24/01/2016 Sunday Politics Northern Ireland


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

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Jeremy Corbyn calls on Britain to accept more refugees and economic


migrants, as the Port of Calais is forced to close overnight


after migrants attempted to force their way onto a Channel ferry.


David Cameron appears increasingly confident he'll bag a deal on EU


reform next month, including new measures to reduce EU migration


In the first of three Sunday Politics debates,


the leave and remain campaigns go head-to-head on immigration.


And speaking exclusively to this programme, Ed Miliband's former


pollster Deborah Mattinson criticises Labour's official report


into why the party lost the general election for failing to face up


I think it was a whitewash and a massive missed opportunity.


And in Northern Ireland: Despite welfare mitigations,


it seems some benefits claimants will lose out


So have our politicians abandoned those most in need?


-- the conservative's Mayor candidate has now launched his


action plan. And with me, as always,


the best and the brightest political panel in the business -


Nick Watt, Beth Rigby and Janan They'll be tweeting


throughout the programme So, the Port of Calais was forced


to close for a while yesterday after migrants managed to breach


security and board a ferry. Amateur footage captured


the moment a group managed to break through security fences and head


towards the P ferry. The incident happened


during a protest at the port, The head of the Road Haulage


Association here in Britain has renewed demands for the French


military to intervene. As it happens,


the Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, was in northern France yesterday,


visiting the migrant camps While he was there,


he reiterated his calls for the British Government to do


more to help migrants. I talk to people all over


the country and not everyone is that cold-hearted, not everyone


else has a stony heart. They are prepared to reach out,


and I think we need a response And indeed Germany has


done an enormous amount, other countries have


done varying amounts, and I think we should


be part of helping to bring a European-wide support


to people, and that's what I'm Jeremy Corbyn yesterday. Beth, what


we make of the story, the government will allow unaccompanied children


refugees, already in Europe, to come into Britain? Some of my government


sources have suggested that is not what David Cameron would like to do,


if you think about how he dealt with the crisis in August, he said we


will take some Syrian refugees but we will take them from the camps in


Syria and around Syria, we will not take them from Calais, because he


thinks this is a push factor and it makes people come over. What the


government might end up doing, they might agree to take refugee children


unaccompanied, but only from Syria and the Middle East, not from


Calais. What about the kids who have made it here? They could be bad way.


