11/05/2014 Sunday Politics North East and Cumbria


Andrew Neil and Richard Moss with the latest political news and interviews. With UKIP's Nigel Farage and Labour's Douglas Alexander ahead of the European and local elections.

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Morning, folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics, where we're talking


about the Europe-wide contest that really matters. No, not Eurovision.


The European elections. There are local elections across England too


on May 22nd. The party leaders are campaigning ahead of polling day.


The results could be a pointer to the Big One, May 2015. We'll be


speaking to the man in charge of Labour's election battle plan. Has


the opposition really got its sights set on all-out victory in 2015? Or


will it just be content with squeaking home? And you can't


mention elections these days without talking about the impact of this


In the North East and Cumbria: him if UKIP really


In the North East and Cumbria: Conservative and Lib Dem candidates


fight it out as both try to hold onto their seats.


And who's voting for UKIP? We've the view from South Shields.


And I'm joined by three journalists guaranteed to bring a touch of


Eurovision glamour to your Sunday morning. With views more


controversial than a bearded Austrian drag act and twice the


dress sense, it's Nick Watt, Helen Lewis and Janan Ganesh. So you might


have thought you've already heard David Cameron promise an in-out


referendum on EU membership in 2017 if he's still Prime Minister. Many


times. Many, many times. Well he obviously doesn't think you've been


listening, because he's been saying it again today. Here he is speaking


to the BBC earlier. We will hold a referendum by the end of 2017. It


will be a referendum on an in-out basis. Do we stay in a reformed


European Union or do we leave? And I've said very clearly that whatever


the outcome of the next election, and of course I want an overall


majority and I'm hoping and believing I can win an overall


majority, that people should be in no doubt I will not become Prime


Minister unless I can guarantee that we will hold a referendum. Here's


saying there that an overall majority there will definitely be a


referendum. If these are the minority position, he won't form a


new coalition unless they agree to a referendum, too. The Lib Dems a


pulmonary agree to that. They probably will because the Prime


ministers have a strong argument which is I gave you a referendum


back in 2010 so the least I need is theirs and the Lib Dems are the only


party who have stood in recent elections on a clear mandate to hold


a referendum, so it is difficult for them to say no, there was


interesting the interview he did earlier today. He named everything


was going to ask for. The most controversial with him, as he said


in his speech last year, he wants to take Britain out of the commitment


to make the European Union and ever closer union. That is a very big


ask, but the point is, he may well get it because the choice for the


European Union now, France and Germany, is a clear wonderful do


Britain in or out? Previously, it was can you put up with a British


prime ministers being annoying? I think you'll find the answer is they


are willing to pay a price but not any price to keep Britain in. In


this scenario, Labour would have lost the election again because we


are talking the slowly happen if Mr Cameron is the largest party or has


an overall majority. Could you then see Labour deciding we had better go


along with a referendum, too? I think that's unlikely because as I


think that's unlikely because there's a huge upside for that for I


think what's interesting is the idea he would for minority government.


Would you get confidence and look at other options that might well happen


with the way the arithmetic is going or is he going to hold out and say


the only way I will be Prime Minister is in a majority


Conservative government? No, the implication of his remarks was I


wouldn't form a coalition government unless my coalition partners would


also agree to vote for a referendum. He's basically talking about is


negotiating strategy in those coalition talks. It's a red line and


a huge opportunity for the Lib Dems, because they know David Cameron


absolutely has to do, for accidental reasons, as a person who survives as


Tory leader, to ask for that referendum, so they can ask anything


they want in return and if I was Nick Clegg, I would work out in the


next year one absolute colossal negotiating demand for those


coalition talks. For a party around 10% in the polls, they will do have


the Prime Minister over a barrel on this one, assuming that coalition


talks goes well. They could make Michael Gove Tbyte meeting. OK, we


need to move on. So, the politicians are out and about on what used to be


called the stump ahead of local and European elections in less than two


weeks' time. But, without wanting to depress you on a damp Sunday


morning, the party strategists are already hard at work on their


campaign plans for the General Election next May. Yes, it's less


than a year to go. They may have taken their time, but Labour's


battleplan for 2015 is starting to take shape. As well as take


promising to freeze your energy bills, and reintroduce the 50p rate


of tax, Ed Miliband now says he wants to intervene in the housing


market to keep rents down. There's even talk that the party leadership


wants to bring more railway lines into public ownership. And Labour is


gambling that its big push on the cost of living will see it through


to the general election despite evidence that growth is firmly back.


Labour's campaign chief Douglas Alexander hopes it all adds up to


victory next May. But so far, the evidence is hitting home very thin.


One survey today shows that 56% of people don't think Mr Miliband is up


to the job of Prime Minister. As we head towards one of the least


predictable general elections in 70 years, has Labour got a message to


win seats up and down the country? And Labour's election co-ordinator


and Shadow Foreign Secretary, Douglas Alexander, joins me now.


