Andrew Neil and Gordon Brewer with the latest political news, interviews and debate.
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Morning folks, and welcome to the Sunday Politics.
After Friday's failed coup, the crackdown in Turkey begins
with thousands of arrests and threats of retribution,
including the death penalty for rebels.
What does the turmoil mean for Turkey's future,
Nato and the fight against Islamic State?
I wish you all the best and I am supporting you all the way. Do I get
a hug? Jeremy Corbyn's confident
that his fans will ensure he's re-elected - but he tells us
that the rules of Labour's leadership election are unfair
and the party's national executive She was a "Remainer"
but Theresa May's promised to deliver on the voters' verdict
and take us out of the EU - but how quickly will Brexit come
and what should it look like? Coming up on
Sunday Politics Scotland: I'll be talking
to the First Minister, And Labour MSP Neil Findlay will be
explaining why he's launching Since we broadcast last week,
a new Prime Minister, a new government, carnage in Nice
and an attempted coup in Turkey. The unexpected is now
commonplace, major news events But one thing that doesn't change
here on Sunday mornings is that we always bring you the best
and the brightest political panel in the business -
Steve Richards, Isabel Oakeshott So Friday night's attempted army
coup in Turkey failed and President Erdogan has moved
ruthlessly to re-establish He says the coup was "a gift from
God" because it gives him a reason A major clampdown on dissent is now
widely anticipated, Let's get the latest
from our Correspondent Is it underway? Is it expected to be
pretty ruthless? Yes. It is underway. The crackdown has already
taken place. Around 3000 soldiers have been detained including
high-ranking generals and around 3000 judges have been dismissed from
their posts. Many judges have also been detained. President Recep
Tayyip Erdogan had already said that those behind the coup attempt would
be paying a heavy price and that is what we are seeing at the moment.
Many people think that the crackdown will further deepen. The government
thinks that the movement of Fethullah Gulen is behind this
attempt. That is something that Fethullah Gulen denies. He is a
cleric based in Pennsylvania, Annex aisle who used to be on good terms
with the government, and Mr Hird one himself. -- Mr Erdogan. Fethullah
Gulen has said he has been involved includes himself, but he played no
part in this one. Although the square would normally be packed with
hundreds of tourists, the beauty of Istanbul being celebrated, but last
night it was a different story, packed with hundreds of supporters
of the government, chanting slogans like, God is great, in protest of
the coup attempt. They adhered to the call coming from President
Erdogan to take it out to the streets. They were jubilant because
they felt empowered, in the part they played in suppressing the coup
attempt. If there was a source of resistance to President is Erdogan,
it was not the army, and I would suggest that he is going to take
over the army, and he will have complete control. He was already
pretty authoritarian before this happened. Is Turkey now in danger of
a dictatorship? That is a question that many people asked. In Turkey
and in the world. People who do not necessarily aligned themselves with
the government policies were already cautious about Mr Erdogan's
tendencies about getting more executive powers. It is no secret
that President Erdogan once to change the parliamentary system in
Turkey to a presidential system which would give him powers that no
other president has seen before in Turkey. And now that he has managed
to suppress this coup attempt, many people in Turkey fear that this
could actually play into the hands of Mr Hird one, and turn the country
into an alt. Chrissie, as you have said. -- way into the hands of Mr
Erdogan. But on the other hand, Mr Erdogan's supporters are jubilant
and they think that this was a victory of democracy. Yesterday the
Turkish parliament convened an extraordinary session and all the
opposition parties supported the government. The portrayed a stand
against the coup attempt. The Prime Minister thanked them and said that
this could be a threshold moment for Turkish politics but considering
that Turkey is a polarised country and politics is divided, whether the
government can bring everybody together after these 48 hours of
trauma, it is a difficult task. They give very much. -- thank you very
much. We're joined by the Foreign Affairs
analyst, Tim Marshall. Let's look back at what happened
here. The Turkish army, traditionally does not like Islamist
leaning governments and has mounted three successful coups, turning
Turkey to a more secular at two secular government. What was this, a
gang that could not shoot straight or the keystone cops to make a bit
of both. It was white, they did most of the right things but they did not
have the depth above them. Above them, they had no support. They made
two massive errors. They did not kill President Erdogan. That is the
first thing you should do. I am not advocating it! It is a 101 guide to
coups! But that is paragraph one, kill or at least capture the
president. And shut down the media. They went to the state television,
and in the 20th century, all the media was in one building and you
would close it down. But they forgot that in the 21st-century, there was
CNN Turkey still on a, and they did not close down social media, so Mr
Erdogan, who hates social media and Twitter, pepper and --
hypocritically gets onto Facebook and says to Turkey, get into the
streets and because the coup is white and not deep, very soon the
call to prayer goes out, and they know it is not the proper time, and
it means going to the street. Within half an hour, the people outnumber
the troops and the pendulum swings the other way. If Turkey faces a
serious clamp-down, a move from authoritarianism to something
bordering on dictator -- a dictatorship, this surely has huge
obligations for Turkey's relations with America and the EU? And for the
fight with Islamic State. This goes from being a domestic event to one
with regional and geopolitical implications. And a Nato member.
It's funny, we talk about him all the time, but as your correspondent
It's funny, we talk about him all said, this is a parliamentary
republic, where traditionally the president is simply a figurehead but
because he is so dominant and has total control of the HK party, all
he had to do was switch from one job to the next. And all the power went
with him because of the atmosphere at not because of the law. But he
tried last year to move the powers legally into his office. He is
closing down the media, he is now getting rid of the remnants in the
Army that art not with him, and he has the support of the mosques and
parliament. It is becoming a democratic dictatorship, a phrase I
came up with for the loss of itch in Serbia, you bring two new radio
stations out that broadcast so loudly that free speech is still
allowed, but it cannot be heard. Remember the Civil War was the
Kurds? That will just be utterly ruthless. This is a hugely historic
event in Turkey's history because previous army coups have won and he
will now take out the army as an independent force and it will become
much more authoritarian, perhaps even autocratic. Where does this
leave Western relations with Turkey? I think we can agree that it is not
going to join the European Union any time soon so we can scotch that one.
