21/09/2014 Sunday Politics North East and Cumbria


21/09/2014

Andrew Neil and Richard Moss with the latest news and debate live from the Labour Party conference in Manchester, with guests including Alex Salmond and Lord Prescott.


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Good morning from Manchester, where the Labour Party are gathering

:00:09.:00:12.

for their annual conference as British politics adjusts to what

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the rest of the UK. in Scotland might mean for

:00:16.:00:53.

Scotland's decision to vote 'no means more powers heading north

:00:54.:00:59.

But what about Home Rule for England?

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Independence for Scotland has been his life's work. Alex Salmond tells

:01:07.:01:11.

us why he is stepping down after losing Thursday's vote. And we've

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In the North East and Cumbrha: people who want to be

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Demands for power and money ` but will the region get either

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And the pollution hotspots where air quality fails European standards.

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powers and more freedom to spend. But what is the next devolution step

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for the capital? With me, the best and brightest political panel in the

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business, at least that is what they pay me to say every week. Nick Watt,

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Helen Lewis and, this week, we have done some devolution ourselves to

:01:54.:01:59.

other areas, and we have Sam Coates from the times. The union survived,

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but only at the cost of more powers for the Scottish parliament and

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enshrining the formula that gives Scotland a privileged position when

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it comes to public spending, which has MPs on both sides of the Commons

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of in arms. The Scottish question has been answered for now. Suddenly,

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the English question takes centre stage, doesn't it? Absolutely. It

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has a grubby feel, when that vow was put to the Scottish people, that

:02:33.:02:35.

they hoped would swing the vote there was nothing about English only

:02:36.:02:41.

votes. It was unconditional? The Tory proposal did talk very core

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justly about looking at the proposals by a former clerk of the

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House of Commons that looked at this issue. That was very cautious. -

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cautiously. These proposals will not get through Westminster unless David

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Cameron addresses the English-only issue. You look at people like Chris

:03:01.:03:04.

Grayling in the Sunday Telegraph. Alistair Darling on the Andrew Marr

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Show said you could not have a link between what you are giving Holyrood

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and English-only MPs. Back on says, is welshing on the deal. -- comic he

:03:12.:03:21.

They were furious that he gave away these tax powers and inscribed the

:03:22.:03:28.

Barnett formula. They said they weren't going to vote for it. It is

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a shameless piece of opportunism. Now they can say that Labour are the

:03:38.:03:40.

ones that don't trust you and don't want to give you more powers. He

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knows it is going to be a tight timetable. The idea of getting a

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draft of this out by Burns Night, most people would say, given they

:03:49.:03:52.

had six years to set up Scottish parliament, the idea we will solve

:03:53.:03:55.

these huge constitutional questions in four months is absurd. But they

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don't care about the constitutional questions, the one they care about

:04:04.:04:09.

is English votes? There is a simple reason they won that. If you look at

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the MPs in England alone, the Tories have a majority of 59, an

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overwhelming bias, and if you strip out Wales Scotland and Northern

:04:19.:04:21.

Ireland, so this has become a partisan issue. The question is

:04:22.:04:24.

whether David Cameron can follow through on the promise. He said he

:04:25.:04:30.

would link the two Scottish powers, but it's not clear you will get

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either before the general election. It's not but the purpose is to cause

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Labour Party discomfort, and it is. You can see with date -- Ed Miliband

:04:40.:04:45.

this morning, they find it very hard to answer the question, why

:04:46.:04:48.

shouldn't there be English votes for English laws? Ed Miliband this

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morning was saying how London MPs get to vote on London transport and

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English MPs don't outside of London and it is confusing, but Labour is

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in a difficult position. They were before the Prime Minister made his

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announcement. The yes side triumphed in Glasgow, the largest city in

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Scotland, a Labour heartland, and the Prime Minister is saying that if

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Labour don't agree to this the Prime Minister is saying that if

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handing a gift to the SNP, the Prime Minister is saying that if

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Labour voters would vote for to see the Prime Minister is saying that if

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unarguable. If you say her chewing a partisan way, you can't sell it to

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the country. Ed Miliband is on course to have a majority of about

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20, and you take the 40 English MPs, and he hasn't got it. This is a

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coalition government where the Conservatives haven't got really to

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be in charge, they have put in sweeping laws. Labour should

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probably take the bullet on this one.

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probably take the bullet on this spent on social housing in Scotland

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than in Yorkshire and the North West and the Midlands. The Welsh do very

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poorly on social services for the elderly. What are we saying? That

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they need our children, patients and the elderly are worth less than the

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Scots? That's not the way to have a sustainable solution. I understand

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the distribution impact of the Barnett Formula, but Westminster

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politicians are already held in contempt by a lot of people and to

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rat on such a public pledge would confirm their worst fears. Your

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leader would have secured the union on a false prospectus. First of

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all, it's clear from the Ashcroft poll that the offer made in the

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Scottish newspaper had zero effect and if anything was

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counter-productive to the overall result because two thirds of swing

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voters in the last few days voted for independence. But we can't keep

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proceeding without looking at the promises made to the English. We

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said in the referendum that we would have English laws -- English votes

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on English issues. The Liberal Democrats, in their manifesto,

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pledged to scrap the Barnett Formula. We have to reconcile all of

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the promises to all parts of the UK, and Alex Salmond talks about a

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Westminster stitch up, but what he's trying to do is, with gross double

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standards, is in French stitch up in rapid time, which would be grossly

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unfair to the rest of the rest of UK -- is contrive stitch up. What is

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unfair about the current spending formula? The extra money Scotland

:08:56.:09:01.

gets from Barnet, is covered by the oil revenues it sends to London

:09:02.:09:06.

Scotland is only getting back on spending what it pays in tax. There

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is no analysis out there that suggests it is the same amount.

:09:10.:09:16.

Having voted to stay in the UK. Let me give you the figures. Last year

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revenues were 4.5 billion, and the Barnett Formula was worth 4.5

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billion to Scotland. It is awash. A huge amount of British taxpayer

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investment has gone into extracting North Sea oil, and if we move to a

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more federal system, we would need to look at things like the

:09:37.:09:40.

allocation of resources, but the Barnett Formula has been lambasted

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as a national embarrassment and grossly unfair by its Labour Party

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architect, Lord Barnett. So what we need is to change this mechanism so

:09:49.:09:53.

it is based on need. The irony is, when the Scots allocate Avenue to

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the -- revenue to their local authorities, it's done on a needs

:09:58.:10:01.

basis, and what is good for Scotland must be good for the rest of

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Britain. One final question. The Prime Minister is now making his

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promise of more home rule for Scotland conditional on English

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votes for English laws. Why didn't he spell out the condition when he

:10:14.:10:17.

made his bow to the Scottish people? Why has this condition been tacked

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on by the Prime Minister? In the heat of the referendum debate lots

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of things were said, but the truth is that Parliament must also look at

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this and make its views known, and English MPs as well. You will find

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that conservative as well as a lot of Labour MPs would say, we cannot

:10:37.:10:39.

just rush through a deal that is unsustainable. It has to be good for

:10:40.:10:45.

all parts of Britain. Yes, we should deliver on our promises for more

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devolution to Scotland, but let s deliver on promises to be English,

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and Northern Irish. Why are they locked out of the debate? Let's

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leave it there. Thank you for joining us.

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The man responsible for taking Scottish nationalism from

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the political fringes to within touching distance of victory, Alex

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Salmond, has a flair for dramatic announcements, and he gave us

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another on Friday when he revealed he's to stand

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Friends and foes have paid tribute to his extraordinary career.