Nick? The signals on government, they have not made any decisions yet


and the announcement is not imminent, but Beth makes a very


important point, the Prime Minister said you do not want to encourage


people to make that journey, therefore the instinct is to take


people from the neighbouring countries. Apart from unaccompanied


kids, they have come across in terrible conditions, and they are in


Calais and Dunkirk. The call to take these children, from that report,


that says that is a fair proportion of the 26,000 unaccompanied children


that have come to Europe. The figures in that report are


terrifying, in 2014, of the 13,000 unaccompanied children that ended up


in Italy, 3000 went missing, and of the African children that went to


Italy, half of them had been subject to some form of sexual abuse, it is


the most horrific figures. That 3000 figure, endorsed by Jeremy Corbyn,


also endorsed by the cross-party International Development Select


Committee, said there is edible pressure on the Prime Minister on


this one. -- formidable. The humanitarian case has been strongly


but by Jeremy Corbyn and others, but it is marginal. 3000 children, that


would be great for them, but 37,000 migrants have come to Greece in


January alone, and the mud has not even ended, ten times the number


that came in last January -- the month. The problem is getting bigger


and bigger, and the response has been wholly inadequate. It has, it


looks marginal, but that is about as much as you can expect, until there


is EU wide agreement about how to distribute what you might call the


burden of the influx, but there is nothing close to that agreement and


there's not even a deal between the EU and Turkey about ceiling borders


and dealing with human traffickers let alone a deal within the EU about


which country bears how much of the burden. Until then, you just have


these improvised solutions, 3000 here, France taking a bit more, and


there is no certainty that the unaccompanied children are


overwhelmingly Syrian, there is the suspicion that Syrians travel as


complete families and the unaccompanied children are


disproportionately from Somalia, for example, similarly distress, but not


the problem that they think they are dealing with. This plays into the


referendum question, there is the nervousness in the in campaign, that


a referendum in September, after a summer of large sums of migrants


coming in, kids or otherwise, would affect the result one way or


another. That is a big story, and we will come back to that at the end of


the show. Last week, the long-awaited autopsy


into Labour's defeat at the general The report by Margaret Beckett


concluded that Ed Miliband wasn't judged to be as strong a leader


as David Cameron, and that Labour had failed to shake off the myth


that Labour was responsible But parallel research was also


commissioned to inform the Beckett Report,


and despite being completed in July, The former Labour pollster


Deborah Mattinson carried out this research, and has spoken exclusively


to the Sunday Politics. We are saying the Conservatives


are the largest party. We all know what happened


on election night. Instead of a hung parliament,


David Cameron walked back into Downing Street


with a majority of 12. Labour got it wrong, as well,


suffering a net loss of 26 Friends, this is not the speech


I wanted to give today. Ed Miliband resigned


within hours, but it has taken eight and a half


months for the party to publish its own inquiry


into what went wrong. Margaret Beckett's report is called


Learning The Lessons From Defeat. It doesn't, says one pollster,


who has worked for several former I think it was a whitewash


and a massive missed opportunity. Just a few weeks after the election


defeat, Deborah Mattinson was commissioned


by the acting leader Harriet Harman to research


why Labour lost. She says the evidence was meant


to feed into the Beckett I did brief Margaret


Beckett so I was somewhat disappointed not to see some


of that reflected back. Yes, I think she picked up


on the economy but there was actually no analysis,


it is reduced effectively to one And there is a lot of quite


defensive stuff about the fact this does not necessarily


mean that anti-austerity is wrong. "Of course we had a great business


strategy, what a pity the voters "That was probably


the fault of the media". Quite apologetic,


lots of defensive stuff in there, but nothing that actually


really shone a light on what had Do you accept that when Labour


was last in power it No, I don't, and I know


you might not agree with that Margaret Beckett's report


acknowledges that Labour failed to shake what she


describes as the myth that the party caused


the financial crisis. But she concludes that Labour


was not seen as anti-aspiration Deborah Mattinson says that


for people in her focus groups Frankly, they did not trust Labour


to manage the economy effectively, they were very


concerned about that. In their minds, they


are seeing a conflation between the financial crisis,


which they do blame Labour for, rightly or wrongly,


and their sense that Labour would waste money,


their money, and run the economy Voters could not see


him as Prime Minister. But Margaret Beckett


concluded that Ed Miliband faced an exceptionally


vitriolic and personal attack People looked at Ed Miliband


and did not see him And if you look at every


election since the 70s, what we see, the party that has


the leader with the best ratings is the party that wins,


there is no exception to that. I get it, that people weren't


prejudiced against immigration, I get it and I understand


the need to change. The Beckett Report acknowledges that


Labour did not quite get it on issues like immigration


and benefits, and that the fear of the SNP propping up a minority


government scared off many voters. But Deborah Mattinson says Labour


was losing support in Scotland well before the independence referendum


and the surge in SNP support. Put simply, she said


voters did not feel that Labour was on their side,


and the party still does not I feel very concerned


that the lessons will be learned and I can't see how


they will be learned, because that was the vehicle,


that was the moment, and if this report does not address


those issues then I'm not No political party has a divine


right to exist and unless Labour really listens to those voters,


that it must persuade, it stands no chance


of winning the next election. And we've been joined by the former


Shadow Cabinet minister Michael Dugher - you might remember


he was sacked by Jeremy Corbyn Deborah Mattinson says the better


report is a whitewash, is she right? -- Beckett Report. That is a bit


harsh, does it have all the answers, though, of course not, and I think


Deborah Mattinson make some very fair observations in that piece, but


what Margaret concludes in her report, it is not a massive shock to


those of us that were knocking on doors last May and have thought long


and hard about it since, we were not trusted enough on the economy, and


that was the big issue, but also on immigration and welfare, we were


seen as out of touch, and also leadership being the most important


thing in any race. She makes those conclusions, in the report, and I


think the key thing now, is to listen to the issues that she


raises, but also listen to Debra and many others who have made a


contribution since the report came out. We have got to face up to the


difficult issues as to why we lost, if we are going to win again. Voters


found Ed Miliband the personification of the Labour brand,


that was the problem, well-meaning but ineffectual. I'm likely to


deliver -- and likely to deliver on promises. Did you detect that at the


time? I was very close to Ed Miliband and I gave him some advice,


some of which he took and some of which he didn't. I wanted him to be


a success, I saw him in private and you have strong he did beat, and


often he got very unfair coverage in the media and often he did not do


himself justice in his performances -- I saw him in private and how


strong he did beat. The real lesson here, for any lead at the Labour


Party can you have got to play to your strengths and you have got a


fundamentally address your perceived weaknesses. The private polling


showed the Tories were in the late, was that not a warning that things


were going wrong? -- in the lead. I'm not sure how much private


polling I was shown. You did not see this? The year before the election,


I was appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Transport, I was not so


much part of the central operations and I did not see private polling.


Many of us thought that we were getting difficult conversations on


the doorstep, but we were told consistently, including by the


pollsters, that we were neck and neck and there was a perception that


we were doing better in the marginals, as well. That turned out


to be catastrophically wrong, but one of the things that is not in


Margaret's report is about the organisational lessons, that does


speak, if you have a million conversations, what are you doing


with the data? I remember in the last two days of the campaign, I was


sent to Derbyshire, Amber Valley, and in Yorkshire, to Rothwell, but I


should have been sent to Morley to help Ed Balls, and Derby North to


help Chris Wood this. The campaign has got to base what they do on the


information, and in 2010 we took very hard decisions, six months away


from polling day, based on the information we had about prioritise


in resources, but are not sure that happens this time. -- I'm not sure.


Deborah Mattinson looks at the boundary changes before the next


election, and she thinks the Beckett Report made a failure to confront


why you lost enough. Her conclusion is this, Labour's future is in


profound jeopardy - is it? I think we have a massive challenge at the


next election. I don't think any political party has a right to be


successful in the future. I am an optimistic person. Labour, when we


have got our act together, when we have been in touch with the public


we have shown we can win. Is Labour's continued existence a


question mark? We have got to start getting in touch with the public.


One thing the report did slightly skirt around, the question over


politics as an identity. People like myself have been banging on about


this, not just in the weeks before the election but for months and


years before, and we need to face up to that. No political party has a


right to exist, but I think if Labour gets our act together, if we


stop picking fights with ourselves, if we face up to the difficult


issues in this report and elsewhere, we can be successful in the future.


