13/03/2016 Sunday Politics Northern Ireland


13/03/2016

Andrew Neil and Mark Carruthers with the latest political news, interviews and debate. Andrew is joined by Nicola Sturgeon, John Mann, Seema Malhotra and David Davis.


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Morning, folks, and welcome to the Sunday Politics.

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begins a new drive urging Scots to support what she calls

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"the beautiful dream" of independence.

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Tough talk from George Osborne ahead of his Budget on Wednesday.

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The Chancellor wants us to live within our means.

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Fighting talk too, from the man in his shadow.

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John McDonnell wants to revive Labour's economic credibility.

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And does Jeremy Corbyn's Labour Party have a problem

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Labour students at Oxford are already being investigated

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And coming up in Northern Ireland: university will also face scrutiny.

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Colum Eastwood as his home city hosts the SDLP conference.

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The party leader will be live on the programme.

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And with me three Fleet Street journos, living the dream.

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Nick Watt, Julia Harley-Brewer and Tim Shipman.

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For the rest of us, it is a bit of a nightmare!

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So, four months ago, George Osborne sounded upbeat

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Writing in the Sun on Sunday, ahead of Wednesday's Budget,

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the Chancellor says the world is facing its most uncertain period

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He says Britain has to act now, rather than pay later,

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Let's listen to the Chancellor on the Marr Show a little earlier.

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I think the world is a much more difficult and dangerous place.

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My message in this Budget is that the world is a more

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uncertain place than at any time since the financial crisis.

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We need to act now so we don't pay later.

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That is why we need to find additional savings,

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equivalent to 50p in every ?100 the Government spends by the end

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We have got to live within our means to stay secure.

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That is the way we make Britain fit for the future.

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That was the Chancellor earlier this morning. What did we learn? He is

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preparing the ground for a very difficult budget. Why is he talking

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about the difficult global economic circumstances? We have a significant

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slowdown in China but it helps him in the EU referendum campaign. Why

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risk leaving the EU when it is difficult economic circumstances? It

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helps him with a budget. You need to expend why he was talking in the

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July budget, the Autumn Statement, targeting a 10 billion budget

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surplus by 2020 and now he will be talking back calories and ?18

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billion hole in the size of the economy. Will he be able to meet

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that surplus? He needs an alibi for that. All the global headwinds,

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problems in the emerging markets, the slowdown in China, the

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problems in the emerging markets, struggling to be overwhelmed. We

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knew that back in July. struggling to be overwhelmed. We

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changed. The struggling to be overwhelmed. We

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Osborne is he is a politician. It is always about politics. It is not

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ideal, coming into local elections, London mayoral

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ideal, coming into local elections, giving a load of cuts to public

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services and possibly tax rises. giving a load of cuts to public

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reality is he is always looking at the long game and he does always

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reality is he is always looking at play a brilliant politicians long

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game. He is looking to 2020 and play a brilliant politicians long

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not care. He also plays a bad shot game. Will it be a difficult budget

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or will it be a steady issues budget? What is striking about back

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in this morning, at least half of it budget? What is striking about back

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was about the European Union and not the budget. The rest of it was about

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was about the European Union and not been a difficult and dangerous time

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for George Osborne and his teacher. He sat there and said, I am

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for George Osborne and his teacher. going to sit in this chair and

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mumble away. Who could he be talking about there? We were told week ago

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that the subtext of the budget would be the dangers of Brexit and the

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Tory leadership. It is not the subtext, it is the text. There is

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hardly anything in it in terms of subtext, it is the text. There is

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we just have another shout out subtext, it is the text. There is

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the brilliant headline, genius political strategist clears up mess

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made by genius political strategist. He may be nursing a little rabbit to

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surprise as always! Now, if a certain referendum had

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gone a bit differently, Scotland, would be an independent

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country in just over ten days' time. Those wanting to leave the UK didn't

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win that argument in 2014 but that It's the party's Spring Conference

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in Glasgow this weekend, and we're joined now

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from there by the First Minister Good morning. A pleasure to be with

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you, Andrew. Had the referendum gone your way, we would be ten days from

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independents. You will be taking a massive and unsustainable ?15

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billion budget deficit, 10% of Scottish GDP. What would you be

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doing to get that down? We would deal with it in the same way the UK

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dealt with its deficit in 2009/ when they had 2.2% of the GDP. -- 2009/

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2010. They will be building on the underlying fundamental strengths of

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the Scottish economy. Our this goal position has been broadly similar to

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the rest of the UK and, in some years, better than the rest of the

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UK. Onshore revenues are growing at a faster rate than the fall in

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offshore revenues. We have higher employment and faster productivity

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growth. The economy is fundamentally strong and that would have been a

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very good basis on which to become an independent country. Did you not

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oppose most efforts of the British government to get the deficit down?

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I opposed many measures that George Osborne has taken. I do not say we

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should not try to get the deficit down. I have opposed and continue to

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oppose the speed at which it is happening in the way in which it is

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happening but no one would deny that countries want to get their fiscal

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positions into a more stable condition and the UK is in right

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now. The point I'm making is the Scottish economy is fundamentally

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strong economy. Much of what I have said illustrates that point. Let's

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look at some of the things you have said. You have said most countries

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have deficits. Can you name another at Fat economy 80s after the

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financial crash that has a budget deficit of 10% of GDP. You do not

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look at just one year full if I go back to that -- two 2008, 2009, it

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was double that of Scotland. Our this goal position has been stronger

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but is not right now because of the particular issues. Is it not the

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case that Scotland's deficit now is the highest in the European Union?

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That is true, isn't it? In the year we had figures published in this

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past week, we have a very difficult and challenging set of figures. It

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is the highest. No country, whether the UK, Scotland or another EU

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country, makes judgments about that this good strength of that country

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on the strength of one year's goes. The point I am making is over the

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past ten years, our fiscal position has been broadly similar to the UK

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and coming summer beiges, has been significantly better. If you project

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forward to the next five years, the future is much more important than

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the past, onshore revenues are likely to Bath the outstrip the

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decline in offshore revenues. -- basked in the outstrip. The North

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Sea contains difficulties for those working in the North Sea and

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economies on the North East of Scotland. The economy of Scotland is

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fundamentally strong. Let's look at more than one year. You have said it

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is a snapshot. Without oil revenues, and there are no oil revenues now,

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without the revenues, Scotland has run a persistent budget deficit of

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over 10% every year for 13 years. You have a systemic deficit problem.

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Why should you not look at oil revenues? Oil revenues are there and

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have been contributing to the Treasury to the tune of ?300

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billion. They are not there now. Without them you have run a

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persistent budget deficit and have done for 13 years. I accept it is

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the future that matters more than the past. If you look at the

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projections for the next five years, our onshore revenues, remember more

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than 90% of the Scottish economy comes from onshore and not offshore.

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If you look five years ahead, onshore revenues are projected to

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grow in the region of ?14 billion. That is many times before in

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offshore revenues in that period. I am not denying the challenge of

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North Sea and other countries. Norway is facing exactly the same

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challenge. Because they are better prepared for it and have Stuart did

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oil resources better, Norway, in the last couple of weeks true down on

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its massive oil fund. The powers that independence would have given

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as and we did not vote yes, we have had -- we would have had ability to

:10:25.:10:33.

draw down on that faster. Why are onshore revenues growing less

:10:34.:10:35.

strongly in Scotland than the rest of the UK? That is a long-standing

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issue. One issue at the heart of that is growth in the heart of

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London. We are seeing a narrowing in some of the long-standing gap there

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has been between aspects of the Scottish economy and the UK economy.

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If we take productivity, for a long time Scotland lags significantly

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behind the rest of the UK. Over the past years we have close that gap is

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it that can leave. We still lag behind our European competitors and

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that is a problem. I am not standing here denying the challenges that the

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Scottish economy has. In the same way you have been talking about the

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Chancellor's budget and the same way the UK economy has challenges and

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across the European Union, they have challenges. There are real strength

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is in the Scottish economy. The real question should be how we build on

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and accents are the big strengths. Revenues per person in Scotland

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where ?10,700 in the years 2011, 20 12. They are now ?10,000, 700 ( even

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with the growth in revenues. The offshore has offset that. We still

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have a fundamental deficit problem. I am not denying we have a deficit.

