12/02/2017 Sunday Politics Scotland


12/02/2017

Andrew Neil and Gordon Brewer with the latest political news, interviews and debate.


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Commons Speaker John Bercow is accused of compromising his

:00:38.:00:42.

impartiality by revealing he voted Remain in last year's EU referendum.

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The EU Withdrawal Bill clears its first Parliamentary hurdle.

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But will the House of Lords be quite so accommodating?

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Labour's Leader in the Lords joins us live.

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And we report from Stoke-on-Trent ahead of a crucial by-election

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later this month, where Ukip is looking to give

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And on Sunday Politics Scotland, Alex Salmond joins me live -

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we may mention the word 'referendum'.

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And, we speak to two farmers on either side of the Brexit divided

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about their hopes and fears for the future.

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And with me a political panel who frequently like to compromise

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Steve Richards, Julia Hartley-Brewer and Janan Ganesh.

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I'll be trying to keep them in order during the course of the programme.

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So, Commons Speaker John Bercow has insisted his ability

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to act impartially is not damaged by reports that he voted to Remain

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The Sunday Telegraph reveals that Speaker Bercow revealed his views

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in front of an audience of students at Reading University

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This may not be popular with some people in this audience -

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I thought it was better to stay in the European Union than not,

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partly for economic reason, being part of a big trade bloc,

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and partly because I think we're in a world of power blocs,

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and I think for all the weaknesses and deficiencies

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of the European Union, it is better to be part of that big

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Speaker Bercow speaking at Reading University earlier this month. Does

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he not care is this I get that impression, he knows perfectly well,

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it states he has to be particularly -- Parliamentary neural. Whether

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there are going to be enough votes to force him out, the question, the

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last speaker wept out with the 20 vote against him. You yes to have

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the command of the support across the House. There is a Deputy

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Speaker, waiting, who would be superb. I think even the people who

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pretend to support Macis have had enough -- Speaker Bercow have had

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enough of his ways. The reason I ask whether he care, he didn't just tell

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the students that he voted to Remain, he then gave them a running

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commentary on all the issues that will be part of the Brexit

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commentary on all the issues that negotiations, workers' rights,

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immigration, trade policy, everyone maternity leave got a hat tip from

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him. He would be a very well prepared Brexit minister if

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attendance needs a colleague -- David Davis needs a colleague. I

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don't think this story makes his position untenable, what does is the

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wired pattern of behaviour of excessive candour on his political

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views, going back years, this is a guy who when the Queen visited

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Parliament described her as theical lied scope Queen. He had a running

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argument with David Cameron. We know his views on Brexit, we know his

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views on Donald Trump. . He has given interviews, none of the views

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are illegitimate but the candour which they are expressed with is

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scrupulous. Given Lyndsay Hoyle is a class accuse. He is the Deputy

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Speaker. And a fairly ready replacement, whether there is more

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of a movement to say, maybe not force Bercow out but acknowledge he

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has had a few years in the job and the question of successor ship comes

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into play. Has he concluded he is untouchable? What I can definitely

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say, is that he is determined to fight this one out, and not go of

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his own volition, so if he goes he will have to be forced out. He wants

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to stay. Which will be tough. It will be tough. Likely as things

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stand. I would say this, I speak to someone who likes the way he has

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brought the House of Commons to life, held ministers to account,

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forced them into explain thing, whenever there is a topical issue

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you know it will be in the House of Commons. He has changed that. He

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has. Time has been courageous, Ied a mire the way he has been a speaker.

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I would say this, during the referendum campaign, he asked me

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Nick Clegg, and Peter Hitchens to debate Brexit if his constituency.

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It was a packed out meeting. He chaired it. I said don't you want to

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join in? He didn't. He showed no desire to join in, he was impartial.

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He goes out to universities and kind of demyth GCSEs Parliament by

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speaking to them in a way, he doesn't gets credit for it and stays

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on after and drinks with them. Sometimes he, you know, it is

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clearly a mistake to have gone into his views retrospectively on that

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referendum campaign, I don't think that, did he try and stop Article 50

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from being triggered in the House of Commons? That would be a scandal.

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Even that would be beyond him. Briefly, yes or no, could you

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imagine Betty Boothroyd behaving like that? Not at all. None of the

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recent speakers I could imagine doing that. It is good he is

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The bill that will allow the government to trigger Article 50

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and begin Brexit negotiations was voted through

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Many MPs were in a difficult position - unsure whether to vote

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with their conscience, their constituency,

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Europe, once such a divisive issue for the Conservatives,

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is now causing major divisions inside the Labour Party.

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So, let's have a look what happened in a bit more detail:

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Thanks to academic research carried out since the referendum,

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we now have estimates of how each individual constituency voted.

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It's thought that 410 constituencies voted Leave.

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On Wednesday night, the EU Notification of Withdrawal Bill

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was voted through by the House of Commons.

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The bill left the Labour Party divided.

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Jeremy Corbyn told his MPs to respect the result

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of the referendum and vote for the government's bill -

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But 52 Labour MPs defied Mr Corbyn's thee-line whip

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That's about a fifth of the Parliamentary Labour Party.

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Of those 52 Labour MPs who voted against the bill,

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the majority, 45 of them, represent seats that voted Remain.

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However, seven Labour MPs voted against the Article 50 Bill,

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even though their constituents voted Leave in the referendum.

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The Conservative Party were much more united.

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The vast majority of Tory MPs, 320 of them, voted for the bill.

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Just one Conservative MP, Ken Clarke, voted against it.

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His constituency, Rushcliffe in Nottinghamshire, voted Remain.

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The bill will now go to the House of Lords -

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peers will start debating it on Monday the 20th of February.

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Joining me now is Matthew Goodwin, politics professor at

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He's got a book out next month called

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Brexit: Why Britain Voted To Leave The European Union.