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In a moment I'll be speaking to Alex Salmond,

:11:13.:11:14.

but first here's Adam Fleming with the story of the vote that broke

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The BBC's HQ on the Clyde, the whole place converted into a studio for

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Scotland's big night. You know what you need for big events, big

:11:40.:11:42.

screens, and there are loads of them here. That one is three stories

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high, and this is the one Jeremy Vine uses for his graphics. The

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other thing that is massive is the turnout in the referendum, it is

:11:51.:11:55.

enormous. It was around 85% of the electorate, that is 4 million ballot

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papers. First to declare Clackmannanshire. No, 19,000. 1 ,000

:12:01.:12:13.

and 36. The first Noel of the night, and there were plenty more. -- the

:12:14.:12:18.

first no vote. The better together campaigners were over the moon, like

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Jim Murphy, who had campaigned in 100 different towns. I don't want to

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sound schmaltzy, but it makes you think more of Scotland. It makes you

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small tree. Yes, 194,779. Around five a.m., the Yes campaign

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applauded as they won Scotland's biggest city, Glasgow. Dundee went

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their way as well, but just for areas out of 32 opted for

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independence. How many copies have you had? This is my second cup of

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tea on the morning -- how many copies. He was enjoying the

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refreshments on offer, but the yes campaigners were not in a happy

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place. We are in the bowels of one of the parts of the British

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establishment that, I've got to say, has probably done its job in this

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referendum, because I think the BBC has been critical in shoring up the

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establishment and have supported the no campaign as best as they could.

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But there was no arguing with the numbers, and by sunrise, the BBC

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called it. Scotland has voted no in this referendum on independence The

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result, in Fife, has taken the no campaign over the line and the

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official result of this referendum is a no. There we go, on a screen

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three stories high, Scotland has said no to independence. As soon as

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the newsprint was driving north of the border, the focus shifted south

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as the Prime Minister pledged more devolution for Scotland but only if

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it happened everywhere else as well. Just as Scotland will vote

:13:58.:13:59.

separately in the Scottish Parliament on their issues of tax,

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spending on welfare, so to England, as well as Wales and Northern

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Ireland, should be able to vote on these issues, and all this must take

:14:09.:14:13.

place in tandem with and at the same pace as the settlement for Scotland.

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It began to dawn on us all that we might end up doing this again. See

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you for an English referendum soon? Northern Ireland. There could be

:14:28.:14:30.

another one in Scotland. But not next weekend? Give me a break. There

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was no break for Nick, because Alex Salmond came up with one last twist,

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his resignation was as leader, my time is nearly over. But the

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Scotland, the campaign continues, and the dream shall never die. So,

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the referendum settled, the Constitution in flux, and a leader

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gone. All in a night work. Alex Salmond is to stand down as

:14:58.:15:07.

First Minister of Scotland. He shows no signs of going quietly. Last

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night, I spoke to the SNP leader in Aberdeen and began by asking him if

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it was always his intention to resign if he lost the referendum. I

:15:16.:15:20.

certainly have thought about it Andrew. But for most of the

:15:21.:15:23.

referendum campaign I thought we were going to win. So, I was...

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Yeah, maybe a few months back I considered it. But I only finally

:15:30.:15:33.

made up my mind on Friday lunch time. Did you agonise over the

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decision to stand down? I'm not really an agonising person. When you

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get beaten in a referendum, you have to consider standing down as a real

:15:52.:15:57.

possibility. Taking responsibility and politics has gone out of fashion

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but there is an aspect, if you need a campaign, and I was the leader of

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the Yes Campaign, and you don't win, you have to contemplate if you are

:16:06.:16:09.

the best person to lead future political campaigns. In my

:16:10.:16:12.

judgement, it was time for the SNP and the broader yes movement, the

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National movement of Scotland, they would benefit from new leadership.

:16:18.:16:22.

In your heart of hearts, through the campaign, as referendum on day

:16:23.:16:25.

approached, you did think you were going to win? Yes, I did. I thought

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for most of the last month of the campaign, we were in with a real

:16:32.:16:39.

chance. In the last week I thought we had pulled ahead. I thought the

:16:40.:16:42.

decisive aspect wasn't so much the fear mongering, the scaremongering,

:16:43.:16:49.

the kitchen sink being thrown at Scotland by orchestration from

:16:50.:16:51.

Downing Street, I thought the real thing was the pledge, the vow, the

:16:52.:16:55.

offer of something else. A lot of people that had been moving across

:16:56.:17:00.

to independence saw within that a reason to say, well, we can get

:17:01.:17:04.

something anyway without the perceived risks that were being

:17:05.:17:11.

festooned upon them. You were only five points away from your dream.

:17:12.:17:18.

You won Scotland's largest city There is now the prospect of more

:17:19.:17:23.

power. Why not stay and be an enhanced First Minister? Well, it is

:17:24.:17:29.

a good phrase. I'm not going away, though. I'm still going to be part

:17:30.:17:34.

of the political process. In Scotland, if people in Aberdeenshire

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wish to keep electing me, that is what I will do. But I don't have to

:17:38.:17:43.

be First Minister of Scotland, leader of the Yes Campaign, to see

:17:44.:17:47.

that achieved. The SNP is a strong and powerful leadership team. There

:17:48.:17:52.

are a number of people that would do a fantastic job as leader of the

:17:53.:17:56.

party and First Minister. I've been leader of the party for the last 24

:17:57.:18:02.

years, I think it is time to give somebody else a shot. There are many

:18:03.:18:06.

able-bodied people that will do that well. -- many able people that will

:18:07.:18:10.

do that well. I'm still part of the national movement, arguing to take

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this forward. I think you are right, the question, one of the irony is

:18:18.:18:21.

developing so quickly after the referendum, it might be those that

:18:22.:18:24.

lost on Thursday end up as the political winners and those that won

:18:25.:18:30.

end up as the losers. When we met just for the vote, a couple of days

:18:31.:18:35.

before the vote, you said to me that there was very little you would

:18:36.:18:38.

change about the campaign strategy. Is that still your view? Yes. There

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are one or two things, like any campaign, there is no such thing as

:18:46.:18:51.

a pitcher campaign. I would refer not to dwell on such things. I will

:18:52.:18:56.

leave of my book, which will be called 100 Days, coming out before

:18:57.:19:00.

Christmas. Once you read that, I will probably reveal the things I

:19:01.:19:04.

would have changed. Basically, broadly, this was an extraordinary

:19:05.:19:08.

campaign. Not just a political campaign, but a campaign involving

:19:09.:19:12.

the grassroots of Scotland in an energising, empowering way, the like

:19:13.:19:17.

of which in on of us have witnessed. It was an extraordinary phenomenon

:19:18.:19:20.

of grassroots campaigning, which carried the Yes Campaign so far

:19:21.:19:26.

almost to victory. If Rupert Murdoch put his Scottish Sun behind you

:19:27.:19:37.

would have that made the difference? If ifs and ands were pots and

:19:38.:19:45.

pans... Why did he not? I would not say that, you have form with him

:19:46.:19:49.

that I do not have. I'm not sure about that. I was very encouraged.

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The coverage, not in the other papers, The Times, which was

:19:57.:20:00.

extremely hostile to Scottish independence, but the coverage in

:20:01.:20:04.

the Scottish Sun was fair, balanced and we certainly got a very fair

:20:05.:20:13.

kick of the ball. In newspapers I would settle for no editorial line

:20:14.:20:17.

and just balanced coverage. We certainly got that from the Scottish

:20:18.:20:20.

Sun and that was an encouragement. I think you saw from his tweets,

:20:21.:20:27.

certainly in his heart he would have liked to have seen a move forward in

:20:28.:20:36.

Scotland and I like that. He said if you lost, that was it, referendum

:20:37.:20:41.

wise, for a generation, which he defined as about 20 years. Is that

:20:42.:20:47.

still your view? Yes, it is. It has always been my view. It's a personal

:20:48.:20:51.

view. There are always things that can change in politics. If the UK

:20:52.:20:56.

moved out of the European Union for example, that would be the sort of

:20:57.:20:59.

circumstance. Some people would argue with Westminster parties, and

:21:00.:21:03.