I think the ultimate dilemma must be for Nato. It is a security
organisation but it is also an organisation defined by certain
values and practices and if President Erdogan responds to the
coup attempt by tightening freedoms further, by intervening against the
judiciary and the Armed Forces further, then there must be a
dilemma at some stage for Nato. I thought it might have been telling
that three or four hours, I don't know if Tim agrees, for the US at
least, if not Nato, to say anything about the coup, when they did they
did not mention President Erdogan by name. I don't know if that suggests
they know what side there bread is buttered on and they were waiting to
see if the coup would succeed. But it is a huge event for the West and
Turkey. The state was founded on secular ideals. The Armed Forces
have always been seen as an invigilator of government. I am
right in saying that the Turkish president has never been
commander-in-chief, officially, in the way that a US president would
be. Or a French president. Many people think that what he wants to
do is create an executive style French presidency. You would still
have a parliament and a Prime Minister but it would be the
president that matters, rather than just being head of state. Turkey has
been so pivotal, first of all in dealing with the migrant crisis in
the eastern Mediterranean, with the situation in Syria, and Islamic
State, and in the region as a regional superpower that balances
Iran and even Saudi Arabia. We don't know where this is going to lead
now. And has been talk for a long time about how it is massively in
the interest of the West to have a stable Turkey. It has not been
stable for some time and it will not be, even if this coup was a somewhat
silly, ill thought through coup, it is clearly destabilising and will
have consequences for a long time to come. I would be interesting to -- I
would be interested to hear from Tim whether the EU has some leveraged
because Turkey's desire to join it. That dynamic, although clearly not
the agenda in spite of the farcical things said during the referendum
campaign, that gives the EU some leveraged in reshaping what happens
in Turkey. You wonder if that is even on his mind. It will not be.
But the president has so many domestic fish to fry, and that might
not be a very good metaphor given what he is about to do. If he is
about to reintroduce the death penalty, it becomes very difficult
to talk about Turkey being part of the EU. What do our diplomats do? It
is in our interest to encourage the dreamer but it does not look
compatible with the way that things are being carried out. Remarkably,
these events in Gneiss had been overshadowed by Turkey and yet it
only happened on Thursday night and this is Sunday morning. I suggest
that the reaction in France to Nice is going to be very different.
Charlie Hebdo, the Bataclan, there was great solidarity and it brought
France together. I think this is different because people have had
enough and it is different because there are clear security questions.
No barrier on the promenade. We are told that there was a barrier when
the military parades took place but it was removed after words, and
already the politicians are ganging up on the government and this is
becoming a major pre-election issue. That's right. The election is next
year and Marine Le Pen is positioning herself very strongly
with the National Front. There is a public divided on how to approach it
and even if this is not Islamic State, and I am not convinced that
it is, it happens in the context of Islamic State and of mass slaughter
in the name of something. It is another chip away at our freedoms.
And that is, in itself, a success. They are going to continue. I
believe the rise of the right is far from Peking. And it plays absolutely
into next year's presidential election. Going back from the
presidential election, that all comes into what the EU is going to
look like. We are in a state of flux. You are old enough, forgive
me, Andrew, to know that everybody always says it has never been as bad
as now and it is always untrue. But it is actually more corrugated than
I have ever known it. And you may agree. I do agree.
The Conservatives completed their leadership contest
in a matter of days, Labour's has barely begun.
There are now two candidates standing against Jeremy Corbyn -
Angela Eagle and Owen Smith - but the Labour Leader has told us
that the rules which exclude recently signed up members
from voting in the contest are unfair and he wants
the party's national executive to change them.
Adam Fleming went for a walk in the park with Mr Corbyn.
This is the lake that was built here in the 19th century,
rather strange lake on the top of the hill.
I went for a stroll round the Labour leader's
favourite local beauty spot - Finsbury Park in north London.
Do you have time to take a casual stroll with a journalist
Yes, because doing things in a relaxed way is important,
and doing other things is important, so going to a park, being in your
However busy I am, my allotment is tended.
It's in good order, we had a good crop of broad beans and we ate
A slightly less relaxing part of his week.
At a meeting of Labour's national executive on Tuesday,
Jeremy Corbyn secured an automatic place in the leadership election.
But he's not happy with new rules that say people who joined the party
There's going to be some quite intense discussions over the next
few days, I suspect, and I hope our party officials
and National Executive will see sense on this and recognise
that those people who have freely given their time and money to join
the Labour Party should be welcomed in and given the opportunity to take
part in this crucial debate, whichever way they decide to vote.
I'm hoping there will be an understanding that it is simply
not very fair to say to people that joined the party in the last six
months, "sorry, your participation is no longer welcome
because we are having a leadership contest."
In the next few days, various Labour factions will be
racing to sign people up as registered supporters,
It costs ?25, not ?3 like in the last contest.
For people who can't afford the 25 quid, what would you suggest
If they can't afford the ?25, what they do?
It seems to me the ?25 bar is quite high and not really reasonable.
A lot of people have said to me, people stop me in the street saying,
"I would love to vote in this election but I can't afford ?25."
He is also disappointed that virtually all local party meetings
have been suspended over fears of intimidation.
I haven't stopped party meetings taking place and I actually
I think party meetings should take place.
Intimidation of any sort by anybody is absolutely wrong,
but to cancel meetings because of the perception that
intimidation might take place I think is a big mistake.
The issues appear to be that where meetings have taken place,
far more people have attended than were expected and so there has
been issues about how people can get in the room,
whereas there's a fairly simple answer to that -
Talking of meetings, who was he with when Theresa May
was taking over as Prime Minister earlier this week?
I was with an all-party group, including Conservatives,
talking to two of the Miami five who had been in prison
in Miami and were released by the court decisions of USA
and the new rapprochement with Cuba and actually welcoming the fact
there had been an agreement reached in Cuba.
I was actually with Conservatives and Labour people.
I was there for about 20 minutes, then I went back to my office
And so you felt that was a good use of your time at that point
when the country was transitioning from one Prime Minister to another?