Welcome to Sunday Politics. A lot of these policies announced polar


pretty well. By popular with the country. When you add them together,


it's a move to the left and what would be wrong with that? I think is


your packet suggests, the contours in the coming campaign are becoming


clear. Our judgement is the defining issue of the year in British


politics will be the widening gap between the wealth of the country


and the finances of ordinary families. We believe it will be a


cost of living election and we have been setting out our thinking in


relation to energy prices and rent, but you will hear more from Labour


Party in the coming months because we're now less than one year away


from a decisive moment. If the leftish think tank suggested any of


his policies in that Tony Blair years, you would have opposed them.


Let's be clear, when not going for an interest but seeking to secure a


majority for the only way to do that is not simply to appeal to your


base, but to the centre ground. I believe we got genuine opportunities


in the next year. You have the Conservatives in a struggle with


UKIP on the right of politics. The Lib Dems 9% of trying to find their


base, and there's a genuine opportunity in the next year for


Labour to dominate the centre ground of politics and secure the majority


Labour government we are planning for in the coming year. I notice you


didn't deny you wouldn't have opposed. You say you have got an


message for aspirational voters in the South. This is what John Denham


said. He thinks you're talking too much to your core vote.


He is right to recognise we took a terrible beating in 2010. 29%. If


you look at what we've done in the last week, for example, the


signature policy on rent Ed Miliband announced to launch the campaign,


there's now more than 9 million people in the country in the private


rented sector, more than 1 million families. Many of them are in the


south-east. They are seeing circumstances where, suddenly,


landlord will increase the rent and they put the pressure involved in


schooling, health care facing the families, so it is important both in


terms of policy and in terms of politics that we speak to the whole


country, not simply to one part of it falls up what is the average rise


in event last year? I don't know. Can you tell me? 1%. 1% not in real


terms. I'm not sure what the problem is. It will happen to wages in last


year, we are facing circumstances where people will be worse off, up


to ?1600 off worse and frankly, if our opponents want to argue that the


economy has healed and they deserve a victory lap, good luck to them


because actually, what we are hearing from the Buddhist public,


not just in the north and south, is not the cost living crisis is


continuing and it affects families. There was nothing aspirational about


your party election broadcast for the European elections. It looked


like crude class war to money people. That's a bit of it. Bedroom


tax. Isn't it going to look bad that two thirds of those affected are


disabled? Who cares? They can't fight back. Shall be lay-offs and


NHS nurses? The National Health Service? Oh yes. Mr Cameron? Who


said that? Me. My gosh. The man has shrunk. He's actually shrunk. What


shall we do with him? Can we hunt him? Nothing about Europe, Labour


policy. News that the Tories would result in negative campaigning and


smear. You didn't tell you would be just as bad. Let's start the party


broadcast. The one thing guaranteed to have most people reaching for the


remote control these days are the words, there now follows a party but


the broadcast. I make no apology in the factory to be innovative in how


we presented. It's factual. It was a policy -based critic of this


government. And the Lib Dems role within it. So you're claiming it's


factual to betray the camera and cabinet is not even knowing what the


NHS is, -- the Cameron Cabinet. They attack the disabled because they


can't fight back. The Pinellas Tanner severely Prime Minister Sun


and he was treated during a short life by the NHS. It's a fact many


disabled people across the country including in my constituency have


been directly affected by the bedroom tax. And ultimately, this


Conservative led government, including the Lib Dems, will be held


accountable by the politicians. You say that, the Prime Minister, who


had a severely disabled son of. I you not ashamed about? I shadowed


Iain Duncan Smith of five months also they don't have the excuses of


seeing that saying nobody told them the consequences of the bedroom tax.