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The UK has a deficit. Take revenues per head of population, which is

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what you decided to me there. In the most recent year, our revenues per

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head of population are broadly similar to the UK. In every one of

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the past 35 years, revenues per head of population have been higher than

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the rest of the UK. I accept we have a challenge in the North Sea. I

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accept that like all oil-producing countries, we have challenges about

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how we transition away from oil and gas over the years to come, though

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there is a great deal of attention in the North Sea. These are

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challenges we should embrace and challenges we should be working out

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how we face up to and address. Scotland is doing that and we'll do

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that on the basis of fundamental strengths in our economy. -- will do

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that. Scotland pays per capita about the same as the UK average. I am

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talking about the current year. What I am saying is, you cannot judge the

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economy in one year. It is similar in one year in 34 of the past 35

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years and has been higher. That is the

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years and has been higher. That is you are running a deficit, per

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years and has been higher. That is capita spending is so much higher

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years and has been higher. That is than in Scotland it is ?1400 higher

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public spending per than in Scotland it is ?1400 higher

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Westminster that is that build it is the difference between

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Westminster that is that build it is and what you spend. -- fits that

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bill. It is a deficit. The UK is in deficit in Scotland is in deficit.

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It is twice as big! In deficit in Scotland is in deficit.

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the UK deficit was twice as deficit in Scotland is in deficit.

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year. In terms of the point about per capita spending, there are

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year. In terms of the point about good reasons why someone who knows

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Scotland good reasons why someone who knows

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where one in five of the population lives in a row and remote

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where one in five of the population I was Health Secretary for five

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years. It cost more to deliver health services on an island or

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rural community than it does in Glasgow. Westminster pays for that,

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it makes up the difference. If you are independent you would either

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it makes up the difference. If you have to raise taxes or cut spending.

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What would it be? By how much would you raise taxes and cut spending? We

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set a budget in you raise taxes and cut spending? We

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every year. We make choices, sometimes these are tough choices.

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every year. We make choices, would do that as well. The point I

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independent Scotland would face challenges like other economies do.

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independent Scotland would face We're in a fundamentally strong

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position. Employment is higher than any other UK nation. Productivity is

:14:48.:14:51.

growing faster. We have a number of key strengths in the economy. One of

:14:52.:14:56.

the challenges is how we build on these strengths and get our economy

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growing faster. We have a number of world leading sectors in our

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economy. The fact is your deficit was ?15

:15:04.:15:14.

billion, moving with oil revenues at 2 billion last year. This year oil

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revenues are reckoned to be at zero so your budget deficit would get

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even worse. Two cut your deficit to anything like acceptable levels you

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would have to increase tax to 16% or cut spending by 14% or a combination

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of the two, what would it be? We would deal with the deficit in the

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same way the UK is dealing with the deficit and dealt in the deficit --

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with the deficit in 2009/ ten. We would be in the same position as

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many other countries but we would be in a position where we have got a

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fundamentally strong economy. I wish Scotland have voted yes in 2014, if

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it had done we would have spent the last almost two years preparing for

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Scotland becoming independent. In a negotiation around independence,

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there would have been discussions about assets, liability, the share

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of defence spending, so that's what would have been the case if we voted

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for independence. Looking ahead, we have a strong economy and the

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challenge is how we grow it even faster. You accept surely that you

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wouldn't be allowed to join the European Union with a 10% deficit,

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you would have to agree to Brussels programme, correct? We are getting

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into some ridiculous territory here and one of the most ridiculous

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arguments. Scotland wouldn't have been out of the EU, we wouldn't have

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been in the position of an accession state. It is a bit rich for anybody,

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given where we are right now, with the prospect of being taken out of

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the EU ahead of us, for scaremongering about the prospects

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of that. With two weeks to go until independence, instead of increases

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in public spending which you announced yesterday... They didn't

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vote yes. But if it had been, you would have been looking at the list

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of hospitals and schools to close, you would be the austerity party,

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that's what you would have to do. That's ridiculous. Countries the

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world over have deficits and deal with them. We would also have been

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taking on the greater powers to grow our economy, particularly our own

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short economy. Italy and Greece had 10% deficit and you know the

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austerity they had to go through. I think this argument starts to tip

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over into being incredible, we start to compare Scotland, with all of the

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strength of the Scottish economy, to countries like Greece and Italy. I

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have spoken about the fundamental strengths of our economy, not least

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the fact we have had the longest period of economic growth since the

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devolution. You have said all of that. Yes, we have challenges, but

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Scotland has a strong economy. Then why do your revenues like you're

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spending by ?2400 per person? -- lag your spending. We have a deficit

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like many other countries... Nobody has a deficit like Scotland's. We

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have a particular issue because of the fall in North Sea revenues. It

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is an indictment of Westminster mismanagement that unlike Norway, we

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don't have a massive oil fund to help deal with that. Westminster is

:19:03.:19:07.

paying for your deficit, Westminster is paying for the difference for the

:19:08.:19:11.

rest of the deficit, would you like to thank the rest of the people of

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the United Kingdom for making up for the deficit you have got?

:19:16.:19:20.

Westminster has a deficit of its own, it is ?1 trillion in debt. That

:19:21.:19:25.

is not the deficit, that is the debt. That is why I said debt, I

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understand the difference between deficit and debt, but it has

:19:33.:19:37.

accumulated debt of ?1 trillion, it has an annual deficit just like

:19:38.:19:41.

Scotland and many other countries do. It is actually 1.5 trillion,

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even worse than you think. I was being kind to them, Andrew! You

:19:48.:19:52.

should be kind because they are saving you quite a bit of money!

:19:53.:19:56.

Does Labour have a problem dealing with allegations of anti-semitism?

:19:57.:19:58.

The party is worried enough to have established an inquiry

:19:59.:20:00.

into the Labour Club at Oxford University

:20:01.:20:02.

where there are accusations that members used off-colour language

:20:03.:20:05.

And the Sunday Politics has been told that the investigation

:20:06.:20:08.

will look at new claims from another university.

:20:09.:20:12.

It comes after an activist with controversial views was allowed

:20:13.:20:15.

back into the party then promptly chucked out again last week.

:20:16.:20:17.

Does Jeremy Corbyn's support for causes like the Palestinians

:20:18.:20:22.

or Stop The War mean he's not tough enough when there are allegations

:20:23.:20:26.

It's seen that way by some students at Oxford.

:20:27.:20:29.

Last month the vice-chair of the Labour club there resigned,

:20:30.:20:32.

claiming some members had a problem with Jews and used words like Zio,

:20:33.:20:38.

a nickname for Jewish people that many find offensive.

:20:39.:20:41.

It's now being investigated by the Labour peer Baroness Royle,

:20:42.:20:44.

who is also looking at the wider issue of behaviour in

:20:45.:20:46.

We understand she's now extended her investigation

:20:47.:20:49.

to include students at the London School of Economics.

:20:50.:20:52.

This week, they have been electing a new general secretary

:20:53.:20:55.

One of the candidates, Rayhan Uddin, who's also

:20:56.:21:01.

in the Labour group, has been criticised for some

:21:02.:21:04.

Facebook posts that emerged during the campaign.

:21:05.:21:08.

In one, he talked about leading Zionists wanting to take over

:21:09.:21:10.

the student union to make it right wing and Zio again.

:21:11.:21:17.

Facebook post: of language, writing in another

:21:18.:21:32.

He has been referred to Labour's investigation

:21:33.:21:34.

into student politics by someone who now works for an MP.

:21:35.:21:38.

We've seen the letter they wrote, which said:

:21:39.:21:47.

Because it was an older generation of activists that came up

:21:48.:21:57.

at Prime Minister's Questions this week.

:21:58.:21:59.

I was completely appalled to see yesterday that the Labour Party has

:22:00.:22:02.

readmitted someone to their party who says, and I believe

:22:03.:22:06.

that the 9/11 suicide bombers, and I quote, must never be condemned

:22:07.:22:11.

and belongs to an organisation that says "we defend the Islamic State

:22:12.:22:14.

He was referring to Gerry Downing, who had also blogged

:22:15.:22:19.

about what he called the Jewish question,

:22:20.:22:23.

after being readmitted to the party this week he was resuspended.

:22:24.:22:27.

He reckons it's really a battle between different wings in Labour.

:22:28.:22:33.

Well, Dan Jarvis and these people of course, obviously there's

:22:34.:22:39.

the whole Blairite wing of the party and others, who have been absolutely

:22:40.:22:44.

disgusted at the membership and the left-wing surge

:22:45.:22:46.

in the membership and can't believe what happened.

:22:47.:22:59.

And do you think they are using race and religion as a tool for that?

