Andrew Neil and Isabel Fraser with the latest political news, interviews and debate. Including UKIP leader Nigel Farage, and David Willetts on Lord Heseltine's growth plan.
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Morning folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics. Could Britain
thrive and prosper outside the European Union? Cabinet Minister
Iain Duncan Smith's gave every impression this morning that Yes We
Can! We'll ask Business Minster David Willetts what he makes of
that. It's our top story. They're flying high in the polls
and - they say - winning the arguments on Europe, but can the UK
Independence Party really stand up to the scrutiny that comes with
success? Leader Nigel Farage joins us for the Sunday Interview.
Which of these two men would you like to see in the White House?
With the US election three days away Diane Abbott and Dan Hannan go
head to head on whether Obama or Romney would be better for Britain.
And coming up here in Scotland: Is it time for a radical rethink of
Scotland's drug abuse strategy - as more people are becoming addicts
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 1842 seconds
If you're worried about the debt you should be worried about Mitt
Romney. How does he make the deficits good? This is why the
Washington Post and be New York Times refused to endorse them.
Their economic plans do not add up. He wants massive unfunded tax cuts.
He wants an increase in its defence spending. The USA is already in
debt to the tune of 14 trillion. you look at the plan, it is a plan.
We know that with Barack Obama the deficit will draw. There is the
certainty of continued debt. people in Florida thought the plan
was good, Mitt Romney would have gone down. Nobody is going to
return to a balanced budget within one turn, but with Mitt Romney we
have somebody who will try. Even Barack Obama's foreign policy is
alien to British values. There has been a rise in drones over Pakistan.
There is no progress in Middle East peace. I regret the use of drones.
But he has taken America out of a rut -- out of Iraq. Would it be a
return it to Bouch? He implies he is prepared to attack Iran. He
knows nothing about Britain or Europe. He said there was a
cultural component in the success of his real compared to the rest of
the region. He had no kind words. That is not the same as despising
the Palestinians. He said they did not want peace. Under both US
presidents there will be forced on the table as an option as there was
in Libya. I was not big on the Iraq war or the Afghanistan war. But to
say that they should not be any possibility of taking any kind of
action is not responsible. action is on the Pacific Rim. He
does not care about Europe and the UK. Barack Obama's foreign policy
is cheaper. Mitt Romney is more likely to bomb Iran. The who will
win? Barack Obama. If turnout is right it will be Barack Obama.
Therefore I will put my money on Good morning.
As Holyrood prepares to debate the Scottish governments drugs strategy
and will be finding out if this residential rehab centre for
addicts is only half full. Alex Salmond is set to become the
longest serving First Minister of Scotland. How has he done?
And more on the race to the White House. Does the Trident debate give
Holyrood and presented focus in Washington.
An emergency summit is to be held next month to discover why
occupancy rates at Scotland's residential drug treatment centres
are sold. With Holyrood debating the drug strategy this week one
addiction expert says the residential option is dying off in
Scotland. There is a bright future for one
recovering drug addict. majority of my peer group are doing
well. Without this project I do not know where I would be. This man it
spent 20 years on methadone until his spell in residential rehab.
More than 24,000 people are given methadone in Scotland. The
programme is under review after deaths linked to methadone. The
Liberal Democrats say the programme should not be used as a scapegoat
for what is a complex issue. Labour say methadone is not working. The
Conservatives are calling for more residential sectors.
There are some incredible stories of recovery, but there is a warning
that places like this may not survive in the long term in
Scotland. The residential sector is dying.
need to know whether we want it to die. When we compare like with like,
residential treatment is no more expensive than other forms of
treatment. Since last year residential treatment centres have
been reporting low levels of occupancy. In Inverness it stands
at 40 %. Banner measures to some it is being held next month to find
out why people are not being repaired. The policy is there.
There is a grassroots momentum. There may be something in the
middle blocking it. It may not be one thing or one person. It may be
101 different things. Although supporters of residential rehab I
knew it is cost-effective there are equally strong arguments about cost
on the other side and also on the benefits of methadone. It decreases
the death-rate in those were prescribed it at least five or six
cold. It decreases drug abuse and crime. It might be possible to get
drug three and even mentally healthy while staying in a country
house somewhere, but they have to come back, usually to the council
estate where they live. A at a debate about treatment continues
their race is on to find effective strategies to help the 65,000
people struggling with drug addiction.