They went into this with their eyes open. They knew about the hardship


and difficulty. If they were one-bedroom properties available


across the country for people to move into, their argument would be


OK but they knew they were dealing with the most vulnerable people. Did


you sign off that part of the broadcast? Of course I stand by the


fact of it. I wish David Cameron and Iain Duncan Smith would apologise to


the disabled people of the country and the poorest people for the


effects of the bedroom tax. I hope we get that apology between now and


election. As someone who thinks integrity is important in politics,


not ashamed of this kind of thing? It's important we scrutinise the


policies of this government as well as adding a positive agenda for


change. You want that you won't promise this is the last time we'll


see such a negative press campaign? I don't think it is negative or


personal to scrutinise the government. So we'll get more of


this? I'm less interested in the background of the cabinet than their


views. You call the upper-class twits. It's for the British public


to make a judgement in terms of the British... That's how you depicted


them. We are held in accountable for the bedroom tax, the NHS, taxation,


and our record they have to defend. One reason are so fearful in this


election is actually because they know they have a poor record. Let's


look at other part of the election campaign. This poster. Particularly


digitally doing the rounds. On that shopping basket, can you tell us


which items take the full 20% VAT? It's representative of household


shopping, which includes items like cleaning products, and we know that


food is not that trouble. People don't go to the supermarket and say


this is -- vatable. So you are denying that ?450 extra is being


paid? Yes, where'd you get that figure? For an average family to pay


?450 a year extra VAT, they would have to spend ?21,600 a year on


vatable products at 20%. The average take-home pay is only 21,009. They


have got to spend on all sorts of things which are zero VAT. So in


addition to the items, has a range of products people face in terms of


VAT. How could an average family of ?21,000 a year spent 21,006 and the


pound a year on 20% vatable items? It's not an annual figure, is it? So


what is it then? If it's an annual, what is it? The increased VAT in


this parliament is calculated over the course of a Parliament. For the


whole of the Parliament? And you're illustrated this with a shopping


basket which almost has no VAT on it at all? People will be buying a


weekly shop in the course of this Parliament every week. Did you sign


off on this as well? Of course. It didn't dawn on you you're putting


things on it which have no VAT? If you want to argue some people go to


the shops and say these are vatable or not, I disagree. Even your rent


cap announcement went wrong. You're working on the rent rises and it


turns out it wasn't. It was a post your policy. It is the exception


rather than the rule to have the position we have at the moment. In


Northern Ireland we have seen the continued rise in terms of the


rented sector but there is a widespread recognition that for


those people in the rented sector, change is necessary. Are you


coordinating this campaign? It seems accident prone. This is a party that


has set the agenda more effectively than a Conservative party that said


when David Cameron was elected he wasn't going to bang on about


Europe. The day after the election we expect the Conservative party to


be engulfed in crisis. I'm proud of what we talk about and I think there


is a clear contrast about a party talking about issues people care


about, and a Conservative party talking about exclusively a


referendum. Are you in charge of the campaign? I am coordinating the


campaign is, yes. The expensive election guru you have hired, has he


been involved in any of this? We have started our discussions with


him. You are going to have to brief him about British politics because


he doesn't know anything about it. I make no apology for hiring him. He


has a lot of experience in winning tight elections and that is what we


are expecting. If you are expecting us to say, they have passed and we


have to hold them accountable, then I am sorry but we have a campaign


that holds the Government and the Conservatives to account for what I


think is a very hopeless record in government. Thank you.


He leads a party with zero MPs but his media presence is huge. He's had


an expenses scandal, but the public didn't seem to mind. He's got a


privileged background but he's seen as an anti-establishment champion.


Nothing seems to stick to him, not even eggs. I speak of course of


Nigel Farage. We'll talk to him in a moment, but first Giles has been out


on the campaign trail ahead of elections that could make or break


the UKIP leader. Nigel Farage likes a stage, and at


this stage of the Euro and local election campaign he is, like his


party, in buoyant mood. They feel they are on the verge of what they


see as causing an earthquake in British politics. Today Nigel is


filling thousands seat venues and bigger. Not that there's much sign


of that at this press launch. But it's a threat with serious money


behind it, that they believe the media and the political elite just


haven't realised yet, much less learned how to counter it. Not that


it's all been plain sailing. Offensive comments from some


candidates has not only seen UKIP labelled as racist, but necessitated


a rally by the party to visibly and verbally challenge that. The


offensive idiotic statements made by this handful of people have been


lifted up and presented to the great British public as if they represent


the view of this party, which they do not. They never have and they


never will. APPLAUSE I don't care what you call us, but


from this moment on, please do not call must trust a racist party. We


are not a racist party. The need to say that is not just


about the European and local elections even at that campaign


launch it's clear UKIP's leader has set his sights firmly on the


ultimate prize. I come from the south of England and I would not


want to be seen as an opportunist heading to the north, north Norfolk


or whatever it will be. I will make my mind up and stand in the general


election for somewhere in Kent, East Sussex, Hampshire, somewhere in my


home patch. Back at UKIP HQ they are still drilling down how the last


fortnight of campaigning should go. They aren't taking any chances, and


one imagines having offices above those of Max Clifford is a reminder


how fragile built reputations can be of the bubble bursting. They want


their reputation to be built on votes and they know anything but


significant success on May 22nd and some seats in Westminster in 2015


isn't going to be good enough. And after that, having sold yourselves


as the honest outsiders, that stance is harder to maintain once your


people are on the inside. And subtle changes from the past are already


noticeable. The ordinary man of the people stance is still working.


