05/02/2017 Sunday Politics Northern Ireland


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05/02/2017

Andrew Neil and Mark Carruthers with the latest political news, interviews and debate. Guests include Gavin Barwell MP, Charles Grant and Henry Newman.


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

:00:36.:00:40.

Theresa May pledged to help people who are "just about managing",

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and this week her government will announce new measures to boost

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the number of affordable homes and improve conditions for renters.

:00:47.:00:49.

After a US court suspends Donald Trump's travel ban and rules

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it could be unconstitutional, one of the President's inner circle

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tells me there is no "chaos", and that Donald Trump's White House

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is making good on his campaign promises.

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As the Government gets into gear for two years

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of Brexit negotiations, we report on the haggling to come

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over the UK's Brexit bill for leaving the European Union -

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and the costs and savings once we've left.

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And with me, as always, a trio of top political

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journalists - Helen Lewis, Tom Newton Dunn

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They'll be tweeting throughout the programme,

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So, more anguish to come this week for the Labour party as the House

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of Commons continues to debate the bill which paves the way

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Last week, Labour split over the Article 50 bill,

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with a fifth of Labour MPs defying Jeremy Corbyn to vote against.

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Five shadow ministers resigned, and it's expected Mr Corbyn

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will have to sack more frontbenchers once the bill is voted

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Add to that the fact that the Labour Leader's close ally

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Diane Abbot failed to turn up for the initial vote -

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blaming illness - and things don't look too rosy

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The Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry was asked

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about the situation earlier on the Andrew Marr show.

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The Labour Party is a national party and we represent the nation,

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and the nation is divided on this, and it is very difficult.

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Many MPs representing majority Remain constituencies have this very

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difficult balancing act between - do I represent my constituency,

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Labour, as a national party, have a clear view.

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We fought to stay in Europe, but the public have spoken,

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But the important thing now is not to give Theresa May a blank check,

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we have to make sure we get the right deal for the country.

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That was Emily Thornberry. Helen, is this like a form of Chinese water

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torture for the Labour Party? And for journalists, to! We are in a

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situation where no one really thinks it's working. A lot of authority has

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drained away from Jeremy Corbyn but no one can do anything about it.

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What we saw from the leadership contest is on the idea of a Blairite

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plot to get rid of him. You are essentially stuck in stasis. The

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only person that can remove Jeremy Corbyn is God or Jeremy Corbyn.

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Authority may have moved from Mr Corbyn but it's not going anywhere

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else, there's not an alternative centre of authority? Not quite, but

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Clive Lewis is name emerging, the Shadow Business Secretary. A lot of

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the Labour left, people like Paul Mason, really like him and would

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like to see him in Corbyn. I think that's why Jeremy Corbyn do

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something extraordinary next week and abstain from Article 50, the

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main bill itself, to keep his Shadow Cabinet together. That clip on

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Andrew Marr, point blank refusing to say if Labour will vote for Article

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50. The only way Jeremy Corbyn can hold this mess together now is to

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abstain, which would be catastrophic across Brexit constituencies in the

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North. The problem with abstention is everyone will say on the issue of

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our time, the official opposition hasn't got coherent or considered

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policy? I love the way Emily Thornberry said the country is

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divided and we represent the country, in other words we are

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divided at the party as well. The other thing that was a crucial

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moment this week is the debate over whether there should be a so-called

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meaningful vote by MPs on the deal that Theresa May gets. That is a

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point of real danger for Brexit supporters. It may well be there is

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a coalition of Labour and SNP and Remain MPs, Tory MPs, who vote for

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that so-called meaningful vote that could undermine Theresa May's

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negotiation. So Theresa May could have had troubles as well, not plain

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sailing for her? There is no point, apart from lonely Ken Clarke voting

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against Article 50, no point in Tory remainders rebelling. It would have

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been a token gesture with no support. But there might be

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meaningful amendments. One might be on the status of EU nationals... The

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government could lose that. There might be a majority for some of

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those amendments. The ins and outs of the Labour Party, it fascinates

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the Labour Party and journalists. I suspect the country has just moved

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on and doesn't care. You are probably quite right. To be honest I

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struggled to get Labour split stories in my paper any more, the

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bar is so high to make it news. Where it does matter is now not

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everyone will pay huge amounts to the -- of attention to the vote on

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Wednesday. But come the general election in 2020, maybe a little

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earlier, every Tory leaflet and every labour constituency will say

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this guy, this goal, they refuse to vote for Brexit, do you want them in

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power? That is going to be really hard for them. The story next week

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may be Tory splits rather than just Labour ones, we will see.

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Theresa May has made a big deal out of her commitment to help people

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on middle incomes who are "just about managing", and early this week

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we should get a good sense of what that means in practice -

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when plans to bring down the cost of housing and protect renters

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are published in the Government's new white paper.

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Theresa May has promised she'll kick off Brexit negotiations with the EU

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by the end of March, and after months of shadow-boxing

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Ellie Price reports on the battle to come over the UK's Brexit bill,

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and the likely costs and savings once we've left.

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It was the figure that defined the EU referendum campaign.

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It was also a figure that was fiercely disputed, but the promise -

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vote leave and Britain won't have to pay into the EU are any more.

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So, is that what's going to happen now?

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The trouble with buses is you tend to have to wait for them

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and when Theresa May triggers Article 50, the clock starts

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She needs something quicker, something more sporty.

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According to the most recent Treasury figures,

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Britain's gross contribution to the EU, after the rebate

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is taken into account, is about ?14 billion a year.

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There are some complicating factors that means it can go up

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or down year on year, but that's roughly how much the UK

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will no longer sending to Brussels post-Brexit.

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But, there are other payments that Britain will have to shell out for.

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First and foremost, the so-called divorce settlement.

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It is being said, and openly by Commissioner Barnier

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and others in the Commission, that the total financial liability

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as they see it might be in the order of 40-60 billion

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The BBC understands the figure EU negotiators are likely

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to settle on is far lower, around 34 billion euros,

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but what does the money they are going to argue

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Well, that's how much Britain owes for stuff in the EU budget that's

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already signed up for until 2020, one year after we are

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Historically, Britain pays 12% in contributions,

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so the cost to the UK is likely to be between ten

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Then they will look at the 200-250 billion euros of underfunded

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spending commitments, the so-called RAL.

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Britain could also be liable for around 5-7 billion euros

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for its share in the pensions bill for EU staff, that's again

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12% of an overall bill of 50-60 billion.

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Finally there's a share of our assets held by the EU.

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They include things like this building, the European Commission

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Britain could argue it deserves a share back of around 18 billion

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euros from a portfolio that's said to be worth 153 billion euros.

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So, lots for the two sides to discuss in two years of talks.

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They have a great opportunity with the Article 50 talks

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because actually they can hold us to ransom.

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They can say, "You figure out money, we will talk about your trade.

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But until you've figured out the money, we won't," so I think

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a lot of European states think they are in a very strong

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negotiating position at the moment and they intend to make

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The principle is clear, the days of Britain making vast

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contributions to the European Union every year will end.

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Theresa May has already indicated that she would want to sign back up

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to a number of EU agencies on a program-by-program basis.

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The Europol for example, that's the European crime

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agency, or Erasmus Plus, which wants student exchanges.

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If everything stays the same as it is now, it would cost the UK

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675 million euros a year, based on analysis by

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But there are likely to be agencies we don't choose to participate in.

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If we only opted back to those dealing with security,

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trade, universities and, say, climate change,

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it could come with a price tag of 370 million euros per year.

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Of course that's if our European neighbours allow us.

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I wonder if they're going to let me in!

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There will also be a cost to creating a new system to resolve

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trade disputes with other nations once we are no longer part

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Take the EFTA Court which rules on disputes

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between the EU and Norway, Iceland and Lichtenstein.

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That costs 4 million euros to run each year,

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though in the Brexit White Paper published this week,

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the Government said it will not be constrained by precedent

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Finally, would the EU get behind the idea of Britain making some

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contribution for some preferential access to its market?

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The sort of thing that Theresa May seems to be hinting

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at are sectoral arrangements, some kind of partial membership

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Switzerland, which has a far less wide-ranging deal than Norway,

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pays about 320 million a year for what it gets into the EU budget,

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but it's not exactly the Swiss deal that we're after.

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The EU institutions hate the Swiss deal because it is codified

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in a huge number of treaties that are messy, complicated

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and cumbersome, and they really don't want to replicate

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Theresa May has been at pains to insist she's in the driving seat

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when it comes to these negotiations, and that she's

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But with so much money up for discussion, it may not be such

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Sadly she didn't get to keep the car!

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And I've been joined to discuss the Brexit balance sheet

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by the director of the Centre for European Reform, Charles Grant,

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and by Henry Newman who runs the think tank Open Europe.