In what ways, as things stand at the moment, what ways will Labour be


better, in better shape, under Jeremy Corbyn heading into the 2020


election than it was in the 2015 election? What is one of the main


conclusions from the Beckett Report, it said we did make some gains,


1.5%, but we were stacking up area -- support in areas where we were


already strong. If they think you are out of touch on immigration and


welfare, you had better start talking about immigration and


welfare. Jeremy Corbyn seems to want almost no limit on immigration, it


is hard to detect if he would have any limits, and he is rather against


welfare reforms. I'm not sure that is an election winning strategy. On


immigration, I made this point to him, you have got to understand this


is the second biggest issue nationally, it is the biggest issue


in many constituencies including mine, and I said that many of the


answers are about stopping pressure on wages and conditions. There are


good centre-left solutions to these problems, about Europe dividing more


help for communities facing these changes. I made the point to him, on


welfare he is right to say we should be standing up to help the most


vulnerable, but in my experience you only get heard on those issues if


the public think you are for real in terms of wanting to be tough on


people who are frankly making decisions not to go into work so you


have got to get the balance right. Do you accept, given his huge


support among party members, that Jeremy Corbyn will lead you into the


next election? He faces a big test in May. We have seen the polls and


the ratings, any big test is a real election. He faces a big test


because he was clear that a left-wing agenda is the key to


transforming our fortunes in Scotland, I hope he's right. We need


to win in London but we have got to show we can make big gains in the


rest of London as well and we have got to hold onto power in Wales as


well. But even if he fails these tests, do you think there will be an


attempt to remove him? We have got to get behind Jeremy and he has got


to show us that he can deliver and turn things around. We need to get


behind him. People are very clear about what Jeremy stands for. He has


achieved remarkable cut throughs. Over the next few months we will see


more of that so he has got to be given a chance because he has a huge


mandate by the party members but he has got to show he can turn that


into real support from the public. That means also winning the support


of people who voted Conservative last time. It is not an easy


challenge, we are behind him in that but he has got to show he can learn


the lessons that Margaret Beckett has talked about and Debra and


others as well. We have got to stop it there, thank you.


The hole Labour is in is deepest in Scotland, where the once-mighty


party now holds just one Westminster seat.


If Jeremy Corbyn is to win the general election in 2020,


he needs to claw back support from the SNP,


and the first test of his appeal north of the border is coming up


fast in elections to the Scottish parliament in May.


Speaking to Andrew Marr this morning, the leader of the SNP took


aim at Mr Corbyn, criticising a plan he's floated


to keep Britain's Trident submarines minus their nuclear warheads.


I wonder what you made of Jeremy Corbyn's suggestion that


you could keep the Trident submarines, therefore keep the jobs


in Scotland, but not have nuclear missiles on them.


I think it was ridiculous and I think it's a sign of just how


tortured these debates are becoming within the Labour Party.


On Trident, I agree with Jeremy Corbyn.


I'm not in favour of the renewal of Trident, and we might have a vote


on that in the House of Commons sooner rather than later.


I think the real challenge for Jeremy Corbyn is,


can he get his party into the position he wants it to be


in so we can have any chance at all of stopping


For Labour to sit on the fence on this issue or have a free vote


on this issue will leave them without a shred of credibility.


And I've been joined now by the Shadow Scottish Secretary,


Let's pick up on the point from Nicola Sturgeon about Trident. In


Scotland the electoral choice on this is clear, if you are unilateral


disarmament, you vote SNP. You couldn't vote Labour on this issue


because people don't know what you stand for. The Labour Party has been


clear, a motion was passed almost unanimously to reject the renewal of


Trident on that policy basis. But it is not party policy. There is a


policy review happening at the moment so the Scottish Labour


Party's policy on this is clear. It is a Scottish election don't forget.


These Trident issues are diverting us away from big issues of policy in


terms of public services. The Deborah Mattinson research found


Scottish voters felt abandoned by the Labour Party. When did Labour


start taking Scottish voters for granted? It has been clear from a


number of reports that have been done that there has been a process


in the party where we have not devolved the party as much as


Scotland. The Scottish party, in 1999 it was a tremendous opportunity


for the Scottish Labour Party but I don't think we have caught up with


that. I think under Kesia's leadership she is refreshing that.