Characteristically outside a pub, Nigel Farage is glad handed by a


customer. Two weeks to go, let's cause an upset. Wouldn't that be


great? The only sign that such an interaction is different now is the


ever presence of bodyguards who shadow his every move. Over lunch


ahead of Question Time, a radio appearance, and then off to


Scotland, I ask him if some of those minded to vote UKIP who see him as a


man they'd be comfortable having a drink with are the sort of people


he'd be entirely comfortable sitting down with. Every political party


attracts support from across the spectrum and there will be some


magnificent people who vote for us and some ne'er-do-wells. The one


common thing about UKIP voters is that they are often not very


political. And it's that people's army that if UKIP can get to a


polling booth might just create that earthquake they want.


Nigel Farage joins me now. When you decided not to stand at the new work


by election coming said if you lost it that the bubble would have


burst. What did you mean by that? I was asked at seven 20p -- at 7:21pm


if I would stand, I have decided by the next morning that I would not. I


didn't know he was going to resign. You claim only a handful of UKIP


candidates have ever said things that are either stupid or offensive,


I'm right on that, yes? 0.1%, I'd rather it was non-. But why have you


chosen a candidate to fight this by-election that has said many


things most people would regard as stupid or offensive? Roger is


fighting this for us, someone of 70 years of age who grew up with a


strong Christian Bible background, in an age when homosexuality was


imprisonable. He had a certain set of views which he maintained for


many years which he now says he accepts the world has moved on and


he is relaxed about it. The comments about homosexuality are not from the


dark ages, they are from two or three years ago. From when he was a


Conservative, yes, so will you be asking David Cameron that question?


I have never seen a single comment from Roger that would be deemed to


be offensive. Do you regard his comments on homosexuality as


offensive? When he grew up, homosexuality was illegal in this


country. But this was in 2012 but he said that. Most people have his age


still feel uncomfortable about it -- of his age. In 2012 he said, if two


men can be married, why not three, why not a commune. Many people in


this country are disconcerted by the change in the meaning of marriage


and in a tolerant society we understand that some people have


different views. But he has changed his views now in only two years? He


says he is more relaxed about it. Was he your candidate? He is a


first-class campaigner who has had 30 years in industry, he served in


the European Parliament, he is a good candidate. This morning's


papers suggest you are about to select Victoria Ayling for Grimsby,


but she is on camera saying that, of immigrants, I just want to send a


lot back. This is all very interesting, and we can talk about


it, all we could talk about the fact that in 12 days we have a European


election and every voter across the UK can vote on it and it is really


interesting. Are you happy to pick a candidate that says of immigrants, I


just want to send a lot back? I have seen the tape, it is a complete


misquote and she says it in the context of illegal immigrants. I


have seen the full quote and in the context it is not about illegal


immigrants. Let's come onto the European campaign, you have used a


company that employs Eastern European is to deliver leaflets in


London and the Home Counties. Have we? I'm told that in Croydon one


branch might have done that. Have you found some indigenous Brits to


deliver leaflets in Europe? We have thousands joining the party every


month and they are not all indigenous because what is


interesting is that in today's opinion polls, UKIP is above the Lib


Dems and the Conservatives amongst the indigenous voting.


We have not agreed a manifesto for the general election, we will do


over the course of the summer. This is in your local election. We are


having local elections in some part of the country but we are fighting a


European election. It is impossible with the British media to have an


intelligent debate on the European question. But as I say, we are also


fighting the local elections too. You have promised these tax cuts,


how much will they cost? I have met -- read the local election manifesto


and it doesn't make those promises. We do talk about local services, we


do talk about the need to keep council tax down but we don't talk


about income tax. Absolutely not. In local election campaigning you say


you would restore cuts to policing, double prison places, restore cuts


to front line NHS, spend more on roads, how much would that cost? You


are obviously reading different documents to me. We are voting for


local councillors in district councils who have got little local


budgets. Every party in a manifesto puts his aspirations in it. Have you


read it? Of course I have, cover to cover, which is why I'm saying you


are misquoting it. By the way, on the bubble bursting, you told that


to Norman Smith of the BBC. 75% of British laws are now made in the


European Union. Now AstraZeneca is potentially going to be taken over


by Pfizer. The BBC is refusing to show the public that that decision


cannot be taken here but by an elected European commissioner, and


we sit and argue about what is in or not in the local election manifesto.


It is my job, but let me come on to AstraZeneca. Is it your view that a


British government should stop the takeover of AstraZeneca? It cannot.


Can we please get this clear. I sat next to Chuka Umunna the other day


at question time and he said what could and couldn't be done. He said


I am being studiously neutral, and the reason is we don't have this


power. That is what the European elections is about. Should France


have the takeover of the food company Danan? We seem to do things


to the Nth degree and nobody else does, perhaps because we have this


culture and we obey it. In your view, you don't think Pfizer should


be able to take over AstraZeneca? There is some good science within


AstraZeneca which is in being asset stripped and lost.