Informing yourself by listening to people from all kinds of walks
This morning I was on the phone to friends in Istanbul and Ankara
And so when an issue happens anywhere in the world,
obviously I read all the briefings that I've been given,
obviously I follow the news and information, but also I quite
often know people in different places around the world so I call
Can I get a hug for that?
He also seems to know a lot of people in this park.
What do you think about Angela Eagle and Owen Smith
I have been trying to unregister from the Green Party so that I can
register with the Labour Party so that I can support you.
We were walking round with Jeremy Corbyn,
What did you shout out when you saw him?
I don't know what I said, something awful like...
Something like "you've ruined the Labour Party".
Something like, "step aside and stop ruining the Labour Party," I guess.
And I couldn't let Jeremy go without introducing him to the craze
sweeping the nation, Pokemon Go.
He didn't seem that bothered but then he's playing a much bigger
game, trying to hold onto his job, and that's no walk in the park.
Our work this morning has not been in vain.
And a longer version of that interview with Jeremy Corbyn
We're joined now from Salford though by the Shadow
Education Secretary, Angela Rayner.
Welcome to the programme. Jeremy Corbyn wants to allow people who
joined in the last six months of your party to vote, he thinks the
?25 fee is too high. Isn't it just typical of the chaos Labour is now
in that you are holding a leadership contest before you have agreed
rules? Good morning, I think it's important we recognise the Labour
Party is transformed with now over half a million members joined, which
is fantastic. We are the largest democratic social party across
Europe. For me it is about democracy. I asked about the rules,
should you be having a contest before you have agreed rules? The
rules were decided at the NEC meeting which lasted seven hours,
quite a lengthy marathon... You want to change them? People need to
reflect upon the current situation and there has been outrage. 130,000
people have joined since the referendum, and we have got to give
them the opportunity to have their voice heard. Have these 130,000 that
joined after the referendum been properly vetted? That is a situation
that the NEC and our party has got to approve and go through. We did it
last time, we had a huge number of people join our party recently. Have
that number been vetted or not? You have got to allow democracy. What we
do is we ensure we get more people, more staff, more ability to deal
with that issue because democracy is important, it is enshrined. Hold on,
you are starting the leadership campaign and you still haven't
vetted those who may be allowed to vote, that's what I mean by chaos,
if not fast. I don't think it's chaotic to have over half a million
people join our party and want to have a say, it is a positive step.
It is if you cannot vet them come you don't know if they are members
of the Socialist workers party, the Greens, the Communists, the National
front, the Conservatives. You have no idea. We have 130,000 people who
have joined in the last three weeks, which the Conservative Party have
around 150,000 members per se. We have over half a million members so
we are doing a great job. The Trotskyists and other groups you are
suggesting may be trying to join our party, they are not in the great
numbers we see at the moment. It is important to give people a say about
the future of our country and party. I love democracy. Will you
definitely be voting for Mr Corbyn this time because you didn't last
time. No, I supported Andy Burnham last time, but I recognise Jeremy
Corbyn had a significant mandate to lead our party. I don't think it's
time to have a leadership contest. I will not be nominating another
candidate, I will be recognising our democratically elected leader. I
asked who you will be voting for. I will be supporting -- our
democratically elected leader. Can you say the words, I will vote for
Jeremy Corbyn? I have made it clear what my position is, and that's
about democracy and our members making... Are you or aren't you? I
have told you I will be supporting our democratically elected leader of
our party. I want to hold the Government to account, we have a
bill coming up on Tuesday... I'm puzzled, are you voting for Mr
Corbyn? Your viewers want to see us holding this Government to account.
I have tried to answer your question but you don't want to listen to my
answer. Could you name the person you will be voting for in this
election? I will be listening to our membership and in the meantime
holding the Government to account and supporting our democratically
elected leader of our party, which is Jeremy Corbyn. A new poll shows
Theresa May leads Jeremy Corbyn 58% to 19, on who would make the better
Prime Minister. It shows 40% of Labour voters think Theresa May
would make a better Prime Minister. Why are you backing, if you are, I'm
still not clear, why are you backing a loser? Our party is seen as quite
divided and divided parties never win elections. We don't disagree on
policy points, we have to get our policy points across to the
electorate and then they will decide. Theresa May has the
challenge of bringing her Conservative Party together. There
was no competition, no democracy within the Conservative Party in
terms of who they wanted as leader. She has a job to do because the
country has never been more divided than it is now and that's directly
as a result of the Conservatives. You all seem to have a job to do.
Speaking of Mrs May, is the Labour Party now the nasty party? No,
Theresa May had it right, the Conservatives continue to be so.