:23:00.:23:03.

Whereas the Labour MP Wes Streeting says there is a problem

:23:04.:23:06.

I think in certain parts of the British left,

:23:07.:23:10.

there has always been a virulent form of pretty bigoted politics,

:23:11.:23:14.

particularly in terms of anti-Semitism, which has been

:23:15.:23:21.

an issue in some of our university campuses

:23:22.:23:23.

There's also a mentality which I think has been epitomised

:23:24.:23:28.

by the repulsive use of Mr Downing, which is not so much Stop The War

:23:29.:23:32.

People who seem to hate their country more than they hate

:23:33.:23:37.

And we have got to start sending a far stronger message that this

:23:38.:23:43.

is simply not acceptable in the modern Labour Party.

:23:44.:23:46.

Jeremy Corbyn's supporters, like those in the grass roots

:23:47.:23:49.

campaign group Momentum, say none of this is fair on him.

:23:50.:23:53.

Corbyn comes under the most incredible level of attacks and one

:23:54.:23:56.

of the things that he's attacked for is his long-standing commitment

:23:57.:23:59.

to anti-war, anti-imperialism, peace in the Middle East.

:24:00.:24:07.

And I think that's where some of this comes from.

:24:08.:24:09.

He does absolutely condemn anti-Semitism, he has time

:24:10.:24:12.

There is not a shred of anti-Semitism in his personal

:24:13.:24:15.

make-up, in his moral make-up or in his political make-up.

:24:16.:24:19.

And as for Labour's investigation into anti-Semitism among students,

:24:20.:24:29.

Let's speak now to the Labour MP, John Mann, who's chair

:24:30.:24:35.

of the All-Party Parliamentary Group against Anti-Semitism.

:24:36.:24:40.

Is there an anti-Semitism problem in Anti-Semitism Conference.

:24:41.:24:47.

Is there an anti-Semitism problem in the Labour Party? Of course,

:24:48.:24:50.

Is there an anti-Semitism problem in why these issues have got attention.

:24:51.:24:52.

It is not a big problem, why these issues have got attention.

:24:53.:24:58.

problem when it comes to racism needs to be dealt with. We have been

:24:59.:25:01.

here before. I can recall 30 needs to be dealt with. We have been

:25:02.:25:07.

ago when there were extremists trying to ban Jewish societies in

:25:08.:25:12.

some of the universities, and we clamped down on them very hard then

:25:13.:25:15.

and they weren't in the Labour Party but it is the same kind of people,

:25:16.:25:21.

the same ideology. Some of that has crept into the Labour Party and it

:25:22.:25:25.

needs to be removed. Why has it come back? People could write big

:25:26.:25:33.

academic books on why it has re-surged but what we have seen in

:25:34.:25:38.

history is that anti-Semitism never seems to go away. But why in the

:25:39.:25:44.

Labour Party has come back? People have obviously chosen to dissociate

:25:45.:25:47.

with the Labour Party in the growth of membership, some of those people

:25:48.:25:51.

have attitudes that are very outdated and prejudiced. There is no

:25:52.:25:58.

space for them in the Labour Party and the reason that is important is

:25:59.:26:03.

because I am getting young Jewish activists posturing whether the

:26:04.:26:05.

Labour Party is the place for them in terms of their support, their

:26:06.:26:11.

vote and their activity, and we cannot tolerate a situation where

:26:12.:26:19.

any part of society doesn't feel that a major political party like

:26:20.:26:23.

the Labour Party is not the place for them, which is why prompt

:26:24.:26:27.

effective action and vigilance on this is required, including from

:26:28.:26:31.

Jeremy as the leader of the Labour Party. Is the Labour leader doing

:26:32.:26:38.

enough? Or the fact he has talked about his friends, Hamas, Hezbollah,

:26:39.:26:44.

and shared platforms with people who have been very hostile to Israel and

:26:45.:26:51.

so on, is that a disadvantage? Is it encouraging anti-Semitism or is it

:26:52.:26:55.

not relevant? I have met Jeremy recently to discuss anti-Semitism in

:26:56.:26:59.

the Labour Party and it is clear to me that he does not tolerate or

:27:00.:27:05.

support it but what he has to do is follow that free with actions and

:27:06.:27:10.

ensure that others in the Labour Party follow it through with actions

:27:11.:27:15.

because the kind of thing, the atmosphere that is being created in

:27:16.:27:19.

Oxford University is not a one-off. This has been happening elsewhere as

:27:20.:27:25.

well. While these can be seen as small incidents, if you are the

:27:26.:27:29.

young Jewish person who is impacted by it, it is not small for you and

:27:30.:27:37.

it is magnified in the universities, which are pretty tolerant places and

:27:38.:27:42.

rightly so, if there is in tolerance to any particular group and to

:27:43.:27:46.

Jewish students. We are not prepared to have that in the Labour Party,

:27:47.:27:50.

there has got to be action, it has got to be led from the front and it

:27:51.:27:54.

has got to be decisive action. There is no space for these people in the

:27:55.:28:01.

Labour Party or is there space for people in any way excusing their

:28:02.:28:06.

actions. But there is an inquiry into what has been going on at

:28:07.:28:12.

Oxford, but is your party doing enough about this? Because I

:28:13.:28:16.

understand these inquiries may be subsumed into a much bigger inquiry

:28:17.:28:20.

into bullying and so on. What is your feeling? It is action by

:28:21.:28:27.

results. If there is a decisive action, there will be an almighty

:28:28.:28:30.

row which wouldn't be helpful but the idea that those of us who fought

:28:31.:28:38.

over decades, challenging anti-Semitism and other forms of

:28:39.:28:43.

racism, are going to accept other than the highest of standards in our

:28:44.:28:47.

own party, well I can tell you it is going to happen. There are many of

:28:48.:28:55.

us who will only accept absolutely the highest standards. We are not

:28:56.:28:59.

prepared to tolerate any form of anti-Semitism or any excuse for it

:29:00.:29:04.

in the Labour Party or anywhere else in society. But in our own party

:29:05.:29:09.

absolutely not and therefore there has got to be action, words are not

:29:10.:29:13.

good enough. Historically the Labour Party has done well from the Jewish

:29:14.:29:19.

vote. The Jewish vote over time has tended to vote Labour. If this

:29:20.:29:23.

anti-Semitism continues in your party, are you in danger of losing

:29:24.:29:30.

the Jewish vote? We prepared a report ten years ago on a

:29:31.:29:34.

cross-party basis that highlighted anti-Semitism in all of its aspects

:29:35.:29:38.

including from the right but also what was described by some as the

:29:39.:29:42.

new anti-Semitism on the left. It is not new but it had been dormant for

:29:43.:29:47.

a long period of time. People have been accustomed to the Labour Party

:29:48.:29:51.

and that part of the left being highly tolerant to everybody. That

:29:52.:29:59.

has got to happen, you cannot have a progressive party of any substance

:30:00.:30:02.

in politics if it allows any form of intolerance and therefore we are not

:30:03.:30:07.

prepared to have second-class citizens, second-class form of

:30:08.:30:12.

racism allowed in the Labour Party. Anti-Semitism has got to be

:30:13.:30:16.

challenged, including anti-Semitism on the left, and so robustly and put

:30:17.:30:22.

back in the dustbin again. That is my intention in the Labour Party. I

:30:23.:30:31.

am looking forward to Jeremy and the National Executive being decisive,

:30:32.:30:35.

removing the anti-Semites, going into where there is intolerance and

:30:36.:30:38.

explaining what is anti-Semitism and why we are not prepared to have it

:30:39.:30:43.

in our party. Thanks for joining us this morning.

:30:44.:30:46.

Labour's Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell ran Jeremy Corbyn's

:30:47.:30:48.

leadership campaign on a platform fighting not just austerity,

:30:49.:30:51.

Now though, he wants to be the new voice of fiscal

:30:52.:30:54.

responsibility, and says he's going to re-write

:30:55.:30:56.

In a moment we'll be talking to John McDonnell's number two,

:30:57.:31:00.

the Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

:31:01.:31:01.

But first let's hear what Mr McDonnell had to say

:31:02.:31:04.

It is a wider ambition then just Labour's fiscal credibility.

:31:05.:31:07.

I want to try to restore credibility to economic policy-making generally,

:31:08.:31:10.

not just within the Labour Party but across politics too.

:31:11.:31:13.

We have had too long, for example, the last six

:31:14.:31:15.

years we have had fiscal rules which have not been met,

:31:16.:31:18.