I'm actually not surprised that they are reneging on commitments, I am

:21:04.:21:09.

just surprised by the speed they are doing it. They seem to be totally

:21:10.:21:12.

shameless in these matters. You don't think they will meet the vow?

:21:13.:21:18.

You don't think there will keep to their vow? They are not, for that

:21:19.:21:22.

essential reason you saw developing on Friday. The Prime Minister wants

:21:23.:21:27.

to link change in Scotland to change in England. He wants to do that

:21:28.:21:30.

because he has difficulty in carrying his backbenchers on this

:21:31.:21:35.

and they are under pressure from UKIP. The Labour leadership are

:21:36.:21:38.

frightened of any changes in England which leave them without a majority

:21:39.:21:41.

in the House of Commons on English matters. I would not call it an

:21:42.:21:47.

irresistible force and immovable object, one is resistible and one is

:21:48.:21:53.

movable. They are at loggerheads. The vow, I think, was something

:21:54.:21:56.

cooked up in desperation for the last few days of the campaign. I

:21:57.:21:58.

think everybody in Scotland now engines that. -- recognises that. It

:21:59.:22:05.

was the people that were persuaded to vote no that word tricked,

:22:06.:22:10.

effectively. They are the ones that are really angry. Ed Miliband and

:22:11.:22:15.

David Cameron, if they are watching this, I would be more worried about

:22:16.:22:22.

the anger of the no voters than the opinion of the Yes Vote on that

:22:23.:22:29.

matter. If independence is on the back burner for now, what would you

:22:30.:22:35.

advise your successor's strategy for the SNP to be? I would advise him or

:22:36.:22:41.

her not to listen to advice from their predecessor. A new leader

:22:42.:22:48.

brings forward a new strategy. I think this is, for the SNP, a very

:22:49.:22:53.

favourable political time. There have been 5000 new members joined

:22:54.:22:59.

since Thursday. That is about a 25% increase in the party membership in

:23:00.:23:02.

the space of a few days. More than that, I think this is an opportunity

:23:03.:23:15.

for the SNP. But my goal is the opportunity for Scotland. I would

:23:16.:23:18.

repeat I am not retiring from politics. I'm standing down as First

:23:19.:23:25.

Minister of Scotland. On Friday coming back to the north-east of

:23:26.:23:28.

Scotland, I passed through Dundee, which voted yes by a stud --

:23:29.:23:35.

substantial margin. There was a line of a song I couldn't get out of my

:23:36.:23:39.

head, and old Jacobite song, rewritten by Robert Burns, the last

:23:40.:23:47.

line is, so, tremble falls wakes, in the midst of your glee, you've not

:23:48.:23:55.

seen the last of my bonnets and me. So you are staying a member of the

:23:56.:23:58.

Scottish Parliament, shall we see you again in the House of Commons?

:23:59.:24:03.

What does the future hold for you? Membership of Scottish Parliament is

:24:04.:24:10.

dependent on the good folk of Aberdeenshire east. If they choose

:24:11.:24:14.

to elect me, I will be delighted to serve. I've always loved being a

:24:15.:24:19.

constituency member of Parliament, I have known some front line

:24:20.:24:22.

politicians that regarded that as a chore. I'm not saying they didn t do

:24:23.:24:26.

it properly, I am sure they did But I love it. You get distilled wisdom

:24:27.:24:32.

from being a constituency member of Parliament that helps you keep your

:24:33.:24:34.

feet on the ground and have a good Parliament that helps you keep your

:24:35.:24:38.

people. I have no difficulty Parliament that helps you keep your

:24:39.:26:29.

left-wing candidates? I don't think I accept the characterisation of

:26:30.:26:32.

candidates being left wing. I don't think your viewers see politics in

:26:33.:26:36.

terms of what is left and right I think they see it in terms of what

:26:37.:26:39.

is right and wrong. Obviously, many of the things we have been talking

:26:40.:26:44.

about, how we ensure that the next generation can do better than the

:26:45.:26:47.

last, how we raise the wages of your viewers, who are currently working

:26:48.:26:51.

very hard but not making a wage they can live off, that is what they are

:26:52.:26:54.

talking about and that is what the public will judge them on. But they

:26:55.:26:59.

want to raise taxes, they don't want to cut public spending, they want to

:27:00.:27:02.

re-nationalise the railways, they don't think there is too much

:27:03.:27:05.

immigration, they want to scrap Trident. These are all positions

:27:06.:27:09.

clearly to the left of current party policy. But that is your

:27:10.:27:13.

characterisation. If you look at our policy to increase the top rate of

:27:14.:27:18.

tax to 50% for people earning over ?150,000, that is a central

:27:19.:27:21.

position. It is something that enjoys the support of the majority

:27:22.:27:28.

of the public. Trident? If you talk to the British public about

:27:29.:27:32.

immigration, yes, there are concerns about the numbers coming in and out,

:27:33.:27:36.

yes people want to see integration, yes, people want to see people

:27:37.:27:40.

putting a contribution before they take out, the people recognise, if

:27:41.:27:43.

you look at our multicultural nation, we have derived a lot of

:27:44.:27:47.

benefits from immigration. I don't think your characterisation of those

:27:48.:27:51.

positions, that is your view... It's not, it is their view. They are

:27:52.:27:58.

saying... You describe it... You described those positions as left

:27:59.:28:03.

wing positions. I am saying to you that I actually think a lot of those

:28:04.:28:08.

positions are centrist positions that would enjoy the support of the

:28:09.:28:11.

majority of your viewers. I don t think your viewers think the idea of

:28:12.:28:16.

the broadest shoulders bearing the heaviest burden in forms of tax are

:28:17.:28:19.

going to see it as a way out, radical principle. They want to

:28:20.:28:25.

scrap Trident, not party policy It isn't.

:28:26.:28:30.

I think that 73... Well, we will have 400 Parliamentary candidates at

:28:31.:28:36.

the time of the next general election, not including current MPs.

:28:37.:28:42.

This is 73 out of over 400 of them. I think we also need to treat the

:28:43.:28:48.

survey with a bit of caution. They are not representative? You are

:28:49.:28:52.

basically quoting the results of a small percentage of our

:28:53.:28:55.

Parliamentary candidates. It's pretty safe to say when you look at

:28:56.:28:59.

their views, they might be right or wrong, that's not my point, it's

:29:00.:29:04.

fairly safe to say that new Labour is dead? Again, I don't think people

:29:05.:29:12.

see things in terms of gold -- old or new Labour. We are standing at a

:29:13.:29:15.

Labour Party. We are a great country, but we have big challenges.

:29:16.:29:21.

We want to make sure that people can achieve their dreams and aspirations

:29:22.:29:24.

in this country. Too many people are not in that position. Too many

:29:25.:29:27.

people worry about the prospects of their children. Too many people do

:29:28.:29:32.

not earn a wage they can live off. Too many people are worried about

:29:33.:29:35.

the change. We have to make sure we are giving people a stake in the

:29:36.:29:38.

future. That is a Labour thing, you want to call it old or new come I

:29:39.:29:42.

don't care. It's a choice between Labour and the Conservatives in

:29:43.:29:53.

terms of who runs the next government. That one of your

:29:54.:29:55.

candidate we spoke to things that the party's relationship with the

:29:56.:29:57.

unions is to close. 30% of them think it should be closer. You have

:29:58.:30:02.

spoken to 73 out of 400 candidates. Why should the others be any

:30:03.:30:07.

different? It's a fairly representative Sample. Many people

:30:08.:30:11.

working on this set are the member of the union, the National union of

:30:12.:30:14.

journalists. People that came here to this Conference would have been

:30:15.:30:18.

brought here by trade union members. Do you think the relationship should

:30:19.:30:23.

be closer? I think it is where it should be. It should not be closer?