You face further electoral disasters in Holyrood in May. No one is under


any illusion this will be a difficult election, but what Kesia


is trying to do is get a positive policy platform together, reconnect


with Scottish people, respond to what Scottish people have been


saying on the doorsteps, and she's doing that on the basis of


responding to what the Scottish people want. That's what people want


to have. What the Shadow Cabinet was told by your own election director


is that he expects you to lose all of your constituency MSPs, just as


you lost all of your constituency MPs bar you last May. What can you


do to avoid that? The important thing is to go back to Kezia


Dugdale's policy. She wants to change the policies of the Scottish


Labour Party in order for us to have a policy platform that is incredibly


positive. What is the most distinctive Scottish policy


initiative since Jeremy Corbyn became leader? This isn't about


Jeremy Corbyn, it is about Kezia Dugdale. We have helped to buy


scheme for first time buyers, we want to build 60,000 affordable


homes, we want to put the 50p tax rate back in to close the


educational attainment gap, they are just a few of the policies she has


announced already. She is one of the few people in this election campaign


actually talking about the policy issues of Scotland. Nobody is


talking about these kinds of issues. Do you think that collection


policies you have outlined are enough to stave off a further


electoral humiliation? It is just the start of a policy platform she


will be announcing in the run-up to the elections. Help to buy is a Tory


policy. This is about resolving a housing crisis that has been created


by an SNP government. We are not holding them to account because


people are obsessing over things like polls. The transport system is


creaking at the seams. This has got to be dealt with and there is a real


opportunity to talk about the powers the Scottish Government currently


has and new powers. Let's talk about tomorrow's Scotland. How much would


a top rate 50p tax for Scotland raised? Up to 10 million, depending


where you would have any change but every single penny would go into


educational attainment. When the Conservatives cut the tax rate to


45p, the Treasury were projecting it would cost ?3 billion a year to


satisfy. That was for the whole of the UK, so 60-110,000,000 is a lot


of money we can use to cut the educational attainment gap. Why is


Jeremy Corbyn not cutting much ice north of the border? He has won a


significant mandate within the party, he needs to win that now


within the country but what we are concentrating on now is Kezia


Dugdale as a new leader. I am interesting that you stress all the


time Kezia Dugdale, is Jeremy Corbyn and asset or a liability in May? He


is an asset because she wants us to invest in public services, he wants


to use the powers in the Scottish bill to transform the Scottish


Parliament... So why are the polls, if you have got Kezia Dugdale and


Jeremy Corbyn doing all the right things, why are the polls so dire


for you in Scotland? We will fight for every single vote and seat, we


fight to win every election but whilst we are talking about polls


and not holding the Scottish Government to account for a dreadful


record in Government for eight years and not talking about positive


policies being put forward, we will not get any traction in the polls.


Let's get this campaign onto real issues that ordinary Scots want to


talk about on the doorsteps, which is about holding the Government to


account for a dreadful track record, and get some policies on there that


says to the people the Scottish Labour Party has changed and we can


talk about tomorrow's Scotland and how we can transform people's lives.


Thank you. The huge influx of migrants


into the EU from Syria and elsewhere is putting the future


of the EU in "grave danger", that was the stark warning


from the French Prime Minister Tomorrow, EU interior ministers


will discuss a possible two-year suspension of the Schengen system


of passport-free travel. It all comes as David Cameron seeks


to put the finishing touches to a new deal for the UK


inside the EU before But how is the migrant crisis


affecting his renegotiation? Since January 2015, nearly 1.1


million migrants have arrived in Europe, the vast


majority coming by sea. The International Monetary Fund


estimates that nearly 4 million migrants will have reached


the EU by the end of 2017. Tomorrow, EU interior ministers


will discuss a possible suspension of the passport-free Schengen area


and the re-introduction of border The EU is also considering tearing


up the so-called Dublin Convention and introducing a new dispersal


scheme to distribute migrants more It's an extra headache


for David Cameron as he seeks to renegotiate the terms


of our membership of the EU. The Prime Minister's preferred


option is a four-year ban on new EU migrant workers claiming


in-work benefits. But that's unlikely to satisfy many


Conservative backbenchers. Former Cabinet minister Liam Fox,


who has already said he will campaign to leave the EU,


said yesterday that he "didn't expect a British prime minister


to have to take the political begging bowl around the capitals


of Europe just to change our own Over the next three weekends


we will be staging three debates Joining me now to discuss


immigration and the EU are the Ukip MEP Diane James, who's campaigning


for Britain to leave the EU, and the Conservative MP


Damian Green, who supports The French prime ministers as the


future the EU is in grave danger, so why would we want to stay in it? --


Prime Minister says. It is useful to as, it makes us safer and more


secure and more prosperous and therefore it is worth saving, from


our perspective and to the other member countries. Why does it make


us more secure? The way that we cooperate with other European


countries, the European institutions, things like the


European arrest warrant, data share, these are very useful to our police


and security services. We share data with the United States, as well. But


not on the same automatic basis as we do with Europe. There is


automatic sharing of intelligence between Britain and the United


States. There is can we have a separate treaty with them, it is not


as automatic and quick. -- there is, we have a separate treaty. We can


change information within minutes with other European countries, and


it takes days and weeks with other countries, and that means in cases


of terrorism and sadly we live in a dangerous world, with global


terrorism, that kind of European cooperation is increasingly


important. Diane, we face a migration crisis, what is your


solution, to turn Britain into a fortress Britain? No, it isn't, but


it is to regain border control for the United Kingdom, and that is a


position endorsed by a number of countries, and number of member


states across the EU, you have five countries which every imposed border


controls to some extent. There is still free movement of people.


France said last week they will extend their border control, their


passport control as an emergency measure because of the terrorist


attacks in Paris. Border control is needed because under the current


system freedom of movement, people, services, transport, that also means


freedom of movement for terrorists and weapons, that come from the


Balkan states. We don't have border controls? Yes, but not sufficient,


if someone comes in from the Mediterranean states or from the


Balkan states, they have gained entry into the European member zone.


They can't then move around. If they get their passport, ultimately...