I am trying to encourage a better economic debate.

:31:19.:31:23.

What I have said is quite clearly, when we go back into government,

:31:24.:31:26.

we will eliminate the deficit, reduce debt, and will

:31:27.:31:29.

ensure that is supervised independently by the Office

:31:30.:31:32.

And Labour's Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Seema Malhotra,

:31:33.:31:39.

Welcome to the Sunday Politics. You would balance current spending with

:31:40.:31:52.

revenue and borrow to invest. How does that differ from Mr Brown and

:31:53.:31:57.

Mr balls? You are right about there being two key parts to the new

:31:58.:32:02.

fiscal credibility were all. In a sense, this builds on very much

:32:03.:32:06.

where we have been before. It also responds to the criticisms that were

:32:07.:32:12.

made of Jaws -- George Osborne's this school charter where he was

:32:13.:32:17.

criticised for tying his own hands and not allowing for investment. --

:32:18.:32:22.

fiscal charter. There are two key differences. It makes it more

:32:23.:32:27.

explicit, that there should be independent voices. We have said we

:32:28.:32:31.

want the OBR to be an independent voice around deficit reduction

:32:32.:32:35.

targets, and also reporting directly to Parliament. The second area is

:32:36.:32:42.

that we want to make sure there is the opportunity for investment and

:32:43.:32:46.

also, if there are difficult times, like we had in 2009, when monetary

:32:47.:32:52.

policy does not seem to be working, it gives an opportunity for fiscal

:32:53.:32:56.

policy to work alongside. It builds on but has two key differences. Mr

:32:57.:33:01.

Brown defended his rules as well when times got bad. It was described

:33:02.:33:16.

as being austerity light. This must be as well? It has been developed

:33:17.:33:23.

and the reason... It is not about austerity. It is a framework that

:33:24.:33:26.

will allow us to make spending and tax decisions in the future. It

:33:27.:33:32.

responds to the criticisms, the universal criticisms of George

:33:33.:33:38.

Osborne's this dull charter. -- fiscal charter. It says we need to

:33:39.:33:45.

invest for the future. I understand all that. Mr Brown and Mr Balls also

:33:46.:33:50.

wanted to invest and that was criticised by the Shadow Chancellor

:33:51.:33:56.

as austerity light. If that were austerity light, this is steroid to

:33:57.:34:04.

-- night as well. We're in a situation where George Osborne is

:34:05.:34:13.

blaming everyone but himself. -- this is austerity light as well.

:34:14.:34:21.

George Osborne's Member of Parliament for the Tory Party has

:34:22.:34:25.

said, what we have seen our warm words. He has talked about

:34:26.:34:29.

investment and an export led strategy. This is built on debts,

:34:30.:34:37.

household debt. How much is public investment? Around 30 billion, if

:34:38.:34:43.

you take into account the difference in spending. It is 34 billion in

:34:44.:34:49.

public spending at the moment. It should be much higher. How much more

:34:50.:34:55.

should it be? It should be higher. There is no excuse for what George

:34:56.:35:00.

Osborne has done. I am not asking about Mr Osborne. I am asking about

:35:01.:35:06.

your policy. 34 billion at the moment, rising to 40 billion by 20

:35:07.:35:11.

20. How much more would it be? It focuses on where it needs to be

:35:12.:35:21.

regarding GDP. You need to have a good level of investment so you are

:35:22.:35:26.

creating jobs for the future. What I am trying to work out is what this

:35:27.:35:33.

means in hard cash for investment, how big would investment be under a

:35:34.:35:37.

Labour government? It is clear that George Osborne has been cutting

:35:38.:35:44.

investment. It was around 3%, 3.5%, and is now 1.4% in terms of

:35:45.:35:48.

infrastructure. If you want jobs of the future coming through, if you

:35:49.:35:54.

want to turn around the situation where young people... By how much

:35:55.:35:57.

more would public investment increase under this formula? What we

:35:58.:36:02.

have said is you need to make sure that we have a balance of where the

:36:03.:36:06.

economy needs investment so we can get tax receipts and growth for the

:36:07.:36:10.

future. We had economists saying that George Osborne, if you talk

:36:11.:36:15.

about fairness in the future... I am here to talk about the labour policy

:36:16.:36:21.

and not that of George Osborne. Nor has there been balanced growth. If

:36:22.:36:25.

you want a balanced budget, you need to balance growth. Let's talk about

:36:26.:36:34.

labour. John McDonnell has talked about the difference between

:36:35.:36:37.

short-term and long-term investment. What is the difference? What we have

:36:38.:36:40.

said as she want to see investment that will see us having a big stake

:36:41.:36:45.

in the future. If you want to look at energy investment, you are

:36:46.:36:55.

talking out about -- about 20, 30 years. It is about supporting

:36:56.:37:01.

companies, entrepreneurs and supporting the long-term growth for

:37:02.:37:05.

the country as well. If you're talking about rail, roads and

:37:06.:37:08.

infrastructure, you will be aware, I am sure, of the reports that showed

:37:09.:37:15.

recently we have fewer buses than 2010, our rolling stock and trains

:37:16.:37:19.

are in poor condition, people are taking longer to get to work and the

:37:20.:37:24.

trains are more crowded. That should be a wake-up call to George Osborne

:37:25.:37:28.

he is not working in the interests of the British public and people are

:37:29.:37:32.

asking if the decisions are based on political interest and not on the

:37:33.:37:40.

country's future. You would balance current spending, day-to-day

:37:41.:37:43.

spending. At the moment there is a deficit. What would you cut to

:37:44.:37:48.

balance current spending? There are two things. The first is about

:37:49.:37:52.

spending decisions and the second about tax receipts. We are arguing

:37:53.:37:57.

that if you want to see tax receipts grow, George Osborne has seen them

:37:58.:38:01.

for in regard to productivity growth. What would you cut? We would

:38:02.:38:10.

want to see that growth increases in that you see an increase in tax

:38:11.:38:15.

receipts. You cannot spend if it is not within your means. What would

:38:16.:38:22.

you cut? You cannot spend if it is not within your means. What the

:38:23.:38:25.

announcement from the Labour Party is about is how we earn our way in

:38:26.:38:29.

the world and survived in a competitive economy. We will leave

:38:30.:38:32.

it there. Thank you very much. It's just gone 11:35am,

:38:33.:38:37.

you're watching the Sunday Politics. Hello and welcome to Sunday Politics

:38:38.:38:45.

in Northern Ireland. Coming up in the programme:

:38:46.:38:48.

Colum Eastwood gets a home town welcome, but can he face down

:38:49.:38:52.

the challenge of Sinn Fein? We've got our voices back and we are

:38:53.:39:05.

getting stronger by the day. The SDLP is back in the conversation.

:39:06.:39:09.

And our guests of the day after a fascinating week of politics

:39:10.:39:16.

are Professor Cathy Gormley-Heenan from Ulster University

:39:17.:39:19.

and Professor Pete Shirlow, Director of the Institute

:39:20.:39:21.

of Irish Studies at the University of Liverpool.

:39:22.:39:30.

'This party has a new feel and a new spirit about it.

:39:31.:39:34.

'We are a party full of new people and new ideas.' The words

:39:35.:39:37.

of the SDLP leader, Colum Eastwood, as he addressed party activists

:39:38.:39:40.

yesterday at their annual conference in Londonderry.

:39:41.:39:44.

So is this the moment the party's climb-back to the glory days

:39:45.:39:47.

We'll hear live from Mr Eastwood in a moment,

:39:48.:39:51.

correspondent, Stephen Walker, was in Derry to look

:39:52.:39:54.

at some of the key tests the new SDLP leader faces.

:39:55.:40:02.

The timing of this conference and the location is no accident.

:40:03.:40:10.

Political party gatherings generate publicity, and on this occasion this

:40:11.:40:13.

meant live television coverage on a Saturday evening. Two months away

:40:14.:40:17.

from these assembly elections, the SDLP hope this event will kick-start

:40:18.:40:22.

their campaign, and give them an electoral boost. So, after four

:40:23.:40:28.

months as leader, how should we assessed Colum Eastwood? The

:40:29.:40:31.

difficulty is that the SDLP didn't get much of the bounce by getting

:40:32.:40:35.

him as the leader, and they have improved, he is slightly more

:40:36.:40:39.

popular as a leader, but he has been overshadowed by Arlene Foster, and

:40:40.:40:43.

has a lot of work to do between now and the election if he wants to

:40:44.:40:46.

actually cement the numbers that he have, to grow, to get more seats. In

:40:47.:40:53.