They are cutting education funding by up to 8% in this Parliament, they
want to prioritise the NHS and have already been creeping that in. They
are not on the side of ordinary people in this country. Theresa May
has said she wants the Conservatives to be a party for everybody and
working people across the country. Now her words have to be matched by
actions. Let me ask you this about Labour. Meetings of constituency
Labour parties have been suspended from fear of intimidation. There are
death threats and violence, a brick thrown through the window of the
office block where Angela Eagle's constituency is housed. Police have
had to investigate. I ask again, is it not Labour that is the nasty
party? I think any act of abuse and intimidation is disgusting in
politics and many politicians from all sides of the house have had
death threats and threats of violence, and that has got to be
stamped out of a modern democracy. Why is it in the Labour Party this
is happening? It happens across the spectrum in politics and it is
disgusting. But it cannot stop democracy either, we have got to
continue to uphold and enshrined our democracy in everything we do
because it is important. It means a lot to a lot of people but you
cannot win on democracy by abusing, threatening and intimidating the
other side of the argument. You have got to have a constructive debate
and people have got to have their democratic right to vote. Thanks for
being with us this morning. Now, despite signing up
to David Cameron's Remain strategy, our new Prime Minister has put
navigating the UK's departure from the EU and retaining
the union at the centre We're joined now by the Conservative
MP and former attorney-general The appointment of three key Cabinet
positions to Brexiteers - Boris Johnson, David Davis,
and Liam Fox - reflects this. A few days before his appointment,
the Brexit Secretary set out how he'd proceed
with separation from the EU. He said triggering new trade talks
were a priority and wanted the UK
to negotiate free-trade deals with Mr Davis believes the UK should not
budge on control of our borders, but the tariff-free access to the EU
single market is still his preferred The Brexit Secretary
acknowledged that talks with the Scottish, Welsh, and
Northern Ireland governments And Theresa May made the first step
on Thursday, telling Nicola Sturgeon in Edinburgh
that she is willing to listen to options on Scotland's future
relationship Mrs May said Britain
would not rush into Brexit negotiations and would need
some time to prepare. However, Mr Davis said
Article 50 should be and mean Britain would be out
of the EU by January We're joined now by the Conservative
MP and former attorney-general Dominic Grieve, who campaigned
for Remain, and the Labour MP who chaired the Vote Leave campaign,
Gisela Stewart. We are joined by Dominic Grieve and
the chairman of the boat Leave campaign, Gisela Stuart. -- Vote
Leave. As Theresa May delivered? I think she has. I think it was
important that you made clear that Brexit meant Brexit. We had to make
a clear that there was no second referendum in the offering. That
required certainty for the country. Are you satisfied with that? I am
completely satisfied with her approach, yes. It is clear that the
vote, as expressed in the referendum, has to be respected. We
have to take forward a programme for removing the United Kingdom from the
EU. Really that is going to be an immensely comported process and it
also carries with it economic risks, certainly in the short to medium
term. I am also open-minded as to how one best does that. I think
we're going to have to respond to events as well as trying to shape
them. We have seen a blueprint published by my friend and
colleague, David Davis, about Britain's outside the EU. I expect
that 99.9% of conservatives would subscribe to that but getting to it
is more congregated. We need to unpick this bit by bit. When do we
trigger article 50? You need to go in reverse, like a reverse accession
process. The most important thing is trade negotiations. As I understand
that you cannot have a bilateral agreement unless you have notified
Article 50. But you must have some idea of the time? The sooner the
better. When do you think we should trigger article 50. I think we
should trigger at when there is some clarity as to what the scope of the
negotiations that will follow will be. This is the first big hurdle.
Clearly if our European partners do not want to negotiate with us at
all, even informally, prior to triggering Article 50, that might
presents difficulties but from the point of view of the Prime Minister,
she will make up her own mind. Actually getting some clear idea of
what it is that the United Kingdom is seeking in terms of a future
relationship is going to very important. And I think it is
impossible to give a particular time frame. But I agree with Gisela
Stuart. But the time frame has to work and it has to be done in good
time for the 2020 election, so you can work back from that. I think you
can, but I think that she needs, the Prime Minister needs to be given
maximum flexibility about this because boxing herself in to how she
goes about what is going to be one of the most difficult political
transformations this country has gone through in modern times, I
think that requires pragmatism. Does it require a vote of Parliament to
trigger Article 50? Not necessarily. Let's come back to something. This
is not just about our relationship with the EU, it is our relationship
with the rest of the world. Triggering Article 50 has also been
interpreted into how we talk with other countries. But we can talk
with them without concluding deals? But in terms of negotiations, there
comes a point that to make it meaningful, you have to trigger it.
But I want to ask you, do we need a vote in parliament to trigger
Article 50? Undoubtedly. It is a matter of convention. The idea that
a government could take a decision of such massive importance to the
United Kingdom without Parliamentary approval, it seems to me to be
extremely far-fetched. It is not about law. It is about convention
and reality. Do you agree? I can see the arguments from both sides but I
don't think you absolutely have to do it. We have not got a lot of
time, would you vote for triggering Article 50? Yes. I have made it
quite clear that the result of the referendum must mean that we have to
be willing to embark on the process. I put in one rider to that which is
that it seems to me that any sensible decision has to be made at
the time you make it. But that is not a suggestion that I am going to
suddenly decide not to support triggering Article 50, but
triggering Article 50 is an important political step to withdraw
from the EU. One has to keep that in mind. Do you worry that people like
Dominic Grieve are teeing themselves up to call for a second referendum
on the nature of the deal we will do? I do. I think if there is one
on the nature of the deal we will thing the European Union is very
good at, it is that when political necessity is in the interest of both
sides, they are capable of rewriting the rules. So the European Union
itself has to look at the problems it faces, and then at what the best
deal is. There is a danger that those who do not like the outcome of
the referendum get themselves hooked on Article 50, rather than saying
that there is a new reality out there and we need to deal with that
in the interests of the United Kingdom. If you could bring it
about, you would have a second referendum, wouldn't you? Not
necessarily. The justification for having a second referendum is if the
circumstances that prevail at the time and justify it because there is
some legitimate question to put to the electorate. I am very wary of
circumscribing oneself. The referendum is no different from the
general election in this sense. It is a statement at the time of what
people want in terms of the way policy is taken forward. If people's
opinions change, it would be extraordinary. And I think the only
way you can judge that is by looking and listening to what people are
saying to you. Opinion polls can measure it. Like the opinion polls
that told you your site was going to win the referendum? I am not sure I
ever believe those polls. But they did. If you take a decision on the
base of those polls... But what is the question that one might be
asking. What the public have asked us to do is quite clear. They have
given, by a majority of 1.2 million people, not insubstantial, they have
said they want a fundamental change to the UK's relationship with the EU
and they see that relationship as being one where we are outside of
it. I have to respect that. And we have not got much time so I am going
to interrupt. You have had a good save. Gisela Stuart, here is the
point. There is a lot of people on the Labour side listening to Dominic
Grieve and nodding their heads. Owen Smith, one of the leadership
contenders, he basically wants a second referendum, and you are going
to have to start gearing up for that. Do you fear that this could be
foisted upon you? I think it would that. Do you fear that this could be
be a disastrous step because both political parties need to search why
they were so out of step with the electorate, particularly the Labour
Party. It is a Parliamentary democracy were we get elected to do
a job and that is to either hold the government to account or to be the
government. We have asked them and they have reflected, in large
numbers, they have said that we want to leave. And they expect us to get
on with the job. I am sorry to rush you but we have been short of time.