Because it is run by a Swede and a Frenchman and most of its employees


are overseas. I understand that but there are still some good science


being produced here. What did you think of the Prime Minister saying


he would not form a government after the election unless he was able to


have a referendum in 2017? I sat here talking to you and you said to


me that David Cameron had given a cast-iron guarantee that if David


Cameron becomes Prime Minister he will have a referendum on the Lisbon


Treaty, but he didn't deliver on that. He knows that people struggle


to believe the renegotiation is worth a row of beans. He is saying


he will not form a government unless he can go forward with the


referendum. I know he is desperately trying to pretend to be Eurosceptic


whilst at the same time saying he will campaign for Britain to remain


in. In a sense, that is what this election is about. We have three


traditional parties, all of whom passionately believe in the


continued membership of the European Union and we have UKIP saying we


want trade and cooperation but there is a bigger and better world out


there. You are now travelling with I think four bodyguards, has this


affected you and your family life? I can't stand it. I've always wondered


about the place and on my own thing. Sadly we have a couple of


organisations out there headed up by senior Labour Party figures who


purport to be against fascism and extremism, who received funding from


the Department of communities, from the trade unions, who have acted in


a violent wait more than once. You are saying the Labour Party is


behind the threats? No, I said a taxpayer funded, trade union funded


and headed by senior Labour Party figures, and I'm happy for them to


come to my meetings and have an itinerant with me, but it's not so


much fun when there are banging you over the head. I is still keen to be


an MP? Yes, what UKIP will then do is target before the general


election next year for the one life be easier if you just went to the


Lords? That's the last thing I want to do. There's an awful lot to do.


Most of all, I will not rest until we are free from political union and


government from Brussels. Nigel Farage, thank you for being with us.


It's just gone 11.30am. You're watching the Sunday Politics. We say


goodbye to viewers in Scotland, who leave us now for Sunday Politics


Scotland. Coming up here in 20 minutes, our panel talks about the


big stories of the week. Hello and welcome to your local part


of the show and the second of our European election specials. Last


Sunday Labour and UKIP candidates in the North East argued over migration


and jobs. This week it's the turn of Conservative Martin Callanan and


Liberal Democrat Angelika Schneider to go head`to`head. UKIP are a


potential threat to their hopes. We're in South Shields a year after


they came second in the by`election there. We've been talking to voters


to see if Nigel Farage's party can build on that success. And we'll be


talking to the Greens who say it's time to put fracking and nuclear


power on the election agenda. Well, Labour believe they can


overcome the threat from UKIP to top the poll in the North East on May


22. The party leader Ed Miliband took his campaign to Tyneside on


Friday afternoon with a visit to Newcastle's Grainger market. There


may be elections for the European Parliament but Labour has chosen to


focus mainly upon economic themes and its familiar message about what


it calls the "cost of living crisis". Angelika Schneider, you


have tried to position yourself as the party who are pro`EU. Our labour


just as pro`EU as you are, and they are not sullied by being in


government with the Conservatives? If you look at the Labour election


broadcast, if you listen to Ed Miliband, the real issue for the


European elections is to actually talk about Europe and make the case


for Europe, and talk about what you want to do in Europe. We don't hear


anything from Labour about these issues. The polls suggesting people


not buying that. Your poll ratings are pretty terrible. You might not


keep your seat here? I agree that the polls are looking challenging


for the Liberal Democrats. In life, when the going gets tough you have


two choices, you can either go in the corner and feel sorry for


yourself or you can go out and speak to more people, make the case for EU


membership, make the case for jobs and growth here in the north`east,


make the case for tackling crime, tackling crack `` climate change.


That is what we're doing is Liberal Democrats, standing proud and


fighting EU membership. Is it good by Brussels? I don't think so


actually. There has been no specific regionwide Paul's, but a revolt is


solid, I have been going out. The Conservatives have never been that


strong in the north`east. We have always managed to get a seat in the


last three European elections, so I am quietly optimistic. I am not


taking anything for granted. Why do you think the Conservatives are not


reaping any benefits? We have been traditionally, the north`east has


been a Labour area, a difficult battle for us. It was a lot better


under Margaret Thatcher's time? If you look at some of the performance


of many of our labour authorities in the region, many people have been


let down, they are still living in poor conditions. Primarily driven by


the Labour Party. It is a hard message to get across but we're


trying to do that. Well, it was a year ago this week


that UKIP made one of its big breakthroughs in the North East,


coming second in the South Shields by`election. Since then the party


claims it's been winning new members and gaining support daily across the


region. Our correspondent Mark Denten has been back to South


Shields to try and gauge levels of support for UKIP ahead of this


month's elections. A year ago, the South Shields


by`election, Labour holding onto a seat they have had since 1935.