:30:24.:30:27.

I think that trade unions help create wealth in our country. If you

:30:28.:30:30.

look at some other success stories we are in the north-west, GM

:30:31.:30:36.

Vauxhall is there because you have trade unions working in partnership

:30:37.:30:40.

with government and local employees to make sure we kept producing cars.

:30:41.:30:45.

I'm not asking if unions are good or bad, I'm asking if Labour should be

:30:46.:30:49.

closer. You are presupposing, by the tone of your question, that our

:30:50.:30:57.

relationship is a problem. Let's turn to the English question. Why do

:30:58.:31:01.

you need a constitutional conversation where you have to

:31:02.:31:04.

discuss whether English people voting on English matters is

:31:05.:31:07.

unfair? We want to give the regions and cities in England more voice,

:31:08.:31:10.

but let's get it into perspective, we have had a situation where the

:31:11.:31:18.

Scottish people, as desired buying rich people, have to remain part of

:31:19.:31:24.

the UK -- by English people. What is the answer to the question? I don't

:31:25.:31:28.

want to get to a situation where people have voted for solidarity

:31:29.:31:31.

where you have a prime ministers talking about dividing up the UK

:31:32.:31:36.

Parliament. Let me put this point you. Most Scottish voters think it

:31:37.:31:40.

is unfair that Scottish MPs get to vote on English matters. That comes

:31:41.:31:44.

out in Scottish polls. Why don't you see it as unfair? If the Scots see

:31:45.:31:50.

it as unfair, why don't you? This is an age-old conundrum that has been

:31:51.:31:54.

around for 100 years and it's not so simple. You're talking about making

:31:55.:31:57.

a fundamental change to the British constitution on a whim. It's not

:31:58.:32:02.

just an issue, in respect of Scottish MPs. As a London MP, I can

:32:03.:32:09.

vote on matters relating to the transport of England and transport

:32:10.:32:13.

is a devolved matter in London. In Wales, there are a number of

:32:14.:32:16.

competencies that Welsh MPs can vote on and they've been devolved to

:32:17.:32:20.

them. So with all of these different votes, you will exclude different

:32:21.:32:24.

MPs? I think the solution is not necessarily to obsess about what is

:32:25.:32:27.

happening between MPs in Westminster. That turns people

:32:28.:32:31.

politics. We need to devolve more. I think we should be giving the cities

:32:32.:32:35.

and regions of England more autonomy in the way that we are doing in

:32:36.:32:40.

Scotland, but I've got to say, Andrew, it's dishonourable and in

:32:41.:32:44.

bad faith for the Prime Minister to now seek to link what he agreed

:32:45.:32:49.

before the referendum to this issue of English votes for English MPs.

:32:50.:32:53.

That is totally dishonourable and in bad faith. You have promised to

:32:54.:32:56.

devolve more tax powers to Scotland. What would they be? This is being

:32:57.:33:00.

decided at the moment. I cannot give you the exact detail of what the tax

:33:01.:33:05.

powers would be. Could you give us a rough idea? There is a White Paper

:33:06.:33:09.

being produced before November and there will be draft legislation put

:33:10.:33:15.

forward in January. Your leader has vowed that this will happen. And you

:33:16.:33:18.

haven't got a policy? You can't tell us what the tax powers will be? I

:33:19.:33:22.

can't tell you on this programme right now. But we have accepted the

:33:23.:33:26.

principle on further devolution on tax, spending on welfare and we will

:33:27.:33:31.

have further details in due course. Your leader promised to maintain the

:33:32.:33:33.

Barnett Formula for the foreseeable future. Why is that fair when it

:33:34.:33:39.

enshrines more per capita spending for Scotland than it does for Wales,

:33:40.:33:43.

which is poorer, and more than many of the poorer regions in England

:33:44.:33:47.

get? Why is that fair? We have said that in terms of looking at go -

:33:48.:33:52.

local government spending playing out in this Parliament, we have

:33:53.:33:54.

looked at what the government has done which is having already

:33:55.:33:58.

deprived communities having money taken away from them and wealthier

:33:59.:34:03.

communities are getting more. We accept that the Barnett Formula has

:34:04.:34:09.

worked well. How has it works well? There is a cross parliamentary

:34:10.:34:12.

consensus as they don't know what to do about it. Why has it works well,

:34:13.:34:18.

when Wales, clearly loses out? I'm not sure by I accept that when you

:34:19.:34:23.

look at overall underspend -- government spending. It is per

:34:24.:34:27.

capita spending in Scotland, which is way ahead of per capita spending

:34:28.:34:33.

in Wales, but per capita incomes in Scotland are way ahead of Wales Why

:34:34.:34:39.

is that fair Labour politician? We have said we want to have more

:34:40.:34:43.

equitable distribution. You haven't, you have said you will keep the

:34:44.:34:47.

Barnett Formula. I'm not sure necessarily punishing Scotland is

:34:48.:34:51.

the way to go. The way that this debate is going, what message does

:34:52.:34:54.

it send to the Scottish people? I want to be clear, I am delighted

:34:55.:35:00.

with the result we have got. The unity and solidarity where

:35:01.:35:02.

maintaining across the nations of the United Kingdom. All of this

:35:03.:35:06.

separatist talk, setting up different nations of the UK against

:35:07.:35:09.

each other goes completely against what we've all been campaigning for

:35:10.:35:13.

over the last two years, and we shouldn't have any truck with it.

:35:14.:35:16.

Coming onto the announcement on the minimum wage, you would increase it

:35:17.:35:22.

by ?1 50 to take it to ?8, which would be over five years. That is

:35:23.:35:26.

all you are going to do over five years. Have you worked out how much

:35:27.:35:31.

of this increase will be clawed back in taxation and fewer benefits? Work

:35:32.:35:38.

has been done on it. How much? I can't give you an exact figure. The

:35:39.:35:44.

policy pays for itself. The way we have looked at this, we looked at

:35:45.:35:48.

the government figures, and if people are earning more, they would

:35:49.:35:52.

therefore be paying more in income tax and they will be receiving less

:35:53.:35:57.

in benefit and will pay out less in tax credits, so we are confident

:35:58.:36:01.

that this will pay for itself. I'm not asking about the pavement, I'm

:36:02.:36:04.

asking what it means for low paid workers will stop they will get an

:36:05.:36:09.

extra 30p per hour -- about the payment. How much of the 30p to they

:36:10.:36:15.

get to keep? In terms of what they get in the first instance, somebody

:36:16.:36:19.

on the minimum wage now, with our proposal, would get in the region of

:36:20.:36:23.

?3000 a year more than they are at the moment. That is before tax and

:36:24.:36:28.

benefits. How much do they keep I cannot give you an exact figure Why

:36:29.:36:35.

don't you give me an exact figure if you've done the modelling? We are

:36:36.:36:39.

talking about some of the lowest paid people in the country, and I

:36:40.:36:42.

would suggest to you that going down this route, they would face a

:36:43.:36:48.

marginal rate of tax of 50 or 6 % and they will not keep most of this

:36:49.:36:52.

increase you are talking about. I don't accept your figures. But you

:36:53.:36:57.

haven't got any of your own. I just don't have any in my head I can give

:36:58.:37:02.

you right now. Don't you think out policies before you announce them?

:37:03.:37:05.

