten up in terms of access here. You say that


but you have always had control of non-EU migration. You cannot blame


the EU for that. You control immigration from outside the EU.


Have you ever managed to get even that below 100,000? Well, no doubt


you will present the numbers now. You haven't. You have got down a bit


from 2010, I will give you that, but even non-EU migration is still a lot


more than 100000 and that is the thing you control. It is 164,000 on


the latest figures. There is no point in saying to the voters that


when we get control of the EU migration you will get it down when


the bit you have control over, you have failed to get that down into


the tens of thousands. The general trend has gone up. Non-EU migration


we have brought down over the last few years. Not by much, not by


anywhere near your 100,000 target. But we clearly have more tools


available to us, following Brexit. At this rate it will be around 2030


before you get non-EU migration down to 100,000. We clearly have more


tools available to us and I return to the point I made. In the last six


or seven years, particularly the last four or five, we have seen the


UK jobs market growing substantially. It is extraordinary


how many more jobs we have. So you'll only promised the migration


target because you did not think you were going to run the economy well?


That is what you are telling me. I don't think anyone expected us to


create quite a number of jobs that we have done over the last six or


seven years. At the time when other European countries have not been.


George Osborne says your target is economically illiterate. I disagree


with George on that. He is my old boss but I disagree with him on that


point. And the reason I say that is looking at the economics and the


wider social impact, I don't think it is sustainable for us to have


hundreds of thousands, year after year after year. Let me ask you one


other thing because you are the chief secretary. Your promising that


spending on health will be ?8 billion higher in five use time than


it is now. How do you pay for that? From a strong economy, two years ago


we had a similar conversation because at that point we said that


we would increase spending by ?8 billion. And we are more than on


track to deliver it, because it is a priority area for us. Where will the


money come from? It will be a priority area for us. We will find


the money. So you have not been able to show us a revenue line where this


?8 billion will come from. We have a record of making promises to spend


more on the NHS and delivering. One thing I would say is that the only


way you can spend more money on the NHS is if you have a strong economy,


and the biggest risk... But that is true of anything. I am trying to


find out where the ?8 billion come from, where will it come from? Know


you were saying that perhaps you might increase taxes, ticking off


the lock, so people are right to be suspicious. But you will not tell us


where the ?8 billion will come from. Andrew, a strong economy is key to


delivering more NHS money. That does not tell us where the money is


coming from. The biggest risk to a strong economy would be a bad


Brexit, which Jeremy Corbyn would deliver. And we have a record of


putting more money into the NHS. I think that past performance we can


take forward. Thank you for joining us.


So, the Conservatives have been taking a bit of flak


But Conservative big guns have been out and about this morning taking


Here's Boris Johnson on ITV's Peston programme earlier today:


What we're trying to do is to address what I think


everybody, all serious demographers acknowledge will be the massive


problem of the cost of social care long-term.