That can take ten years. It is five years in Germany, it can be granted


sooner if the Dublin agreement is changed and asylum seekers get a


faster processing, they can then come to the United Kingdom. It is


not five years in Germany, it is a comment if you have a criminal


record, you can't get one, and the things that Niger Farage was saying


about the scenes in Cologne, that was wrong. -- Nigel. The out


campaign is saying that border controls are what we need, strong


border controls, and pulling out of Europe would have the practical


effect, our border controls which act have a, thanks to the treaty


with the French government, they would certainly come back to Dover


-- our border controls which we have at Calais. Migrants would find it


much easier to get to this country and claim asylum here. But if they


couldn't get in, they did not qualify, we would have the power to


deport them? We were, after a legal process, but they would be stopped


not at Calais, it would be at Dover, when they are in Britain, and once


they are here they can claim asylum and because we have proper legal


processes it takes a lot of time and expense to deal with that. He has


all the accused me of getting my facts wrong, but he has got his


facts wrong. The agreement in terms of stationing our teams and our


support staff and control, in the French ports, that is a France UK


agreement, it has nothing to do with the European Union. If you are


suggesting that the agreement between France and the United


Kingdom gets torn up because we leave the EU, that is fanciful and


misleading and I don't agree with you. France signed the treatment


with us as a fellow member of the EU and the French interior minister has


said that they would look at the treaty, of course it would be at


risk, do you think the people of Calais want that camp on their


doorstep? Of course not. The French are doing us a favour. How would the


renegotiation by the Prime Minister help address any of this? The area


of renegotiation and this is about the extra pull factor that comes


from the perception that the British benefits system is easier to access


compared with other countries, and therefore there are people coming


here simply to make the benefits system and I think what many people


think about immigration, they are moral axed about people coming here


to work and pay taxes but they don't like people coming to use the


welfare system -- they are more relaxed. But it has been said this


will not have a big impact, you might marginalise one pull factor,


but with rises in the national minimum wage, you have increased the


pull factor on the other hand. It's a boiler fairness, that is what --


that is a boiler fairness, that is what people want... It is unlikely


to have a big impact. This will have very little impact on the numbers. I


think people can make a distinction between those who are coming here to


work, who benefit our economy and benefit all of us. But we have


agreed it is unlikely, even if it is fair, it is unlikely to have any


impact on the numbers. We don't know. The OBR has had a good guess.


They are guessing, it is a guess. Nigel Farage said he would cut


immigration even if that meant lower economic growth, do you agree? There


are two parts to your question, George Osborne has predicated his


fiscal strategy on high numbers of immigration, but we have done this


on individuals who come here on a points system to deliver real value


to this country, who are not subsidised by the tax credit option


and who actually meet the needs that we have in the United Kingdom, and


currently, as we know, we want engineers and medics and nurses and


lawyers. Ukip strategy has never been to stop those individuals


coming, but what we are saying, the impact of low skilled immigration on


this country is negative. That is our position. Even if it meant slow


economic growth, you would still cut the numbers? It would not mean


slower economic growth. We have made our position very clear in terms of


the value of the money that we would not be paying in terms of membership


of the EU, coming back to the United Kingdom's economy, and balancing the


whole position, that would be a positive for us as a country. The


Prime Minister has refused to leave a group of 40 Eurosceptic


backbenchers in the Conservative Party, who want to asking to do much


more. Should he not make them? The Prime Minister meets backbenchers


all the time. He has not meant this group, they wrote to him in November


and he has not met them. -- he has not met this group. Anyone who would


like to meet the Prime Minister has ample opportunities to do so, I'm a


backbencher, I can speak to the Prime Minister, and all of these


points have been raised. It is possible that this story is slightly


overblown. Thank you very much. We will be coming back to these stories


in the weeks ahead. And next week we'll be debating


the economic effects of leaving It's just gone 11.35,


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


in Scotland who leave us now Hello and welcome to Sunday Politics


in Northern Ireland. With the welfare mitigation


issue seemingly resolved, Or have politicians


abandoned the vulnerable? That's what I'll be asking


Sinn Fein and the SDLP. Plus, as Presbyterians discuss


the 1916 anniversaries, the Republic's Minister responsible


for the commemorations reveals her plans for


this landmark year. And with their thoughts


on all of that and more - Fionnuala O'Connor


and Paul Gosling... It once threatened the existence


of Stormont itself, but now the welfare issue has apparently


been put to bed with the publication of a report this week outlining how


mitigations will work. While the report was broadly


welcomed, it's clear some benefit recipients could lose out under


planned welfare changes. With me now is Sinn Fein's John


O'Dowd and the SDLP's Alex Sinn Fein's line was always that no


benefit recipient would be allowed It's clear people are going to lose


out despite those pledges... We were faced with a scenario. The


British government were going to take over welfare reform, the role


of the executive, it would have collapsed, so Sinn Fein have made a


correct decision. Concluding the peace process, should we collapse


the executive? You don't see that you were going to do that at one


point. Passing the legislation, more to do with timing than policy. In


terms of the journey, it is better balance with local politicians,


boundaries of appeals, and the report has set out it the measures,


existing nowhere else. You over promised.


Gerry Adams said in January 2015, one year ago...


"No one will have any benefit reduced which is under the authority


That was our key point on this issue."