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Henry Newman, these figures that are being thrown about in Brussels at

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the moment, and exit bill of 40-60,000,000,000. What do you make

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of them? I think it is an opening gambit from the institutions and we

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should take them seriously. We listened to Mr Rogers, the former

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ambassador to Brussels in the House of Commons last week, speaking about

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the sort of positions the EU is likely to take in the negotiation. I

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personally think the Prime Minister should be more concerned about

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getting the right sort of trade arrangements, subsequent to our

:12:53.:12:54.

departure, than worrying about the exact detail of the divorce

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settlement and the Bill. They might not let them go on to trade until

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they resolve this matter. Where does the Brexit bill, the cost of exit,

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if there is to be one, in terms of a sum of money, where does that come

:13:10.:13:14.

in the negotiations, upfront or at the end? The European Commission has

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a firm line on this. You have to talk about the Brexit bill and the

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divorce settlement before you talk about the future relationship.

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Therefore they are saying if you don't sign up for 60 billion or

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thereabouts, we won't talk about the future. Other member states take a

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softer line than that and think you probably have to talk about the

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divorce settlement and Brexit bill as the same -- at the same time as

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the economic situation. If you can do both at the same time, the

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atmosphere may be better natured. You have spoken to people in

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Brussels and are part of a think tank, how Revista gives the figure

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or is it an opening gambit? Most member states and EU institutions

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believe they think it is the true figure but when the negotiations

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start adding the number will come down. As long as the British are

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prepared to sign up to the principle of we owe you a bit of money, as the

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cheque, then people will compromise. What is the ballpark? You had a

:14:14.:14:18.

figure of 34 billion, that is news to me, nobody knows because

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negotiations haven't started but I think something lower than 60. Even

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60 would be politically toxic for a British government? I think Theresa

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May is in a strong position, she has united the Conservative Party. You

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could expect coming into this year all the Conservative divisions would

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be laid bare by Gina Miller. But she is leading a united party. Labour

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Party are divided... Coogee get away with paying 30 billion? We should

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give her the benefit of the doubt going into these negotiations, let

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her keep her cards close to her chest. The speech he gave a few

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weeks ago at Lancaster House, our judgment was she laid out as much

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detail as we could have expected at that point. I don't think it's

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helpful for us now to say, we shouldn't be introducing further red

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line. I want you to be helpful and find things out. I would suggest if

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there is a bill, let's say it's 30 billion, let's make it half of what

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the current claims coming out of Brussels. And of course it won't

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have to be paid in one year, I assume it's not one cheque but

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spread over. But we will wait a long time for that 350 million a week or

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what ever it was that was meant to come from Brussels to spend on the

:15:33.:15:38.

NHS. That's not going to happen for the next five, six or seven years.

:15:39.:15:44.

Everyone has been clear there will be a phased exit programme. The

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question of whether something is political possible for her in terms

:15:50.:15:53.

of the divorce settlement will depend on what she gets from the

:15:54.:15:56.

European Union in those negotiations. If she ends up

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settling for a bill of about 30 billion which I think would be

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politically... No matter how popular she is, politically very difficult

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for her, it does kill any idea there is a Brexit dividend for Britain.

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Some of the senior officials in London and Brussels are worried this

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issue could crash the talks because it may be possible for Theresa May

:16:21.:16:24.

to accept a Brexit bill of 30 billion and if there is no deal and

:16:25.:16:29.

will leave EU without a settlement, there is massive legal uncertainty.

:16:30.:16:36.

What contract law applies? Can our planes take off from Heathrow?

:16:37.:16:38.

Nobody knows what legal rights there are for an EU citizen living here

:16:39.:16:44.

and vice versa. If there is no deal at the end of two years, it is quite

:16:45.:16:51.

bad for the European economy, therefore they think they have all

:16:52.:16:55.

the cards to play and they think if it is mishandled domestically in

:16:56.:16:59.

Britain than we have a crash. But there will be competing interests in

:17:00.:17:05.

Europe, the Baltic states, Eastern Europe, maybe quite similar of the

:17:06.:17:08.

Nordic states, that in turn different from the French, Germans

:17:09.:17:13.

or Italians. How will Europe come to a common view on these things? At

:17:14.:17:19.

the moment they are quite united backing a strong line, except for

:17:20.:17:26.

the polls and Hungarians who are the bad boys of Europe and the Irish who

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will do anything to keep us happy. We should remember their priority is

:17:33.:17:36.

not economics, they are not thinking how can they maximise trade with the

:17:37.:17:41.

UK, they are under threat. The combination of Trump and Brexit

:17:42.:17:45.

scares them. They want to keep the institutions strong. They also want

:17:46.:17:52.

to keep Britain. That is the one strong card we have, contributing to

:17:53.:17:57.

security. We know we won't be members of the single market, that

:17:58.:18:01.

was in the White Paper. The situation of the customs union is

:18:02.:18:07.

more complicated I would suggest. Does that have cost? If we can be a

:18:08.:18:13.

little bit pregnant in the customs union, does that come with a price

:18:14.:18:18.

ticket? We have got some clarity on the customs union, the Prime

:18:19.:18:23.

Minister said we would not be part of the... We would be able to do our

:18:24.:18:28.

own trade deals outside the EU customs union, and also not be part

:18:29.:18:32.

of the common external tariff. She said she is willing to look at other

:18:33.:18:35.

options and we don't know what that will be so as a think tank we are

:18:36.:18:39.

looking at this over the next few weeks and coming up with

:18:40.:18:42.

recommendations for the Government and looking at how existing

:18:43.:18:45.

boundaries between the EU customs union and other states work in

:18:46.:18:50.

practice. For example between Switzerland and the EU border,

:18:51.:18:54.

Norway and Switzerland, and the UK and Canada. We will want is a

:18:55.:19:00.

country the freedom to do our own free trade deals, that seems to be

:19:01.:19:07.

quite high up there, and to change our external tariffs to the rest of

:19:08.:19:12.

the world. If that's the case, we do seem to be wanting our cake and

:19:13.:19:16.

eating it in the customs union. Talking to some people in London, it

:19:17.:19:20.

is quite clear we are leaving the essentials of the customs union, the

:19:21.:19:26.

tariff, so even if we can minimise controls at the border by having

:19:27.:19:31.

mutual recognition agreements, so we recognise each other's standards,

:19:32.:19:34.

but there will still have to be checks for things like rules of

:19:35.:19:39.

origin and tariffs if tariffs apply, which is a problem for the Irish

:19:40.:19:42.

because nobody has worked out how you can avoid having some sort of

:19:43.:19:46.

customs control on the border between Northern Ireland and the

:19:47.:19:49.

South once we are out of the customs union. I think it's important we

:19:50.:19:53.

don't look at this too much as one side has to win and one side has to

:19:54.:19:59.

lose scenario. We can find ways. My Broadview is what we get out of the

:20:00.:20:03.

negotiation will depend on politics more than economic reality. Economic

:20:04.:20:06.

reality is strong, there's a good case for a trade deal on the

:20:07.:20:23.

solution on the customs deal, but Britain will need to come up with a

:20:24.:20:26.

positive case for our relationship and keep making that case. If it

:20:27.:20:29.

turns out the Government thinks the bill is too high, that we can't

:20:30.:20:31.

really get the free trade deal done in time and it's left hanging in the

:20:32.:20:35.

wind, what are the chances, how I as things stand now that we end up

:20:36.:20:38.

crashing out? I'd say there's a 30% chance that we don't get the free

:20:39.:20:42.

trade agreement at the end of it that Mrs May is aiming for. The very

:20:43.:20:47.

hard crash is you don't even do an Article 50 divorce settlement from

:20:48.:20:51.

you go straight to World Trade Organisation rules. The less hard

:20:52.:20:56.

crash is doing the divorce settlement and transitional

:20:57.:21:00.

arrangements would require European Court of Justice arrangements. We

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will leave it there. Thank you, both.

:21:06.:21:07.

Donald Trump's flagship policy of extreme vetting of immigrants

:21:08.:21:09.

and a temporary travel ban for citizens of seven mainly-muslim

:21:10.:21:11.

countries was stopped in its tracks this weekend.

:21:12.:21:13.

On Friday a judge ruled the ban should be lifted and that it

:21:14.:21:16.

That prompted President Trump to fire off a series of tweets

:21:17.:21:21.

criticising what he says was a terrible decision

:21:22.:21:24.

by a so-called judge, as he ordered the State Department

:21:25.:21:26.

Now the federal appeals court has rejected his request to reinstate

:21:27.:21:34.

the ban until it hears the case in full.

:21:35.:21:45.