This is a responsible, grown-up, conservative approach,


trying to deal with a long-term problem in a way that is equitable,


allows people to pass on a very substantial sum,


still, to their kids, and takes away the fear


Joining me now from Liverpool is Labour's Shadow Chief Secretary


Petered out, welcome to the programme. Let's start with social


care. The Tories are saying that if you have ?100,000 or more in assets,


you should pay for your own social care. What is wrong with that? Well,


I think the issue at the end of the day is the question of fairness. Is


it fair? And what we're trying to do is to get to a situation where we


have, for example, the Dilnot report, which identified that you


actually have cap on your spending on social care. We are trying to get


to a position where it is a reasonable and fair approach to


expenditure. But you will know that a lot of people, particularly in the


south of country, London and the south-east, and the adjacent areas


around it, they have benefited from huge house price inflation. They


have seen their homes go up in value, if and when they sell, they


are not taxed on that increase. Why should these people not pay for


their own social care if they have the assets to do so? They will be


paying for some of their social care but you cannot take social care and


health care separately. It has to be an integrated approach. So for


example if you do have dementia, you're more likely to be in an


elderly person's home for longer and you most probably have been in care


for a longer period of time. On the other hand, you might have, if you


have had a stroke, there may be continuing care needs paid for by


the NHS. So at the end of the date it is trying to get a reasonable


balance and just to pluck a figure of ?100,000 out of thin air is not


sensible. You will have heard me say about David Gold that the house


prices in his area, about 450,000 or so, not quite that, and that people


may have to spend quite a lot of that on social care to get down to


?100,000. But in your area, the average house price is only


?149,000, so your people would not have to pay anything like as much


before they hit the ?100,000 minimum. I hesitate to say that but


is that not almost a socialist approach to social care that if you


are in the affluent Home Counties with a big asset, you pay more, and


if you are in an area that is not so affluent and your house is not worth


very much, you pay a lot less. What is wrong with that principle? I


think the problem I am trying to get to is this issue about equity across


the piece. At the end of the day, what we want is a system whereby it


is capped at a particular level, and the Dilnot report, after much


examination, said we should have a cap on care costs at ?72,000. The


Conservatives decided to ditch that and come up with another policy


which by all accounts seems to be even more Draconian. At the end of


the day it is trying to get social care and an NHS care in a much more


fluid way. We had offered the Conservatives to have a bipartisan


approach to this. David just said that this is a long term. You do not


pick a figure out of thin air and use that as a long-term strategy.


The Conservatives are now saying they will increase health spending


over the next five years in real terms. You will increase health


spending. In what way is your approach to health spending better


than the Tories' now? We are contributing an extra 7.2 billion to


the NHS and social care over the next few years. But you just don't


put money into the NHS or social care. It has to be an integrated


approach to social and health care. What we've got is just more of the


same. What we don't want to do is just say, we ring-fenced an out for


here or there. What you have to do is try to get that... Let me ask you


again. In terms of the amount of resource that is going to be devoted


in the next five years, and resource does matter for the NHS, in what way


are your plans different now from the Conservative plans? The key is


how you use that resource. By just putting money in, you've got to say,


if we are going to put that money on, how do we use it? As somebody


who has worked in social care for 40 years, you have to have a different


approach to how you use that money. The money we are putting in, 7.7,


may be similar in cash terms to what the Tories claim they are putting


in, but it's not how much you put in per se, it is how you use it. You


are going to get rid of car parking charges in hospital, and you are


going to increase pay by taking the cap on pay off. So it doesn't


necessarily follow that the money, under your way of doing it, will


follow the front line. What you need in the NHS is a system that is


capable of dealing with the patience you have. What we have now is on at


five Asian of the NHS. Staff leaving, not being paid properly. So


pay and the NHS go hand in hand. Let's move onto another area of


policy where there is some confusion. Who speaks for the Labour


Party on nuclear weapons? Is it Emily Thornbury, or Nia Griffith,


defence spokesperson? The Labour manifesto. It is clear. We are


committed to the nuclear deterrent, and that is the definitive... Is it?