Of course we think our policies before we announce them but we are

:37:06.:37:08.

confident people have more in their pocket and will be better off with

:37:09.:37:12.

the changes proposed, and we are also seeking to incentivise

:37:13.:37:15.

employers to pay a living wage as well. At the end of the day, as I

:37:16.:37:19.

said, the economy is recovering great, but we know, at the moment,

:37:20.:37:23.

it's still not delivering for a huge number of your viewers and we're

:37:24.:37:26.

determined to do something about it. The status quo is not an option And

:37:27.:37:29.

even joining me. Twice in three days. You can't have too much of a

:37:30.:37:35.

good thing. I am mad. He said that, not me.

:37:36.:37:38.

It's just gone 11.35, you're watching the Sunday Politics. We

:37:39.:37:40.

say goodbye to viewers in Scotland who leave us now for

:37:41.:37:43.

Coming up here in twenty minutes, we'll be joined by John Prescott to

:37:44.:37:48.

talk about the challenge facing Labour as their conference starts

:37:49.:37:50.

First though, the Sunday Politics where you are.

:37:51.:38:00.

Hello, and welcome to your local part of the show:

:38:01.:38:02.

We're live with all the weekend's political devdlopments

:38:03.:38:04.

as the Prime Minister promises a new deal for regions

:38:05.:38:07.

But can the parties agree on what devolved powers we should gdt `

:38:08.:38:14.

The Labour MP for Sunderland Central Julie Elliott

:38:15.:38:18.

and North East Conservative Jeremy Middleton join me in the sttdio

:38:19.:38:21.

I'll also be talking to the leader of Newcastle Council

:38:22.:38:25.

We'll also be reporting on the 15 pollution hotspots,

:38:26.:38:27.

from Carlisle to Durham, whdre air quality fails to meet EU st`ndards.

:38:28.:38:35.

First, a promise of an ?8 an hour minimum wage if

:38:36.:38:38.

Julie Elliott, there were concerns there about whether tax will swallow

:38:39.:38:58.

up some of it, isn't it radhcal thing Conservatives are talking

:38:59.:39:02.

about the minimum wage? We `re the people who introduced the mhnimum

:39:03.:39:05.

wage, the Conservatives votdd against it. They said that ht would

:39:06.:39:10.

lose jobs, but it's created jobs. If people have more money to spend in

:39:11.:39:15.

the economy then that is a good thing, but ?8 an hour is a decent

:39:16.:39:20.

amount of money to be the mhnimum amount anybody should learn for

:39:21.:39:24.

work. The CBI has already r`ised concerns. This is going to push up

:39:25.:39:31.

their costs. All of the polhtical parties talk about a higher minimum

:39:32.:39:37.

wage, George Osborne was calling for one last year. It is very ddsirable

:39:38.:39:41.

to increase low`paying wee Prosser began. It is very `` if we possibly

:39:42.:39:49.

can. But the balances that hf we put up the minimum wage to fastdr too

:39:50.:39:53.

quickly, that will cost jobs. The solution at the moment is to use the

:39:54.:40:00.

Low Pay Commission who tries to take into account all of the views and

:40:01.:40:04.

make a balanced recommendathon. All of the political parties ard trying

:40:05.:40:07.

to pressure them to say that they would like to have a much hhgher

:40:08.:40:11.

minimum wage. I think that would be desirable, but if you go too fast

:40:12.:40:16.

and too quickly it will cost jobs. In Scotland, they have kick`started

:40:17.:40:21.

an intense debate this weekdnd about the future here in the north`east

:40:22.:40:24.

and Cumbria. David Cameron says there's

:40:25.:40:25.

an opportunity to change thd way Conservative MP for Hexham, Guy

:40:26.:40:27.

Opperman, believes the region will now get a fairer deal with greater

:40:28.:40:32.

powers handed to the new colbined I believe that there will bd greater

:40:33.:40:35.

powers devolved to the local authorities

:40:36.:40:46.

so that they actually can then drive forward a proper agenda for

:40:47.:40:49.

the north`east, governed, I hope, I'd like to see Boris`style figure,

:40:50.:40:51.

who is the mayor for the North East batting for us, and actuallx giving

:40:52.:40:56.

us the representation, But for all the talk of a ndw deal,

:40:57.:40:59.

critics are sceptical about the Government's commhtment to

:41:00.:41:10.

deliver real change. John Tomaney led the Yes calpaign

:41:11.:41:12.

when the North East was offdred its He says so far the Government

:41:13.:41:15.

isn't being radical enough. We have not seen any propos`ls for

:41:16.:41:23.

anything. At the moment we have a set of technocrat ick soluthons

:41:24.:41:26.

combined authorities, things which have made no real change. These are

:41:27.:41:37.

political things about how we revive democracy, that is really bhg issue

:41:38.:41:42.

that has been put on the agdnda about what has happened in Scotland.

:41:43.:41:52.

What is it that the north`e`st and Cumbria needs? We need a major

:41:53.:42:01.

transfer of economic power. The opportunity that we have is a

:42:02.:42:09.

massive opportunity to improve connectivity, with Scotland and the

:42:10.:42:14.

rest of England. HS three should be started in Edinburgh and cole down

:42:15.:42:20.

the East Coast, then the West Coast. Air air passenger duty, that should

:42:21.:42:27.

come down not just in Scotl`nd. We should have a waterway to Scotland.

:42:28.:42:33.

What about the trans`Pennind connections? `` motor way. These

:42:34.:42:39.

could make a major economic difference. We can discuss different

:42:40.:42:43.

political structures, but what we need is a solution now, and major

:42:44.:42:47.

investment in infrastructurd to help the North. You're one of thd

:42:48.:42:53.

campaigners for regional devolution. Some people say that the re`son that

:42:54.:42:57.

it failed was that what was offered was to meet. Do you need solething

:42:58.:43:05.

bigger? I was the agent for the Yes campaign. I was committed to it and

:43:06.:43:09.

voted for it. What I think ht was at the wrong time and the wrong package

:43:10.:43:14.

was on offer. I think now things have moved on, I am not surd it

:43:15.:43:17.

would be the right thing to try to do now. In a sense, John is right,

:43:18.:43:23.

it is not the process, it is about getting the

:43:24.:43:37.

commitments to Scotland, but you have no idea what Labour is going to

:43:38.:43:42.

offer to the north`east. We have is promise of a constitutional

:43:43.:43:48.

development. It will start to be kept things soon, but that hs the

:43:49.:43:54.

point. The Scottish question has been debated heavily. We nedd to

:43:55.:43:58.

take a stand back. It has changed the face of politics in the UK. We

:43:59.:44:02.

need to stand back and get the rate mechanism and powers transfdrred for

:44:03.:44:04.

the regions. power to regions like ours, but

:44:05.:45:34.

which powers and who should hope them? UKIP says that it shotld be

:45:35.:45:40.

Let us get the view of the leader of Let us get the view of the leader of

:45:41.:45:51.

Newcastle Council. What shotld they be offering cities like Newcastle?

:45:52.:45:57.

What we would like to see is not necessarily tax`raising powdrs but

:45:58.:46:02.

tax retention powers. The m`jority of taxes collected in places like

:46:03.:46:05.

Newcastle go straight to thd Treasury and if we're lucky we are

:46:06.:46:09.

allowed to for them to come back into the region to support some of

:46:10.:46:12.

our public services. The link between the public services that

:46:13.:46:15.

people receive and the monex that they pay for them has been broken

:46:16.:46:18.

because of that distance in decision`making. What I want to see

:46:19.:46:25.

us greater connectivity between what monies people creating taxes and the

:46:26.:46:29.

decisions that are taken locally about how that money is then spent

:46:30.:46:35.

to improve the local area. Will that compete with an enhanced Scottish

:46:36.:46:39.

parliament? Of course not. Hn the north`east the danger we ard

:46:40.:46:43.

squeezed between a Scottish parliament with more powers and the

:46:44.:46:48.