May, he fights a fight in his own backyard. Martin McGuinness has been

:40:54.:40:57.

brought in as one of three Sinn Fein candidates in foil. They obviously

:40:58.:41:01.

think that bringing Martin McGuinness back to Derry is a great

:41:02.:41:05.

strategic move. I would have the same most people in Derry will be

:41:06.:41:09.

asking if that was the case then why he hasn't been representing the

:41:10.:41:12.

place for the last 20 years customer why now? There might be a bitter

:41:13.:41:17.

cynicism about that. So who will win this big political battle between

:41:18.:41:22.

Sinn Fein and the SDLP? To some observers, the result in this

:41:23.:41:26.

constituency inmate could end up defining Colum Eastwood's

:41:27.:41:29.

leadership. This is ground zero for the SDLP. If he can see Martin

:41:30.:41:36.

McGuinness off and Sinn Fein off here then he will have

:41:37.:41:39.

McGuinness off and Sinn Fein off victory on May five, maybe if they

:41:40.:41:40.

even lose other seats like in Belfast, the fact that Sinn Fein

:41:41.:41:48.

will have put the best man they have forward, and column has held with

:41:49.:41:51.

the seats, that will solidify his leadership over the next few years.

:41:52.:41:55.

So how many seats will they win in May? I think it is foolish to

:41:56.:42:02.

So how many seats will they win in their seat, and I know that the

:42:03.:42:04.

electorate will give us a chance on the 5th of May and we will see a

:42:05.:42:08.

number of us return. Are you worried your colleagues might use your

:42:09.:42:13.

seats? -- lose your seats is too have always worked hard to get seats

:42:14.:42:20.

in election. We have worked hard, and we hope that people will reward

:42:21.:42:26.

us for our efforts? What can he achieve? If he can hold onto the

:42:27.:42:32.

14th then he will be success. If he gains in Fermanagh, then so much the

:42:33.:42:35.

better, but he stands a past brick of going down to 11 seats, and that

:42:36.:42:42.

would cast a shadow over the future of the future. Last fight he won, it

:42:43.:42:49.

was the biggest of his life. This time the stakes are higher,

:42:50.:42:54.

Let's talk live now to Colum Eastwood from our Foyle studio.

:42:55.:42:58.

Thank you very much for joining us on the programme. Not surprisingly,

:42:59.:43:01.

you have a tub thumping on the programme. Not surprisingly,

:43:02.:43:06.

the party faithful for your speech last night was that had you expend

:43:07.:43:11.

that way your messages received less enthusiastically? I think have a big

:43:12.:43:14.

job to do doodle to be enthusiastically? I think have a big

:43:15.:43:17.

Yesterday was the start of that. The SDLP are setting out a new vision

:43:18.:43:21.

for a new Ireland and I think it was very exciting Derry. Anyone around

:43:22.:43:28.

Sun column's hall yesterday noticed the SDLP, noticed the buzz and the

:43:29.:43:30.

new field of excitement that we have. We are ready for a fight, with

:43:31.:43:34.

a huge new team of people, have. We are ready for a fight, with

:43:35.:43:38.

talented people, I can win seats right across the north and I think

:43:39.:43:44.

we will. We will begin to change our politics

:43:45.:43:46.

we will. We will begin to change our because people are fed up of

:43:47.:43:50.

we will. We will begin to change our years of unbroken DUP and Sinn Fein

:43:51.:43:52.

control of the Executive with very little being delivered so I think

:43:53.:43:56.

people want to see politics moving on to a

:43:57.:44:00.

people want to see politics moving accountability. You aim is anybody

:44:01.:44:01.

banshees in accountability. You aim is anybody

:44:02.:44:05.

Fein last night. You are of course fishing in the same pool for

:44:06.:44:09.

Fein last night. You are of course Only difference the FDA -- had you

:44:10.:44:13.

differentiate the SDLP and Sinn Fein? Our passion is

:44:14.:44:17.

differentiate the SDLP and Sinn Ireland work. -- making Northern

:44:18.:44:25.

Ireland work. Makes more sense than Sinn Fein's record in government.

:44:26.:44:29.

They have a poor record in charge. Nothing has happened in the

:44:30.:44:33.

government for nine years without the Sinn Fein and DUP agreement.

:44:34.:44:38.

They have cut university places, thousands of young people are

:44:39.:44:42.

leaving our shores to find work. 37% of the people going to university

:44:43.:44:45.

had away to Britain, and most never come back. That is the legacy of

:44:46.:44:50.

this executive, that the executives's legacy of the DUP. And

:44:51.:44:55.

Sinn Fein. We will invest in the economy, we invest in skills and

:44:56.:44:58.

infrastructure because we can understand that you can't build an

:44:59.:45:02.

economy based on one tax rate alone. With the greatest respect, your

:45:03.:45:04.

fingertips are all over the legacy of the Northern Ireland legacy of

:45:05.:45:10.

the last 20 years. Former leaders of your party have been finance

:45:11.:45:15.

minister, social development Minister, environment Minister... If

:45:16.:45:19.

you are found wanting in any of these clear areas, the SDLP is as

:45:20.:45:24.

lovable as anyone else. The SDLP were in government when things got

:45:25.:45:28.

done, but we did not pull down the Executive, it was other parties from

:45:29.:45:32.

other sides. We have now had nine years of unbroken devolution that is

:45:33.:45:36.

a good thing. I think anyone would however tell you that it hasn't been

:45:37.:45:41.

a delivery. It has been stopped start politics stop it has been

:45:42.:45:44.

about people making an argument about who should be First Minister.

:45:45.:45:47.

They don't deliver for Northern Ireland. We have had one ministry,

:45:48.:45:51.

and with that ministry we have done a lot of good things. We would like

:45:52.:45:55.

to have more influence in this executive, and that is why we are

:45:56.:45:58.

going to set out our stall and a manifesto very soon and one for

:45:59.:46:02.

election. We have an election, and we are going into a programme for

:46:03.:46:05.

government negotiation, and then we will see of the other parties are up

:46:06.:46:14.

for making the real change at Northern Ireland needs. Did you

:46:15.:46:16.

perhaps reveal your hands due to rate and extent in talking about the

:46:17.:46:19.

conditions that need to be met for the SDLP to go into the Executive

:46:20.:46:22.

based on signing up to the programme for government? You gave away your

:46:23.:46:26.

entire hand last night. I don't think I did. In fact you will see

:46:27.:46:29.

when we produce the manifesto in the coming week that we have a lot more.

:46:30.:46:34.

To ask of this programme for government negotiation. The SDLP set

:46:35.:46:37.

out very clearly last night that we want to see investment and

:46:38.:46:42.

infrastructure and skills, and the economy turning round. We want to

:46:43.:46:46.

stem the tide of emigration. We don't want to see our young people

:46:47.:46:49.

leave and never come back. That is what we want to see in this proposal

:46:50.:46:53.

for government. We have plenty more proposals. You named the specific

:46:54.:46:57.

present last night, showed us the colour of your money. He made it

:46:58.:47:04.

very clear that there was requirements for commitments to

:47:05.:47:10.

distribute in jobs, economic infrastructure, fiscal powers...

:47:11.:47:13.

What did you not tell us that we would have yet to hear? I think it

:47:14.:47:17.

would make no sense for us to go into the next mandate and say we

:47:18.:47:24.

weren't going to invest in infrastructure, University places,

:47:25.:47:26.

we weren't going to try the economy around, because it is not good

:47:27.:47:30.

enough that thousands of a young people use Billy Magaluf our shores.

:47:31.:47:35.

You have said that the background is shrinking is a and you want to make

:47:36.:47:40.

all these investments and critical and keeps you enter the executives,

:47:41.:47:44.

where will that money come from? But you will have the disinvest

:47:45.:47:47.

somewhere. We have large pot of money that we can use. What this

:47:48.:47:54.

executive is doing is spending ?700 million, ?700 million that should be

:47:55.:47:58.

used, ring fenced for investing in infrastructure but they are using

:47:59.:48:01.

that to get rid of civil servants. That is not the proper use of our

:48:02.:48:05.

money. It is happening, you can't stop it. Civil servants had been

:48:06.:48:11.

made redundant, left the employment, you can't get the money back again.

:48:12.:48:16.