Emily Thornbury said that Trident could be scrapped in the defence


review you would have immediately after taking power. On LBC on Friday


night. She didn't, actually. I listened to that. What she actually


said is, as part of a Labour government coming in, a new


government, there is always a defence review. But not the concept


of Trident in its substance. She said there would be a review in


terms of, and this is in our manifesto. When you reduce


something, you review how it is operated. The review could scrap


Trident. It won't scrap Trident. The review is in the context of how you


protect it from cyber attacks. This will issue was seized upon that she


was saying that we would have another review of Trident or Labour


would ditch it. That is nonsense. You will have seen some reports that


MI5 opened a file on Jeremy Corbyn in the early 90s because of his


links to Irish republicanism. This has caused some people, his links to


the IRA and Sinn Fein, it has caused some concern. Could you just listen


to this clip and react. Do you condemn what the IRA did? I condemn


all bombing. But do you condemn what the IRA did? I condemn what was done


with the British Army as well as both sides as well. What happened in


Derry in 1972 was pretty devastating as well. Do you distinguish between


state forces, what the British Army did and the IRA? Well, in a sense,


the treatment of IRA prisoners which made them into virtual political


prisoners suggested that the British government and the state saw some


kind of almost equivalent in it. My point is that the whole violence if


you was terrible, was appalling, and came out of a process that had been


allowed to fester in Northern Ireland for a very long time. That


was from about two years ago. Can you explain why the Leader of the


Labour Party, Her Majesty 's opposition, the man who would be our


next Prime Minister, finds it so hard to condemn IRA arming? I think


it has to be within the context that Jeremy Corbyn for many years trying


to move the peace protest... Process along. So why wouldn't you condemn


IRA bombing? Again, that was an issue, a traumatic event in Irish -


British relations that went on for 30 years. It is a complicated


matter. Bombing is not that complicated. If you are a man of


peace, surely you would condemn the bomb and the bullet? Let me say


this, I condemn the bomb and the bullet. Why can't your leader? You


would have to ask Jeremy Corbyn, but that is in the context of what he


was trying to do over a 25 year period to move the priest process


along. Thank you for joining us. It's just gone 11.35,


you're watching the Sunday Politics. We say goodbye to viewers


in Scotland and Wales. Hello, welcome to


Sunday Politics East. Later in the programme,


what the over 65s make of plans which could mean pension increases


in the future will be lower. But let's start with


small businesses. In 2016 we had more than half


a million small businesses in this region, one of the highest figures


per head in the country. According to the latest


survey by the Federation of Small Businesses,


members across the east of England are most worried about rising costs


and want the next Government to help reduce the bill for


national insurance. This is a highly paid region


with the average wage Unemployment is 3.9%,


well below the national average. Of course small businesses are


an important part of all of that. According to new research,


our small businesses want a business rates review


and superfast broadband. They also want a good


deal on Brexit. This report from Sam Reid starts


with some flashing images. Bringing a spark to


the Northamptonshire economy. This metal might not look much


but it's precise technology being produced at this motorsport


engineering film, RML These frames will end up


on cars at racing teams So with Brexit on everyone's mind,


bosses here say a good international trade deal -


quickly - is key. Certainly we would want


to hear information around those trade agreements,


when are they going to happen, Key to us is our ability, at


the moment we are quite competitive. With the drop in the strength


of the pound means that for exporting we are in a very good


situation right now. But knowing what that is going


to look like in the future, some stability over what markets can


I concentrate on trying 80% of this firm's


trade is overseas. The fastest-growing


market is the Far East. But Europe is important


and at the moment it is not clear when in the UK will get to talk


about a trade deal. And this will be a key issue


for the new Government. But any suggestion this should


be defined as a Brexit election is rejected


by business leaders here. Brexit is important to a lot


of businesses in the locality but it is not the be


all and end all. Basically getting the fundamentals


right, the next Government, at the infrastructure,


they've got to look at the locality we are in so that devolution etc,


where funds are coming locally, they've got to make sure


that is right for this environment and they've got


to concentrate on International We do a lot of documentation


from this chamber to other parts of the world and that is


on the increase. The view that we need to look


beyond just Brexit is shared here. This Northampton-based


heating and plumbing company employs 90 people,


12 of them are apprentices. It is nice to learn a trade and be


paid at the same time. So you don't have to worry


about going to university or getting But the boss says they are having


to train apprentices like these because the skills they need


aren't out there. If we had more people,


we could do more work. We are turning away work at this


present moment because we haven't So we are putting the commitment


in to train those people, we just need the commitment back


to ensure that we can Financial commitment


is a really key issue. It's a big overhead at the moment


that we have of training, Skills have an impact


on business but of course also Employment rates here


in a soggy Northamptonshire are above the national average