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Welcome to the programme. Has Brexit, how you voted in the

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referendum and your continuing attitudes toward it, is that now

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becoming the new dividing line in British politics? I think it

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certainly is contributing to a new dividing line, in western politics

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more generally, we know over the last ten years, that the old left

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and right division has been making way for a new division, between

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essentially social liberals and Conservative, and Brexit was a, an

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incident a moment that really reflected that new dividing line, so

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it wasn't just the case that Brexit has cut across Labour's base, it is

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that dividing line, that deeper division is cutting across social

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democracies more generally. Is there a possibility, no higher than that,

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that it will reShane our party politics? I think it is too early to

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know whether this is a fundamental long-term realignment. If we look at

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what is happening in local by-election, what is happening at

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by-elections, pictures a bit mixed but if you look at how some of the

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Labour vote is responding, I think that potentially reflects the

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possibility of a terminal decline for the Labour Party, it is going to

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be incredibly difficult for Labour to win these voters back, these are

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traditional working class, socially Conservative voters who are leaving

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the party, don't forget, since the 1997 general election. It is not

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just because of the referendum. If that was the case, Labour would

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become more a party of the Metropolitan areas, and less of a

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party outside of these area, is that what you are saying? What we are S

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seeing across the west can social democracy that retrenchment into the

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cosmopolitan, Metropolitan city area, university towns, you can

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seeing in many European states populist right parties filling the

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traditional socialist area, why are they doing that? Because they are

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offering two message, economic and cultural protectionism. Social

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Democrats are clinging to that economic protectionism but not

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saying much about migration and multiculturalism and that sort of

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stuff. Are there deeper forces at work than Jeremy Corbyn? He often

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gets the blame for what is happening to the Labour Party now, but if you

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look the way the Greek socialist party has been wiped out. The German

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Social Democrats are in trouble. The Italian socialist party has lost a

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referendum. The French socialist are coming close to being wiped out on

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April 23rd, Labour's problems, are part of a much wider problem of

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social democracy S Jeremy Corbyn is a surface problem, what I mean by

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that is you could replace him tosh with another leader, they would

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still have this fundamental tension within the electorate. They are

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trying to appeal to two differenter reconcilable groups of voters who

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think differently about the key issues of the day. It is very

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difficult for any centre left party now to assemble the kinds of

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coalitionses we saw in the '90s with Clinton and Blair and Schroeder.

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Those days are gone. Does that explain why it is now Labour, rather

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than the Conservatives, historically the party divided over the European

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Union, does all of that help to explain why its Labour that now

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seems, disunited over the EU? I think so, I think also that the

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issue of Brexit, and the EU, is so immatly wrapped up with that issue

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of immigration, if you look at who has been abandoned Labour since 2015

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or the late 90s, the one thing those voters share is a rejection of the

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so-called liberal consensus on EU membership and mass immigration. It

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is difficult for any Labour lead eer co-bin or Clive Lewis on Dan Jarvis,

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to bring those voters back unless they are going to move on that

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cultural terrain. If they are not, they may not go to Ukip, they might

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go to somewhere more difficult for Labour which is political apathy.

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Thank you for that. Attention now shifts to the House

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of Lords where peers will begin scrutinising the EU Withdrawal Bill

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in just over a week. Brexit Secretary David Davis urged

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the Lords "to do its patriotic duty" and resist the urge to tinker

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with the legislation. Former minister Oliver Letwin

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went one further - mooting the possibility

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of the abolition of the Lords if it sought to frustrate

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the bill in any way. Here he is posing the question

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in the Commons on Thursday. Would he find time, in government

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time for a debate, should the other place seek to delay beyond the end

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of March the passage of our accession to Article 50, for this

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House to discuss the possibility of either the abolition or full-scale

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reform of the other place? And Oliver Letwin joins

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me now from Dorset. Welcome back to the programme Mr Let

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win. Before we come on to the Lord's, can I get your thoughts on a

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matter that has been making the news this morning and John Bercow's

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remarks about being a remain voter an giving something of a running

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commentary on various Brexit issues, has he sqloefr stepped the mark as

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speaker? -- overstepped the mark. I think this is slightly a fuss about

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nothing. Every person who thinks about politics will have had some

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opinion about great matters like Brexit, and I really don't see any

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particular reason why his opinion shouldn't be known after the fact.

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I, I was there throughout the five days of the Brexit debate, and I

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have to say, I thought he was pretty scrupulously fair in the way he

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handled the House, so, I, I don't really share the view that there is

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some terrible thing that has been revealed this weekend. Let me come

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on to what we are here to talk about, which is the Lords. Why have

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you raised the threat of the abolition of the Lord for doing its

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job of scrutinising what is coming out the Commons? Well, you know,

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Andrew, this question of the job of the House of Lords and scrutiny, has

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to be looked at carefully. There are all sorts of bills that come out the

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House of Commons which are detailed things that relate to, finance, and

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expenditure, and the criminal law, and all that sort of thing, and all

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of that, I admire the work that the House of Lords does, as you say

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scrutinising and we shouldn't use that word loosely, it means looking

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carefully at the detail, line by line of complicated legislation,

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hundreds of Paps in some cases, and spotting, using the considerable

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expertise many, not all be many of the peers have, in any given field,

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to identify things where the Commons has got it wrong in the sense that

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the legislation wouldn't achieve what the Government of the day is

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seeking to make it achieve. That is a serious proper role for an Upper

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House and the House of Lords performs it pretty

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Now this is a very different case. This is a two clause bill. The first

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clause which is the operative clause says the Prime Minister should go

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ahead and sign... I understand all that. We haven't got that much time,

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this is becoming a monologue. There is nothing to scrutinise, Andrew.

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There were plenty of amendments put before the Commons, none of them got

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through, it is true. There are eight Labour amendments in the Lords, are

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you resigned to this bill coming back to the Commons with amendments?

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No, it should not come back with amendments. There were hundreds of

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amendments literally put down in the House of Commons, they were all

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drunk. They were all trying one way or another to derail the process.