Conor Murphy, December 2014: "What we've done is ensure


that those who suffer will be picked up by a system devised by us -


What we wanted to achieve, it has to be against the political reality. We


were involved in negotiation, with other parties, few of them committed


to bringing forward proposals, the issue has become so toxic, it was on


the day job collapsing political institutions. In the broader sense,


protecting public services, to maintain institutions. Did Sinn Fein


overpromise? If every person said that nobody was going to be losing


out, but now people are going to be, they overpromised. But it is the


preposterous idea, to travel, it is not a matter of policy, because of


that decision Sinn Fein, signing up to these benefit freezers, the Mike


-- freezes and this week, charity groups have been arguing against the


proposals, so not only as a bizarre place, in the year of 1916,


Republicans giving power back to London, it was the technicality, and


it has impact on citizens, when we could have control. The more


interesting question, what did the SDLP deliver? Nothing. Welcoming the


report. SDLP voted against the fresh start, and last week, against the


budget. Spending half ?1 billion, protecting citizens. Those measures,


scaremongering, it rests with the assembly. All powers rest with the


assembly. It is difficult to argue against what has been said, you want


your cake and eat it. You did not vote for the budget? I support the


work. I support what she did. Put meat on proposals. Last year, and


the welfare reform discussions, the DUP and Sinn Fein voted them down.


That included the abolition of the bedroom tax. So on. It is not the


case, to pretend that what Sinn Fein agreed, is about timelines, it is


about reductions, taking money out of the pockets. But be have tried to


mitigate those difficulties, and the best possible way, with as much


money as is available? It is easy to sit on the sidelines. They are


having to deal with the issues. We welcome what has been said. How


would you fund it? You voted against the budget. No alternative. Out of


the current budget. You didn't vote for it! We produce an alternative.


That does not mean, they oppose every measure. If you want to see


what we have produced, looked at the documents, in the recent


negotiations, the most extensive, unlike Sinn Fein, handing over now


documents. Do not be misled. Sinn Fein are trying to sell the past on


welfare, surrendering to London, creating a fog around the fact that


when it comes to people in Northern Ireland, not as much mitigation as


promised. It does nothing about the proposals that they have signed up


to, going to Westminster, impacting on policy. At no time during that


lengthy contribution, as he outlined how the SDLP would treat the


situation. Why is this happening? Sinn Fein step forward, how are they


being funded? Let's broaden this. You promised people, a great deal.


You have deliver less. You could be punished for that. It is a lot less


than people thought they were going to be. The deal that people are


going to get, it is good to last 12 months. The electorate is going to


make decisions. Based on informed debate. That is what democracy is


about. Sinn Fein will defend the position. The mitigations, set out


for 12 months, but the most important part, that the sanctions


being imposed, in England, having the most devastating impact. What we


have introduced, it is a support package, to have an appeals process,


laptop, -- backed up... It buys people time. You also, within the


SDLP, could be punished. In out approach to welfare. No. All of what


has just been opened, Intel's mitigation, it has no impact upon


the welfare changes coming across, because of the bill. Falsehood.


Secondly, a lot of the principles of the proposals, established in the


chamber, one years ago, when we said we should have protection for people


on benefit conflicts, changes in the benefit caps, all of those... DUP


and Sinn Fein voted them down. So when people make the choice, they


will have to remember who flip flopped. And those who brought


forward crafted proposals. Those who protect the devolution settlement.


Those opposed to benefit freezes and those who endorsed them. That is why


Martin McGuinness, going back to Derry. That is a different issue.


You can fool some people some time, not all the people all the time.


People are going to make up their own mind.


Do you think the recommendations make sense? She is a good socialist,


producing reports, in 1981, on single parents, battered women. Both


of them, the most deprived sections, that long ago. She produced a solid


piece of work, a woman in a male dominated world. And she has done


this well. But this question, it is a distraction. Gerry Adams used that


world. In that heated discussion, as John's voice got louder, Alex Atwood


struggled, that the proposals, related to those documents, neither


of them can make the case that is going to matter on the doorsteps.


Especially if people are already feeling hit by cuts. It is


describing efforts, to mitigate the situation, that the administration


can do little about. Do you get a sense, it is going to become an


issue on the doorsteps, and that people understand precisely what it


is, Eileen Evason? Eileen Evason's report this excellent, but it does


not achieve, the impossible, if you promised the impossible you cannot


deliver. That is going to be a political issue. It is a


distraction, from unionism, that is what they should be concentrating


on. Unionists said that we have no choice, Tory policy, we ought to


stay in line with Britain. They have moved, the bedroom tax has gone,


this is the sort of thing that Sinn Fein should be concentrating on, but


these conservative policies, accepted to a degree, by all of them


because they had to. But also mitigated, DUP moved from defending


that. It is going to make for some interesting battles. A new


constituency, west Belfast as well? Absolutely. Interesting political


battles. Large levels of poverty. I think people are going to be angry,


about these unfathomable promises. Next to the Easter Rising


and the Somme - part of 'our shared narrative across this shared land' -


the words of Fine Gael Minister Heather Humphreys on a visit


to Belfast this week. The Minister, who's overseeing


the centenary of the 1916 Rising, has a few shared narratives herself,


with a grand-father who signed Nevertheless, I asked her if her


notion of a 'shared history' isn't a little idealistic when there


are so many competing I live on the border. I am conscious


of sensitivities. But it's 100 years ago. We should hear the stories. The


historical facts. We have a lot of misinformation. A lot of people came


forward. They didn't realise great grand uncles were in the war. It is


about the personal stories. Impact. 1916. And we have the chance, to


look back. Can you see why some people are uncomfortable, with


anything that looks like a celebration of rebuilding, against


the British presence? That is one thing I want to be freed about. This


is not a celebration. It is not triumphalism. It is a commemoration.


Remembering, listening to the stories. There's going to be a wall.