Well yesterday I spoke to Sebastian Gorka, Deputy Assistant

:21:46.:21:50.

I asked him if the confusion over the travel ban

:21:51.:21:53.

was a sign that the President's two-week-old administration

:21:54.:21:55.

There is no chaos, you really shouldn't believe the spin, the

:21:56.:22:08.

facts speak for themselves. 109 people on Saturday were mildly

:22:09.:22:14.

inconvenienced by having their entry into the United States delayed out

:22:15.:22:20.

of 325,000. So let's not get carried away with the left-wing media bias

:22:21.:22:29.

and spin. Hold on, 60,000 - 90,000 people with visas, their visas are

:22:30.:22:33.

no longer valid. That's another issue. You need to listen to what

:22:34.:22:37.

I'm saying. The people who entered on the day of the executive order

:22:38.:22:44.

being implemented worth 109 people out of 325. Whether people won't

:22:45.:22:50.

travelling to America were affected is another matter, so there is no

:22:51.:22:59.

chaos to comment on. Following Iran's latest missile tests,

:23:00.:23:04.

National Security adviser Flint said the US was "Putting Iran on notice",

:23:05.:23:10.

what does that mean? It means we have a new president and we are not

:23:11.:23:13.

going to facilitate the rise of one of the most dangerous nations in the

:23:14.:23:19.

world. We are jettisoning this naive and dangerous policy of the Obama

:23:20.:23:27.

Administration to try and make the Shi'ite dictatorial democracy some

:23:28.:23:31.

kind of counter balance to extremist Sunni groups in the region and that

:23:32.:23:35.

they cannot continue to behave in the way they have behaved for the

:23:36.:23:39.

last 30 years. It is a very simple message. So are there any

:23:40.:23:45.

multilateral alliances that Mr Trump would like to strengthen?

:23:46.:23:51.

Absolutely. If we are looking at the region, if you listen to what

:23:52.:23:54.

President Trump has said and specifically to also the speeches of

:23:55.:24:00.

general Flint, his national security adviser, we are incredibly vested in

:24:01.:24:05.

seeing our Sunni allies in the region come together in a real

:24:06.:24:11.

coalition. The so-called vaunted 66 nation coalition that was created

:24:12.:24:17.

under the Obama administration... There was no coalition. But we want

:24:18.:24:22.

to help our Sunni allies, especially the Egyptians, the Jordanians, come

:24:23.:24:30.

together in a real partnership to take the fight to ISIS and groups

:24:31.:24:36.

like Al-Qaeda. But there is not a formal multilateral alliance with

:24:37.:24:41.

these countries. Which of the existing, formal multilateral

:24:42.:24:45.

alliances does Mr Trump wants to strengthen? If you are specifically

:24:46.:24:49.

talking about Nato, it is clear that we are committed to Nato but we wish

:24:50.:24:54.

to see a more equitable burden sharing among the nations that are

:24:55.:24:58.

simply not spending enough on their own defence so the gentleman 's

:24:59.:25:02.

agreement of 2% of GDP has to be stuck to, unlike the, I think it's

:25:03.:25:06.

only Six Nations that reach the standard today out of almost 30. So

:25:07.:25:11.

he does want to strengthen Nato then? Absolutely, he believes Nato

:25:12.:25:22.

is the most successful military alliances. You mustn't believe the

:25:23.:25:28.

spin and hype. EU leaders now see the Trump administration as a threat

:25:29.:25:32.

up there with Russia, China, terrorism. What's your response to

:25:33.:25:39.

that? I have to laugh. The idea that the nation that came to the

:25:40.:25:45.

salvation of Europe twice in the 20th century hummer in World War I

:25:46.:25:51.

and World War II, was central to the defeat of the totalitarian... It is

:25:52.:26:03.

not even worth commenting on. Would it matter to the Trump

:26:04.:26:07.

administration if the European Union broke up? The United States is very

:26:08.:26:10.

interested in the best relations possible with all the nations of the

:26:11.:26:17.

EU am a whether the European union wishes to stay together or not is up

:26:18.:26:22.

to the nations of the European Union. I understand that but I was

:26:23.:26:28.

wondering what the US view would be. Until Mr Trump, EU foreign policy

:26:29.:26:33.

was quite consistent in wanting to see the EU survive, prosper and even

:26:34.:26:37.

become more integrated. Now that doesn't seem to be the case, so

:26:38.:26:41.

would it matter to the Trump administration if the EU broke up? I

:26:42.:26:46.

will say yet again, it is in the interests of the United States to

:26:47.:26:49.

have the best relations possible with our European allies, and

:26:50.:26:54.

whether that is in the formation of the EU or if the EU by itself

:26:55.:26:58.

suffers some kind of internal issues, that's up to the European

:26:59.:27:02.

nations and not something we will comment on. Listening to that

:27:03.:27:07.

answer, it would seem as if this particular president's preference is

:27:08.:27:12.

to deal with individual nation states rather than multilateral

:27:13.:27:17.

institutions. Is that fair? I don't think so. There's never been an

:27:18.:27:24.

unequivocal statement by that effect by the statement. Does he share the

:27:25.:27:28.

opinion of Stephen Bannon that the 21st century should see a return to

:27:29.:27:33.

nation states rather than growing existing multilateral ways? I think

:27:34.:27:39.

it is fair to say that we have problems with political elites that

:27:40.:27:42.

don't take the interests of the populations they represent into

:27:43.:27:48.

account. That's why Brexit happened. I think that's why Mr Trump became

:27:49.:27:54.

President Trump. This is the connected phenomena. You are

:27:55.:27:58.

obsessing about institutions, it is not about institutions, it's about

:27:59.:28:01.

the health of democracy and whether political elites do what is in the

:28:02.:28:06.

interests of the people they represent. Given the

:28:07.:28:09.

unpredictability of the new president, you never really know

:28:10.:28:12.

what he's going to do next, would it be wise for the British Prime

:28:13.:28:17.

Minister to hitch her wagon to his star? This is really churlish

:28:18.:28:24.

questioning. Come on, you don't know what he's going to do next, listen

:28:25.:28:28.

to what he says because he does what he's going to say. I know this may

:28:29.:28:33.

be shocking to some reporters, but look at his campaign promises, and

:28:34.:28:37.

the fact that in the last 15 days we have executed every single one that

:28:38.:28:43.

we could in the time permissible so there is nothing unpredictable about

:28:44.:28:48.

Donald Trump as president. OK then, if we do know what he's going to do

:28:49.:28:54.

next, what is he going to do next? Continue to make good on his

:28:55.:28:58.

election promises, to make America great again, to make the economy are

:28:59.:29:05.

flourishing economy, and most important of all from your

:29:06.:29:09.

perspective in the UK, to be the best friend possible to our friends

:29:10.:29:14.

and the worst enemy to our enemies. It is an old Marine Corps phrase and

:29:15.:29:19.

we tend to live by it. Thank you for your time, we will leave it there.

:29:20.:29:27.

Doctor Gorka, making it clear this administration won't spend political

:29:28.:29:34.

capital on trying to keep the European Union together, a watershed

:29:35.:29:35.

change in American foreign policy. Theresa May has made a big deal out

:29:36.:29:38.

of her commitment to help people on middle incomes who are "just

:29:39.:29:41.

about managing", and early this week we should get a good sense

:29:42.:29:44.

of what that means in practice - when plans to bring down the cost

:29:45.:29:47.

of housing and protect renters are published in the Government's

:29:48.:29:50.

new white paper. The paper is expected to introduce

:29:51.:29:52.

new rules on building Communities Secretary Sajid Javid

:29:53.:29:54.

has previously said politicians should not stand in the way

:29:55.:30:00.

of development, provided all options Also rumoured are new measures

:30:01.:30:03.

to speed up building the 1 million new homes the Government promised

:30:04.:30:07.

to build by 2020, including imposing five-year quotas

:30:08.:30:09.

on reluctant councils. Reports suggest there will be

:30:10.:30:13.

relaxation of building height restrictions,

:30:14.:30:15.

allowing home owners and developers to build to the height

:30:16.:30:17.

of the tallest building on the block without needing to seek

:30:18.:30:20.

planning permission. Other elements trialled include

:30:21.:30:26.

new measures to stop developers sitting on parcels of land

:30:27.:30:30.

without building homes, land banking, and moving railway

:30:31.:30:32.

station car parks Underground, The Government today said it

:30:33.:30:34.

will amend planning rules so more homes can be built specifically

:30:35.:30:43.

to be rented out through longer term tenancies, to provide more stability

:30:44.:30:46.

for young families, alongside its proposed ban

:30:47.:30:47.

on letting agent fees. And the Housing Minister,

:30:48.:30:55.