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This is a binary issue, should Theresa May sign the withdrawal or

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not? What should the Commons do? The Commons has now voted in favour of

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it. Node do should tolerate and unelected chamber forcing the

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British people... The people voted in a referendum and the Commons

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voted. The matter is now signed and sealed and should not be derailed by

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the House of Lords. On Labour amendment wants confirmation that

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when it is done, the potential Brexit agreement will be put before

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parliament before any vote in the European Parliament, that has been

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an agreed principle, what is wrong with that amendments? The government

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has already agreed there will be a vote, but actually, what the

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amendments were seeking was to give the Commons a further vote on

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whether we actually leave or not. That is already decided. Neither the

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House of Lords nor anybody else has a right in my view, despite the fact

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I was a remain, to what the will of the British people. Nobody should

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think an unelected chamber should now try to change the course of

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British history by asserting amendments in a very effective on

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clause bill which says go ahead and trigger Article 50. Are you

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concerned that amendments by the Lords which would then have to go

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back to the Commons for consideration, are you concerned

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that could derail or delay the Prime Minister's timetable for Article 50?

:18:41.:18:45.

Yes, exactly. That would be the result of a prolonged bout of

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ping-pong between the two houses, or much worse, if the House of Lords

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failed to give way and the Parliament act had to be used. It

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would really be intolerable. It is not good for our country. Those of

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us who voted remain would prefer for that not to happen. The whole

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country -- it is important for the whole country that this happens in a

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rapid way and allowing the government free rein to negotiate,

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that is surely in all our advantages? Deed think any efforts

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to abolish the House of Lords, an issue you have raised, does that

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make it easier because your friend David Cameron stuffed the upper

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chamber with donors, lapdogs and lingerie designers? I was among

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those who advocated for many years wholesale reform of the House of

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Lords, to turn it into a serious elected second chamber. I think we

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should have an upper house which commands legitimacy. This is a

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second issue. Here we have not got such a House and it seems to be very

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clear that it should not seek to derail on delay the action which has

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been mandated by the referendum, agreed by the House of Commons, and

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what we want to see now is a smooth orderly effect for this bill, so it

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becomes law and Theresa May can go ahead and negotiate on our behalf.

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One more question on the process, if the Lords to amend the bill and it

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goes back to the Commons and the Commons sends these amendments back

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again, take them out, how long could this ping-pong between the two

:20:25.:20:30.

chambers go on in your experience? It is a very, very interesting and

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complicated question with the clerks of the two ends of the Palace of

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Westminster not always agreeing about this. But through certain

:20:40.:20:45.

machinations of slightly changing amendments as they go, in my

:20:46.:20:48.

experience this could carry on for an awful long time if clever people,

:20:49.:20:52.

and there are plenty of clever people in the House of Lords, want

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to do that and that is precisely why I think we should not tolerate it.

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Oliver Letwin, thank you for joining us from Dorset.

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Joining me now is Labour's Leader in the House of Lords, Angela Smith.

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The Commons passed this bill without any amendments... There were

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changes, the government did concede a couple of points. But the

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amendments did not go through. Does that put pressure on the Lords to do

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the same? I think the Lords always feels under pressure to do the right

:21:24.:21:27.

thing. When I heard Oliver Letwin, I did not know whether to laugh or

:21:28.:21:33.

cry. We will not frustrate, we will not wreck, we will not sabotage. We

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will do what David Davis said was our patriotic duty. We will

:21:40.:21:43.

scrutinise the bill. We have at amendments from the Labour Party. We

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will look at those. It depends on the government response if we vote

:21:47.:21:50.

on those. There could be amendments asking the Commons to look again.

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That is normally what we do. It is not the wrong thing to do. But if

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you do this and make amendments, it then goes back to the Commons. If

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the Commons rejects the Lords' amendments, what do you think will

:22:05.:22:08.

happen? I do not see any extended ping-pong at all. It is perfectly

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legitimate. We are not talking about the outcome of negotiations, we are

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talking about the process. The process of engaging with Parliament

:22:19.:22:22.

and reporting to Parliament. It would be totally responsible for

:22:23.:22:25.

Parliament to say, off you go, Theresa May, have two years of

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negotiation and come back and talk to us at the end. The has to be a

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process where the government can use the expertise of parliament to get

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this right. But if you do put in some amendments, it has to go back

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to the Commons, they may well say they don't want those amendments and

:22:44.:22:46.

it may go back to the Lords, could that at the very least delay the

:22:47.:22:51.

Prime Minister's Brexit timetable? I don't think so. She said the end of

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March. Time has been built in for all the normal processes. I think

:22:57.:23:00.

Oliver Letwin and others are getting a bit overexcited. This is the

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normal process. Unless the government get things right the

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first time every time, the has to be this kind of process. These are

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reasonable amendments. This is a Labour amendment we are talking

:23:13.:23:17.

about here, you want a vote in the UK Parliament before any

:23:18.:23:30.

vote in the European Parliament if and when the Brexit deal is done,

:23:31.:23:34.

the Commons and the Lords get to vote on it first. But the government

:23:35.:23:37.

I think have already agreed to that so what is the point? It needs to be

:23:38.:23:40.

on the face of the bill. It is over well if the government have agreed

:23:41.:23:43.

it. Lord dubs had an agreement about child and look what happened to

:23:44.:23:47.

that. Does not sound as if you would go to the wire on that? It is

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important it is not just about the vote at the end, you have the

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ongoing engagement. If it is going to be a bad deal, we need to know

:23:58.:24:03.

long before we get to that stage? Is it something you would hold out for?

:24:04.:24:08.

I don't know yet. It is about how the House of Lords votes, Labour do

:24:09.:24:13.

not have a majority, we never had a majority in the House of Lords when

:24:14.:24:16.

we were in government. It is wrong to suggest that we cannot debate

:24:17.:24:22.

these issues... I don't think anyone is suggesting that. They are. It is

:24:23.:24:28.

not unfair to ask the government to ask the House of Commons to look

:24:29.:24:30.

again to look at those issues if again to look at those issues if

:24:31.:24:34.

that is what the House of Lords decides. Bit of the House of Commons

:24:35.:24:38.

says we looked, we are sticking with what we voted for, we rejected every

:24:39.:24:42.

amendment by at least 30 votes on all occasions, the Lords then have

:24:43.:24:48.

to buckle, is that what you are saying? Some point I think it is

:24:49.:24:51.

clear the House of Commons have to have its say. I think it is

:24:52.:24:54.

inconceivable that having had a referendum, which was not

:24:55.:25:00.