It's just gone 11.35, you're watching the Sunday Politics.
We say goodbye to viewers in Scotland and Wales, who leave us
Good morning and welcome to Sunday Politics Scotland.
Nicola Sturgeon tells this programme Theresa May did not tell her
the British Government would block a second independence referendum.
Labour's Neil Findlay is here to explain why
And if all that's not enough for you,
because Tory grandee and former Foreign Secretary
Sir Malcolm Rifkind is here too, with some entertaining views
on Boris Johnson, among other things.
On Friday, Theresa May made her first visit to Scotland
as Prime Minister and seemed to suggest that Article 50
would only be triggered with the agreement
Since then, there has been much speculation
could it only go ahead with Scotland's backing?
Such a move would put Nicola Sturgeon at the heart
But it would be at odds with what the new Brexit Minister
He has made it clear that he wants to see Article 50 enacted
Since the First Minister has made it clear she is determined
both positions surely cannot be tenable.
Well, shortly before we came on air, Nicola Sturgeon came into the studio
and I asked her if she believed she had a veto.
I didn't use that word, but I do think Scotland's got a strong
position right now. In the talks I had with Theresa May she said that
she would listen to options that the Scottish Government brings forward
to give effect to have Scotland voted within the wider UK context.
After the meeting she said she would not trigger article 50 unless she
thought she had a set of circumstances that were acceptable
to the whole of the UK. But she didn't say that to you.
It's an extension of what we talked about.
I think we've got a window of opportunity that -- between what is
back where we are now and the triggering of article 50, to see if
there is a way of effectively squaring the circle, a way that
Scotland can protect its relationship with the EU in line
with how Scotland voted. I am not going to sit here today and
say that is possible, there are significant challenges along the
way, but I've always -- also said repeatedly that I'm going to examine
all options to protect Scotland's's interests.
But you would be in favour of Scotland and ended the UK staying as
part of the single market? Of course. Is it your understanding
that if the Scotland Government says that has to be a bottom line in
whatever is being negotiated with Europe, that you could stop her
triggering article 50 and you get that?
I don't know did -- definitively what the answer to that is, we're in
the bizarre situation where the UK Government doesn't even appear yet
to know what relationship it is seeking to help with the European
Union. I've had over the last few days since Theresa May became Prime
Minister different ministers in her Government articulate different
positions on whether or not the UK should remain in the single market.
So I think we are at such an early stage of this process that it is not
possible to answer these definitively.
But did Theresa May says she would not trigger article 50 until she had
you on board? She said she would listen to all
options. Now, what exactly the interpretation
of that turns out to be, we will have to wait and see. But we have a
window of opportunity. We've already started work to look at, in these
unprecedented time, whether there are ways of protecting Scotland's
relationship within a UK context. Will that proved to be possible? I
can say at this stage, but I've got a duty to examine all options.
And if it proves impossible to protect the interests of Scotland,
jobs, investment, universities, our rights as citizens, within the UK,
then of course we have to have the option of considering independence
on the table. Before we move on, I want to ask you
something else about these discussions. She was very strong
afterwards in saying she didn't think there needed to be another
independence referendum. Did she, in your talks, say that the UK
Government would block you holding another referendum?
She didn't say she would block a referendum, and interestingly in the
interview I had afterwards she didn't say that after. -- either.
She said she didn't want Scotland to become independent, I don't think
anybody's going to be surprised that that is her position. But we've also
heard in recent days, the leader of the Scottish Conservatives, the
Secretary of State for Scotland, saying they don't think it would be
right if the UK blocked a referendum that wanted independence.
But did she say what Ms Davidson said, that they would not do that?
Our discussions were focusing on the process that is about to get
underway in the aftermath of the Brexit phone. I said already that in
the circumstances Scotland now finds itself in, which is facing exit from
the EU against its will, if in these circumstances a Scottish parliament
decided that the only way to protect our interests was to offer the
Scottish people the choice of independence, I find it
inconceivable that any UK Government stand on of that.
You seem a bit unclear on whether you have been handed a veto over the
triggering of article 50 or not. If you are asking whether I think
Theresa May will never ever trigger article 50 unless we are saying I am
happy with the direction the UK is taken, I don't know that is the
case, but she did seem to indicate that she wanted, as I want, to see
if we can find options that respect how Scotland voted, just as I
respect how England and Wales voted. So I'm going to take that window of
opportunity to see if we can find these options. That is in line with
what I committed to doing in the morning after the referendum.
Should it come to December when they might trigger article 50, and you
are not satisfied, but you are not on board, and the British Government
says, we are doing this anyway, realistically is there anything you
can do? I did this out the morning after the
referendum. I am also in parallel to this discussion is making sure that
the Scottish Parliament is making preparations to have another
independence referendum if we find ourselves in that position.
But would you take that as a trigger point for a referendum?
I don't want to get too far ahead, but of course that would be an
option that I would have to to consider.
What, in six months' time? Is whether we had found it
impossible to protect Scotland's interests in the UK. I am going to
play as far as I can, with a straight bat here, and come at this
Scotland's interests. Scotland's interests.
-- of protecting. But would you want a referendum of independence say in
the first half of next year? I will have one if I come to a
conclusion but I think that is in I will have one if I come to a
the interests of Scotland. I've always said that. My job is to seek
to protect Scottish interests. It would be up to the Scottish people
to decide whether they thought that was the way to go.