Joining me now in the studio are Ruth Davidson and William Rennie.
Also joining the is Mark McDonald. Mike McDonald, and you will be one
of the key speakers in the debate. What is the policy of the
government on residential care? Very charitable to describe me as a
key speaker. Residential rehab has a role to play as part of the
bigotry that agenda. The figures that are being shown to me show
that there are low levels of waiting list for people who need
residential rehab. The issue is about need. It is around clinical
assessment of the needs of the individual. No two individuals are
the same when it comes to addiction and the need for rehabilitation. So
be to categorise residential rehab as a suitable for all addicts would
be a mistake. We have to offer a package of measures. Given that
there is a residential care package, it all comes as one, it seems that
from the numbers that we have discovered in a report, it has not
been used as widely as it was being used five years ago. Is that a
deliberate policy? Have you decided it is less effective than other
methods of treatment? What you need to do is offer a range of different
treatments, dependent on the needs of the individual. For some people
residential rehabilitation will be the most suitable option. You
package was talking about looking further ahead to a sum at which
will discuss these matters. I am sure that the government and all
politicians will be taking a keen interest to see what the outcome of
the sum that is. 40 % occupancy end summer residential rehabilitation
centres. As that concern you? it does. The one that has featured
in the package there is in my area of Glasgow. That is at 50 %. There
is a big problem in Glasgow. This is only have the story. You pack is
did not say that the number of rehab centres has been reduced to
23 since the new drug strategy for Scotland came in. Fewer beds and
still in some cases on they have of them are being filled. We have to
find out what the blockage is. People are not get any opportunity
to go in there. There seems to be a specific problem with referrals
into the system, rather than a specific policy decision, even
accepting what you have said about the fall in numbers. If you are to
have a sophisticated response to this what should be done? It should
be based on need. Budgets are tighter. Residential care is much
more expensive. I am sure that is a factor in commiseration. --
consideration. 1st May experts said that it is not this sally Moore
expensive. -- it is not Mrs Sally more expensive. -- are not more
expensive. You need to have the support mechanisms. You have now
got things like recovery cafes which create a support network for
people to get into. They can extract themselves from their
environment that slip into drugs. It is not for politicians to decide
what kind of care people should get. It should be left that to the
health professionals. They work with this day in and day out.
Politicians do not know how to deal with the decisions. Leave it to the
health professionals. Just to clarify the policy, I know that you
say it is dependent on the individual and that would be
reflected in how the doctors allocate places and what a treat at
the pink is appropriate, but if the number of residential
rehabilitation unit has closed down and there is this ongoing under
occupancy and the number of drug users is increasing and the number
of drug death is increasing, this would seem to suggest that the
policy is dead. We have the lowest level of drug users and the
population for one decade. It is constantly in decline. We have the
lowest numbers among its young people using drugs for one decade.
That is the backdrop to which the debate should be framed. You have
to profile the services that should be offered. I think William Rennie
and aye are clear on this. It is about need. The point is about
clinicians taking the best decisions on behalf of the
individuals. If you ask clinicians what people need they will take the
decision that is most appropriate for the individual. Just to clarify
the statistics. The estimated number of individuals with a drug
problem in Scotland A's 59,000, compared with 55,000 in 2006. That
is an estimated increase of 4,300 individuals since 2006. There is a
particular problem with the number of women regarding drug fatalities.
That figure has jumped to 117 % increase. It shows that methadone
is reasonably successful. It is quite effective at keeping people
alive and healthy. That is part of the reason why these numbers have
changed. That is the reality. you look at the methadone programme
and leaving aside the cost, even though it is a huge cost, there is
also the cost in lives. More people now died taking methadone then be
to taking heroin. It cost lives. When the drug strategy was brought
in, drug deaths was cited as one of the reasons. That was one of the
reasons why needed strategy to work. Look at the soaring numbers. The
number has gone up. One of the reasons that we were so supportive
of the drug strategy was to be wanted treatment to be part of a
cure so that people could be help of long term at use. Met the don't
can stabilised people's lives, but some people need to be put on a
reducing does so that they do not spend 20 years on it. A I am not
suggesting we should not have different approaches. But you said
it was a simplistic approach. problem with what Ruth Davidson is
saying is that she is saying that methadone as part of the problem.