but wages are lower with full-time workers earning ?45 a week


less than the average This week we learnt that inflation,


the rate at which prices are rising, has increased to its highest rate


for more than three years. That is leaving some


here feeling in the pinch. I probably get the going rate


for the role that I do. What I'm earning, everything


is going up, mortgages A lot of hours worked but you don't


feel like you're getting any more. You can work more and you still feel


like you are buying the same things, you're not getting any more


for your money these days. I'm a mother of two


so I think we are all feeling Is there anything the Government


could do, the next Government, to get more better paid


jobs into Northamptonshire? I think we need to increase our


industry at the moment, more investment opportunities need


to be created. Back at RML in Wellingborough,


these batteries for electric cars are being tested before


being shipped to China. But the message here


is if the economy is to be fully charged, the next Government


will have to think about a lot In the manifestos this week,


the Conservatives say they want to carry on reducing red


tape for small businesses. Labour wants to reintroduce


a lower small profits And the Lib Dems want to expand


the British Business Bank which would provide long term


capital for small and So what is it that


small business needs. Graham Buck is a Regional Chairman


of the Federation of Small Business. What could be even better is of some


of these ideas were put into medium-term planning, not just


flavour of the month. We have had brought tax regimes before that


quietly disappeared. What matters above all to businesses and


stability, that way you can plan a business and develop and grow it. If


people are altering too many things too much of the time it is difficult


to create a growing business. Are you saying politicians are promised


in the air provided nothing? No, we are seeing a not very good at


remembering what he promised after the election. Other things become


more important. The bureaucracy that the Conservatives are talking about,


is that one of the things which is worrying what people and small


businesses? It is, because if you are a small business without


departments to do things, and regulations come along, that


actively detracts from your ability to to run the business and make


profits and take on more people and contribute to the economy. And


Labour are seeing small profits rate of corporation tax they would change


that, presumably that is one of the cost things you would welcome? We


would, provided it is a reasonable medium-term commitment and not just


something that is good for election purposes but then gets quietly


dropped thereafter. Keep being told that people are addressing the


skills shortage, as it's been addressed or do you think that the


still a problem? There are various aspects to it. One is of course our


concern about the situation of non-British EU nationals working in


this country, our views are very simple that they should be allowed


to stay. Right up until the day we leave anybody should be able to come


here under the present arrangements and that he also think the


apprenticeship system is very good but needs extending and developing.


The migrant workers thing is about cost per unit of employee? Not just


that, don't forget that a significant number of members who by


definition are business model is our themselves migrants from the rest of


the EU. This is not just about the workforce, this is about people


starting and developing businesses, entrepreneurs, what this country


desperately needs. We've heard a lot about broadband, is that not getting


better? It is patchy. We are getting fed up with major infrastructure


providers and off, putting statistics, there is a subtle


difference between a statistic and whether or not your business


business can get adequate capacity broadband. Your pet streaming


parties, what would you like? I think legislation and taxation need


to be dramatically simplified for the smaller business, simply that.


Let us get on with running the business, not completing the


paperwork. Thank you. That seems fairly clear, Vicky? Absolutely.


Since 2010 around 1 million more businesses in the UK, when Labour


was last in power at the corporation tax was 20%, it is now 19% and


actually reducing tax and reducing red tape is absolutely key, that's


why we have also got the red tape challenge. As an NEP I have


represented small businesses across the region and the Federation of


Small Businesses manifesto ask for 30 key point is the first of which


is securing certainty through Brexit and beyond. This point is that


actually most politicians make promises and don't keep them.


Certainty through Brexit and beyond which is why we have the Brexit


strategy and why I want to reason me to be leading the negotiations for a


position of strength and not handing over to Jeremy Corbyn and the


chaotic approach that he would have any coalition. That is why we need


to get that right and then invest in apprenticeships and skills is key,


manifesto commitment is up to 3 million. We will keep these


promises. Let him defend his leader. The problem with this argument as


you are ignoring the seven years the Tories have been in power, I don't


know who you want to blame it on, the Lib Dems are David Cameron. It


is all about to reason me know. These are still issues we haven't


invested in the basics. We changed tax-free genes and that is one of


the reasons Labour wants to introduce lower rates to small


businesses rather get massive discounts to big businesses. We have


invested, we have a strong economy, the sickest Springwatch second


strongest growing after Germany. We have more businesses than ever


before. What about the seven years of not having achieved? We have more


apprenticeships than ever before, I have some fantastic degree


apprenticeships starting as well, we have this new commitment to take


levels as well as A-levels so young people can do technical training.