Labour supporters celebrated, there are party's majority dropped by over


4000, putting on the squeeze UKIP. UKIP got nearly a quarter of the


votes here in South Shields in that election. 5000 people voted for


them, 3000 more than voted Conservative, 17 times more than


voted Liberal Democrat. Flash in the pan or platform for success at the


European elections? What do the voters of South Shields make of


UKIP? The Conservatives promised this and that for the country. It


has gone downhill badly. Labour have done the same thing. I used to vote


Labour, now I have gone to UKIP. Listening to the people and picking


up on what people want, not just saying what people want to hear.


What do you want? More control on immigration. I don't agree with a


lot of the policies. The immigration ones I don't agree with. My family


actually came from Arabia originally. I think that a lot of


the workers that do immigrate work really hard. How UKIP's policies


going down here? If there is a bit of an international flavour here,


that is really no surprise because South Shields has a history of


immigration going back over 100 years. With UKIP calling for tougher


immigration policies, is that encouraging the voters around here


or is it a turn`off? I wouldn't be one for voting for it if that was


the case. It brings in, it helps the economy as well. The UK has an open


door policy for everyone, basically. Migrants are coming in from


everywhere. Obviously, the way the country is at the moment with the


Conservatives, working`class people worse off now. The cost of living


has gone through the roof, we just have to come in line with the cost


of living. I think change is needed, definitely. Would you vote UKIP? If


they could make the change, yes. I hear on from that election, we're


ready for more voting. Our UKIP just a protest vote easily dismissed, or


the stuff of nightmares for the other parties?


We still have the Liberal Democrat and Conservative parties candidates


still here. And also here is the Green Party's lead candidate in the


North East, Shirley Ford. We would like to have voters backing us. UKIP


is a party of protest and anger, we are a party of answers. We are the


only party that is able to deliver a referendum on the European Union, so


if you want to leave like some of those voters did, you're only going


to be able to do that through a referendum only we can do. UKIP


never turns up the European Parliament. Whatever their


complaints, they have no mechanism. It is a protest vote. They should be


looking to a party that will actually deliver a solution. Your


party has moved as far in Europe as it possibly can without pulling out.


All UKIP want to do is leave the EU, and you can't offer seeing you will


leave the EU, you have promised referendums before and not deliver


them. There will be a referendum in our general election manifesto, we


have tried to put a bill through the House of Commons which was vetoed by


Labour and the Liberal Democrats. Unfortunately we don't have a


majority in our own right, but David Cameron said last week if he is


Prime Minister there will be a referendum on the European Union.


Whatever UKIP say in protest, they cannot deliver that. If you want at


referendum on EU must vote Conservative. Angelika, it must be


depressing, you call yourselves the party of in, it is actually the


party of oat. As Martin was saying, UKIP is a party of protest and fear


and anger. It is a party that doesn't believe in staying in the


European Union. We are looking for answers to very complex issues, and


it is up to us as Liberal Democrats to make the case for more, located


answers, which is being constructively involved in the


European Parliament. Those arguments don't seem to be holding water with


people. People do believe that jobs through Europe are very important


for the north`east. 156,000 jobs in trade with the EU, a lot of people


are working here, in Sunderland, big companies have come out to say they


would reconsider investment. People do know what it is like when big


industry dies. You actually might end up sliding down fifth, sixth, in


these elections? What we're trying to achieve is say, look, we're the


only pro`European party, appealing to one third of the British


population that is pro`European. And we say, please do back the Liberal


Democrats in this election. Shirley Ford, what sense do you get


campaigning about why people might be turning to UKIP? `` to you?


Because people are very angry, both with the Conservative and Liberal


Democrat government, but they feel abandoned and disillusioned with the


Labour Party. They are looking for an alternative, and when we talk to


people, when they hear our policies, which offer a living wage for


stopping fracking and nuclear, which they might expect, but also for


bringing banks into public hands and ending, excuse me, ending Lope


culture. Those are things... There is a danger that you are just


getting a protest vote. It is a very dangerous place to be. But I think


people are fed up with the way that the Big three ignore real people. I


work in a primary school in South Shields, every day I can see and


hear people saying how angry and fed up and stressed out they are. People


really do want to change, we are offering hope, we are offering a


referendum, we agree on a referendum, to give people the


vote, but we say we want to vote to change the inside. Martin, the other


danger of this is that UKIP's vote, you could easily lose a few seats?


UKIP did very well in the elections then there are support plummeted in


the general election. When people feel that they have what they regard


as a serious decision to make in the general election, who was Prime


Minister? Is it David Cameron or Ed Miliband? That is the decision


people face. I am sure you will see people coming back to us to support


us. In the choice between David Cameron or Ed Miliband, I cannot


believe that anyone... Angelika, the danger also for you in Redcar and


Berwick, you could have no MPs in the north`east? Are candidates are


absolutely fantastic candidates. They do have great support on the


doorstep. Quite frankly, are polling suggests that we can hold onto both


of the seats and we will fight very hard to do this. I want to make this


point, it is essential to have a political alternative in the


north`east. There is no joy if the whole region is represented by


Labour, because political alternatives give people the


choice. We'll have to leave it there, you have made your point.