But the good that she quotes -- the figures that she courts include
other drugs. What about the tone of the debate? The Daily record
campaign was deplorable. It was unacceptable. Methadone has changed
the lives of drug users dramatically. Russia does not have
the programme that Scotland has got. HIV rates among subjecting drug
users in the Russia is 35 %. It is below five % year. That is
staggering. We should not blame methadone for that problem. This
overall strategy and it was introduced have wide support. Will
that support hold or does this strategy you require to be refined?
The support is there for the strategy. The comments of Ruth
Davidson are over the top. We do not want to see people dying as a
result of drug use whatever drug that may be, but we are talking
about less than one-fifth of drug users in treatment or on prescribed
drugs. There is a big picture out there. To focus the debate so
narrowly on to the use of methadone misses the bigger picture. I would
hope that the Scottish Conservatives when they come to the
debate will have something more to say that simply bashing the
methadone programme. Do you accept that the bigger picture includes
deprivation, poverty, lack of job opportunity in many of the
communities? Absolutely. There are a range of different factors that
affect an individual becoming a drug user. One of the. It was made
earlier during the discussion was around support. I have met a number
of organisations who are supporting families to enable them to support
the individual because one of the worst things that can happen is if
the individual loses their ties to the family. We need to look at it
as our whole strategy. We need to look at how are families and others
can play a role in the support of the individual. And you'll have
Alex Salmond will soon become the longest serving First Minister. How
has he done? We have been looking back. The modern Scottish
Parliament has seen four first ministers.
Death took Donald Stewart, a so- called middle over office removed
Henry McLeish. Defeat did for Jack McConnell, but Alex Salmond goes on.
This is him arriving at this week's First Minister's Questions, a
familiar routine five years after he first got the job. He often
starts conversations with advises asking, are we winning? In recent
years, the answer has been yes, but sometimes only just. The 2007
elections saw Mr Salmond to beat Labour by a slim margin, just one
seat, but it was enough. I heard a rumour. I think we won the
election! I think the election of Alex Salmond as the first SNP First
Minister of Scotland was significant, because until then
they were just an oppositional party, marginal to British politics
and devolution. Even after devolution, it took a number of
years before the SNP were fit to govern. One of his first challenges
was winning the Commonwealth Games for Glasgow. He lobbied delegates
and voters. It was a formula which would deliver him the biggest
victory of his political career four years later. I heard another
rebuff. We have won another election! It certainly was an
endorsement of Alex Salmond, but also the team that he had built
around him. That is one of his skills, the teams he built around
him. It was about his vision for the future. His days as First
Minister have not been uncontroversial, not least the
release of the Lockerbie bomber. The last fortnight has probably
been his worst as a row has reached over EU legal advice. But the
politician remains personally popular. He is doing extremely well
by any yardstick. Only in recent times could Tony Blair in his
heyday have had ratings which exceed where Sam and -- Alex
Salmond is. Alex Salmond is more popular. It is no coincidence that
support for independence is going down, support for the SNP is going
down, and satisfaction with the First Minister is going down, and
that is all happening at the same time. And that is tied up with the
referendum. Alex Salmond's place in Scottish history does but depend on
the length of his service as First Minister. Delivering the referendum
guarantees he will be remembered. His next challenge will be winning
that vote. Victory, and he will be in the job for many more years to
come. Defeat, and his time as First Minister it may be more limited.
With me now is Murray Ritchie, the longest serving Scottish Political
Editor of the Herald. That itself deserves an award! And in an hour
and the studio, Henry McLeish, former Labour First Minister.
If you look at Alex Salmond's personal journey, he has
fundamentally changed personal positions on NATO, most recently,
on the monarchy, on Stirling, yet he has always maintained his social
justice position. What does that tell us? He is obviously the major
figure in Scottish politics by a mile row. He has changed his
position of all the parties on major issues. If you look now at
the Labour Party, their attitude on Trident has changed. Johann Lamont
has embraced Trident now, and that is a weapon in store for the SNP.