Surely the most important thing is stability. You talk a lot about


strong and stable, there is nothing strong or stable about an economy


when we don't even know where we're going to be in two years. The points


were made really well by the Federation of small business, you


need a Brexit steel that is going to deliver for business and therefore


deliver for people. At the minute Theresa May is going off in one


direction and left unchecked and given a blank cheque we are going to


end up in a situation where stability is... I disagree. We have


we had a chaotic labour economy and we have a strong economy. We going


into the most competitive negotiations of a generation and we


need to make sure that those are held with certainty and stability


which is why we have... Look at what we have done since the referendum


and holding the economy strong and encouraging investment to continue


and we do need to deliver the negotiations. I do see it is


chaotic? There hasn't been a political situation and are relating


to rehashing more people and yet we are going into this election which


is it approaches for opportunistic reasons so that Theresa May can get


that strong and stable position but without any idea what we're for the


end of it. Stability is the most important thing, we have laid out


our approach, it is know for Theresa May to lay.


In this region one in four people are 65 or over -


The manifestos will have given them lots to think about.


The Conservatives say they will make changes including means testing


the winter fuel allowance and a plan to end the triple lock on pensions.


The triple lock is a guarantee that pensions will rise


By the increase in average earnings or by 2.5 per cent,


The triple lock would end in three years' time to be replaced


with a double lock linked only to earnings or inflation.


Labour and the Lib Dems would keep the triple lock.


Earlier this week I went to meet pensioner Brian Andews who's


Well, I am a newbie to pensions and I was 65 last year.


I have the new state pension, thank you very much,


and the two and a half percent we get with the triple


It keeps pace with inflation, with higher prices, and we get two


and a half percent as you know as a minimum.


And it is very important that we get this, if we don't then the ?600


a month pension that goes into your bank account is probably


going to diminish over time and the youngsters out


there will end up with a pension much less than what we get now


So as far as you're concerned, why should the Government do this


Well, you know, if the Government are having a difficult


time with the economy, why should pensioners who have paid


I've got 44, my wife has got 42 years of contributions


We've paid into a pension scheme and now we want our money out


and we want it protected as you do with a private pension.


Why should we have to pay for Government


It's not fair and I think there are other ways


I disagree with Brian. I take the view that this is not money that


people have just felt away, they have invested it and pay the


national insurance all this time. We know prices will significantly. Most


pensions are paid out of the pension pot, we haven't got up a great


pale... I would like to see politicians be honest and say to


to UB group to keep them but it is to UB group to keep them but it is


not just the triple lock, it is the winter fuel payments that Theresa


May isn't committing to, it is the raising of the retirement age and it


is the inheritance tax cost, attacks on illness. If these are the things


they Tories are talking about and then manifesto, given five years and


a blank cheque we are going to find out exactly what they want to do to


have a pensioners. Under Labour, pensions had fallen way behind which


increases so the triple lock was put there in order to increase pensions


will stop the Tories put it in, pensions have gone up by over ?1200


a year. Now they are ahead of wages. The double block will mean your


pension is still linked to inflation, it still goes up with


inflation but it means that there is no fairness between young and old.