Gavin Barwell, joins me now. Welcome to the programme. Home

:30:56.:31:04.

ownership is now beyond the reach of most young people. You are now

:31:05.:31:08.

emphasising affordable homes for rent. Why have you given up on the

:31:09.:31:12.

Tory dream of a property owning democracy? We haven't given up on

:31:13.:31:16.

that. The decline on home ownership in this country started in 2004. So

:31:17.:31:21.

far we have stopped that decline, we haven't reversed it but we

:31:22.:31:24.

absolutely want to make sure that people who want to own and can do

:31:25.:31:29.

so. The Prime Minister was very clear a country that works for

:31:30.:31:32.

everyone. That means we have to have say something to say to those who

:31:33.:31:36.

want to rent as well as on. Home ownership of young people is 35%,

:31:37.:31:41.

used to be 60%. Are you telling me during the lifetime of this

:31:42.:31:45.

government that is going to rise? We want to reverse the decline. We have

:31:46.:31:50.

stabilised it. The decline started in 2004 under Labour. They weren't

:31:51.:31:54.

bothered about it. We have taken action and that has stop the

:31:55.:31:58.

decline... What about the rise? We have to make sure people work hard

:31:59.:32:02.

the right thing have the chance to own their home on home. We have

:32:03.:32:06.

helped people through help to buy, shared ownership, that is part of

:32:07.:32:11.

it, but we have to have something to say to those who want to rent. You

:32:12.:32:14.

say you want more rented homes so why did you introduce a 3%

:32:15.:32:20.

additional stamp duty levied to pay those investing in build to rent

:32:21.:32:24.

properties? That was basically to try and stop a lot of the

:32:25.:32:28.

speculation in the buy to let market. The Bank of England raised

:32:29.:32:31.

concerns about that. When you see the white paper, you will see there

:32:32.:32:37.

is a package of measures for Bill to rent, trying to get institutional

:32:38.:32:43.

investment for that, different to people going and buying a home on

:32:44.:32:47.

the private market and renting out. You are trying to get institutional

:32:48.:32:52.

money to comment, just as this government and subsequent ones

:32:53.:32:54.

before said it would get pension fund money to invest in

:32:55.:32:57.

infrastructure and it never happened. Why should this happen? Is

:32:58.:33:02.

already starting to happen. If you go around the country you can see

:33:03.:33:05.

some of these builder rent scheme is happening. There are changes in the

:33:06.:33:10.

White Paper... How much money from institutions is going into bill to

:33:11.:33:20.

rent modular hundreds of millions. I was at the stock exchange the other

:33:21.:33:23.

day celebrating the launch of one of our bombs designed to get this money

:33:24.:33:26.

on. There are schemes being... There is huge potential to expand it. We

:33:27.:33:28.

need more homes and we are too dependent on a small number of large

:33:29.:33:31.

developers. -- to launch one of our bonds. You talk about affordable

:33:32.:33:38.

renting, what is affordable? Defined as something that is at least 20%

:33:39.:33:44.

below the market price. It will vary around the country. Let me put it

:33:45.:33:48.

another way. The average couple renting now have to spend 50% of

:33:49.:33:53.

their income on rent. Is that affordable? That is exactly what

:33:54.:33:56.

we're trying to do something about. Whether you're trying to buy or

:33:57.:34:00.

rent, housing in this country has become less and less affordable

:34:01.:34:04.

because the 30-40 years governments haven't built in times. This white

:34:05.:34:07.

Paper is trying to do something about that. You have been in power

:34:08.:34:11.

six, almost seven years. That's right. Why are ownership of new

:34:12.:34:19.

homes to 24 year low? It was a low figure because it's a new five-year

:34:20.:34:23.

programme. That is not a great excuse. It's not an excuse at all.

:34:24.:34:27.

The way these things work, you have a five-year programme and in the

:34:28.:34:30.

last year you have a record number of delivery and when you start a new

:34:31.:34:34.

programme, a lower level. If you look at the average over six years,

:34:35.:34:38.

this government has built more affordable housing than the previous

:34:39.:34:43.

one. Stiletto 24 year loss, that is an embarrassment. Yes. We have the

:34:44.:34:50.

figures, last year was 32,000, the year before 60 6000. You get this

:34:51.:34:53.

cliff edge effect. It is embarrassing and we want to stop it

:34:54.:34:58.

happening in the future. You want to give tenants more secure and longer

:34:59.:35:02.

leases which rent rises are predictable in advance. Ed Miliband

:35:03.:35:09.

promoted three-year tenancies in the 2015 general election campaign and

:35:10.:35:13.

George Osborne said it was totally economically illiterate. What's

:35:14.:35:18.

changed? You are merging control of the rents people in charge, which

:35:19.:35:23.

we're not imposing. We want longer term tenancies. Most people have

:35:24.:35:27.

six-month tenancies... Within that there would be a control on how much

:35:28.:35:32.

the rent could go up? Right? It would be set for the period of the

:35:33.:35:36.

tenancies. That's what I just said, that's what Ed Miliband proposed. Ed

:35:37.:35:40.

Miliband proposed regulating it for the whole sector. One of the reasons

:35:41.:35:45.

institutional investment is so attractive, if you had a spare home

:35:46.:35:49.

and you want to rent out, you might need it any year, so you give it a

:35:50.:35:54.

short tenancy. If you have a block, they are interested in a long-term

:35:55.:35:58.

return and give families more security. You have set a target,

:35:59.:36:05.

your government, to build in the life of this parliament 1 million

:36:06.:36:09.

new homes in England by 2020. You're not going to make that? I think we

:36:10.:36:16.

are. If you look at 2015-16 we had 190,000 additional homes of this

:36:17.:36:19.

country. Just below the level we need to achieve. Over five...

:36:20.:36:28.

2015-16. You were probably looking at the new homes built. Talking

:36:29.:36:34.

about completions in England. That is not the best measure, with

:36:35.:36:37.

respect. You said you will complete 1 million homes by 2020 so what is

:36:38.:36:43.

wrong with it? We use a national statistic which looks at new homes

:36:44.:36:47.

built and conversions and changes of use minus demolitions. The total

:36:48.:36:49.

change of the housing stock over that year. On that basis I have the

:36:50.:36:56.

figures here. I have the figures. You looking I just completed. 1

:36:57.:37:00.

million new homes, the average rate of those built in the last three

:37:01.:37:05.

quarters was 30 6000. You have 14 more quarters to get to the 1

:37:06.:37:10.

million. You have to raise that to 50 6000. I put it to you, you won't

:37:11.:37:14.

do it. You're not looking at the full picture of new housing in this

:37:15.:37:19.

country. You're looking at brand-new homes and not including conversions

:37:20.:37:23.

or changes of use are not taking off, which we should, demolitions.

:37:24.:37:28.

If you look at the National statistic net additions, in 2015-16,

:37:29.:37:34.

100 and 90,000 new homes. We are behind schedule. -- 190,000. I am

:37:35.:37:39.

confident with the measures in the White Paper we can achieve that. It

:37:40.:37:43.

is not just about the national total, we need to build these homes

:37:44.:37:47.

are the right places. Will the green belt remain sacrosanct after the

:37:48.:37:53.

white paper? Not proposing to change the existing protections that there

:37:54.:37:56.

for green belts. What planning policy says is councils can remove

:37:57.:38:01.

land from green belts but only in exceptional circumstances and should

:38:02.:38:03.

look at at all the circumstances before doing that. No change? No. We

:38:04.:38:10.

have a manifesto commitment. You still think you will get 1 million

:38:11.:38:16.

homes? The green belt is only 15%. This idea we can only fix our broken

:38:17.:38:20.

housing market by taking huge swathes of land out of the green

:38:21.:38:23.

belt is not true. We will leave it there, thank you for joining us,

:38:24.:38:26.

Gavin Barwell. It is coming up to 11.40.

:38:27.:38:28.

We say goodbye to viewers in Scotland, who leave us now

:38:29.:38:30.

Coming up here in 20 minutes, the Week Ahead...

:38:31.:38:39.

Hello and welcome to Sunday Politics in Northern Ireland.

:38:40.:38:43.

Four weeks from now, we should know exactly who has

:38:44.:38:45.

won what in the latest Assembly election.

:38:46.:38:49.

In our first leaders' interview, I'll ask the Alliance Party's Naomi

:38:50.:38:51.

Long what makes this trip to the polls different.

:38:52.:38:54.

Will Leitch has been talking to some of the less well-known

:38:55.:38:57.