London assembly and possiblx even an English parliament which wotld be

:46:49.:46:53.

dominated by the interests of London and the south. We need to bd pulled

:46:54.:46:57.

and set out what we want to see in order to improve our economx,

:46:58.:47:01.

improve our society. We havd already been, as local authorities, working

:47:02.:47:07.

together. We have a local atthority from Berwick down to Durham which

:47:08.:47:13.

gives us the skeleton of how these powers could be developed. There is

:47:14.:47:17.

not 100% agreement between those local authority leaders. Cotld they

:47:18.:47:22.

work together on some of thdse bigger issues? Of course we do. We

:47:23.:47:27.

all want to see better prosperity and public services. But thd council

:47:28.:47:31.

leader in Sunderland wants to see a good deal for Sunderland, you want

:47:32.:47:35.

to see a good deal for Newc`stle, do those always come together? They are

:47:36.:47:42.

not mutually exclusive. What is good for Newcastle is good for Stnderland

:47:43.:47:46.

and vice versa. If we pool our local resources than it is good for

:47:47.:47:53.

everyone. It is an everyone's interest to make sure that the

:47:54.:47:59.

north`east thrives. Do you think that you can wait for the rdsult of

:48:00.:48:06.

the Constitutional Convention? No. We have set out ways in which the

:48:07.:48:11.

government can devolve responsibility is to straightaway. I

:48:12.:48:14.

would like to see us working on the same timetable as Scotland,, it is

:48:15.:48:20.

too important an issue to khck into the long grass. Would it re`lly

:48:21.:48:34.

work? It could work. It could provide much more focus and it could

:48:35.:48:36.

provide more unity in the leadership. But that is not

:48:37.:48:41.

something which is going to happen straightaway. I agree with Nick that

:48:42.:48:45.

we need something that will happen sooner than that. In partictlar

:48:46.:48:54.

there is also a threat from what has happened in Scotland. There will be

:48:55.:48:58.

a great many powers going to Scotland. I have talked abott how we

:48:59.:49:02.

can work with them. But there is a flip side, if they get lots of

:49:03.:49:08.

economic power and we do not, then they may be tempted to focus on

:49:09.:49:12.

inward investment that we should have had, in facing companids across

:49:13.:49:17.

the border, perhaps they will change the air passenger duty and then

:49:18.:49:23.

people will fly across the border. We cannot wait for a constitutional

:49:24.:49:28.

debate such as has been described. The impression and the accusation is

:49:29.:49:31.

that Labour is kicking this into the long grass and that it needs to

:49:32.:49:36.

happen now. We are the partx has always been committed to regional

:49:37.:49:39.

devolution. We took form with the Welsh Assembly, the Scottish

:49:40.:49:45.

parliament. What is your policy now? We have got to look at this

:49:46.:49:49.

carefully. What has happened in Scotland has completely changed the

:49:50.:49:54.

playing politics and to makd the wrong decision quickly is not the

:49:55.:49:57.

right thing to do. The Ray Davies mechanisms that could be usdd ``

:49:58.:50:05.

there are various mechanisms. We do not want to rush and make the wrong

:50:06.:50:08.

decision because there has not been proper discussion of this. What

:50:09.:50:15.

about someone who can be a focus for powers, and mayor in the north`east?

:50:16.:50:22.

I am not a fan of that. People have to have the support and trust of the

:50:23.:50:32.

people they represent. How's it democratic, there are seven Labour

:50:33.:50:37.

Leader sitting round a tabld? It is representative of who the pdople

:50:38.:50:43.

elect. 40% of 50% of the voters who do not vote... It has not all was

:50:44.:50:52.

been that way. Leaders change. There are other things on the table. We

:50:53.:50:56.

need to be kept it carefullx to make sure that the reasons we've all set

:50:57.:50:59.

out that we need the transfdr of powers, we need the transfer and

:51:00.:51:06.

there is not much disagreemdnt on that, but we need the right

:51:07.:51:09.

mechanism for our region and that needs to be thought through

:51:10.:51:12.

properly. Will be get a refdrendum on whether we have the city mayor?

:51:13.:51:20.

Will people be asked if thex want a mayor Newcastle? There is a lot to

:51:21.:51:29.

be said for that... Will people get say on it? I do not think that it

:51:30.:51:35.

could come in without there being a referendum. We will all havd

:51:36.:51:38.

different views and we could spend 25 years debating it and we will be

:51:39.:51:42.

having the same discussions, because frankly Scotland could not lanage to

:51:43.:51:45.

have consensus on its own independence and it was an

:51:46.:51:48.

independent country a few htndred years ago. I do not see much success

:51:49.:51:54.

that way. What happens is the economic powers `` what matters

:51:55.:51:58.

They can come now. That will make a difference to people, whethdr our

:51:59.:52:06.

economy booms are not. Should we be passing on powers to get thd buses

:52:07.:52:10.

to run on time or should we concentrate on bigger things? That

:52:11.:52:15.

is quite a big thing, it allows people to get to and from work and

:52:16.:52:20.

enjoy a social life. What wd are seeing at the moment being played

:52:21.:52:24.

out as a wrangle between he`lth and social, who gets which bits of the

:52:25.:52:30.

part? There is so much more we could do if we had the ability to join up

:52:31.:52:34.

our public services over a long period of time. How is this debate

:52:35.:52:38.

is taking shape in the Labotr Party? Let us speak to Mark.

:52:39.:52:50.

As soon as one great big row goes out of the way another one comes

:52:51.:52:54.

along. With the end of that referendum campaign it is not just

:52:55.:52:59.

differences between parties for devolution for England, it hs

:53:00.:53:02.

differences within parties, including this one. One MP over the

:53:03.:53:07.

weekend said that our public services in the north`east has been

:53:08.:53:11.

cut to the bone for the Scottish, everyday, are being offered braid

:53:12.:53:21.

stash Mack `` are being offdred bribes. Regional dialogue, Dd

:53:22.:53:27.

Miliband has talked about that, but what we do not know is what it means

:53:28.:53:32.

for the north`east and Cumbria, and crucially, when we will get them.

:53:33.:53:37.

What else is on the agenda, presumably more than this?

:53:38.:53:42.

What of other issues. The mhnimum wage announcement, which yot have

:53:43.:53:45.

been talking about, that is going to be a topic. And quite interdstingly,

:53:46.:53:51.

Police and Crime Commissiondr is, the announcement today from Yvette

:53:52.:53:55.

Cooper, Libra is going to abolish them. `` Labour. And of course, Ed

:53:56.:54:09.

Miliband's speech on Tuesdax. We will be bringing you full coverage

:54:10.:54:13.

throughout the week. Mark will be speaking exclusively to

:54:14.:54:16.

the Labour Leader Ed Miliband about the future of the region, you can

:54:17.:54:18.

see that next week. Now, as I think someone oncd said,

:54:19.:54:25.

for something completely different ` air pollution. Which we're told is

:54:26.:54:28.

contributing to hundreds of deaths a year in the North East and Cumbria.

:54:29.:54:31.

In 15 places, including parts of Carlisle, Newcastle and Durham,

:54:32.:54:34.

pollution limits set by the European Union are being regularly exceeded.

:54:35.:54:36.

As Luke Walton reports, our local councils are coming under pressure

:54:37.:54:39.

to tackle the problem. Refute it's leafy front garden is

:54:40.:54:52.

not the obvious place to worry about pollution `` research unit's `` Ruth

:54:53.:55:06.

Hewitt's garden. There were not many industry factories around hdre but

:55:07.:55:09.

we are close to the motorwax and the airport, so some of the pollution

:55:10.:55:13.

from those places could havd an impact. So far her measuremdnts

:55:14.:55:19.

suggest that street does not have a problem, but close by is a different

:55:20.:55:25.

story. This is one of the pollution hotspots, Gosford high`stredt in

:55:26.:55:28.