Well, it's not only UKIP putting forward an anti`EU message at these


elections. An Independence from Europe was set up by a former UKIP


member and is standing a full slate of candidates in the North East.


Candidate Sheridan Forbes outlined the platform her party is standing


on. The principles would be leaving the EU, taking back UK border


control, making sure we have more scrutiny on the borders, which would


take pressure off the National Health Service, schools, local


authorities, and places where, at the moment, we are feeling the pinch


because of posterity that Europe has put on us.


Meanwhile the English Democrats are also standing. Kevin Riddiough is


its lead candidate in the region. He says the North East wouldn't miss


out economically if we left the EU. There is no reason why trade


barriers should change from us leaving the European Union. The


European Union is purely a title. We have got a European free trade


agreement, no one needs to move their businesses, big businesses can


come back to us. It is as simple as that. The EU is a diktat, if you


like, making the rules, which is stifling trade if anything, rather


than opening a free`market economy. The BNP are also contesting the


elections and had the national launch of their campaign this week


with party leader Nick Griffin, who's also an MEP in the North West.


They say the main issue is immigration and have pledged to


withdraw from the EU. The party, however, have so far declined to


offer up one of their North East candidates for an interview.


Well, the last time European elections were fought in the North


East, back in 2009, almost four out of every ten votes did go to parties


other than Labour, the Conservatives and the Lib Dems. Shirley Ford, what


are your ambitions in the north`east elections? We are getting closer, if


you look at the poll ratings, we are overtaking in some polls, the Lib


Dems. It is very volatile with this PR system. If you look at the


Northwest, we are very, very close to winning that final seat they are


that Nick Griffin one last time around. The change of dynamics will


mean that we are seriously contending for the North West seat.


We are looking for a very strong results in the north`east. But if


people analyse your policies for the north`east, industries such as


steel, high carbon industries, people want to save their jobs and


won't want to vote Green? You need to invest in the right sort of jobs.


Are we paying for people who are in the wrong sorts of jobs, is that it?


Public investment is currently going into nuclear. Public money is going


into researching fracking and underground gas. That money needs to


be going into renewable energies that are safe, clean and green. That


would bring people's Energy Bill stone. Martin, parties that are


hostile to Europe, a reflection that Westminster parties have failed to


resolve the issue? In many respects, yes. That is why we are seeing ``


saying... You have been dragged down by these parties? Not necessarily.


There should be a referendum, party leadership has adopted that as a


policy, we're the only major party who can deliver a referendum.


Caroline Lucas says thank you. Would you help yourself that you promised


an in dash out referendum? We are with the Conservatives in


government. A deal on the table that we can actually decide upon needs to


happen, but at the moment there is nothing new coming out of Brussels.


A lot of people would say, as Martin said, it is a very different


organisation to the way it is now. If you said, look, we will offer you


a vote on this, what is wrong with that? We have said we would have a


referendum. When there is a big change and people can have the


choice then. We have legislated in government that there will be a


referendum as a treaty change. We will have to leave it there I'm


afraid. Well, if our interviews with the


Euro election candidates have left you frustrated, angry or just plain


bemused, there's something you can do about it. Why not come along to


Gateshead tomorrow lunchtime when there's an opportunity to put your


questions face`to`face to today's Conservative and Lib Dem guests, as


well as candidates from Labour and UKIP. I'll be there too keeping


order with our world famous "hot seat" or "chaises chaud" as they


might be known in the continent. You can find us in Trinity Square in the


middle of Gateshead tomorrow from 12 noon until 2pm. And if you can't


make it, we'll be showing the best of the questions, and the answers of


course, on Look North later in the week.


Now we've talked lots about the Euro elections. There's the locals too in


some areas. Then there's the small matter of the Scottish referendum in


September. But that's not enough for a small corner of Teesside which is


holding its own vote about whether to become part of North Yorkshire.


Here's Fergus Hewison with that and the rest of the week's news in 60


seconds. One County Durham man has taken his


case for tougher gun controls the Westminster. His sister and mother


were shot dead, and he met the Shadow Secretary of State Cooper. ``


Yvette Cooper. South Shields MP has challenged David Cameron over


welfare cuts. My constituent's disability means he needs a


specially adapted bed and cannot share a room with his wife, yet


still we are hit by the bedroom tax. Can the premise to explain why this


government is punishing his disability? As the honourable lady


knows, we have discretionary housing payments are exactly the sort of


case, the money has been topped up, so there is no reason poor people


can be disadvantaged. Finally, people will get a vote, but the Paul


on May 27 will not be legally binding.