In terms of winter fuel allowance, In terms of winter fuel allowance,


if you need it you will still get it. It will be means tested buddy


Richard Branson 's of this world don't need it and they want to. That


money then got into the which is really need the money to go. He is


saying you have a blank check if you win this election and all sorts of


other things will happen. We have commitments and we have made


commitments we have helped too. We have said in the past we have had


the triple lock it has done its job, no pensions will go up with


inflation. And the winter fuel allowance it will be means tested if


you need that he will keep it. The 2.5% has hardly ever actually come


into play? But the that was a key part of this commitment that we made


two people because very simply it covers all sorts of scenarios. It


may be that we can be very predictable at what is happen in the


economy for the next five years, I would personally prefer an assurance


that we can to older voters to make sure that they don't fall back into


pensioner proper poverty and have the people are in poverty are still


pensioners. If you go into a care home, your savings go right down to


20,000. We are quadruple in the amount of your savings that you and


your partner can keep you going to a care home. But that has got to be


fair between those at home and those in a home. But if you are cared for


and your own home you are going to lose it very significantly under


these changes and people are realising the threat that Tory


Government 's presents to older voters know. My own view is that


risks should be shared across all of us when we don't know what the risk


is likely to be. One of one in four of us only to hear and I can tell


you who it is. Let's protect all people not just those people that we


can... We are raising by four times the amount of savings that are


protected and we are making it fair between those at home and at home.


But at home as an important... This is an issue we have seen all this


week has been making the front page of the papers so it is something


that's... It has a real issue. Not only do just this week of someone


whose father was at home whose mother had dementia and in a home


and for the father who had been left alone, what is savings are basically


gone to this tiny level that he couldn't afford to then go on a


holiday or take a break respite. We will note the triple the amount for


that father and have that fear. The average cost of the house is 270


7000. The reason we have to do this is because we are living longer. We


must move on. Now our round up of the political


week in 60 seconds Patients suffered delays


and cancellations in the aftermath of last week's cyber attack


on NHS computer systems. Colchester Hospital


was one of those hit. We got 3000 PCs across


the organisation in all clinical We have looked at probably


about half of those so far The Conservative's plans for school


funding failed to impress some We know that the Department


for Education were looking to remove ?3 billion from school budgets just


in the next couple of years sought to offer 4 billion over five years


clearly isn't going to achieve Home Office Minister Great Yarmouth


candidate Brandon Lewis got a chilly reception


at the Police Federation conference. As those police officer


numbers have changed, we have actually seen crime fall


by about one third since 2010. And Unite for Europe's


effigy of Theresa May I stop about education and school


meals. The money from school meals will be going into education, we


need more money in education and that is the and also a region we


must get the fairer funding for schools. Vast parts of East Anglia


are underfunded but the fairer funding is absolutely key. It


teaches I'm speaking to say take the money away from the music that into


the teaching. But every child is hungry they don't learn. That is why


breakfast is more important than lunch. And the parents who can


afford it... Shouldn't it be breakfast and lunch. I grew up on


feeling like I was different because feeling like I was different because


of that and at the heart of it, this policy which a Government introduced


in the first place was to make sure you remove that stigma and reason


learning standards. Show me the evidence that this is a better way


to achieve that and I will be on board but the evidence isn't there


at the something that has been sucked into the manifesto and I


think most Tories are afraid to talk about it because it would work the


repetition of taking news away from hungry kids. Bail? Bail? Don't leave


the snick but we need to support those who need it badly to put the


money into education. Thank you very much. It is a a busy couple of


weeks. Thank you for taking the time to be with us this morning.


Don't forget you can watch the programme online


through our website - we're back next week in the final


fortnight of the campaign, now back to Andrew.


cancelled. And rent to own is still our policy. Thank you very much, Tom


Brake. Andrew, back to you. So, two and half weeks


to go till polling day, let's take stock of the campaign


so far and look ahead Sam, Isabel and Steve


are with me again. Sam, Mrs May had made a great thing


about the just about managing. Not the poorest of the poor, but not


really affluent people, who are maybe OK but it's a bit of a


struggle. What is in the manifesto for them? There is something about


the high profile items in the manifesto. She said she wants to


help those just above the poorest level. But if you look at things


like the winter fuel allowance, which is going to be given only to


the poorest. If you look at free school meals for infants, those for


the poorest are going to be kept, but the rest will go. The social


care plan, those who are renting or in properties worth up to ?90,000,


they are going to be treated, but those in properties worth above


that, 250,000, for example, will have to pay. Which leads to the


question - what is being done for the just about managings? There is


something, the personal allowance that David Cameron promised in 2015,


that they are not making a big deal of that, because they cannot say by


how much. So you are looking in tax rises on the just about managings.