overwhelming, but it was a clear result, the House of Lords has no

:25:01.:25:03.

intention of sabotaging that but there are things which are not good

:25:04.:25:06.

about the process that we think could be improved. We have not just

:25:07.:25:12.

have the result of the referendum which voted to leave, but we have

:25:13.:25:16.

had the will of the Commons that passed this legislation by a

:25:17.:25:23.

majority of 372. And I am not contesting that for a second! Could

:25:24.:25:27.

you cite a precedent for the upper house amending a bill which passed

:25:28.:25:33.

by 372 votes in the Commons? Quite other things will come to the House

:25:34.:25:36.

of Lords with big majorities from the Commons and quite often the

:25:37.:25:40.

amendments we get, with that then forward and the government sees it

:25:41.:25:47.

could do better. Though not necessarily saying the government

:25:48.:25:49.

has got things wrong, but they could do things better. That happens time

:25:50.:25:51.

and time again and it is not unusual. If you were seen to thwart

:25:52.:25:57.

the referendum result and the vote in the Commons, the elected chamber

:25:58.:26:02.

of parliament, is the threat of abolition hanging over you? I think

:26:03.:26:07.

that is really ridiculous and absolute nonsense. We are not tying

:26:08.:26:11.

to what the decision of the House of Commons, we are trying to do better.

:26:12.:26:14.

It is a bit rich of the government and Oliver Letwin to complain about

:26:15.:26:19.

getting things through in time when the House of Commons spent -- the

:26:20.:26:24.

government spent three months trying to debate this issue. There have

:26:25.:26:28.

been some strong questions put to the government from the House of

:26:29.:26:30.

Lords on all sides. I don't know if the amendments have been passed or

:26:31.:26:34.

not. I think we have a good case for the government to get debate the

:26:35.:26:47.

point. If a traditional MP like Oliver Letwin is calling for the

:26:48.:26:50.

abolition of the hereditary and appointed chamber, and the Labour

:26:51.:26:54.

person like yourself was trying to defend that, that would not be a

:26:55.:27:00.

sustainable position, I would suggest! We saw this with the

:27:01.:27:03.

Strathclyde report as well, this is a government like no other. It is

:27:04.:27:05.

the first Conservative government in history not to have an automatic

:27:06.:27:09.

majority. They do not like challenge or scrutiny. But you get my point,

:27:10.:27:15.

Labour cannot go to the wire in defending and an elected second

:27:16.:27:19.

chamber, can it? Actually, Labour can go to the wire in saying the

:27:20.:27:23.

government does not get it right every time. House of Lords is going

:27:24.:27:26.

to normal processes and people like Oliver Letwin are really getting a

:27:27.:27:32.

little bit over excited, and people who have been anonymously briefing.

:27:33.:27:36.

Who has been anonymously briefing? I don't know, they are anonymous! I

:27:37.:27:43.

understand people want to make amendments, that is the role of the

:27:44.:27:46.

House of Lords, but can I just for the avoidance of doubt, is it still

:27:47.:27:50.

your case that whatever amendments to make, whatever may go back and

:27:51.:27:55.

forward, it is not your intention to stop Article 50 being triggered by

:27:56.:28:01.

the end of March? I have been saying that, exactly that for months and

:28:02.:28:05.

months and months. It is inconceivable that an unelected

:28:06.:28:09.

House will thwart the will of the House of Commons and a referendum on

:28:10.:28:11.

this issue. But that does not mean we will be bullied by Oliver Letwin

:28:12.:28:16.

and others. But the triggering will happen by the end of March? I very

:28:17.:28:21.

much suspect so unless Theresa May has second thoughts, I suspect that

:28:22.:28:24.

will happen. Thank you. Now, just because it's

:28:25.:28:27.

parliamentary recess next week There are two by-elections

:28:28.:28:29.

round the corner - one in Copeland, and another

:28:30.:28:33.

in Stoke-on-Trent Central where the former Shadow

:28:34.:28:35.

Education Secretary, Tristram Hunt, vacated his

:28:36.:28:36.

seat to take up a role as Director of the Victoria

:28:37.:28:39.

Albert Museum in London. But Labour are facing a fight

:28:40.:28:42.

to hold onto the constituency Seconds away, Ukip's new leader has

:28:43.:28:45.

stepped into the ring as their candidate in

:28:46.:28:51.

a by-election bout to see At the last election Ukip

:28:52.:28:53.

came second to Labour here But now they are confident they can

:28:54.:29:00.

land a knockout blow, because this place is packed with

:29:01.:29:05.

people that voted to leave the EU. 70% of people voted to leave

:29:06.:29:12.

the European Union. I'm the only candidate

:29:13.:29:15.

standing in this election who is a true Brexiteer,

:29:16.:29:23.

who has always campaigned to leave the EU and therefore I believe

:29:24.:29:25.

I would be the best person But he has had to fight off

:29:26.:29:28.

allegations he wasn't living in the constituency

:29:29.:29:31.

when he entered the contest. Explain to me what is going

:29:32.:29:34.

on with this issue about your house? Well, we took up the lease

:29:35.:29:37.

the day before nominations. Everything we've done is perfectly

:29:38.:29:39.

legal and within the law. The Labour Party are trying to get

:29:40.:29:42.

off the real issues in this election and focus on something

:29:43.:29:47.

which is banal nonsense. And there's been trouble as well

:29:48.:29:54.

for the Labour contender. He's been labelled a Remoaner

:29:55.:30:00.

after he sent a series of anti-Brexit tweets,

:30:01.:30:02.

filled with words I can't believe I'm about to ask

:30:03.:30:05.

this question in a nursery on a Sunday morning TV programme,

:30:06.:30:15.

but did you really tweet that I tweeted many things about Brexit,

:30:16.:30:18.

that's tweet is out there. It was done quite after

:30:19.:30:23.

the referendum result and it was my way of showing my frustration

:30:24.:30:26.

at the fact that months after the result we hadn't had

:30:27.:30:29.

anything from the government. Theresa May had failed

:30:30.:30:34.

to produce any plan, she had failed to give

:30:35.:30:35.

any meaningful statement about what Brexit meant other

:30:36.:30:37.

than bland statements about Brexit is Brexit, and it's

:30:38.:30:40.

a hard Brexit, or a soft Brexit. The context of it was it

:30:41.:30:42.

was out of frustration. So you didn't mean to insult the 70%

:30:43.:30:47.

of the people who live here I never mean to insult

:30:48.:30:50.

anybody and you know, I've made it quite clear,

:30:51.:30:53.

if I'm elected as the member of Parliament for Stoke-on-Trent

:30:54.:30:56.