The point is is that is one example about how the Executive don't think

:48:17.:48:19.

strategically about what they can do. This will be a negotiation which

:48:20.:48:22.

we look forward to, and the SDLP is running for government. We are

:48:23.:48:25.

putting forward a manifesto which you will see in the coming weeks

:48:26.:48:29.

that will be full of good strong plans for investing in the public

:48:30.:48:33.

sector, and the economy, and I think we will see the colour of other

:48:34.:48:36.

people's money at that point, whether they will be prepared to do

:48:37.:48:39.

this. This is a departure for politics in Northern Ireland. I

:48:40.:48:47.

don't think government so far has been good for politics. Let us talk

:48:48.:48:50.

about social issues come up on one particular issue that SDLP looks

:48:51.:48:58.

socially liberal a lot less than Sinn Fein. Let's take self Belfast,

:48:59.:49:03.

Claire Hanna abstaining on the particular issue in there. Fearghal

:49:04.:49:09.

McKinney dead toe the line. What does that say to a middle-class

:49:10.:49:14.

nationalist motor in south Belfast, someone unsure about voting for Sinn

:49:15.:49:16.

Fein, but is hearing a very mixed message from the SDLP? What

:49:17.:49:21.

precisely does the SDLP stand for? Well, when you look at what we did

:49:22.:49:25.

on that day, there was two amendments that were ill thought

:49:26.:49:30.

out, that legal advice told us wouldn't work, that doctors told us

:49:31.:49:33.

wouldn't be helpful to them. We decided we could not support those

:49:34.:49:36.

amendments at that time. That was quite clear, and we also said that

:49:37.:49:40.

we need to see guidelines to deal with the issue... Who got that right

:49:41.:49:46.

on that day? Who, Fearghal McKinney or Claire Hanna? The SDLP's position

:49:47.:49:51.

was clear. Claire Hanna was not wrong. There are many got it right?

:49:52.:49:57.

The party position is, and I'm telling you it now, as the party

:49:58.:50:01.

leader, the party position is that we could not support those

:50:02.:50:03.

amendments because they did not make sense legally, didn't make sense

:50:04.:50:06.

medically, and it would not have worked. So what is the voter to make

:50:07.:50:13.

of that? You say that the party position is what Fearghal McKinney

:50:14.:50:16.

adhered to as party leader, Claire Hanna did not, but you tell me she

:50:17.:50:20.

was not wrong. You can't have your cake and eat it. You are

:50:21.:50:24.

interviewing me and telling me my position with our position is clear.

:50:25.:50:28.

Maybe you should tell Claire Hanna because she doesn't seem to know.

:50:29.:50:32.

She does know. I have written to Martin McGuinness, Arlene Foster,

:50:33.:50:35.

Simon Hamilton was I have asked them to bring forward guidelines to deal

:50:36.:50:39.

with this issue and we are told they are coming. They have not come to

:50:40.:50:43.

the Executive yet, I look forward to them, because I think this is a very

:50:44.:50:46.

important issue, a sensitive issue and one that we need to handle

:50:47.:50:49.

sensitively, and we need to make sure that the Irish do their job

:50:50.:50:54.

properly was protecting life. -- Irish doctors. They may ask you how

:50:55.:50:57.

do you hope to turn around the juggernaut of nationalist votes

:50:58.:51:02.

moving from the SDLP to Sinn Fein under your leadership? Since 1998,

:51:03.:51:07.

your vote share has fallen from 22% to basically 14%. You have lost

:51:08.:51:11.

84,000 votes, and at the same time Sinn Fein has gained 35,000 votes.

:51:12.:51:17.

How do you turn that around? I think I set out last night that the SDLP

:51:18.:51:22.

has for a long time now spends too much time looking back. What we will

:51:23.:51:27.

do now is look forwards. We want is that adds a new vision for a new

:51:28.:51:30.

Ireland and to do that we started last night. People will come with

:51:31.:51:34.

us, and it is a long-term plan, I am under no illusions. It is a

:51:35.:51:39.

difficult challenge, and that is the way I ran for leadership. I think

:51:40.:51:44.

they can turn it around. I once people to see a renewed SDLP because

:51:45.:51:49.

they know when the SDLP does well, Ireland's does well. If you can come

:51:50.:51:55.

back with fewer than 14 seats, your leader shall be under pressure. This

:51:56.:51:58.

is a long-term plan. I think we will do well in this election, I would

:51:59.:52:02.

put numbers on it, but we are developing a long-term plan for

:52:03.:52:06.

these feature of the party and the future of the country and I look

:52:07.:52:10.

forward to doing that. What thank you for joining us.

:52:11.:52:12.

Cathy, did the fightback start here? Yes I think it did. I think that one

:52:13.:52:28.

of the things a party leader's stage is measured upon is how good they

:52:29.:52:33.

are as a rate. The delivery of the speech was much more than previous

:52:34.:52:37.

party speeches from the SDLP. There was a good thing. That is the

:52:38.:52:41.

optics. That is the optics. The public narrative with the SDLP for a

:52:42.:52:46.

long time has been old, dated, stale. There were a lot of young

:52:47.:52:49.

people there yesterday and I saw that myself. Maybe the public

:52:50.:52:53.

narrative is not necessarily keeping in step yet with the changes that

:52:54.:52:57.

the new party leader has made, and to pick up on the point about

:52:58.:53:00.

whether he had declared his hand too much in terms of what he would do

:53:01.:53:04.

with programme for comment, I think you do a very clear red line there.

:53:05.:53:09.

That we can assume that if Colum Eastwood and the party don't get

:53:10.:53:12.

what they want, from these negotiations on the programme for

:53:13.:53:16.

government, they will go to opposition and declared that had

:53:17.:53:19.

earlier because when the negotiations were going on and the

:53:20.:53:22.

changes were being made to John McAllister opposition Bill, they had

:53:23.:53:27.

a very influential role in that helping to the opposition. The SDLP

:53:28.:53:35.

would not have done if they hadn't gone into opposition seriously. Do

:53:36.:53:38.

you think declaring their hand in the way that they did last night was

:53:39.:53:41.

a wise thing, a masterstroke or a foolish thing to do seven or eight

:53:42.:53:49.

weeks from an election? Column will gaze at the minutiae. People don't

:53:50.:53:56.

vote for minutiae. He needs a very clear message on certain things, so

:53:57.:53:59.

if we had this ministry would stop this, or we would reduce waiting

:54:00.:54:03.

lists, or we would invest in universities. One simple message.

:54:04.:54:09.

Sinn Fein have a simple message. We a want a united Ireland, that their

:54:10.:54:14.

politic. The one thing he does have is that he is leading a generation

:54:15.:54:18.

that is very active, very clean, and will knock on doors, rally the

:54:19.:54:22.

support base that they need. His fundamental problem is unlike Sinn

:54:23.:54:30.

Fein he is trying to couch voting voters who are from a wide spectrum.

:54:31.:54:35.

He is also looking at a fundamental problem in terms of those that don't

:54:36.:54:39.

work. Those 35,000 votes that have gone to Sinn Fein... Those who have

:54:40.:54:43.

would be back was at once you go, you don't go back. The 35,000 that

:54:44.:54:50.

are still sitting out there, that he to capture. If you look at that

:54:51.:54:55.

group through statistics etc, that group sits right across the

:54:56.:54:59.

spectrum, pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, United Ireland, staying

:55:00.:55:04.

within the UK... He has to catch up a awful lot of people who think very

:55:05.:55:08.

differently. That is a real challenge for him, Cathy, he has to

:55:09.:55:12.

be all things to all members in Derry where Martin McGuinness is

:55:13.:55:15.

coming back to challenge him, he has due out green Sinn Fein, but where

:55:16.:55:19.

else where he wants to pick up transfers from moderate unionists he

:55:20.:55:24.

wants to extend the hand of friendship in that direction for

:55:25.:55:27.

that a difficult trick to pull off. They tried this in the past which

:55:28.:55:31.

ended up with just one minister in the Executive. The SDLP have a

:55:32.:55:34.

serious question facing them. If they want the possibility of having

:55:35.:55:39.

only one minister again, and we can say, well, you were part of the

:55:40.:55:43.

institutions, it's as much of your fault as the DUP or Sinn Fein's

:55:44.:55:47.

fault, lemon oratory partner in that executive the party will then have

:55:48.:55:50.

to consider do we want to do this all over again? Or do want to do as

:55:51.:55:56.

it every measure go into opposition, hold the two main parties to

:55:57.:55:59.

account, and then come back stronger in the next election? And you had

:56:00.:56:03.

the leader say that, that this is a long-term strategy. I don't

:56:04.:56:05.

necessarily think that they want to grab it by May. Very briefly, he's

:56:06.:56:10.

got 14 seats at the moment. Do you think he will come back with

:56:11.:56:13.

something in and around that, and how dangerous for him is it if he

:56:14.:56:18.

comes back with ten or 11? There is a lot of opportunity between now and

:56:19.:56:22.