I've been looking at how you go about winning a seat for the

:38:58.:39:06.

smallest parties, in the big house. And giving the wisdom

:39:07.:39:08.

of their insight on all things political are Rick Wilford

:39:09.:39:11.

and Patricia MacBride. We're well into the election

:39:12.:39:16.

campaign - doors are being knocked, babies are being kissed -

:39:17.:39:20.

so it's time to start our series of interviews

:39:21.:39:22.

with the party leaders. Today I'm joined by the Alliance

:39:23.:39:25.

Party's Naomi Long, who is, of course, fighting her first

:39:26.:39:28.

election as the woman in charge. Power-sharing has tripped

:39:29.:39:34.

on its laces again, the place is echoing to the cries of people

:39:35.:39:39.

saying they're fed up with the same old same old -

:39:40.:39:41.

if the Alliance Party can't make major strides in this election,

:39:42.:39:44.

it's time to pack up Well, I think that is a very gloomy

:39:45.:39:55.

outlook to have. First of all, Alliance has been growing very

:39:56.:40:00.

strongly in terms of our membership. We are recruiting about a dozen

:40:01.:40:06.

people a day, probably making us one of the fastest-growing parties in

:40:07.:40:10.

Northern Ireland. We are also having people coming forward from

:40:11.:40:13.

constituencies where we previously had quite weak membership. When I

:40:14.:40:17.

took over as leader I said I wanted to strengthen the areas where we

:40:18.:40:21.

already have elected representation, and reach out beyond that poor. I

:40:22.:40:26.

hoped that I would have until the council elections in 2019 to be able

:40:27.:40:30.

to prove whether that strategy is working. I feel quite good about it,

:40:31.:40:36.

because it is an opportunity to show that we are quite serious about that

:40:37.:40:40.

average. There will have been people in places like Omar in Cookstown,

:40:41.:40:45.

and Ballycastle who will have had the those not by a Alliance who will

:40:46.:40:52.

not have done for a long time. -- Omagh. But you need to be making

:40:53.:41:05.

inroads West of the ban if you are to be considered as a serious

:41:06.:41:09.

political force. And I've just described how we're doing that. We

:41:10.:41:14.

are running candidates from those constituencies who have good

:41:15.:41:17.

background in terms of being able for example, having worked in

:41:18.:41:21.

education and health and so on, who are coming to the party now... But

:41:22.:41:27.

are they going to win seats? You are telling me you are going to grow,

:41:28.:41:32.

but it is a time of shrinkage. That's a tall order. It may be a

:41:33.:41:37.

time of shrinkage as far as the Assembly is concerned, but it is a

:41:38.:41:41.

time of growth for our lives. We are seeing new people come forward as

:41:42.:41:45.

candidates who are keen to stand. How many seats are you aiming for? I

:41:46.:41:52.

never do that, because as soon as I give you a number, you will say I am

:41:53.:41:58.

writing of the rest of the seats. I am ambitious for Northern Ireland.

:41:59.:42:02.

Well, then, you should be able to see what your target is. We are

:42:03.:42:09.

running 21 candidates... You are not going to win 21 seats. Do you think

:42:10.:42:16.

you seriously might? Remember, elections are not cumulative. What

:42:17.:42:20.

happened at the last election counts for nothing. We all go to the ballot

:42:21.:42:25.

box on the same basis, and if people come out and vote Alliance, they

:42:26.:42:29.

will get Alliance. I think it is far too easy for people to write parties

:42:30.:42:33.

of based on previous performance. If we want to look at previous

:42:34.:42:37.

performance, let's look at what the parties have delivered a vote on

:42:38.:42:42.

that basis. If you held onto the eight seats you currently have, most

:42:43.:42:46.

commentators would say you had done pretty well. I hope they do. So

:42:47.:42:53.

eight is realistic? I said I hoped people aren't that gracious if we

:42:54.:42:58.

held our eight seats. So realistically, aid is quite a big

:42:59.:43:03.

ask, in the circumstances. If you look at the previous election, Mark,

:43:04.:43:07.

on the basis of our votes in the previous election we would have held

:43:08.:43:13.

eight in a 90 seat Assembly. Now, a lot has happened since the last

:43:14.:43:16.

election, in terms of the fact we are back in another one and eight

:43:17.:43:22.

months. In terms actually of those failures being around issues that we

:43:23.:43:28.

highlighted. The petition of concern, continued paramilitaries in

:43:29.:43:30.

our communities. Those are the issues when we were asked to join

:43:31.:43:37.

the expected that made us say no. The public now have an opportunity

:43:38.:43:40.

to set that right, by electing people who are standing by things

:43:41.:43:44.

that will make the Executive work better, because ultimately I am not

:43:45.:43:48.

running 21 candidates as a protest vote, I'm running them with a

:43:49.:43:52.

positive and construction agenda for Northern Ireland that will actually

:43:53.:43:57.

deliver post election. How do you shake of the allegations that the

:43:58.:44:03.

party is middle-of-the-road and out of touch? If you are bred to make

:44:04.:44:07.

the breakthrough you hope to make, you have got nailed that. I am

:44:08.:44:13.

laughing because the idea that I am inherently middle-class is

:44:14.:44:19.

somewhat... Are you going to tell the UI not? We have people in our

:44:20.:44:25.

party from all walks of life. If anybody looks, we have one of the

:44:26.:44:30.

most diverse tickets in terms of gender, sexual orientation,

:44:31.:44:34.

disability, all of those things, and in terms of where people work and

:44:35.:44:39.

their social class. Inclusion is not just something we talk about, it is

:44:40.:44:43.

something we do, and that is what we are focused on. I actually think

:44:44.:44:48.

anyone who sees as that way is looking at very old stereotypes. Has

:44:49.:44:51.

it changed? Listen to this. Vasundhara Kamble comments on class

:44:52.:45:01.

- listen to this: Alliance They are only friendly

:45:02.:45:04.

to professional people with a certain educational

:45:05.:45:08.

and financial background, people Someone who was a member

:45:09.:45:10.

of your party until ten days ago! And who only three or four days

:45:11.:45:20.

before that sought to seek election as an MLA and was not selected. I

:45:21.:45:24.

understand people are disappointed when they don't get selected. But

:45:25.:45:30.

the question is, why would somebody who thought that was what Alliance

:45:31.:45:34.

was like one to stand? When she became a counsellor, she was

:45:35.:45:41.

selected for a seat against a young, white male solicitor. So the idea

:45:42.:45:48.

that in any way there was prejudiced against her in the party is an

:45:49.:45:57.

absolute, provable nonsense. You need to be very careful not to

:45:58.:46:03.

dismiss this out of hand? I haven't, I am aware of the situation that has

:46:04.:46:08.

taken place. So you were asleep at the wheel. Absolutely not. You

:46:09.:46:14.

should have known about this and dealt with it so it didn't get to

:46:15.:46:17.

the point that it got to. I did, I was dealing with it. We had issued

:46:18.:46:23.

disciplinary proceedings against the two councillors who had left. They

:46:24.:46:29.

admitted they had not raised an issue with me, we were aware of the

:46:30.:46:33.

problems that existed within that council group. David Ford when he

:46:34.:46:38.

was leader was dealing with that as have I been since, but they were not

:46:39.:46:41.

to do with the allegations that emerged after those councils left.

:46:42.:46:48.

So I did not dismiss it. I wrote to them and asked them to provide me

:46:49.:46:51.

with any substantive evidence that will back up those claims. Charges

:46:52.:46:57.

of ageism and racism, and middle-class snobbery at a time when

:46:58.:47:01.

you are trying to say that aligns its two breakthrough and move away

:47:02.:47:05.

from those things is potentially very damaging to you. -- the

:47:06.:47:10.

Alliance Party. Only if people look at it from the perspective of saying

:47:11.:47:13.

they are right and we are lying. We've already had quite a large

:47:14.:47:21.

article the day after in the paper saying that she did not buy the

:47:22.:47:28.

argument. It was her constituency up and only eight months ago, so she

:47:29.:47:31.

would be fairly familiar with both councillors. If you look at the age

:47:32.:47:35.

range, we were criticised in the last election, for having the oldest

:47:36.:47:42.

average age of Assembly candidate going into the elections. That was a

:47:43.:47:46.

criticism of Alliance at that time, and now we are a just? We have

:47:47.:47:51.

people on the ticket of all different ages, some of the youngest

:47:52.:47:57.

and some of the oldest. He is the difficulty. You clearly have pulling

:47:58.:48:00.

power in terms of votes, and you've done well in your constituency. Not

:48:01.:48:06.

least when you won it for Westminster in 2010. But when people

:48:07.:48:09.

go to the polling booths, they are looking at named candidates, and you

:48:10.:48:16.

are running 21, frankly many of whom they will not know, and they do not

:48:17.:48:21.

get a chance to vote for Naomi Long. That is a problem. If the party is

:48:22.:48:28.

in your image, but can also cause difficulties in places for example

:48:29.:48:33.

west of the band. Alliance is not a cult, it is a Democratic party. I am

:48:34.:48:38.

not the big cog in the machine here. I am the party leader, but it is a

:48:39.:48:43.