Central, I will absolutely respect the wishes of the people

:30:57.:30:58.

of Stoke Central. I will make sure my vote in

:30:59.:31:00.

parliament is to trigger Article 50. While the Tories' man has done

:31:01.:31:04.

little bit of rebranding too. I voted Remain and I've been open

:31:05.:31:07.

about that, but my top priority is about the economy and to ensure

:31:08.:31:10.

we still have an Theresa May has set out clear

:31:11.:31:13.

proposal to ensure we develop a trade relationship with Europe

:31:14.:31:16.

and make that a success. It means the Lib Dems and the Greens

:31:17.:31:26.

are the ones battling Brexit. Well, when the Lib Dem

:31:27.:31:29.

candidate is actually here. The candidate is a

:31:30.:31:31.

consultant cardiologist. He is actually at work today doing

:31:32.:31:37.

very important heart surgery. He will be back tomorrow, back

:31:38.:31:40.

on the campaign trail working hard. 30% of people voted

:31:41.:31:43.

to Remain and nobody else is representing them, so, you know,

:31:44.:31:47.

it is still a live issue. It is still something

:31:48.:31:51.

people care about. We are only at the start

:31:52.:31:52.

of the Article 50 process We are very a clear

:31:53.:31:55.

that we are standing up for those who want to remain in the single

:31:56.:32:00.

market, who want to protect jobs Labour have taken people for granted

:32:01.:32:03.

in this area for a great many years. Ukip, I'm afraid, all Ukip can offer

:32:04.:32:08.

to politics is division. I've covered a lot of by-elections

:32:09.:32:10.

where Ukip have come second. We'll find out if they really got

:32:11.:32:13.

Labour on the ropes this And here is a full list

:32:14.:32:16.

of all the candidates standing in the Stoke-on-Trent Central

:32:17.:32:36.

by-election. They do atract lots of candidates.

:32:37.:32:52.

You can get that on the BBC website as well. I was trying to think back,

:32:53.:33:00.

here we have the main opposition party defending two seats in

:33:01.:33:05.

by-elections in the midterm of a government.

:33:06.:33:09.

All the speculation is where the opposition party can hold on, that

:33:10.:33:15.

is unprecedented. I can't give of an equivalent. You wouldn't just expect

:33:16.:33:21.

them to win seats they have held traditionally, you would expect hem

:33:22.:33:27.

to make inroads into seats held by the other party, I wonder if they

:33:28.:33:31.

fail to hold on to just one of these, whether it accelerates the

:33:32.:33:36.

momentum and criticism of the leadership of the moment. I think

:33:37.:33:40.

they are interesting constituencies. Matthew good win was talking about

:33:41.:33:45.

the left win coalition over the years, almost being too broad for

:33:46.:33:51.

its own good, including places like Primrose Hill and Hackney. Big

:33:52.:33:56.

university towns in Manchester, Bristol. Diverse ethnically and

:33:57.:34:03.

included places like Stoke which are more Conservative. With a small c.

:34:04.:34:12.

Less economically well-off, more diverse, can the left hang on to

:34:13.:34:17.

both bits of country. Recent evidence suggests it cannot and the

:34:18.:34:20.

opportunity for Ukip is to pick up the second of those two types of

:34:21.:34:23.

community, the Stokes and the cope lands. That what makes the

:34:24.:34:27.

by-elections interest I would suggest. It is not just about Mr

:34:28.:34:31.

Corbyn's future about which we hear too much, it is about this

:34:32.:34:37.

traditional Labour coalition, can it still survive, particularly in

:34:38.:34:41.

places like Stoke? Europe clearly is a test. I think it's a myth by the

:34:42.:34:47.

way that Labour are only split now, over Europe and it has always been a

:34:48.:34:53.

Tory problem, last time I was on I mentioned it. That is why we had a

:34:54.:34:59.

referendum in 75. That is why they had a round then. But they were in

:35:00.:35:04.

chaos behind the scenes over what they thought about the euro,

:35:05.:35:09.

skillful leadership can paper over the cracks, and to address the wider

:35:10.:35:14.

issue of whether we are now in an era where left right issues have

:35:15.:35:16.

disappeared, and there is more of a era where left right issues have

:35:17.:35:20.

regional divide, if you take Europe out of the equation which you can't,

:35:21.:35:27.

but if you were able to, issues about health, transport housing do

:35:28.:35:31.

split more left-right than a regional divide, so I think there is

:35:32.:35:37.

still fundamental left-right issues, but Europe isn't one of them and

:35:38.:35:42.

Europe has to be managed by a Labour leader skill fully and evidently

:35:43.:35:46.

that hasn't happened now. How would you see the by-elections in the

:35:47.:35:51.

current political context? Labour should be walking them, it should be

:35:52.:35:56.

a sign of the March of the Labour Party taking on the current

:35:57.:35:57.

Conservative Government. I don't think they raise any questions about

:35:58.:36:01.