The Tories, David Cameron has said that if we reject independence,
there will be a new constitutional settlement for Scotland, which is
new. The Tories have not said that for a while. The last time they
said it, it turned up to Peter Reid -- to be true. And the Liberals are
rediscovering federalism. They are talking about a federal Scotland if
we reject independence. So he is not just changing SNP policy, but
the policies of the other parties as well. This is all down to the
SNP's success in the last election and his leadership which was the
major factor in that success. he is not a man he was burdened by
self doubt. What is the balance here? If you have someone he was
very dynamic and can have the sort of influence that Murray has
outlined, you cannot afford to be coming across as arrogant to the
public. What kind of balance is he striking? The balance he strikes is
the one that in politics, it is always better to get respect and to
be like to -- light. He does not show popularity in all quarters of
Scotland, but he does show dynamic leadership. He is changing the face
of Scottish politics. More importantly, he is also defined the
laws of politics by winning the majority in 2007. Parliament was
set up in Scotland to make sure that did not happen. He has brought
his party from being a protest party on the fringe to being a
majority force in Scotland. The tea -- the judicious combination of
Scottishness and firm leadership has won through with the public.
The public do not support independence to any great extent,
but they have nevertheless voted for competent government and a
Scotland that is moving forward. Unlike predecessors, including
myself, he does speak for the nation. This is the important
difference. He is the lead of Polly route, but also a national leader.
That is important when they are discussing constitutional issues.
You are right. Alex can be arrogant, he can be insistent on things, but
look also at the fact that he has shown courage. The Libyan bombing
incident, that was good for Scotland, not liked by the public
at the time, but a fair decision, and he took it. Just before we
leave this, I use saying that Johann Lamont, as leader of
Scottish Labour in Holyrood, she cannot speak for Scotland?
course she can, she aspires to be the leader in that parliament and
to be a national leader. That is not the issue. Since the Alex
Salmond's election, he has dominated Scottish politics, and
the reason for that is that the Unionist parties have lost traction
in the post devolution period. He has taken the idea of Scottishness,
the Saltire, patriotism and pride, and he has wrapped his party around
it. The other parties have failed to do that. The other parties could
learn from the First Minister's and reconfigure their policies. That is
the great weakness, currently top of the Unionist parties. Let me
give you a quote from the former chair of the Scottish Council for
Voluntary organisations. She said that loyalties were negotiable, but
now politics is a punter free zone of poisonous tribalism. Is that a
picture you recognise? Yes, it is. I think there is a poisonous
tribalism in Scottish politics. I can go back to the days of the
original Scottish Labour Party. But the vitriol that was poured on some
people at that time was awful. This is the attitude that a lot of
senior people in the Scottish Labour Party have, you are either
for us are your against us. -- or you are against us. All the parties
have to recognise that the parliament was supposed to be
consensual, the opposite of the Westminster adversarial system. We
were supposed to work together a lot more. When you watch First
Minister's Questions now, as I do it my retirement, it is not
inspiring to watch people standing up and reading scripted insults and
name-calling. We have to rise above that. Henry, I'll have to ask you
to come back to that later, because you are both staying with us, and
we will be looking at the American election and some of the latest
from the newspapers, but right now, let's cross over to London for the
race with -- news with Maxine Mawhinney and Andrew Kerr.
Good afternoon. The US presidential candidates are heading into the
final two days of campaigning, with the outcome still too close to call.
The latest survey suggests that Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are
level, with 48% each of support. No matter how bad a storm is, we
bounced back. No matter how tough times are, we are all in this
together. We rise or fall as one nation and one people.
A final push for votes as the clock ticks towards Tuesday's vote.
Barack Obama is asking for more time to change America. The former
president was brought into help him make his case. His challenger at
Mitt Romney is not letting up either. Both candidates are truth -
- are frantically trying to attract undecided voters in battleground
states. The economy is the big issue of this election.
question of this election can stand this. Do you want more of the same,
what do you want real change? Barack Obama promised change, but
he could not deliver it. I promise change, and I have a record of
achieving change. The two contenders both have a punishing
Schedule ahead of them today. Barack Obama will go to New
Hampshire and then Florida and Ohio. Mitt Romney will go to Ohio first
and then to Pennsylvania. In this vast country, millions of Americans
have already cast their ballots in the early voting to. I am voting
for Barack Obama. He is making some changes. I feel like with Barack
Obama being in office for the next election, things will change for
the better in America, regardless. An opinion poll today but the
candidates each at 48%, with just two days of campaigning left. The
election is still too close to call. Previously unseen text messages
between David Cameron and Rebekah Brooks have been published by the
Mail on Sunday. The messages are from a series of text messages and
e-mails handed to Lord Justice Leveson during his media standards
inquiry. The Children's Commissioner for
Wales has backed calls for a new inquiry into the abuse of children
in care homes in North Wales in the 1970s and 80s. The commissioner
says he suspects a group of people were protected, enabling MPs to
continue. Winter is definitely here and snow
has been falling in the South West of England, covering parts of
Somerset and Wiltshire in up to three inches of the white stuff. He
was have sent in their pictures of the snow. It has already caused
disruption on the roads as well as a suspended do service this morning.