Democratic Party, I represent the rules -- views of the membership of

:48:44.:48:49.

the party. If I was in some way a negative in terms of drawing people

:48:50.:48:52.

into the party, we would not be recruiting at the rate we are. And

:48:53.:48:56.

those candidates coming forward, for the first time in a long time, I

:48:57.:49:01.

grounded in those constituencies. We had a contest for who would run in

:49:02.:49:07.

upper band, we haven't had that situation for a long time. Similarly

:49:08.:49:12.

for mid-Ulster. I think that is positive, but we are running people

:49:13.:49:16.

who grew up and lived in those constituencies, who know the area

:49:17.:49:20.

well, who can represent us. If people choose to vote for Alliance,

:49:21.:49:25.

are they voting for your party to go into opposition, or a Government?

:49:26.:49:28.

They are voting for us to stand on our manifesto and the five pledges

:49:29.:49:35.

we gave on the last occasion we went to the electorate. We stand over the

:49:36.:49:40.

decision we made back in May... We will make the same judgment. But

:49:41.:49:45.

what I would hope is that eight months of failure at the Executive

:49:46.:49:49.

Papal may have tempered people's views enough, that they realise that

:49:50.:49:54.

have a mandate is all well and good, but if you cannot exercise that

:49:55.:49:58.

incorporation with other parties in the Assembly, your mandate is

:49:59.:50:04.

worthless. Arlene Foster learnt that the hardware and lost her job. I

:50:05.:50:10.

have found it quite a constructive place to be, because there have been

:50:11.:50:13.

occasions when we have believed the Government is right, and there have

:50:14.:50:16.

been times when we have found they are wrong. And you were powerless to

:50:17.:50:20.

do anything about it when it fell apart. We were actually challenging

:50:21.:50:24.

Government about the issues that mattered, and I was the person who

:50:25.:50:27.

first called for a public inquiry, and there we have one, from parties

:50:28.:50:31.

have both said there would never be won. So I feel anything but

:50:32.:50:34.

powerless when it comes to the Assembly.

:50:35.:50:38.

Let's hear from my guests of the day, Patricia MacBride

:50:39.:50:41.

Rick, Naomi Long making her case there, so could this

:50:42.:50:44.

be the breakthrough election for Alliance?

:50:45.:50:47.

It could be. It depends on the extent to which the electorate takes

:50:48.:50:52.

a rational view of actually what's happened over the last eight months

:50:53.:50:56.

rather than they are climbing into the same old trench or trenches as

:50:57.:51:03.

before. A dispassionate and more objective approach to the election,

:51:04.:51:07.

weighing up the experience of the last eight months, and the kinds of

:51:08.:51:10.

alternatives being offered, gives our lines and indeed many of the

:51:11.:51:15.

smaller parties an opportunity, if there ever was an open goal at an

:51:16.:51:20.

election for the opposition parties, whether unofficial or official

:51:21.:51:23.

opposition, there is it, because there has been such a debacle over

:51:24.:51:28.

our age are. But then those parties have to demonstrate that they have

:51:29.:51:31.

got an alternative. What might help is that -- if the parties came up

:51:32.:51:36.

with a joint platform which they would agree to negotiate once the

:51:37.:51:40.

talks begin in the wake of the election.

:51:41.:51:52.

Patricia, could there be a new political mood in the country? It's

:51:53.:51:59.

going to be an interesting election, because you can only predict so much

:52:00.:52:02.

based on predicted -- percentage vote shares. The biggest challenge I

:52:03.:52:10.

think, going into the selection, is for Alliance and the other parties,

:52:11.:52:14.

and it is, are you fighting the selection on the basis of going into

:52:15.:52:19.

Government, or opposition? No party should be fighting on the basis of

:52:20.:52:23.

going into opposition, and I think Naomi's comments in her interview

:52:24.:52:29.

regarding holding the Executive to account in terms of issues around

:52:30.:52:39.

RHI and other things, there is a signal we might see Alliance coming

:52:40.:52:46.

out of opposition. There was a fairly widespread support for David

:52:47.:52:49.

Ford as Justice minister, there was the feeling he had done a good job

:52:50.:52:55.

in that role. If there is a situation there where we are forming

:52:56.:52:58.

a new Executive, the question for Alliance that should be on the

:52:59.:53:02.

doorsteps is, are you going to come out of opposition, take that Justice

:53:03.:53:07.

Minister's post in order to save the institutions? That is a big

:53:08.:53:12.

challenge, Rik. We got that position almost by default. We had to invent

:53:13.:53:17.

a procedure to enable that to happen, in effect. If Clare Sugden

:53:18.:53:23.

gets re-elected, maybe the offer will be open to her, but she wasn't

:53:24.:53:28.

the first choice. So it is a big ask for Alliance whether they will do it

:53:29.:53:33.

this time. Ford did do a reasonable job. We don't know who his successor

:53:34.:53:37.

might be, but it is an opportunity for Alliance, for sure.

:53:38.:53:44.

Thank you both - and we'll hear more from you later.

:53:45.:53:47.

Once upon a time, the Alliance Party was the new kid on the block.

:53:48.:53:50.

But there are still several smaller parties -

:53:51.:53:53.

some new, some old - trying to find a way into Stormont.

:53:54.:53:56.

Will Leitch has been looking at the runners and riders.

:53:57.:53:58.

It is less than three weeks since this snap election became a

:53:59.:54:01.

certainty, but something else was certain months earlier. No matter

:54:02.:54:04.

whom the voters choose, from now on there will be 18 fewer MLAs in the

:54:05.:54:10.

Assembly, that's 90 seats instead of 108. Amateur 5 cents per

:54:11.:54:14.

constituency instead of six, how hard is it going to be to win one?

:54:15.:54:18.

It is something the smallest parties are bound to have been thinking

:54:19.:54:22.

about. For political loyalism, that means

:54:23.:54:24.

courting votes previously cast on traditional lines.

:54:25.:54:31.

Stormont is a shambles. It is essentially politics is broken. It

:54:32.:54:35.

is not working, and if we want to fix it, there is no point in doing

:54:36.:54:39.

what we have always done. Will you to do things differently to sort out

:54:40.:54:44.

the chaos that is there. So we need new ideas, a new approach, and we

:54:45.:54:49.

need new people, to bring about change to bring it back on track.

:54:50.:54:54.

That would mean sorting out dash for cash, for a start. But the smaller

:54:55.:54:59.

parties say that is not the only issue. They talk about honesty in

:55:00.:55:05.

politics, and they cannot get an honest answer for many of their

:55:06.:55:10.

questions. People are telling us, health, housing, education, jobs,

:55:11.:55:14.

the environment, and their future. That is what they want to know

:55:15.:55:19.

about. The Conservatives have yet to win an Assembly seat here, and are

:55:20.:55:23.

looking to their strengths in Great Britain. This is an undeserved

:55:24.:55:28.

election, and the parties in Northern Ireland have turned back to

:55:29.:55:31.

form and type. So our message is we over 300 MPs, 800 odd thousand --

:55:32.:55:40.

800,000 odd counsellors, and we want to represent Northern Ireland. Other

:55:41.:55:45.

parties are hoping to represent for the first time this time around.

:55:46.:55:47.

Will Leitch reporting - and he'll be back shortly to look

:55:48.:55:50.

at another three of the smaller parties aiming for Assembly seats.

:55:51.:55:52.

Now, with a look at the political week in 60 seconds,

:55:53.:55:55.

Brexit dominated all four corners of the UK this week. And the Republic

:55:56.:56:09.

of Ireland as well. Any manifestation of a hard border would

:56:10.:56:14.

have very negative comes -- consequences. An explicit objective

:56:15.:56:18.

of the UK Government's work on Brexit is to ensure that full

:56:19.:56:23.

account is taken of the particular circumstances of Northern Ireland.

:56:24.:56:26.

The Secretary of State's appearance at a football match was pushed out

:56:27.:56:30.

of the headlines after he weighed on to the controversy over whether

:56:31.:56:34.

former soldiers are being unfairly targeted for Troubles related

:56:35.:56:39.

prosecution. We think we are carrying out our duties according to

:56:40.:56:45.

the law. And fears over what will happen, if a budget cannot be agreed

:56:46.:56:51.

after the election. I think the politicians have got to realise this

:56:52.:56:56.

cannot be left alone. Civil servants cannot be left in charge of the

:56:57.:56:58.

budget, alone. We'll hear more from Rick

:56:59.:56:59.

and Patricia shortly - but first here's Will Leitch again,

:57:00.:57:07.

with the remainder of the smaller For the smallest parties, this

:57:08.:57:21.

election brings new challenges, not least the fewer seats up for grabs.