Corbyn's leadership because the people who put him in don't think

:36:02.:36:04.

that winning elections matter, you have to remember this will be the

:36:05.:36:10.

mainstream media, it will be our fault why any of those Labour

:36:11.:36:14.

candidates don't win, the thing that is interesting is whether there is

:36:15.:36:18.

is a role for Ukip. The argument after the referendum was Ukip has

:36:19.:36:22.

done its job, it got the referendum, nothing to see here, I remember

:36:23.:36:28.

speaking to put a Nuttall before he was Ukip leader, on the day after

:36:29.:36:34.

the battle and he said this is Year Zero, where Ukip starts now, and

:36:35.:36:38.

this, and this is the interesting thing, does, do we see this one

:36:39.:36:42.

particular party having a role in the future? And I think it is all to

:36:43.:36:46.

play for, they could not not have stood in this seat. They have to win

:36:47.:36:51.

it to be an electoral force. The Labour candidate in Copeland has

:36:52.:36:54.

made the NHS the issue for her in this, that goes into the left-right,

:36:55.:36:56.

are we spending enough, are we That will be a test of what you were

:36:57.:37:03.

saying to see if traditional left-right issue, which at the

:37:04.:37:06.

moment would play Labour's way I would suggest, are big enough to

:37:07.:37:10.

overcome all the things you have been talking about and Matthew has

:37:11.:37:14.

been talking about. Maybe at this particular junction they are not,

:37:15.:37:18.

but I don't think any of those issues will go away, and that is why

:37:19.:37:24.

I question whether we are see the end of a historic left-right divide.

:37:25.:37:30.

At the moment with Europe so prominent, clearly these

:37:31.:37:33.

by-elections are unusual. And they will be a test of leadership for

:37:34.:37:37.

Theresa May in the coming months if not at the moment, as they have been

:37:38.:37:41.

in a way that he hasn't risen to, for the Labour leader.

:37:42.:37:46.

We will be leave on BBC One on the night, February 23rd off back of

:37:47.:37:50.

this week, we will bring you the result of both these crucial

:37:51.:37:51.

It's just gone 11.35, you're watching the Sunday Politics.

:37:52.:37:55.

We say goodbye to viewers in Scotland who leave us now

:37:56.:38:04.

Good morning and welcome to Sunday Politics Scotland.

:38:05.:38:06.

The former First Minister Alex Salmond will be

:38:07.:38:11.

We hear from farmers about their hopes and fears for Brexit.

:38:12.:38:23.

For every reason to stay I could find another to leave.

:38:24.:38:29.

In the NFL, what is affecting me, right now?

:38:30.:38:33.

says it'll mean opportunities for his members

:38:34.:38:36.

Well, just about everyone now seems to think there will be another

:38:37.:38:52.

We were going to speak to Alex Salmond, but we have a few technical

:38:53.:39:00.

problems will stop and talk about farming.

:39:01.:39:06.

We'll talk to Andrew McCorninck in a few minutes.

:39:07.:39:08.

But first Huw Williams has been to meet a hipster who sells his milk

:39:09.:39:11.

direct to his customers, and a hill farmer who breeds prize

:39:12.:39:14.

They both work hard and love the ground. They are both found a niche

:39:15.:39:23.

market and made the most of it. But there are big differences between

:39:24.:39:28.

them. That is in German is. Does he live up to his name? Heated over the

:39:29.:39:35.

family farm on his father died just over two years ago, the

:39:36.:39:38.

third-generation to farm the land in Ayrshire. But he walked into a

:39:39.:39:44.

perfect storm. The sickly I was so sickened by the fact I was attracted

:39:45.:39:50.

to the family legacy going, the milk price collapsed so badly to

:39:51.:39:59.

generations' work, I said to myself, there is no way I will let anyone

:40:00.:40:02.

dictate the price to me again. I wanted a sustainable future for the

:40:03.:40:06.

farm. I wanted people drinking the milk to know where it came from,

:40:07.:40:11.

basically reinvent the food chain. Reinvent your people and their food

:40:12.:40:16.

comes from and re-engage with farming. That said, good girls. She

:40:17.:40:27.

is first generation farmer working on a rented hill farm in the

:40:28.:40:32.

Galloway hills. With her husband she has built up a prize-winning herd of

:40:33.:40:39.

heritage cattle. These are belted Galloway. They are native here,

:40:40.:40:42.

there are tremendous for hill farming. They are good for

:40:43.:40:48.

conservation land as well. They are also a tourist attraction although

:40:49.:40:51.

this area does not have so many tourists yet. We are a hidden

:40:52.:41:00.

corner. But tremendous meat. In the referendum, Brice voted to leave the

:41:01.:41:03.

European Union, although it was not an easy decision. Every reason I

:41:04.:41:06.

could find to stay I could find another to leave. I took it upon

:41:07.:41:12.

myself to think, what is affecting me now? At the time I was only

:41:13.:41:17.

getting 9.7 p per litre for milk, were losing money and just could not

:41:18.:41:21.

stay farming. I looked at why that was happening. Basically worldwide

:41:22.:41:28.

there was too much milk. In the UK we actually don't produce enough

:41:29.:41:33.

milk in the UK to supply the UK. And I found out that the larger dairy

:41:34.:41:38.

items are sold in supermarkets are not British anymore. But, for

:41:39.:41:49.

example. -- batter for example. Jane voted to remain in the EU. Although

:41:50.:41:54.

there are a lot of rules, we know where we are. My biggest worry is

:41:55.:41:58.

that hill farmers with Brexit will be forgotten about, and there are

:41:59.:42:06.

not many ways you can diversified. We cannot change any more than what

:42:07.:42:09.

we already have. We have to work with what we have got and I'm

:42:10.:42:12.

frightened we will be forgotten about. What about the future? Rice

:42:13.:42:18.

thinks we may have to re-engineer the whole structure of agriculture.

:42:19.:42:24.

In Scotland we are unique. We have crafts, small herds and agriculture

:42:25.:42:28.

systems. Whether we have to change the way subsidies are paid or change

:42:29.:42:32.

the way we farm to become more profitable, and not speaking for

:42:33.:42:35.

every farmer, but I'm pretty sure a large proportion of them would

:42:36.:42:39.

rather have a profitable business that did not depend on subsidies

:42:40.:42:42.

rather than having to rely on it. The latest figure was something like

:42:43.:42:48.