And that's about it from us. If you live in Cumbria and would like to


hear from the Europan election candidates standing in the North


West, then BBC Radio Cumbria is the place. They will be debating the


issues on Friday morning from 11. Meanwhile in the North East BBC


Newcastle will be talking to candidates from the main parties


each weekday morning, starting on Tuesday with UKIP. That's at 9am.


We're back same time, same place next Sunday with a look at the local


elections. Bet you're counting the minutes already. For


the website now. Now it is back to you, Andrew.


Welcome back, let's go straight to our panel. What did you make of Mr


Alexander's defence of the Labour party election broadcast? It is


difficult for them because they started by saying they were not


going to do negative campaigning and they have thrown that away for an


advert which is funny but crude in the class war sense. He didn't look


thrilled to be defending it. There is a page in Tony Blair's memoirs


talking about negative campaigning, and he says that anything too


extreme turns off the average voter so his line of attack on Hague was


funny jokes but... I think this failed the Blair test, it was too


vicious. If your strategy is to shore up your car vote, that advert


was genius. If your strategy is to reach out to a broader number of


voters, Middle Britain, then that advert was a complete disaster. It


looks like there is a lot of negativity and smears all round in


the next year. That definitely looks the way we are going. They will be


essentially trying to re-run by -- the American election. I am slightly


puzzled why we cannot have our own election gurus who live here and


understand the country. I should point out that the ?450 extra VAT


that was claimed in that Labour poster, both Ed Balls and the Labour


Treasury team have said that is ?450 per year. Nonsense the VAT rise, one


year. I should also point out that Nigel Farage said to Norman Smith,


the BBC is always reliable Norman Smith that if you run in Newark and


lost the bubble would burst. I should also point out that although


a number of the tax rises I mentioned on council tax, minimum


wage tax and some other things that UKIP wants to cuts, a couple of


these are in the local manifesto but several are not. They are on the


UKIP website, which is still current and dated 2014. We like to make sure


we are absolutely right. Let's talk about Nick Clegg and Michael Gove


and the latest spat. Let me show you this headline in the Observer this


morning. From both the Independent, he called him a zealot, lunatic is


of -- another word. Do we take this seriously? It hinges on this


question of what counts as an area of need in education. The Lib Dems


say an area of need is one where there are not enough school places


to meet local demand. He says it can also be a place where there are


surplus places but that is for a reason. Local places don't trust


those schools to do a good job for their kids. It surprises me because


there isn't a yawning distance between David Laws and Michael Gove.


David Laws has found himself between a rock and a hard place because I


asked -- as I understand it most Lib Dems don't like the free schools but


Mr laws was quite sympathetic to it and he is now having to this respect


it. When they asked people who are the most hated politicians in a poll


were this week, Michael Gove is off the charts, far above David Cameron


or George Osborne. This is tit-for-tat war. The Liberal


Democrats believe Michael Gove had a hand in leaking the document that


showed Nick Clegg was opposing the tougher Chris Grayling position on


knife crime. They are saying there were Cabinet ministers who never


usually attend the sub Cabinet meeting, they turned up and the


document is leaked so what we are getting is tit for tat on that. It


is inevitable but it is not good for either side of the Coalition. Voters


will look at it and say it is politics of the playground. I read


in the Mail on Sunday this morning that some Tory insiders are accusing


Lib Dems of spreading rumours about the camera in marriage. The


rebuttals of education story is that the free school meals is sucking


money away. I always thought they would work together without fuss and


yet it has been more the source of disagreement then I would have


expected a couple of years ago. Is it serious? It is serious obviously,


using that language, but is it fatal for the Coalition? I think it is a


road bump because I don't think anybody wants to dissolve the


Coalition. It is a challenge for Labour because where do they stand


on the free schools? They invented the Academy programme so it is


difficult for them to take a hands-off approach at this stage.


There was a danger for Michael Gove that he looks ideological but the


danger for the Liberal Democrats is that they are breaking the rules for


the Coalition they said that they wouldn't break which is that they


looked like opposition in government. Is Michael Gove's


position safe? Very safe. If he moves in a reshuffle that will be to


a a job. That's all for today. The Daily Politics will be back on BBC


Two at lunchtime from Tuesday onwards. I'll be back here on BBC


One at 11am next week. Remember if it's Sunday, it's the Sunday


Politics. What if the person


that killed her... I found out she'd been taking drugs.


Just let me explain. You wasn't at that party all night.


Yeah, I was. What was she even doing there?


Oi, you keep your mouth shut. She was exchanging a significant


number of texts and calls with someone in the weeks


leading up to her death. It's like we didn't


really know her at all.


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