Newcastle. It is rush`hour congestion which is causing some of

:55:29.:55:36.

the pollution like this. People are purchasing diesel engines. They are

:55:37.:55:46.

causing less CO2, but the pdrmit `` they emit more nitrogen dioxide

:55:47.:55:53.

which can cause respiratory problems and heart disease. Backing debris,

:55:54.:56:00.

the European Commission issted a legal challenge against the British

:56:01.:56:10.

government, saying that it's ear pollution levels were too hhgh. ``

:56:11.:56:25.

Iraq pollution. `` air pollttion. This is one of our brand`new hybrid

:56:26.:56:30.

vehicles. The government insists that pollution is being tackled and

:56:31.:56:35.

sees this as proof, a hybrid bus that is green in more than colour.

:56:36.:56:40.

One of the growing north`east fleet of eco`friendly vehicles, p`rt

:56:41.:56:46.

funded by the transport apartment. You have your traditional engine

:56:47.:56:49.

which drives the electric motor behind it, which generates the

:56:50.:56:54.

batteries and allows it to drive one full electric mode. What is the

:56:55.:57:01.

benefit of that? Zero emisshons Less pollution. We are all being

:57:02.:57:07.

encouraged to go electric, but so far only a minority have done so.

:57:08.:57:13.

This scene in Durham is aftdrnoon rush hour turned into a crawl

:57:14.:57:17.

through the city centre. Thd local council has a plan to build a

:57:18.:57:23.

bypass. 40,000 vehicles crossing the bridge. If we can keep them round

:57:24.:57:32.

the edge of the city then wd will manage air pollution. We want

:57:33.:57:40.

investment in the alternatives. The government has started to btild

:57:41.:57:44.

things like Park and reds. We want to make it easy for people to walk

:57:45.:57:58.

from a to B. The government say that they are making progress, btt for

:57:59.:58:02.

many of us the way ahead, lhke the air, is not crystal clear.

:58:03.:58:08.

Can we wait that long? It is a gradual process, getting eldctric

:58:09.:58:15.

vehicles. Coming from London, as an asthmatic, Londoners have `` London

:58:16.:58:24.

is horrendous for air pollution I have never had a problem in the

:58:25.:58:28.

north`east. The seals of thd letter vehicles are going up and the seals

:58:29.:58:33.

of hybrid cars are going up, but these are hotspots in the

:58:34.:58:37.

north`east, let us not get ht out of proportion. There is not a lassive

:58:38.:58:42.

problem in the north`east. We did have the promise that it wotld be

:58:43.:58:46.

the greenest government ever, remember that? Air quality hs

:58:47.:58:55.

improving, but it is not improving in a few areas at the same rate that

:58:56.:58:59.

European legislation says that it should. We want to see to ilprove

:59:00.:59:02.

further and I agree with Julie that it is about people moving towards

:59:03.:59:06.

low carbon vehicles and thehr are things that local authoritids can do

:59:07.:59:11.

things about. We need more incentives, whether it would be taxi

:59:12.:59:22.

lanes, local authorities can help to solve local problems and hotspot

:59:23.:59:28.

areas. The local council solution is to just build another road. In

:59:29.:59:32.

County Durham people need to use cars to get work, that the reality.

:59:33.:59:38.

Rural communities do not have the public transport infrastructure ..

:59:39.:59:42.

But we're in building new roads for decades and it is not a solttion.

:59:43.:59:47.

But bypass roads can make a big difference, particularly to the

:59:48.:59:51.

quality of people's waves in big cities. It has to be a balanced

:59:52.:59:55.

approach, you need a bit of everything. You take the life in

:59:56.:00:05.

your hands if you cycle and parts of Tyne Wear. We are not Holland

:00:06.:00:11.

that is true, but there are big improvements, and we are not London

:00:12.:00:15.

either. It is not difficult to get around and we do not have tdrrible

:00:16.:00:20.

air pollution problems. By `nd large our pollution levels are good and

:00:21.:00:25.

are improving. You're sending complacent. We are making good

:00:26.:00:32.

progress. Particularly in this region, for we have a higher

:00:33.:00:35.

penetration of electric vehhcles, where we are very motivated to try

:00:36.:00:39.

to drive the low carbon indtstry, we are making more progress th`n most

:00:40.:00:44.

places. I'm not complacent, we should do more, and we will do more.

:00:45.:00:51.

That is all from us after a momentous week for politics. Look

:00:52.:00:54.

out for the Conservative mayor's policy No

:00:55.:00:58.

more time I'm afraid. Andrew, back to you.

:00:59.:01:06.

Welcome back the to Labour conference, where we're joined

:01:07.:01:08.

by the latest hot new stand-up comedian on the Manchester circuit.

:01:09.:01:12.

I speak of course of former Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott.

:01:13.:01:17.

In between giving tub-thumping speeches to rally

:01:18.:01:19.

the party faithful this week, he's appearing at the Comedy Store.

:01:20.:01:22.

He was also of course the man behind the last attempt to solve

:01:23.:01:26.

Our political panel is with me as well. John, we have got Scottish

:01:27.:01:37.

votes for Scottish laws, and more Scottish votes for Scottish laws,

:01:38.:01:40.

why not English votes for English laws? That's an English parliament

:01:41.:01:45.

in a major constitutional change and that is what has started. I

:01:46.:01:49.

certainly don't agree with that I campaign for powers to be given to

:01:50.:01:53.

the regions. When I first tested it in the Northeast, I lost. Why?

:01:54.:01:57.

Because they said they were not the same powers you are giving to

:01:58.:02:01.

Scotland. So, basically, we must do that, decentralised, not just with a

:02:02.:02:09.

Westminster Parliament. As you know, in 32 years I produce the

:02:10.:02:12.

alternative. You've kept that for 32 years? I took it off my shelf and

:02:13.:02:17.

everybody was talking about it now, but they weren't in 1982. This was

:02:18.:02:23.

my five plan. 200 meetings all around the country -- five-year

:02:24.:02:29.

plan. You wrote this morning, not 35 years ago, that this was a plot to

:02:30.:02:33.

turn Westminster into a Tory dominated English parliament. But if

:02:34.:02:37.

that is how England had voted, it's not a plot, it's democracy. You can

:02:38.:02:42.

get reform in a more federal structure,

:02:43.:03:28.

get reform in a more federal of the daily record, but if they do

:03:29.:03:28.

not agree with of the daily record, but if they do

:03:29.:04:40.

the north-east, they said we know you have an idea for devolution and

:04:41.:04:43.

you will give us assemblies but it doesn't have the power of Scotland,

:04:44.:04:47.

but now we are talking about equity, similar distribution of

:04:48.:04:50.

power and similar resources. The English people are entitled to that.

:04:51.:04:54.

They have been robbed of it for too long. Labour has long struggled with

:04:55.:04:59.

what it should do over devolving power to the regions and you came up

:05:00.:05:03.

with regional assemblies. Ed Miliband has a different idea of

:05:04.:05:07.

city regions. Aren't they the same idea of yours but without a

:05:08.:05:11.

democratic accountability? Can we really trust the greater region of

:05:12.:05:14.

Manchester or Birmingham to deliver if there is not the same kind of

:05:15.:05:19.

democratic link with the people I live in whole, and it stops on the

:05:20.:05:24.

boundary of the Pennines -- the city of Hull. We have city regions from

:05:25.:05:29.

Labour because I failed in the north-east to get the assemblies in,

:05:30.:05:33.

and now we have to look at those options. Do you work through city

:05:34.:05:37.

regions? Mainly in the north, I might say. Even the federal

:05:38.:05:40.

structure they talk about my be in the North or Midlands with

:05:41.:05:43.