Where will the tax rises come from. We do not know, that there is the 40


million pounds gap for the Tories to reach what they are pledging in


their manifesto. We do not know how that is going to be made up, more


tax, or more borrowing? So that is why the questions of the


implications of removing the tax lock are so potentially difficult


for Tory MPs. The Labour manifesto gives figures for the cost of


certain policies and where the revenue will come from. You can


argue about the figures, but at least we have the figures. The Tory


manifesto is opaque on these matters. That applies to both the


manifestos. Looking at the Labour manifesto on the way here this


morning, when you look at the section on care for the elderly,


they simply say, there are various ways in which the money for this can


be raised. They are specific on other things. They are, and we heard


John McDonnell this morning being very on that, and saying there is


not a single ? in Tory manifesto. I have only got to page 66. It is


quite broad brush and they are very open to challenge. For example, on


the detail of a number of their flagship things. There is no detail


on their immigration policy. They reiterate the ambition, but not how


they are going to do that, without a massive increase in resource for


Borders officials. We are at a time where average wages are lagging


behind prices. And in work benefits remain frozen. I would have thought


that the just-about-managings are people who are in work but they need


some in work benefits to make life tolerable and be able to pay bills.


Doesn't she has to do more for them? Maybe, but this whole manifesto was


her inner circle saying, right, this is our chance to express our... It


partly reads like a sort of philosophical essay at times. About


the challenges, individualism against collectivism. Some of it


reads quite well and is quite interesting, but in terms of its


detail, Labour would never get away with it. They wouldn't be allowed to


be so vague about where taxes are going to rise. We know there are


going to be tax rises after the election, but we don't know where


they will be. 100%, there will be tax rises. We know that they wanted


a tax rise in the last budget, but they couldn't get it through because


of the 2015 manifesto. Labour do offer a lot more detail. People


could disagree with it, but there is a lot more detail. More to get your


teeth into. About capital gains tax and the rises for better owners and


so on. The SNP manifesto comes out this week, and the Greens and Sinn


Fein. We think Ukip as well. There are more manifestos to come. The Lib


Dems have already brought theirs out. Isn't the Liberal Democrat


campaign in trouble? It doesn't seem to be doing particular the well in


the polls, or at the local elections a few weeks ago. The Liberal


Democrats are trying to fish in quite a small pool for votes. They


are looking to get votes from those remainers who want to reverse the


result, in effect. Tim Farron is promising a second referendum on the


deal at the end of the negotiation process. And that is a hard sell. So


those voting for remain on June 23 are not low hanging fruit by any


means? Polls suggesting that half of those want to reverse the result, so


that is a feeling of about 20% on the Lib Dems, and they are getting


slightly less than half at the moment, but there are not a huge


amount of votes for them to get on that strategy. It doesn't feel like


Tim Farron and the Lib Dems have promised enough. They are making a


very serious case on cannabis use in a nightclub, but the optics of what


they are discussing doesn't make them look like an anchor in a future


coalition government that they would need to be. I wonder if we are


seeing the re-emergence of the 2-party system? And it is not the


same two parties. In Scotland, the dynamics of this election seemed to


be the Nationalists against the Conservatives. In England, if you


look at what has happened to be Ukip vote, and what Sam was saying about


the Lib Dems are struggling a bit to get some traction, it is


overwhelmingly Labour and the Conservatives. A different 2-party


system from Scotland, but a 2-party system. There are a number of


different election is going on in parallel. In Scotland it is about


whether you are unionist or not. Here, we have the collapse of the


Ukip vote, which looks as though it is being redistributed in the


Tories' favour. This is a unique election, and will not necessarily


set the trend for elections to come. In the Tory manifesto, I spotted the


fact that the fixed term Parliament act is going to be scrapped. That


got almost no coverage! It turned out to be academic anyway, that it


tells you something about how Theresa May is feeling, and she


wants the control to call an election whenever it suits her.