But it's up to you when it would be. Absolutely, I will seek to take
these decisions as far as I possibly can in line with what I judged to be
in the best interests of our economy, of business, of jobs, of
our universities, of our freedom to travel. All of these interests that
are no potentially seriously damaged by the Brexit vote. Where you
offered or do you expect to be offered as a Government, as you
personally, a formal role in the Brexit negotiations? I expect the
Scottish Parliament to be fully involved. But you would be
negotiating with Europe? This process, and I'm not trying to dodge
these questions, but my ability to answer this question rests on the UK
Government getting its act together. We don't yet know what shape this
process is going to take. Theresa May gave me a commitment to the
Scottish parliament being centrally involved in this process. So our
officials are already talking to those of the UK Government as they
begin to shape this process. But would you expect your officials to
be involved in negotiations with Europe alongside David Davis? Was
any formal offer made to you? Theresa May doesn't yet know what
this process looks like from a UK perspective. She has said we will be
centrally involved, but that extra bit of a commitment is that that is
not an involvement in a process that just accept as inevitable Scotland's
except from EU, it is a process that options that the Scottish Government
bring forward will be is considered. Is one of the things you would want
before you got on board the way Theresa May indicated, would you
want separate Scottish powers over immigration? That's one of those
issues were already, putting the Brexit vote to one side, there is a
tension between what is in the entrance of Scotland and what
appears to be the direction of the UK Government. We have a case now of
a family... But I'm want to smack I'm looking for an indication of
whether that is something you would want the power over. I'm not going
to get into specifics, because we don't yet know what the UK
Government is going to try to achieve or how this process is going
to go forward. But as to the issue of freedom of movement, we are in
the single market right now, we have freedom of movement, which is not
just the right of people to come to this party is my country, but the
right of all of us to go on travel and study in other countries,
Scotland voted to retain to all of these rights and that is what I have
got to achieve -- fight to achieve. In the more medium term, is it your
idea that if you are to have another independence referendum, I think you
said on this programme a couple of weeks ago you would like to have it
before Britain actually left the EU. For that to work, you are presumably
want some sort of commitment by the EU that Scotland would either never
leave the EU or the fast track -- or be fast tracked back in. I think I
did say this on this programme, of course it makes sense. I'm using the
term "If". This is speculative at this stage, but if we are in the
situation of considering independence again, of course makes
sense for that to happen before the UK leads the EU.
But if you don't get that commitment, it doesn't matter when
you have a referendum. There are all sorts of unknowns and uncertainties.
I'm in a position I did not choose to be in. My job as First Minister
is to seek to navigate Scotland through these uncertainties. We
don't net know what the timescale for the UK will be. We heard Philip
Hammond say in the House of Commons last week he thought it would take
six years for the UK to exit the EU. So some of the uncertainty we are
facing just now draws inevitables on the referendum... The scenario...
facing just now draws inevitables on The UK Government does not yet have
a grip on where it wants to take its relationship. That Scotland could
somehow leave or be fast tracked, has anyone in the EU given you any
indication that might be possible? We are weeks away -- on from a
referendum when there was massive uncertainty and you exit me to say
we have absolute certainty! These are discussion we will be having.
But nobody in Europe gave you any reason to believe that? Firstly, I
was not asking for that commitment, I was going to make sure there was
an understanding across Europe of the different positions Scotland was
in and that we wanted a different outcome. But when I went to Europe,
I found a warmth of response and an openness and sympathy that the
Scottish Government did not find... But the commitment? I was not asking
for hard and fast commitments. As we go through these process, I go back
to what I said on the morning after the referendum, I will be frank with
the people of Scotland about the opportunities and challenges we
face. But we did not ask to be in this position, so we have to
navigate the best way through for Scotland and that is what I remain
focused on doing. Another big subject coming up, Trident, you are
calling for a vote in the House of Commons to be delayed, why? Is it
that you think there is a realist to prospect that you, together with
other people, could stop it? -- a realistic prospect. I would love to
think so. Whether it is tomorrow or at any point, the SNP will vote
against its renewal. By delayed? We are still in a period of huge
uncertainty for the principal party of opposition is in chaos, the party
of government has been in chaos for the last few weeks, there has not
been the opportunity to focus properly on the massive issues that
are involved in a decision like Trident. Do you think there is a
chance that enough MPs will vote against it? I would hope so but it
will give people a chance to properly scrutinise this decision,
which has not been, and I think it is wrong to have this decision as a
way of playing games with the chaos is wrong to have this decision as a
in the opposition, which I think is what the Tories are trying to do.
Nicola Sturgeon, thank you very much.
As Secretary of State for Scotland under Margaret Thatcher,
then Defence and later Foreign Secretary under John Major,
Sir Malcolm Rifkind has held some of the major offices of state.
Shortly before we came on air, he came into our London studio.
I'm curious as to what you make of what Theresa May has told Nicola
Sturgeon at the end of last week, that she wants all the nations on
board before she triggers Article 50. Do you interpret that as a veto?
No, I don't and I don't think anyone else would seriously think it should
be. The United Kingdom else would seriously think it should
has to have the last word on our foreign policy and our relationships
with the rest of the world. She is saying, I'm sure, that you
understands that there is a specific Scottish dimension as well as Wales
and Northern Ireland. Therefore, it is entirely reasonable that there
should be constant dialogue with particularly Scotland and Northern
Ireland on their view of the way things are going. So that the
Scottish Government says, well, for example, we insist on retaining
access to the single market and that is not what David Davis once, you
think he rules? I don't think we should speculate at the beginning of
this process, and the UK clop-mac will spend the next few months
deciding what it is because heating, what its era of compromise might be,
where it could be flexible, it will want to hear views from Northern
Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It is the UK Government that must take
that decision because it is the only body that it can take it as a
perceived the needs of the whole of these islands. One other thing that
Nicola Sturgeon said was that Theresa May did not say to her that
if she planned another independence referendum, that the UK Government
would try to block it. That is Theresa May, we have had Ruth
Davidson saying the British... Should not block another referendum
and we have David Mundell as well. Do you agree? The crucial point is
that nobody, including Nicola Sturgeon, is pressing for a decision
on a referendum or another referendum in the immediate future.