May is for a bit of a bounce. He is articulate, confident, and you will

:56:23.:56:25.

be secure in that longer term strategy. He is catching a large

:56:26.:56:29.

electorate. They will be difficult. Let's pause for a moment to look

:56:30.:56:31.

back at the week gone past, The Republic has a new speaker, but

:56:32.:56:45.

still no sign of a government. The truth of the matter is is there a

:56:46.:56:51.

policy on ideological blocks against us entering a Fianna Fail

:56:52.:56:55.

government. There is a strategic block from Fine Gael entering

:56:56.:56:59.

government. At Stormont the Fed minister urges vigilance furs and --

:57:00.:57:07.

following recent dissident activity. The environment Minister apologised

:57:08.:57:11.

for comments he made about abortion at a women's event in Londonderry.

:57:12.:57:18.

His party colleague had enough of the affairs committee. Order, order!

:57:19.:57:29.

Order! The DUP Ian Paisley was fined for driving without insurance, and

:57:30.:57:34.

in County Derry, here where the Healy-Rae 's! There's no bride,

:57:35.:57:41.

there's no groom, there's not any engagement ring.

:57:42.:57:44.

Gareth Gordon there, featuring Peadar Toibin

:57:45.:57:45.

and the unmistakable Healey-Raes, and we'll stick with the story

:57:46.:57:49.

in the Republic, continually evolving day by day.

:57:50.:57:53.

Some say regardless of the many twists and turns, this has only one

:57:54.:57:56.

outcome, which is Fianna Fail and Fine Gael swallowing hard

:57:57.:58:00.

and signing up to serving together in a grand coalition.

:58:01.:58:08.

That's what my guests thing. Is that the inevitable outcome of the

:58:09.:58:13.

wheeling and dealing taking place at the moment? As you told us, Fianna

:58:14.:58:18.

Fail wants another election and they want it soon, and they want the

:58:19.:58:24.

basis to be there like success, and what they have seen in the last

:58:25.:58:27.

election was their return, Fianna Fail returning must more robustly

:58:28.:58:31.

than anyone expected. In several constituencies they could have

:58:32.:58:35.

picked up another seat. If he had another election, I think it is

:58:36.:58:38.

right, they would gain more seats, people see that they are back, they

:58:39.:58:44.

are confident, and have a role to play in Irish politics. That is

:58:45.:58:46.

important, but the issue is within the party is that there is an old

:58:47.:58:49.

guard which will not share file with Fiona Gale they want not to move

:58:50.:58:54.

forward. Increasingly, another election could be really on the

:58:55.:58:58.

cards. We will speak to Kathleen Justin a second.

:58:59.:58:59.

Let's hear what Lisa Chambers and Peadar Toibin had to say

:59:00.:59:02.

when I spoke to them about this on The View on Thursday night.

:59:03.:59:06.

There is a core chip happening between the two political parties at

:59:07.:59:12.

the moment, and for many members it will be unseemly for the two parties

:59:13.:59:14.

to get together too quickly. They will waiting period of time before

:59:15.:59:21.

they actually do that. There is a policy, and ideological block from

:59:22.:59:24.

entering a Fianna Fail government, there is only a strategic block for

:59:25.:59:29.

Fianna Fail and Fine Gael entering a government. Right from the start

:59:30.:59:32.

there has been a rotation of government, either Fianna Fail Fine

:59:33.:59:35.

Gael in government. They are worried that if two of them were to get

:59:36.:59:38.

together in government on this occasion that that will be the end

:59:39.:59:41.

of the process, that we would change politics in the south once and for

:59:42.:59:46.

all. That is one opinion and I would reject it categorically pulls up if

:59:47.:59:50.

that was the case, the two parties and address. For all sorts of God

:59:51.:59:55.

did reason, there are two parties not just because of policy. Largely

:59:56.:00:03.

to do with history. Our membership base is very different. There is

:00:04.:00:06.

still a government in place, there is no chaos out there, we have a

:00:07.:00:10.

decent government, continuing to do its work, and any pressing matters

:00:11.:00:13.

needing to be dealt with will be dealt with in the chamber.

:00:14.:00:17.

Interesting to hear those two very different perspectives on what is

:00:18.:00:19.

happening. Happy what are your thoughts? Having what we can do at

:00:20.:00:23.

this point is all we can do is describe at Billy Mager what will be

:00:24.:00:26.

happening was we don't know what will be happening in a few months. A

:00:27.:00:33.

grand coalition, a majority of Fianna Fail, a coalition... Belgium,

:00:34.:00:39.

I think holds the world record for not having a government for a length

:00:40.:00:45.

of 19 months at one point. 500 and something days. They were only

:00:46.:00:48.

forced out of political deadlock at the time because the international

:00:49.:00:53.

money markets and financial markets had basically indicated that they

:00:54.:00:56.

would downgrade the credit rating of the country if they didn't form a

:00:57.:01:01.

government. So it is a long time. In reality, just briefly Peter is that

:01:02.:01:07.

we could come back with add similar kind of numbers is and you wouldn't

:01:08.:01:12.

be any further forward. I think if they do business together, there are

:01:13.:01:18.

different structures. They are different level parties. You can

:01:19.:01:22.

fiddle about in the margins, but at some point there is Fianna Fail

:01:23.:01:27.

being more attractive in the past in terms of drawing people together,

:01:28.:01:32.

Healy-Rae's father was helping in the past four example. There is a

:01:33.:01:36.

potential for them to come and many more seats to do that. We will both

:01:37.:01:38.

see. They for years to come. Thank you very

:01:39.:01:43.

much indeed. Now it is back to Andrew.

:01:44.:01:47.

So, what's in store for us this week?

:01:48.:01:50.

Well, just the small matter of George Osborne's Budget.

:01:51.:01:52.

Another EU summit and the political diary's jam-packed with

:01:53.:01:55.

Let's hear more from our Political Panel, and we're also

:01:56.:02:02.

joined by the Conservative MP, David Davis.

:02:03.:02:08.

100 days to go. Where are we at the moment in this campaign? Just on

:02:09.:02:18.

polling, we are balanced with a large number of uncertainty. What

:02:19.:02:24.

has happened in the last few weeks has been dominated with the flow of

:02:25.:02:29.

events. Turkey has dominated peoples minds and that is what will happen

:02:30.:02:33.

for most of the next 100 days. Events like that will force people.

:02:34.:02:39.

Turkey is about security and immigration and so on. That is a

:02:40.:02:44.

potential backdrop. If the Turkish deal begins to fall apart and the

:02:45.:02:47.

migrant crisis continues, which almost certainly it will, that is

:02:48.:02:51.

the kind of backdrop that is probably more helpful to your side

:02:52.:02:55.

of the referendum than the other one? It is not an accident, a

:02:56.:03:00.

structural outcome of the Schengen zone and the weakness of the eastern

:03:01.:03:06.

border. On other fronts, the financial front, you have the Euro

:03:07.:03:11.

structurally driving events. It seems to me the balance of

:03:12.:03:14.

probabilities in the next 100 days will be those sorts of things are

:03:15.:03:22.

actually going to favour a Brexit. For years and years, Mr Cameron, Mr

:03:23.:03:29.

Osborne, Mr Hague and so on have been spewing out Eurosceptic

:03:30.:03:36.

dialogue. Now they praise our membership of the EU! We cannot

:03:37.:03:41.

survive without the EU. Doesn't that risk jarring a bit with the

:03:42.:03:45.

electorate? I think it is absurd. We have a situation where the Prime

:03:46.:03:50.