Re-emergence of the 2-party system, for this election or beyond? For


this election, yes, but it shows the sort of robust strength of parties


and their fragility. In other words, the Lib Dems haven't really


recovered from the losses in the last general election, and are


therefore not really seen as a robust vehicle to deliver Remain. If


they were, they might be doing better. The Labour Party hasn't


recovered in Scotland, and yet, if you look at the basic divide in


England and Scotland and you see two parties battling it out, it is very,


very hard for the smaller parties to break through and last. Many appear


briefly on the political stage and then disappear again. The election


had the ostensible goal of Brexit, but we haven't heard much about it


in the campaign. Perhaps the Tories want to get back onto that. David


Davis sounding quite tough this morning, the Brexit minister, saying


there is no chance we will talk about 100 billion. And we have to


have power in the negotiations on the free trade deal or what ever it


is. I think they are keen to get the subject of the manifesto at this


point, because it has not started too well. There is an irony that


Theresa May ostensibly called the election because she needed a


stronger hand in the Brexit negotiations, and there was an


opportunity for the Lib Dems, with their unique offer of being the


party that is absolutely against the outcome of the referendum, and


offering another chance. There hasn't been much airtime on that


particular pledge, because instead, this election has segued into being


all about leadership. Theresa May's leadership, and looking again at the


Tory manifesto, I was struck that she was saying that this is my plan


for the future, not ABBA plan. Even when talking about social care, he


manages to work in a bit about Theresa May and Brexit. And Boris


Johnson this morning, an interview he gave on another political


programme this morning, it was extraordinarily sycophantic for him.


Isn't Theresa May wonderful. There is a man trying to secure his job in


the Foreign Office! Will he succeed? I think she will leave him. Better


in the tent than out. What did you make of David Davis' remarks? He was


basically saying, we will walk away from the negotiating table if the


Europeans slam a bill for 100 billion euros. The point is that the


Europeans will not slam a bill for 100 billion euros on the negotiating


table. That is the gross figure. There are all sorts of things that


need to be taken into account. I imagine they will ask for something


around the 50 or ?60 billion mark. It looks that they are trying to


make it look like a concession when they do make their demands in order


to soften the ground for what is going to happen just two weeks after


general election day. He makes a reasonable point about having


parallel talks. What they want to do straightaway is deal with the bill,


Northern Ireland and citizens rights. All of those things are very


complicated and interlinked issues, which cannot be dealt with in


isolation. I wouldn't be surprised if we ended up with parallel talks,


just to work out where we are going with Northern Ireland and the


border. Steve, you can't work out what the Northern Ireland border


will be, and EU citizens' writes here, until you work out what our


relationship with the EU in the future will be. Indeed. The British


government is under pressure to deal quickly with the border issue in


Ireland, but feel they can't do so because when you have a tariff free


arrangement outcome, or an arrangement that is much more


protectionist, and that will determine partly the nature of the


border. You cannot have a quick agreement on that front without


knowing the rest of the deal. I think the negotiation will be


complex. I am certain they want a deal rather than none, because this


is no deal thing is part of the negotiation at this early stage.


Sounding tough in the general election campaign also works


electorally. But after the election, it will be a tough negotiation,


beginning with this cost of Brexit. My understanding is that the


government feels it's got to make the Europeans think they will not do


a deal in order to get a deal. They don't want no deal. Absolutely not.


And I'm sure it plays into the election. I'm sure the rhetoric will


change when the election is over. That's all for today,


thank you to all my guests. The Daily Politics will be


back on BBC Two at 12.00 And tomorrow evening I will be


starting my series of interviews with the party leaders -


first up is the Prime Minister, Theresa May,


that's at 7pm on BBC One. And I'll be back here at the same


time on BBC One next Sunday. Remember - if it's Sunday,


it's the Sunday Politics. We've made great strides


tackling HIV. Imagine if we could


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