They all realise, Nicola Sturgeon as much as Theresa May, that it would
not serve any reasonable interest. All evidence indicates that Scotland
as a whole does not want another referendum, only a minority of
people see that as being appropriate, and I think Nicola very
wisely has remembered, as we all did, that in the last referendum not
only did the SNP lose quite seriously but also Scotland as a
whole was deeply divided, families and communities were divided, a lot
of unpleasantness, more than we are normally used to in Scotland, and I
do not think Nicola wants to go through that again in the short to
medium term. Yet, the issue still remains on whether the British
Government should even consider blocking such a proposal. She said
it might even be that she could not sit there would be one but it would
be possible to have another independence referendum in the first
half of next year. As I understand the legal situation, the UK
Parliament would have to give approval before any referendum could
be held on an issue of this kind and I didn't think anyone serious doubts
that. Theresa May has already indicated that she believes... It is
less than two years since we had a referendum, which came... But the
point is, if Parliament blocked it, it would be explosive. But first of
all there is not a proposal at this moment for any referendum to
actually happen. Nicola Sturgeon has been very careful and she said the
issue is on the table. She chooses her words carefully, unlike perhaps
Alex Salmond, who is a bit more explosive on these matters.
Something being on the table is a very diplomatic expression. I
remember it from my time in the Foreign Office. You use these
expressions when you do not want to commit yourself either way. You were
Foreign Secretary. The new Foreign Secretary is Boris Johnson. We have
already said that it is a risky appointment. Yesterday was a gamble.
One that might pay off if he can reinvent himself. What advice would
you give them dubbed him? I think Boris is a very intelligent guy, he
is not like Donald Trump, he is very civilised and intelligent who could
be a very good Foreign Secretary. But he has really made him made his
name as a celebrity and you cannot be a Foreign Secretary, cowering at
the serious problems of international diplomacy and at the
same time expect to continue to be a celebrity. What does reinventing
himself mean if you are Foreign Secretary? Less puzzled air? Fewer
off-the-cuff remarks? -- less tousled hair. I would recommend him
to have a haircut and tucking his shirt into the back of his trousers!
But to be more serious, I think he has got to adopt a conversation that
does not just get an enjoyable headline that cheers are so a Monday
morning, he has to demonstrate he is conscious of the real issues. We are
talking about the future of the Middle East, the war in Syria, what
British policy will be on that, and about the future of our relationship
with Russia. Crucial issues of that kind. One other person you have
commented on, George Osborne, you seemed to regret he was leaving.
Would you like Theresa May to bring him back? No, that decision has been
taken. I said I was surprised, not surprised that he seems to be
Chancellor of the Exchequer, but he is a real heavyweight, I personally
think he has been a successful Chancellor and I think he would
still love to contribute. I think Theresa May put him on the
backbenches... You might enjoy the realisation from the time being. Why
don't you be an adviser to Boris Johnson was like That is the Boris
to decide! We will have to leave it there, thank you.
Nothing better illustrates the turmoil in developing our
political system than the state of the Labour Party.
At a time when this country so desperately needs
a strong opposition, they seem intent on publicly
Well, I'm joined now by Labour MSP Neil Findlay,
who will launch the Scotland for Corbyn campaign
at a rally in Glasgow shortly after this programme.
So, what exactly are you going to do? We will be gathering together a
group of people, a large group, I expect, who will be getting
themselves involved in organising the campaign might just acquitted a
year ago is very successfully, and I look forward to that this afternoon.
Be split in the Labour Party is hopeless at the moment, isn't it? I
think it is very, very regrettable that this has happened. At a time
when we have had the Tory Party on the ropes, the Prime Minister had
resigned and what we should have been in there, putting the boot in
to the Tory Party, finishing them off. Instead the Parliamentary Party
turned on itself and I think that is hugely regrettable. Jeremy Corbyn's
new Shadow Education Secretary was interviewed by Andrew Neil a few
minutes ago and she would not even say she would vote for Jeremy Corbyn
in the leadership election. This is hopeless, even the people replacing
the people who have resigned do not seem to support Jeremy Corbyn. She
stepped up to the plate and serve, unlike some others who deserted. I
think there is great credit to people like her, loyal to the Labour
Party, who stepped up to the plate. Everyone will have a decision to
make as to who they support the leadership candidate. They are
entitled to make that decision in a free and democratic election. I
welcome a free and democratic election. If there is such an
election and Jeremy Corbyn wins, what about the 80% of liver-mac MPs
who do not support him? I think you might want to direct a question to
some of them. -- Labour MPs. I hope they would respect the mandate, the
views of the members, never forget they are the people who do the
leafleting, do the phone calls, raise the money, work day in, day
out, we in, week out for these MPs who give them the privilege to serve
in Parliament. I think members should be respected in that
framework that. If that happens there will be a split in the Labour
Party. I hope not. I hope all candidates in this election and all
their supporters will abide by the result, whoever wins, and we all get
together and move forward. I certainly will be making that today.
I hope that all the candidates and their supporters unite around that
one principle that whoever wins, we gather round and support and move on
and get on with the business of taking on the Tories and the SNP.
There has only been a division in the Labour Party between people who
believe that conference should decide everything, that the Liberal
Party fish be mandated by the militia, and those who believe that
MPs have a slightly different role, they are collected by millions of
people, that they have some independent base. These divisions
are in all parties. -- mandated by the membership. But the two views
are not compatible any more. Be Conservative members last week
complained that the Tory Party election was fixed, it really
involves their members. These tensions within parties, that is
what happens. But most of the Cabinet has not resigned whereas
most of the Shadow Cabinet has. Of course, and that is the regrettable
part of this. Yes, but it still looks hopeless. It should not be
hopeless and that is what I think we looks hopeless. It should not be
have to get home, all sides has two get home to the candidates, that the
people who draft on our behalf are demanding that the Labour Party gets
its act together and that this election clears the air and we move
on, united together to do what we have to do, hold a dreadful
Government to account. Neil Findlay, thank you very much.
Perhaps it has always been true that people decide who to support or how
to vote based on gut feelings, not on who has actually presented
But it has been claimed that now we are living in an era
of "post-truth" politics, so competing sides in the political
debate don't even bother with complicated things
Instead, it is said, they rely on slogans
and spin to shore up support and win over doubters.
Some have pointed to the Euro referendum as proof of that.
Across the channel they are watching what we are up to.