With all the names, of people who lost lives in the Easter Rising.


Many civilians, members of the British Army, a lot of those were


Irish. Stories to be told. And I think when people reflect, you get a


better understanding. Northern Ireland's new First Minister has


expressed reservations, about taking part in formal name originates, of


1916. She is going to attend an event, to discuss historical


context, but will not formally commemorate what has happened, can


you see how she has come to that view? I respect that, but I am glad


that she said that she will be coming, having a debate, I am


pleased and I'm sure we will have many events that she will be able to


attend. Comfortable in attending. If a teacher comes up with the right


invitation, she will accept. There is that going to happen? The two


Bishops... They have come together. They are going to have an event,


bringing the children, both sides of the border, together. It is an


event, involving art, music, and they are going to be telling the


stories, starting from 1916. It goes to the Good Friday agreement. That


is going to involve children. That, for example, is one event that both


of us would love to be attending. The battle of the Somme centenary.


July. Do you see that being commemorated? By weight


cross-sections. So many Irishmen, died in that battle. Perhaps that


could be another event, that people could come with us, and joint, to


commemorate those who most lights. -- lives. The Irish state failed


when they returned from the trenches? Are you having to correct


mistakes by predecessors? They came home, to a different Ireland. I was


agonising, two years ago, and this man I knew... His name was Kevin. He


said that was a fantastic day. It means so much to me. Tears down his


face. means so much to me. Tears down his


came back from the world war, and never spoke about it. He said a


wrong had been made right. That is what is important. You seem to


personify the complexity of identity, you described yourself as


a pro-Irish republican, attending orange order parades, that this


complex? I attend cultural events, in my constituency, bands come and


play. From Northern Ireland, Monaghan, it is a cultural event


that I absolutely enjoyed. People come from all traditions, that is


inclusive. How do you think politicians are doing, in Northern


Ireland? Do you think the meeting enough of an effort? It takes time.


We are making progress all the time. It is by going to these events, GAA


matches, dispelling myths. I would encourage people to come together,


go to different events. We have a lot more in common than we have that


separates us. Heather Humphreys flying the flag


for cross-community encounter. Now, let's take a look back


at the political week in 60 seconds Martin McGuinness on the move. He


will be running, as Sinn Fein target more assembly seats. DUP made it


clear Northern Ireland must be leaving the European Union. We would


be better outside. The budget has been voted through for the next


year. This represents a balanced budget, no level of overcommitment,


for many years. Changes to the welfare system moving closer. This


would mean Northern Ireland is better prepared, to enable


vulnerable people to avoid hardship. Firefighters came to Stormont, to


protest against cuts, and the finance minister was reminded of his


roots. The financial prudence, except when it comes to considering


projects themselves. And let's have a final word


from Fionnuala and Paul... candidate in the hot seat, until


then, back to you, Andrew. Can David Cameron keep his party


together in the run-up Will the SNP stymie the PM's


plans for a summer vote? And who will go along to


John McDonnell's economics roadshow? Nick, Damian Green downplayed the 40


Eurosceptics who have written to the Prime Minister, asking for a


meeting. Is he right? Is there a serious division for the Tories? It


was a very diplomatic response from Damian Green, but what Downing


Street would say about the letter from John Barron, what is the point


of meeting him and his 40 merry friends, because I want to get


Britain out and they have always wanted to do so and the demands they


are tabling in that letter, to have primacy of the UK Parliament over EU


law is not in the negotiation and is not going to happen, but there is a


port in point. David Cameron was dismissive of John Barron in the


House of Commons and he needs to maybe occasionally show a bit more


charm and listening to those kind of people. -- important point. They are


on the other side of the prime Minster, but he has got to manage


the process carefully and he needs to avoid a civil war, and he can


avoid that if all sides are respected in this debate. Presumably


the 40 that signed our hard-core Eurosceptic but there are more


Eurosceptics. Even if David Cameron gets all of what he is asking for,


how many Conservative MPs will still want to come out? Going back to the


John Barenboim, the 40 that have signed that letter, Downing Street


have put them to one side -- John Barron point. The battle for the


party, what do you do with those, maybe a third of the party, that


would be minded to leave, maybe 100-100 and 50 MPs, George Osborne


was talking about emergency brakes on legislation, if things are coming


through from Brussels which the British don't want. They still think


that the negotiation really is in play and what we have to do is try


and pick off moderate Eurosceptics and give them a package which they


can get behind and then we need to accept that there will be 40


hard-core people that we could never placate. In the David Cameron


nightmare, that is the potential backdrop to the referendum, the


French Prime Minister has said Europe is in grave danger and we


have had President task of the council say that we have only got a


couple of months to sort out the immigration issue -- Donald Tusk.