45 present of all European farmers' income a subsidy. I'm sure farmers

:42:49.:42:53.

would rather have a profitable and sustainable business that works with

:42:54.:42:56.

the community and customers rather than depending on hand-outs to keep

:42:57.:43:02.

the business alive. Jane is worried and wants politicians to take

:43:03.:43:06.

farming seriously. Nothing seems to be thought out. Most people were

:43:07.:43:12.

leaving because of immigration, and that took over. For me there was not

:43:13.:43:16.

enough plans put in place to assure us that it was worth leaving, but as

:43:17.:43:23.

it happens we are. I would say they need to listen to the agriculture,

:43:24.:43:28.

because food is a main thing in this country, and if we don't look after

:43:29.:43:32.

it, then we don't know what our market is for buying him. And the

:43:33.:43:35.

strength of the pound and everything. I think we need to

:43:36.:43:40.

seriously realise that agriculture is a big thing for Britain. Whatever

:43:41.:43:46.

we do, we need to get this right. 65,000 jobs, and ?615 million in the

:43:47.:43:52.

Scottish economy depend on agriculture.

:43:53.:43:54.

Shortly before we came on air I spoke to the new President of NFU

:43:55.:44:00.

I'm sure many would agree with the sentiment expressed their that it

:44:01.:44:12.

would be nice to have a farming industry that did not rely on

:44:13.:44:15.

subsidies, but realistically for lots of hill farmers, crofters in

:44:16.:44:21.

the Highlands and Islands, there will have to be subsidies are simply

:44:22.:44:24.

would not be possible to keep them going. The support payment will have

:44:25.:44:29.

to be a big part of it. They are the sectors most endangered with Brexit.

:44:30.:44:35.

This is our issue, we have to be out there and fight for that corner and

:44:36.:44:39.

ensure this does not happen. It is not only the sentiment, there are

:44:40.:44:43.

whole communities that rely on agricultural and crofting activity

:44:44.:44:47.

in these areas. Are you satisfied that you have guarantees are hard

:44:48.:44:51.

commitments from either the British are Scottish Government that an

:44:52.:44:56.

equivalent level of subsidy will stay in place when we are outside

:44:57.:45:03.

the Common Agricultural Policy? This is why these two years, when article

:45:04.:45:06.

50 is triggered, we have to ensure our case is carried forward. And we

:45:07.:45:10.

have a very, very strong case to take forward. We employ 63,000

:45:11.:45:15.

people directly in farming and crofting, but there are 60,000 jobs

:45:16.:45:19.

down the line depending on us. We have to get a strong message. One in

:45:20.:45:24.

eight people in the UK are depending on the food and farming and drinks

:45:25.:45:27.

industry. We have a good message to take, and we will deliver that. But

:45:28.:45:34.

as of now, I want to be clear, you do not know what kind of regime will

:45:35.:45:37.

be in place after Brexit? Nothing definitive. We have been given

:45:38.:45:42.

guarantees of what they call the pillar to payments, one of the five

:45:43.:45:49.

years... Explain what they are. Pillar to other payments you apply

:45:50.:45:52.

for the likes of environmental programmes. They will continue after

:45:53.:46:00.

Brexit? Anyone that are signed up on a long-term agreement will continue

:46:01.:46:03.

payment, but that is only a small part of him, comes to farmers to

:46:04.:46:07.

support payments. On the more positive side, there are

:46:08.:46:10.

opportunities for Scottish farmers positive side, there are

:46:11.:46:13.

in particular, because we don't tend to have the kind of dog crop

:46:14.:46:20.

production -- the bulk production that you have done in England. What

:46:21.:46:25.

are the opportunities? If you look at the Scottish brand, this is

:46:26.:46:27.

something we can sell all over the world. I think we can promote and

:46:28.:46:32.

even more. We are recognised for the quality beef and Lamb. The whole of

:46:33.:46:36.

the sector depends on high-quality cereal industry. You think you could

:46:37.:46:42.

market Scottish beef and make it a niche thing, and Scottish lamb, and

:46:43.:46:48.

the fish farms could market Scottish salmon. Whisky, I'm not so sure.

:46:49.:46:52.

Because whisky production was up does not necessarily mean that helps

:46:53.:46:58.

farmers. It does. Is it mainly coming from Scotland, the Bali? This

:46:59.:47:04.

is one of the opportunities we have to take forward. -- the Bali.

:47:05.:47:11.

Preferably what you would like would be some commitment from the whisky

:47:12.:47:17.

industry to advertise their product as not just Koch whisky but Scotch

:47:18.:47:23.

whisky made from Scottish barley. It would be nice to see... We don't

:47:24.:47:27.

want to hamper or destroy the Scottish whisky industry and anyway,

:47:28.:47:32.

but we certainly believe it should be Scottish product first. If those

:47:33.:47:37.

are opportunities, there are risks. Presumably you would worry about

:47:38.:47:41.

cheap beef imports from countries like the United States. Again, this

:47:42.:47:48.

Scottish brand, we are producing at a far higher standard. Andrea

:47:49.:47:54.

Leadsom did say at this Conservative Party conference that we should not

:47:55.:47:57.

be allowed to be undermined and cheap imports that are not near our

:47:58.:48:02.

standard. This is an opportunity. That's fine, so you sit down with

:48:03.:48:05.

Donald Trump and try to negotiate a trade agreement, and he says, sorry,

:48:06.:48:09.

of course we will sell our beef in Britain. That's one of the

:48:10.:48:13.

challenges we have going forward. If we are selling a product as a far

:48:14.:48:16.

higher standard and quality, reducing it to the standard. But

:48:17.:48:24.

sticking with the issue of beef, and America has hormone treatments for

:48:25.:48:29.

cattle which are not allowed by the European Union, but that is not to

:48:30.:48:36.

say they would not be used by' -- would not be allowed in post-Brexit

:48:37.:48:41.

Britain. I believe we will be doing the majority of trade beyond this

:48:42.:48:44.

with Europe. And part the agreement with Europe will be the vital

:48:45.:48:50.

sanitary controls were talking about, if production is coming in at

:48:51.:48:52.

those standards and is not acceptable in our market. Your beef

:48:53.:48:57.