That is all the news for now. There is more news on BBC One at 5:50pm.
Good afternoon. A huge piece of an aircraft carrier is to be floated
in the Clyde. It is the last part of a ship to be moved to Rosyth.
Stephen Cottrell is at the BAE yard systems -- BAE Systems yard in
Govan. This is the largest section of the
Queen Elizabeth class career built here in Govan. It will be assembled
in Fife. The process of getting it there has already been affected by
the weather. The original plan was to take it round the northern tip
of Scotland, but it will now go around the southern coast of
Scotland. It will be in Fife in nine days.
Trains between Dundee and Aberdeen are suspended after a minor
derailment. The cross-country service came off the tracks that
Inverkeilor in Angus before 10am today. No-one was injured. It is
not clear when the line will reopen. The Aberdeen shares in at -- Emeli
Sande was a big win at the medal awards last night. She scooped
three separate titles. The event was held in Liverpool.
The showers we have had in the South and West will begin to pull
away into the Atlantic, and then the bulk of the country will be dry
and bright, with sunshine in the North and West. Today, we have a
south-easterly wind which is coming off the North Sea, so cloudier in
the North East. Top temperature, Strap yourselves in. It is time for
With the in the studio is Dr Christopher Carman from Strathclyde
University. Still with me is Murray Ritchie and Henry McLeish. Looking
at their headlines today regarding the presidential election, it has
been described as the longest, got ears, silliest election ever.
There are some of the other headlines. How are you calling it
at this stage? Their close. There is a disconnect between national
polls and state level polls. The national polls have it very close.
The state level polls are the interesting ones. Or high York is a
big one. Wisconsin and Florida at others. -- Ohio. It is where the
polls break in these states. We are interested in Ohio, Wisconsin -
they are breaking four or armour -- they are breaking for Barack Obama.
If we look at the possibility of a Trident free Scotland and a nuclear
disarmed UK how would that be seen in the White House? Mitt Romney
tends to reflect Barack Obama in some of these big issues. Mitt
Romney kept saying he supported a lot of what Barack Obama had said
in the third televised debate. They have not specifically committed on
Trident, but I would speculate they would both be in favour of keeping
Trident actor of. They would be in favour of a strong NATO. If we look
at something else, Gordon Brown is saying that an independent Scotland
would be a British colony. He said under SNP plans that would be
perfect. What you think of that and by
saying it now? It is unfortunate that the word Colonial has been
used. It was a thoughtful piece. He is saying that no matter what the
relationship between Scotland and the UK is after independence, we
will still be dealing with the United Kingdom. For me it does
highlight the point that we're based with two options.
Independents or Unionism. If you read between the lines of the
Gordon Brown article he is saying we need more devolution. I suspect
that idea of being part of the UK is acceptable to most Scots, but I
want to see more home rule powers. I think basically that Gordon Brown
is reinforcing my message. What about the timing? He has been
below the radar or a lot of this. That is true. I have spoken to
Gordon Brown over the last six months about his views on the
constitutional question. I did he has shifted in his view. He does
not have much truck with independence. On other hand
hopefully he will start to argue that secures Scotland in the UK is
the best bet for the future. If you do not want independence let us
have maximum home rule. With an independent Scotland be a British
colony? He was talking about the Bank of England under control might
have over the Scottish economy. The bag of England is a British
institution and therefore some of it belongs to Scotland. Alex
Salmond will welcome Gordon Brown coming back into the political
scene and asking questions. This referendum will be won or lost on
the economy. If enough people could be persuaded that they would be
better off, the SNP would win the referendum. We should welcome
Political magazine presented by Andrew Neil and Isabel Fraser. Including UKIP leader Nigel Farage, and David Willetts on Lord Heseltine's growth plan.