The Dutch Prime Minister has given warnings, as well. If there's a


sense that Europe is falling especially regarding migration,


Schengen is swept away, as it might be tomorrow, that is not a way to


win a referendum. It is a huge advantage for the Brexit campaign


and it distinguishes them from their predecessors of 20 years ago,


leaving the EU back then was seen as a pessimistic thing to do, but now


you can almost support Brexit because you think, why chain


yourself to a continent which is losing, when there's so much


dynamism in the world elsewhere? The characteristic of the Brexit


campaign is the challenge David Cameron has got to summer, it cannot


say they are entirely insular any more. -- has got to surmount. I


thought the internal Tory problem with the explosive, if not a big


split, but like a rolling crisis from the 1990s, but I no longer


think that is true, the fact they know they can expect to be in


government until at least 2025, they can maintain basic adhesion because


of the weakness of the Labour Party and that is a contrast with the 90s


-- basic cohesion. Cameron will look like he is losing control, but there


will not be anything existential going on for the party. We believe


the government is anxious to get it out of the way by the end of June,


may be the first week of July. Nicola Sturgeon said some


interesting things on the Andrew Marr show, about the timetable for


the referendum. We had a negative feeling campaign from the no


campaign and they almost lost, in the referendum for Europe, the


campaigns are much closer to start with, and if the in campaign falls


into the trap of the no campaign I fear it will lose. Nicola Sturgeon


has said that she does not want a June referendum and she feels that


is too soon. You can say, that is the view of the First Minister, she


doesn't have a vote in parliament, but it have more significance. I was


briefed last week by senior Scottish Nationalist who said this, "Many


conservatives will not want a June referendum and the risk epics want


more time to layout their case -- Eurosceptics want more time to


layout their case". The Scottish Nationalists will not help to vote


by voting for a June referendum. The SNP could try and turn this into a


vote in the house and then it depends on what Labour do, do they


want to have it in June or later? I think the Eurosceptics are so


focused on trying to get this referendum through, I don't think


them as long as they feel they have the campaign in time that they want,


the four-month period, I think they will go for it. I'm not sure that is


true. Given the divisions in the Eurosceptics side at the moment, and


the out campaign, I think they need longer to get there ducks in a row


and they feel the best time for them to fight is after there has been


another major migration crisis in the summer, people will not on their


side of the ardent when that happens. That might be true. -- of


the argument. But they cannot argue for a delay in some ways, but I do


feel that Nicola Sturgeon's intervention is significant and the


pressure on the Prime Minister to listen to what she is saying, will


not so much come in parliament, it could come from the electoral


commission, which has already said they cannot have the referendum in


May as the same time as the devolved elections, and if you have Nicola


Sturgeon, Arlene Foster, the First Minister of Northern Ireland, and


Karen Jones can be First Minister of Wales Coulibaly said they think this


is over complicating -- First Minister of Wales, if they all said


they think this is over, catering, because it would happen at the same


time as the devolved elections -- if they all said this is


overcompensated. That would be significant, we could be bouncing


into September. They have said they do not want the overlap, there


should be a clear gap between the referendum campaign and the local


elections, the assembly come and the Parliamentary elections in Scotland.


They have a low view of the ability of the electorate to distinguish


between elections, I do think Nicolas -- Nicola Sturgeon is an


obstacle, but the biggest obstacle will be David Cameron and what he


can get from the EU. You don't think it will be a done deal pretty much


they are putting a lot of weight white -- you don't think it will be


a done deal? They are putting a lot of weight on one summit, but the


next summit that matters, it only takes one delay for us to move


beyond June and then into September. I thought 2017 would be more likely,


I have slightly revised that view, but I don't think June is possible.


We have leave, and several out campaigns, and we have got one which


is called grassroots out. Liam Fox, Conservative, Nigel Farage, Kate


Hoey from Labour was there, it was launched yesterday. At some stage


they have got to consult them if they want to be serious and marshal


their resources, they have got to have a single campaign? And by law


they have got through, the electoral commission is going to have two


designate a campaign on either side. It is pretty clear that the inside


are coalescing around the Britain stronger in Europe group, but on the


outside there is not that agreement and there is feuding between these


groups and they're going to have to reach agreement. The problem they


have, who is going to lead them? Nigel Lawson is a key figure and he


says they will get a senior Cabinet minister, but I said the most senior


Cabinet minister who will go for Brexit, in Duncan Smith, do his own


thing, which leaves you with Chris Grayling -- Iain Duncan Smith. And


also Theresa Villiers. They will go up against the leader of the in


campaign who is someone called David Cameron, and so they really do need


to get unity. Vote Labour say they are more grown-up, -- vote leave say


they are more grown-up, for example. Some are said to me the other day


that Chris Grayling's view is that many senior figures in the party


should be voices. In other words he was suggesting he did not want to


leave and they would not be one senior Cabinet minister that was


going to champion it which gives them another problem. The


organisational, factional differences make much less


difference in who you have as your voice, it could be a very prominent


businessperson, for example, the head of a major company. Who knows


how to bend opinion. That is not true of many business people. They


could talk about the economic risk. The state in campaign was launched


by Stuart Rose. And it was a disaster. It was a disastrous launch


will stop you going to John McDonnell's economic seminar? I'm


washing my hair. He was to get out of the -- he says he would like to


get out of the Westminster bubble, he has only


get out of the Westminster bubble, he has only got to the West End, but


he has got out there. You don't want to come? There are many people


worried about Jeremy Corbyn's leadership in the Labour Party, but


they are encouraged about the seminars, the economics panel, he


has got an incredibly serious group of people, is opening up these


seminars and they are encouraged. There was a good piece in the Sunday


Times about whether there is a good deal with Google and whether this is


such a good deal for the British taxpayer. I can feel I'm going to be


on my own. Anyway, it has sold out, there is no room for you.


Jo Coburn will be back with the Daily Politics


And I'll be back here on BBC One next Sunday


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


bought on the streets of east Belfast,


How can it be credible leadership did not know?


The mistakes made in this case would have enormous consequences.


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