It's becoming a bit like Game of Thrones meets Monty Python...
But there's another way of looking at the choice we've faced, a
conflict between head and heart, facts and feelings.
Did the former Chancellor believed his warnings about more austerity if
we voted for Brexit? There will be a hole in the public
finances. Taxes will have to go up, spending will have to be cut.
And did they leave campaign think her claim about the cash the UK pays
to Europe was the whole truth? Are we in an age of what some have
called "post-fact politics"? I would say there is such a thing is
that. My definition of it, because it is a loose area in terms of
study, would simply be the use of barefaced lies and manipulation of
the facts at either end of that sort of moral spectrum.
What you are doing is isolating the of moral spectrum.
best points of your argument, that has been done for hundreds of years.
We all do that in our everyday lives. But there is a big difference
between that and telling lies. There is a view that the big problem
is we have forgotten how to have respect for, grown at political
arguments. I think there has been an
infantilisation, we have gone from the maturity of serious and lengthy
reflection down to the idea of immediate, emotional response. I
call that infantilisation because we are behaving less like adults are
more like children. So basically, I think we need to
grow up, and read to recognise that these are difficult matters, we need
to think long and hard about them and we need to realise that other
people have good intent, and not denigrate them all push aside their
arguments by just misrepresenting them as demons or on the other side
angels. But some say there is no such thing
as post-fact politics. It is just sour grapes from the losing side.
I think this is really lazy thinking, it is like saying that
people don't accept your point of view other people are a bit silly or
stupid in some way, and they just go for emotional responses while some
other side is the truth and the facts. It seems to be what is really
at stake here is not bad at all, what is happening is that if people
cannot get their argument across, it is either because they are not
addressing the real fears or issues that are in the mind of the other
side, or they are just very bad at expressing it and the other side are
very good at putting their figures out or they are very quick.
Perhaps one defining moment of the EU referendum came from Michael
Gove. I think the people have had enough
of experts with organisations... Had enough of experts?!
Organisations with acronyms saying they know best.
What you are saying is I will give you a simple truth to a set of
complex problems. The problem comes when there is genuinely a context
problem to be solved, and in the area of politics you dug up much
more conjugated than that. The problem has when you have a
politician saying he has a simple solution, don't worry, what he is
saying is "Don't think." I used to teach people how not to
answer questions, and that felt like a smart thing to do because it
allowed you to escape from difficult issues. But I think we are now
entering an era where people would really respect a politician who came
out and told it like it was, whether it was good news or bad news.
A straight talker, who tells it like it is. That's exactly what his
supporters see him as. Opponents, of course, say he is the ultimate
"post-fact politician". If there is such a thing.
Now it's time to look back at the events of the past week
and see what's coming up in The Week Ahead.
Here with me now are the journalists Katie Grant and Paul Hutcheon.
Let's start with this whole Scotland and Brexit thing, Paul. Nicola
Sturgeon was saying this veto is maybe not quite a veto, although she
was open about saying she doesn't actually understand whether it is or
not. I do think that the current situation benefits Theresa May more
than the First Minister. If you think back a few days when it looked
like there might be a Tory leadership contest, Theresa May was
quite categorical that she wanted to trigger article 50 next year. I
think what she said to Nicola Sturgeon a few days ago fits into
that, she's given herself a bit more time to negotiate a UK wide deal.
She is saying, oh K, if you think you can negotiate some sort of
Scotland only package, let me see it, I will consider it, probably
knowing it can never happen, and so I think it looks good for the Prime
Minister. And she could perhaps use it, Katie, if she wants to restrain
David Davis. Yes, I think Theresa May has been very astute in making
her first visit up here. I think it was very nice to see her and Nicola
Sturgeon sitting having a relaxed in a way conversation, and I think in
the interview with Nicola Sturgeon earlier it was very refreshing to
hear her say we don't really know. And so I think that sort of honesty,
despite the truth and lies you've just been seeing, were actually help
Nicola Sturgeon cement her position as somebody who is looking for the
best in Scotland. Theresa May did not say, look, you cannot have a
second independence referendum. No, because she is far too wise to say
that. We've had with Davidsson saying the same thing, and David
Mondo pretty much the same way. I don't think she's an expert on
Scottish politics, and I think inevitably we will be having a
second referendum. This idea of talking to EU partners about a third
way for Scotland, I don't think that will result in anything substantial,
legal or significant. And I think Nicola in about a year's time will
probably look at it and think the only option is a second referendum.
This turmoil in British politics doesn't involve tanks and shooting
in the streets and bombing parliament. What do you think this
could happen in Turkey now, there are fears that the president rather
than thinking -- using this as a festival of democracy will simply
use it to crack down on people he is cracking down on anywhere? What we
are hearing sounds like with all these people being arrested but that
is what is good happen. I think Mr Erdogan has shown himself very good
at clamping down on what appears on the outside. It is a very troubling
sort of situation here, because he actually -- he is not a person who
you would think is not -- full of democracy, that's been very
difficult for Turkey, and although nobody wants a military coup, nobody
wants the place to become yet more restricted. But I suspect that what
we hear will be a rather gentler version of what is naturally going
on. We're taking a break for the summer, and we were good to have a
crystal ball here for you to gaze into, but we couldn't afford it. So
you have to imagine one. By the time we come to the autumn, what big
things do you think will have changed in Britain? I think that
there will be relative Tory unity, and I think the divisions you have
seen in the Labour Party will be even greater than they are today. I
would agree with that, I don't think the Labour Party's and to come
together any time soon. I think the honeymoon period for Theresa May may
be slightly over, people will be becoming slightly impatient about if
we voted for Brexit, sort of, where is it? So I think we will be more...
I think things will be less trouble than they are now. Split in the
Labour Party? I think if Jeremy Corbyn wins, some moderates will
form a new party. There will be on STP style split, as you saw in the
early 1980s. Right, -- in a macro is DUP. -- STP. -- SDP style.
Like both Parliaments, we're having a break over summer,
but we'll be back again in September.
They were yum. The children are going to love them.
This week, Gregg and Chris show how spending less on food...