:57:22.:57:26.

That may mean persuading voters to use a different strategy on the

:57:27.:57:31.

ballot paper. Those rules are going to directly affect us, it will be

:57:32.:57:34.

harder for smaller parties to get in, so we need the public to realise

:57:35.:57:38.

that if they go to the ballot box and put down the same votes that

:57:39.:57:41.

they have always done, they are going to get the same results they

:57:42.:57:45.

have always got, and we need change, we need a socialist alternative, and

:57:46.:57:50.

that is what our party will offer the public. There is a strong sense

:57:51.:57:54.

that although the selection came out of nowhere, the dynamics do not have

:57:55.:57:59.

to be the same as last time. For years and years, politicians have

:58:00.:58:04.

told us there is no money for public services, for jobs and services, and

:58:05.:58:08.

now for teachers to have a pay rise. Now this has been completely

:58:09.:58:15.

exposed, there is money, being transferred to private companies.

:58:16.:58:21.

One party previously focused on legalising cannabis has now decided

:58:22.:58:25.

to try and broaden its appeal. We don't see the point on focusing our

:58:26.:58:29.

energies on that now. We are going to use evidence-based practice, what

:58:30.:58:34.

happens in other parts of the world, and seeing how it can work for us

:58:35.:58:39.

here. We are applying that two issues that the other parties are

:58:40.:58:44.

not certain about. Simple, basic things that are not getting touched

:58:45.:58:49.

because of other petty fights between the parties. It still is not

:58:50.:58:52.

clear how many targets -- candidates from the small parties will stand.

:58:53.:58:56.

Nominations are open for another three days.

:58:57.:58:57.

And back to our commentators for a final thought.

:58:58.:59:05.

Patricia, do these smaller parties stand any real chance of grabbing

:59:06.:59:07.

They are fighting for just 90 seats. There are certainly going to be

:59:08.:59:16.

challenges in getting any sort of decent food. You are looking at

:59:17.:59:25.

independence, even people before profit, -- DUP -- PUP. So for the

:59:26.:59:30.

smaller parties to get in and sweep up smaller votes is going to be a

:59:31.:59:36.

challenge. The Alliance Party is doing something they have never done

:59:37.:59:40.

before in terms of managing their vote, trying to get second and third

:59:41.:59:44.

preferences. That is good to hurt the smaller parties in this run as

:59:45.:59:50.

well. I think elections always springs surprises, but I think if

:59:51.:59:54.

the smaller parties make any impression, they are all part of

:59:55.:59:59.

election contests, and it is all very welcome because one hears

:00:00.:00:03.

different voices, but I think now that parties have to get 16.5% to

:00:04.:00:13.

get elected, I think it is doubly difficult for the small parties who

:00:14.:00:14.

are trying to make an impact. Away from the election,

:00:15.:00:24.

Gerry Adams has said he will go to the White House

:00:25.:00:26.

on St Patrick's Day to meet After last year we have to ask, will

:00:27.:00:34.

he be allowed in? I think it is the appropriate thing to do if an

:00:35.:00:38.

invitation is issued, but I wouldn't suggest Donald Trump's interest in

:00:39.:00:43.

Ireland is anywhere near the same level as previous American

:00:44.:00:45.

administrations. That was illustrated if you look at the

:00:46.:00:49.

issues around Black history month and his statements there, which were

:00:50.:00:53.

very short and not at all focused on the issue. I would expect Donald

:00:54.:00:58.

Trump's White House statements to be any more detailed on Irish issues.

:00:59.:01:02.

The Vice President claims Irish ancestry, so he should be more

:01:03.:01:06.

interested, but do you imagine that most of the parties will want to be

:01:07.:01:09.

in Washington in some shape or form in March? I think it is --

:01:10.:01:16.

detestable though Donald Trump is, real politics dictates that if you

:01:17.:01:20.

are invited, you go. Donald Trump might know where the odd golf course

:01:21.:01:25.

in all it is, but I doubt he knows except they were Northern Ireland

:01:26.:01:28.

is, but George Bush didn't either. But we made some progress on his

:01:29.:01:30.

watch. programme at another time an airport

:01:31.:01:36.

expansion, but thank you to both of you for being here. Back to you,

:01:37.:01:37.

Andrew. Will the Government's plan

:01:38.:01:43.

to boost house-building Could a handful of Conservative

:01:44.:01:46.

MPs cause problems for And what is President

:01:47.:01:49.

Trump going to do next? You have been following the genesis

:01:50.:02:08.

of this housing white paper. What do you make of it? I think it will be

:02:09.:02:13.

quite spectacular, pretty radical stuff. We heard bits about beating

:02:14.:02:19.

up on developers. I understand it will be a whack, walk, covering

:02:20.:02:22.

every single problem with housing supply and trying to solve it. Which

:02:23.:02:28.

means bad news if you are a huge fan of the green belt, because they will

:02:29.:02:31.

go round that the other way by forcing large quotas on councils are

:02:32.:02:35.

making it down to councils where they build. If you fill up your

:02:36.:02:41.

brown space in towns they will have to trigger the exceptional

:02:42.:02:44.

circumstances bit of the bill to beat on green belts. Beating up

:02:45.:02:47.

developers, opening up the market for renters across the board. And

:02:48.:02:52.

Theresa May, one of the most defining thing she could do on the

:02:53.:02:57.

domestic agenda. I am not as excited as Tom about this. I look back to

:02:58.:03:02.

2004, do you remember the Kate Barker report? Successive

:03:03.:03:08.

governments, successive prime ministers have been promising to

:03:09.:03:15.

address the housing shortage. In 2004 Kate Barker recommended

:03:16.:03:18.

hundreds of thousands new homes. Gordon Brown talked about 3 million

:03:19.:03:23.

new homes by 2020 in 2007. It never happens. The reason is at the end of

:03:24.:03:28.

the day this is local politics, local councillors need to keep their

:03:29.:03:31.

seats and they won't keep their seats if there are hugely

:03:32.:03:33.

controversial developments locally that they support. Yes, the

:03:34.:03:38.

government can and are proposing to overrule councils that don't back

:03:39.:03:43.

local developments, but they may find themselves completely inundated

:03:44.:03:47.

with those cases. I think that is the whole point of it, to take on

:03:48.:03:52.

those NIMBY often Tory councils and force them to build. I can't think

:03:53.:04:00.

of a better defining issue for Theresa May than sticking one in the

:04:01.:04:04.

eye of some quite well off half Tory countryside councils. The government

:04:05.:04:10.

gives councils a quota of homes they have to fill, if they don't have to

:04:11.:04:14.

fill that all run out overland to fill the quota, the government then

:04:15.:04:18.

comes in and tells them they have to built on the green belt? How is that

:04:19.:04:22.

going to work? At the moment the green belt is absolutely sacrosanct

:04:23.:04:25.

in British politics. They'll have to do some work on educating people on

:04:26.:04:32.

what green belts means. Potato farms, golf courses... At the moment

:04:33.:04:37.

the idea people have of the green belt being verdant fields needs to

:04:38.:04:42.

be dismantled. You are right. I agree with Tom, 11 million people in

:04:43.:04:46.

the private rental sector in the UK. In the last election more voted

:04:47.:04:49.

Labour than conservative. This is an area where Theresa May would look to

:04:50.:04:54.

expand her vote. The problem has always been, the same problem we

:04:55.:04:57.

have with pension policy and why pensioners have done better than

:04:58.:05:02.

working families in recent years. They are older and they vote more

:05:03.:05:07.

and anything to the detriment of older people. I wonder how they will

:05:08.:05:15.

get private money to come in on anything like this go they would

:05:16.:05:18.

need to have a huge expansion? There is a huge amount of speculation and

:05:19.:05:23.

one of the thing that locks up the system as you have people buying

:05:24.:05:27.

land, taking out a stake of land in the hope that one point it may at

:05:28.:05:31.

some point free up. At the end of the day, unless you have councils

:05:32.:05:36.

far more willing to quickly fast track these applications, which they

:05:37.:05:39.

won't for the reason I said before, it's a very long-term investment. Ed

:05:40.:05:45.

Miliband proposed three-year leases in which the rent could only go up

:05:46.:05:50.

by an agreed formula, probably the three years to give the young

:05:51.:05:54.

families a certain stability over that period. He had a use it or lose

:05:55.:05:59.

it rules for planning development, if you don't use it you lose the

:06:00.:06:03.

planning rights. Somebody else gets it. The Tories disparaged that at

:06:04.:06:08.

the time. This is at the centre of their policy now.