Birmingham, but there are a number of options and that is where I

:05:44.:05:48.

believe that what the White Paper should do is to put those options

:05:49.:05:52.

in. Instead of having to put them together, state what you want to do

:05:53.:05:56.

in the English regions. Leave it to the legislation, which is what will

:05:57.:05:59.

happen with the Scottish, and once you've agreed it, you do it after.

:06:00.:06:04.

You have to start the radical debate about giving the English regions,

:06:05.:06:07.

not centralised in London, but decentralised. Do you need to have a

:06:08.:06:12.

separate English parliament? Wouldn't it just satisfy the English

:06:13.:06:17.

if you simply said to MPs, when it's in English matter in the House of

:06:18.:06:22.

Commons, stop interfering? I would disagree with that. I would say put

:06:23.:06:25.

the option in the White Paper. The White Paper seems to be talking

:06:26.:06:30.

about Scotland. If you don't put the commitments to what you want to do

:06:31.:06:33.

with the English regions, people might say I'm not supporting that.

:06:34.:06:38.

Put the framework in the White Paper, but a different timetable.

:06:39.:06:42.

Devolution in this country has been to a different timetable, whether

:06:43.:06:46.

it's Wales, Northern Ireland. Start looking fundamentally at it and the

:06:47.:06:49.

Labour Party should be leading the debate. Let's come the no campaign

:06:50.:06:56.

lost Glasgow. The cradle of British socialism. -- let's come to

:06:57.:07:01.

something that happened with the referendum as the no campaign lost

:07:02.:07:04.

Glasgow. Is it a sign that the Labour Party are finding it hard to

:07:05.:07:09.

what -- hold on to their traditional working class vote question mark its

:07:10.:07:13.

different in Manchester. They would say it is a message about

:07:14.:07:17.

decentralisation. If we change the message a bit maybe. We have been

:07:18.:07:26.

thinking that now it is that either the Labour Party to recognise it is

:07:27.:07:29.

not the old message and old areas that will win it. I remember

:07:30.:07:33.

covering the 1997 referendum in Scotland and you gave a tub thumping

:07:34.:07:38.

speech in a big hall in Hamilton and you really connected. Obviously it

:07:39.:07:41.

was a different referendum because that was about a parliament, not

:07:42.:07:45.

independence and Alex Salmond was on your side, but you, and Ingush MP,

:07:46.:07:49.

an English minister, connected to the core Labour voters in a way that

:07:50.:07:54.

Ed Miliband is failing to do -- an English MP. You make a fair point.

:07:55.:08:02.

In the big rally, I had to point out I was Welsh. Enough of this. Get on

:08:03.:08:09.

with it. What I was saying there was that I supported you, as I did for

:08:10.:08:14.

30 odd years when Labour MPs were against any thinker Scotland. I

:08:15.:08:18.

support you, but I expect you to come in with your Scottish MPs and

:08:19.:08:21.

make sure the English get their share of the powers and resources

:08:22.:08:25.

and that is what that speech was about, and by God, it's as relevant

:08:26.:08:31.

today as it was then. I haven't got any Scottish MPs, I live in

:08:32.:08:35.

Knightsbridge. Did you get the vote? No. What would you have done? I

:08:36.:08:43.

can't tell you. You would have voted yes, come on. I'm interested. What

:08:44.:08:50.

do you want to hear from the speech by Ed Miliband? People are wondering

:08:51.:08:57.

about where Labour stands. There are many issues we have flown around,

:08:58.:09:00.

and we've done the discussion just now. What he has got to do where he

:09:01.:09:07.

started off on the minimum wage You are trying to deal with those left

:09:08.:09:12.

behind. Those are the bottom. That is the Labour message. The National

:09:13.:09:15.

Health Service is our creation and we have to say it will be saved If

:09:16.:09:19.

you can save all of these bankers with all the money and say you

:09:20.:09:22.

haven't got the money for the NHS, say where we stand. That will be the

:09:23.:09:28.

priority. The third one, housing. I have had a revolutionary idea that

:09:29.:09:31.

you can buy a house without a deposit and without the interest or

:09:32.:09:35.

paying the stamp duty, and you buy it by rent. The government gives

:09:36.:09:40.

?150 billion guaranteed housing for up to 600,000. Get down to ordinary

:09:41.:09:45.

people who can use their rent to buy the house. It's happening in the

:09:46.:09:48.

north-east. Why are they not listening to you? You have said more

:09:49.:09:51.

to connect with ordinary people in three minutes than we will probably

:09:52.:09:56.

hear in an hour. I've been telling them, made, and we have a commission

:09:57.:10:00.

coming out. People don't want commissions, they want action. I

:10:01.:10:06.

say, I know what we do, housing health, the people. That is our

:10:07.:10:10.

language. That is why we are Labour. That a lot of people run away. I

:10:11.:10:14.

think in Glasgow, they wondered about that. If you turn up on the

:10:15.:10:18.

same three platforms, and I know it's a critical thing to say, they

:10:19.:10:22.

think in Scotland it is a coalition. I don't like coalitions. It looks

:10:23.:10:28.

like a coalition, didn't it? Maybe it was saved because Rupert Murdoch

:10:29.:10:32.

started the The Times about the polls and he couldn't even get the

:10:33.:10:38.

sun to say that they wanted. We haven't got time. I wondered how

:10:39.:10:42.

long it would take is to get to repot Murdoch. You beat the record.

:10:43.:10:48.

-- to Rupert Murdoch. Labour is quite behind on the economy, and

:10:49.:10:51.

people are looking at Labour, trying to work out if they can trust you to

:10:52.:10:55.

the stewards of the economy given 2010. Under Labour 's plans there is

:10:56.:11:01.

20 billion of cuts to make in the next Parliament. Will we hear

:11:02.:11:06.

anything about that? It is about the proportion of debt to GDP. I know it

:11:07.:11:11.

sounds historic, but our debt when we came in in 1997 was a proportion

:11:12.:11:16.

of GDP, and you must know this, and that was less than Thatcher's. Why

:11:17.:11:23.

did we get done on debt? You guys run around saying a lot about it,

:11:24.:11:26.

but the fact is it was worse under Thatcher. Thatcher is now seen as a

:11:27.:11:33.

hero. If you look at the debt, it is still a problem. Gordon Brown did an

:11:34.:11:37.

awful lot to solve those problems, but they were still left with us.

:11:38.:11:41.

What we have to have is a sensible discussion like we had on devolution

:11:42.:11:45.

and now we are talking about finances. Let's look at the public

:11:46.:11:49.

sector debt and the price we pay. We need to be putting the record

:11:50.:11:52.

straight. The problem is they tell me, John, we have to look to the

:11:53.:11:56.

future not the past. We are getting screwed on the past and we have to

:11:57.:11:59.

change it and perhaps Gordon Brown coming in could do something.

:12:00.:12:06.

Finishing on the future, when we did a poll of the Labour candidates you

:12:07.:12:10.

were watching on the big screen when it came up that their favourite

:12:11.:12:14.

to succeed Ed Miliband was Yvette Cooper, why did you shout no! That

:12:15.:12:25.

is alive. -- alive. -- that is not true. I know resistance is not

:12:26.:12:27.

strong. What did that mean? You can't get away with anything at

:12:28.:12:44.

a Conference, John. I was dropping comments them to pick up everywhere,

:12:45.:12:49.

I do not wear -- nowhere they got that one from. Good to have you

:12:50.:12:55.

back. Round of applause for former Deputy Prime Minister. That's it for

:12:56.:12:59.

today. Don't applaud them, they are useless.

:13:00.:13:01.

my guests. I'll be back here at Labour conference for the Daily

:13:02.:13:06.

11:30am tomorrow when we'll bring you live coverage of the speech by

:13:07.:13:10.

We're here all week, and next Sunday you can find us in Birmingham for

:13:11.:13:15.

Remember if it's Sunday, it's the Sunday Politics.

:13:16.:13:23.

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