Minister gave a big speech at Chatham House. He said can if you

:03:51.:03:55.

could not get the reforms, he would consider the alternative. Everything

:03:56.:04:00.

was on the table. In two options can he would consider campaigning to

:04:01.:04:03.

vote to leave. Now we are told if we left Britain, virtually

:04:04.:04:10.

catastrophic. Plagues of locusts and we will probably all die. You cannot

:04:11.:04:15.

say in November I will leave if I do not get my reforms and now say our

:04:16.:04:19.

country will collapse. That cannot be true, otherwise he would have

:04:20.:04:23.

been willing to leave the EU and risk economic collapse. I think it

:04:24.:04:30.

is scare tactics by Project Fear and it has been very damaging. People

:04:31.:04:37.

like me want Brexit but it is very damaging to the Conservative Party

:04:38.:04:41.

and unity. Howdy you see the campaign going? It has been largely

:04:42.:04:52.

dominated by the Vote Remain rather than the Vote Leave. Vote Remain

:04:53.:05:01.

have chucked a lot at Vote Leave. Many reports have been pumped out.

:05:02.:05:08.

They are in danger of using up all of that arguments for the race has

:05:09.:05:11.

got going. It does look fairly balanced. Some polling has suggested

:05:12.:05:18.

it leans a little towards the remaining side. Whenever people like

:05:19.:05:24.

David or others say it is all Project Fear, for the silent group

:05:25.:05:28.

of people and families with children who are not paying that much

:05:29.:05:31.

attention, if you talk about fear at all, there is a slight sense of

:05:32.:05:34.

maybe there is something to be fearful of after all. It works a

:05:35.:05:40.

bit, I am sure it does, but for how long question that when the Danes

:05:41.:05:44.

had their Euro referendum, the same thing happened. Eventually people

:05:45.:05:48.

were going in for the mockery, as you were, saying we're going to have

:05:49.:05:56.

a 17 foot high fence between us and Germany. That destroyed the campaign

:05:57.:05:59.

for the one thing that has happened is the credibility of the Government

:06:00.:06:04.

are doing has slipped quite a lot in the last few weeks and it is partly

:06:05.:06:09.

because of the exaggeration. You have two friends getting slightly

:06:10.:06:11.

nervous of it, slightly afraid of it, worrying about the risks. On the

:06:12.:06:16.

other hand, they are starting to say, do we really believe all this

:06:17.:06:22.

nonsense? That is the undetermined fact. It has not been a reasonable

:06:23.:06:28.

debate about facts. Is it too early to see who has been nudging ahead?

:06:29.:06:34.

What is significant is that David Davis has a tie in the colours of

:06:35.:06:42.

Vote Leave. The other one is a green tie with black writing. This is an

:06:43.:06:53.

issue of taste. I think what we are learning is the Brexit side is

:06:54.:06:55.

winning skirmishes. The reason they are doing that is because they are

:06:56.:07:00.

an insurgency. With an insurgency, it has six Cabinet ministers in it

:07:01.:07:04.

and that is exciting. You will clearly set the news agenda. The

:07:05.:07:09.

battle in the overall war, you would assume that Remain is nudging ahead

:07:10.:07:14.

because the polling after the Prime Minister Pozner Diehl said voters

:07:15.:07:21.

were impressed by that. Vote Leave have an incredibly simple and

:07:22.:07:26.

incredibly powerful message. Take back control. You may well find that

:07:27.:07:30.

message is so simple and so clear that that might achieve a cut

:07:31.:07:38.

through. Is the queen on the Brexit side or not? I do not think anyone

:07:39.:07:43.

is questioning she is a Eurosceptic. Even at the palace they are not

:07:44.:07:48.

disputing that and the complaint may have made about the story in the Sun

:07:49.:07:51.

newspaper last week. People have said she has in making these

:07:52.:07:55.

comments for some time. Cabinet ministers have told me they do

:07:56.:07:58.

similar things. This woman puts the mother bubble things -- the

:07:59.:08:07.

Commonwealth above all things. She defends the laws and traditions of

:08:08.:08:13.

this country as well. Not Brexit necessarily but Eurosceptic? That

:08:14.:08:19.

seems incontrovertible. The palace and Number 10 are not disputing that

:08:20.:08:26.

at all. It is great to have the Queen onside but I would like her to

:08:27.:08:30.

have one vote. She does not have a vote at all. Is this more within the

:08:31.:08:42.

Tory family question is it more bitter than you thought? Will it get

:08:43.:08:49.

more bitter as time goes on? Even if Mr Cameron wins, he may find it hard

:08:50.:08:53.

to put it together again. I do not think so. It is robust, pretty

:08:54.:08:58.

robust. To some extent he sets the tone himself if he is rude about

:08:59.:09:04.

Boris, there is a backlash. Some say he regards Boris in the same way he

:09:05.:09:11.

regards Ed Balls. A scan and he cannot stop picking at it. This is

:09:12.:09:21.

outside the house and takes quite a lot of poison out of it. It is

:09:22.:09:26.

robust and fears. People are taking it incredibly seriously. How is

:09:27.:09:32.

Boris doing? Pretty well. What is his real value? He draws attention

:09:33.:09:36.

to the issue and adds credibility to it. He makes the odd mistake and

:09:37.:09:41.

everyone forgives him for it. On balance, very useful and important.

:09:42.:09:50.

What about cross-party appeal? The Government began by emphasising the

:09:51.:09:54.

security implications of staying in, saying we needed to stay because of

:09:55.:09:59.

security. I think they have found that a tough argument because people

:10:00.:10:02.

do not associate EU with security. They will move on economic arguments

:10:03.:10:07.

now. The problem with economic arguments is they are nowhere near

:10:08.:10:12.

well-defined as clear and cut -- clearly cut as they were in 1975.

:10:13.:10:18.

They want to make a big picture argument. David Cameron got this

:10:19.:10:24.

deal on the Friday in Brussels. At 7:30pm, George Osborne was on the

:10:25.:10:30.

today programme making a massive destiny economic security argument.

:10:31.:10:34.

They know you cannot focus on the nitty-gritty of that. You have to

:10:35.:10:38.

make the big picture argument. It is potentially a mixed picture. David

:10:39.:10:42.

was saying earlier there is a major crisis in the Eurozone in the next

:10:43.:10:47.

few months, then that could be difficult. You have the opt out full

:10:48.:10:51.

stop when you are in government, there was an opt out from Britain

:10:52.:10:56.

having to join the euro. There is a major crisis. Two European summits

:10:57.:11:05.

in one week. That was not the case when we voted in 1975. The common

:11:06.:11:09.

market was seen as a successful, economic unit that we needed to

:11:10.:11:15.

join. The atmospherics are very different. For 20 years, it was the

:11:16.:11:21.

most successful economic unit, until about the early 90s. Since then we

:11:22.:11:28.

have got nothing. That is what people are seeing. We are moving on

:11:29.:11:34.

to the economic arguments. We have the budget which frames it. They're

:11:35.:11:37.

going to see Barack Obama coming here towards the end of April.

:11:38.:11:42.

You'll be making the argument and doing several events, as I

:11:43.:11:51.

understand it. He owes him a favour. Basically, what you're going to get

:11:52.:11:55.

as a return to the security argument. Returning to where we

:11:56.:11:59.

started this debate, you have got a situation where events will often

:12:00.:12:04.

favoured the out side but the control and ability to stage managed

:12:05.:12:07.

different moments is with the governments. -- the Government. They

:12:08.:12:15.

published a letter with generals on it and have not signed it. One of

:12:16.:12:22.

the generals came out this morning and said he was supporting the

:12:23.:12:26.

Government. It is from the Scottish referendum playbook. That worked. We

:12:27.:12:32.

saw Nicola Sturgeon struggling an hour ago, to explain basic, fiscal

:12:33.:12:37.

point about an independent Scotland but that is why Scotland voted to

:12:38.:12:40.

stay in the UK. You do not know whether the Government will have

:12:41.:12:45.

that element of certainty. As things stand at the moment, are we in or

:12:46.:12:51.

out? The last time I was here I cautiously gave numbers. I would

:12:52.:12:55.

still cautiously stay in. Depressingly I feel we would remain.

:12:56.:13:04.

In with a suppose so vote. None of you overly enthusiast take. We are

:13:05.:13:08.

right on a knife edge in terms of public opinions. We live in a world

:13:09.:13:17.

where the consensus opinion these days is usually wrong.

:13:18.:13:21.

I'll be back next week, same time same place.

:13:22.:13:24.

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

:13:25.:13:31.

Andrew Neil and Mark Carruthers with the latest political news, interviews and debate.

Andrew is joined by Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon, chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group against Antisemitism John Mann, shadow chief secretary to the Treasury Seema Malhotra and David Davis MP.

On the political panel are Julia Hartley-Brewer, The Sunday Times's Tim Shipman and Nick Watt from The Guardian.


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