:06:09.:06:13.

This is probably item number four of Ed Miliband's policy book Theresa

:06:14.:06:16.

May has wholesale pinched in the last six months or so. Why not? I

:06:17.:06:21.

think if you look at the change in mood across housing and planning

:06:22.:06:26.

over the last 5-6 years, it used to be an issue very much of green belt

:06:27.:06:31.

versus London planners. Now you have grandparents living in houses in the

:06:32.:06:34.

countryside, knowing their grandchildren can't get on the

:06:35.:06:37.

housing ladder any longer. Maybe a bit more intervention in the market,

:06:38.:06:42.

tougher on renting conditions, maybe that is exactly what the country

:06:43.:06:45.

needs. Will they meet the 1 million target? It would be a defiance of

:06:46.:06:51.

every political thing that has happened in the last ten years. I

:06:52.:06:57.

think Tom is right, if there is only one difference between Theresa May

:06:58.:06:59.

and David Cameron it's the willingness of the state to

:07:00.:07:04.

intervene. When Ed Miliband said that he was seen as communism, but

:07:05.:07:09.

Theresa May can get away with it. How serious is this talk of a couple

:07:10.:07:16.

of dozen Tories who were very loyal over voting for the principle of

:07:17.:07:22.

Article 50 but may now be tempted to vote for some amendments to Article

:07:23.:07:25.

50 legislation that they would find quite attractive? I think that

:07:26.:07:30.

threat has certainly been taken seriously by levers. I spoke to the

:07:31.:07:36.

campaign group Leaves Means Leave last night. The figure they

:07:37.:07:40.

mentioned was up to 20 remaining Tories. That sounds a lot to me but

:07:41.:07:43.

that is what they are concerned about and those Tories would come

:07:44.:07:48.

together with Labour and the SNP to vote for that amendment. Although

:07:49.:07:53.

that amendment sounds rather nice and democratic, actually in the eyes

:07:54.:07:57.

of many levers that is a wrecking amendment. Because what you are

:07:58.:08:01.

doing is giving Parliament a sort of veto over whatever deal Theresa May

:08:02.:08:05.

brings back. What they want is the vote to be before that deal is

:08:06.:08:09.

finalised. It isn't necessarily the case that if Parliament decided they

:08:10.:08:14.

didn't like that deal we would just go to WTO, we would fall out of the

:08:15.:08:18.

European Union. There are mixed views as to whether we might remain

:08:19.:08:24.

in and things could be extended. My understanding is the people making

:08:25.:08:28.

the amendments, they won any deal that is done to be brought to

:08:29.:08:33.

Parliament in time, so that if Parliament fancies it it's done, but

:08:34.:08:39.

if it does and it doesn't just mean go to WTO rules. There will be time

:08:40.:08:42.

to go back, renegotiate or think again? The question is where it puts

:08:43.:08:47.

Britain's negotiating hand. Nine of the options... Once we trigger

:08:48.:08:55.

Article 50 the two negotiation begins on the power switches to

:08:56.:08:58.

Europe. They can run out the clock and it will be worse for us than

:08:59.:09:02.

them. I don't think either option is particularly appealing. I think what

:09:03.:09:06.

seems like a rather Serena week for Article 50 this week isn't going to

:09:07.:09:10.

be reflective of what will happen next. The way the government's

:09:11.:09:14.

position is at the moment, if at the end the only choice Parliament has

:09:15.:09:19.

is to vote for the deal or crash out on WTO rules, then even the

:09:20.:09:22.

remainder is going to vote for the deal even if they don't like it,

:09:23.:09:26.

because they would regard crashing out as the worst of all possible

:09:27.:09:32.

results. Possibly. It will be a great game of bluff if Theresa May

:09:33.:09:37.

fights off any of these amendments on Wednesday and gets a

:09:38.:09:39.

straightforward deal or no Deal vote. I have a funny feeling this

:09:40.:09:43.

amendment, if it's chosen, we must remember because we don't know if

:09:44.:09:46.

they will choose this amendment, if it does go to a vote on Wednesday it

:09:47.:09:53.

will be very tight indeed. Remember, one final thing Theresa May can do

:09:54.:09:55.

if she gets Parliament voting against, as Isabel would have it,

:09:56.:10:02.

she could try to get a new parliament and go for a general

:10:03.:10:05.

election. And probably get a huge majority to do so. The Lords, it

:10:06.:10:11.

goes there after the February recess. They are very pro-Europe,

:10:12.:10:22.

but does their instinct for self-preservation override that? I

:10:23.:10:27.

think that is it. A Tory Lord said this morning I will vote to block it

:10:28.:10:30.

on a conscience measure, but you have the likes of Bill Cash, veteran

:10:31.:10:36.

Eurosceptics, suddenly converted to the Lords reform saying is an

:10:37.:10:40.

outrage. I doubt they will vote for their own demise, to hasten their

:10:41.:10:43.

own demise by blocking it. What did you make of Doctor Gorka smart

:10:44.:10:51.

fascinating. Cut from the same cloth as his boss. I thought it was

:10:52.:10:55.

extraordinary listening to him, saying everything is going dutifully

:10:56.:10:58.

to plan. But at the end of the day, what they are doing is what people

:10:59.:11:03.

in America voted for Trump to do. If you look at Lord Ashcroft's polling

:11:04.:11:07.

on why America voted for Trump, they went into this with their eyes wide

:11:08.:11:11.

open. One of the top fears among American voters, particularly

:11:12.:11:17.

Republican leading ones was America's immigration policy is or

:11:18.:11:19.

could be letting in terror arrests. As far as he is concerned, he is

:11:20.:11:24.

doing what he was elected to do. This whole year is turning into a

:11:25.:11:28.

wonderful year long lecture series on how democracy works at a

:11:29.:11:31.

fundamental level. I'm not sure anyone wanted it but it's what we've

:11:32.:11:34.

got. This same in the way we've been talking about direct democracy and

:11:35.:11:40.

Parliamentary democracy. The same is happening in America between

:11:41.:11:44.

executive and judicial branches. We are seeing the limits of

:11:45.:11:48.

presidential power. Regardless of the fact that people voted for Trump

:11:49.:11:52.

they voted for senators. The judge who blocks this was appointed by

:11:53.:11:58.

George W Bush. So-called Judge Eckert Mac so-called George W Bush!

:11:59.:12:02.

It's fascinating we're having all these conversations now that I never

:12:03.:12:06.

bought five years ago we would be having at such a fundamental level.

:12:07.:12:10.

Has the media yet worked out how to cover the Trump administration or

:12:11.:12:15.

has he got us behaving like headless chickens? He says something

:12:16.:12:20.

incendiary and we all run over to do that and when you pick it off it

:12:21.:12:25.

turns out not to be as incendiary as we thought? And then back doing

:12:26.:12:28.

something and we all rush over there. Is he making fools of us? Is

:12:29.:12:34.

exactly what he did in the election campaign. So many quick and fast

:12:35.:12:39.

outrageous comments frontrunner on a daily basis, no one single one of

:12:40.:12:42.

them had full news cycle time to be pored over and examined. I think

:12:43.:12:46.

there is a problem with this. Although he keeps the upper hand,

:12:47.:12:51.

keeps the agenda and keeps on the populist ground, the problem is it

:12:52.:12:56.

easy to campaign like that. If you are governing in a state of

:12:57.:12:59.

semi-hysteria, I wonder how long the American public will be comfortable

:13:00.:13:02.

with that. They don't really want their government to be swirling

:13:03.:13:05.

chaos all the time, as fascinating as it might be on TV. They will be

:13:06.:13:09.

exhausted by it, I already am. I have been interviewing White House

:13:10.:13:15.

administration official since 1976 and that is the first time someone

:13:16.:13:19.

hasn't given me a straight answer on America supporting the EU. That is a

:13:20.:13:21.

different America supporting the EU. That is a

:13:22.:13:21.

different world. Jo Coburn will be on BBC Two

:13:22.:13:23.

tomorrow at midday with the Daily Politics -

:13:24.:13:27.

and I'll be back here Remember, if it's Sunday -

:13:28.:13:31.

it's the Sunday Politics.

:13:32.:13:35.

Andrew Neil and Mark Carruthers with the latest political news, interviews and debate. Andrew is joined by housing minister Gavin Barwell MP who talks about the government's plan to increase housebuilding in England and protect people who rent their homes. Plus Charles Grant from the Centre for European Reform and Henry Newman from Open Europe. Donald Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka discusses President Trump's first two weeks in the White House and Ellie Price reports on the negotiations to come with the EU over Brexit. On the political panel are The New Statesman's Helen Lewis and journalists Isabel Oakeshott and Steve Richards.