Bridger and they will have to be not genetically modified or treated if

:48:58.:49:01.

you want to sell it in Europe, but that is not mean that American beef

:49:02.:49:04.

coming in here could not be. I think it should be. We have to make sure

:49:05.:49:09.

we're bringing in an equivalent standard of what we are producing. I

:49:10.:49:13.

would not accept any of my membership to want the competition

:49:14.:49:17.

to come from, that would be an unfair trading practice, and should

:49:18.:49:22.

be things in place to prevent that. We should point out to viewers, they

:49:23.:49:28.

should look very closely, and they can notice that your tyres covered

:49:29.:49:29.

in tractors. Thank you! Well, just about everyone now seems

:49:30.:49:37.

to think there will be another independence referendum,

:49:38.:49:40.

possibly next year, but what exactly would independence

:49:41.:49:42.

campaigners argue for this time? Alex Salmond, the former

:49:43.:49:44.

First Minister, tweeted "Game on" last week when a poll suggested

:49:45.:49:46.

support for independence We will talk about independence in

:49:47.:50:06.

the moment, but first there is another row about John Bercow

:50:07.:50:08.

because of remarks he has made about Brexit. Do you think his position is

:50:09.:50:10.

tenable? Yes, I do. John Bercow has always

:50:11.:50:29.

had a handful of people gunning for him, not just because of remarks he

:50:30.:50:38.

made about Brexit. It is about his modernisation agenda, the fact he

:50:39.:50:42.

lets women and babies into the House of Commons and is taking weeks out.

:50:43.:50:51.

John Bercow, I think, is this significant in the most access in

:50:52.:50:55.

terms of a speaker in history. Certainly the most opportunity the

:50:56.:50:59.

backbenchers. That might be embarrassing for the government but

:51:00.:51:03.

it gives them a commanding support across all parties in the House of

:51:04.:51:08.

Commons. I am right behind John Bercow. I presume from your

:51:09.:51:13.

treating, game on, you would like another referendum. -- tweeting.

:51:14.:51:19.

What would be the most advantageous time to have it? I was in

:51:20.:51:30.

conversation with a Tory minister who asked me who the... There has

:51:31.:51:38.

been less comfortable assumption amongst the government despite the

:51:39.:51:43.

fact that there were 16 out of 17 opinion polls since Brexit which

:51:44.:51:47.

have shown support for independence higher than it was in September 20

:51:48.:51:53.

14th. There was this assumption that the support was under decline. When

:51:54.:51:59.

they saw the poll in the Herald early this week, it had a dramatic

:52:00.:52:03.

effect on matte government minister I was speaking to. He thought

:52:04.:52:07.

everything was in the bag and under control. When do you think there

:52:08.:52:12.

everything was in the bag and under should be one? It is significant

:52:13.:52:20.

because the government is still to respond to Nicola Sturgeon's

:52:21.:52:24.

compromised proposal. That will come over the next few weeks. Once that

:52:25.:52:29.

is done, if they reject it, then we will know there is no interest in

:52:30.:52:34.

the voice of Scotland. Nicola Sturgeon has said there would be

:52:35.:52:37.

another independence referendum very likely. If there is, the likely

:52:38.:52:44.

timescale will be the automatic next year. What would you say to people

:52:45.:52:52.

and there seems to be quite a lot of them, who set even if we are

:52:53.:52:56.

sympathetic to independence, we would rather wait and see what the

:52:57.:53:01.

British government comes up with as a result of the Brexit negotiations.

:53:02.:53:06.

We know what it is we are voting to leave, should we vote, yes. I am

:53:07.:53:13.

guessing there is quite a few people like that where you are speaking to

:53:14.:53:20.

us from now, who were sympathetic to independence but Vote Leave. That is

:53:21.:53:30.

not compatible with what I have been trying to say. There polls that say

:53:31.:53:37.

do you want a referendum right now? Or do you want one after the Brexit

:53:38.:53:47.

negotiations? Some unscrupulous newspapers and on the second

:53:48.:53:50.

percentage. If you are talking about a referendum in 18 months' time, the

:53:51.:53:54.

negotiations will then be crystallised. You will be able to

:53:55.:53:59.

tell what the deal or no Deal will be and certainly that is after the

:54:00.:54:03.

timescale the government was talking about with bringing the deal back to

:54:04.:54:08.

the House of Commons for a vote. I don't see that as incompatible

:54:09.:54:12.

whatsoever. Nicola Sturgeon has been correct in putting forward a

:54:13.:54:17.

compromised proposal and we have to see if the UK Government will pay

:54:18.:54:21.

attention to the interests of Scotland and whether Theresa May

:54:22.:54:24.

will on her commitment of the 15th of July last year. She said she was

:54:25.:54:31.

looking for an agreed UK position back by Scotland on the other

:54:32.:54:36.

devolved administrations. If there is another referendum, what should

:54:37.:54:41.

the SNP argue for? There is some discussion with the party about

:54:42.:54:46.

whether to go for Scotland in Europe or whether to argue for what Nicola

:54:47.:54:50.

Sturgeon is arguing should happen even if we stay in the UK, an

:54:51.:54:55.

independent Scotland should not immediately join the European Union

:54:56.:54:58.

but should be part of the European free trade area. It would be in the

:54:59.:55:03.

single market but not be part of the customs union. You could say there

:55:04.:55:07.

is no question of the border between Scotland and England. Do you think

:55:08.:55:12.

that is what the SNP should argue or should you stick to the leaving the

:55:13.:55:18.

UK and immediately tried to join the European Union? The SNP will

:55:19.:55:26.

continue to argue that Scotland is a member of the European Union. Why

:55:27.:55:30.

shouldn't we? The mainstream media have made fools of themselves by

:55:31.:55:37.

deliberately missing ten -- misinterpreting the European

:55:38.:55:39.

Commission's representative of the UK. As we know from an interview

:55:40.:55:45.

yesterday, it was the opposite of what the mainstream media Andrew

:55:46.:55:53.

Neill was claiming. That will be a strong position that the SNP will

:55:54.:56:00.

argue. In terms of timescale, the key matter, as was enunciated in a

:56:01.:56:05.

compromised proposal, in terms of protecting the Scottish economy and

:56:06.:56:08.

saving Scottish jobs and saving investment, it is for uninterrupted

:56:09.:56:14.

member show of -- membership of the economic area. That can be secured

:56:15.:56:17.

by membership of the European Union but there are other ways to secure

:56:18.:56:24.

it. The SNP's position would be to be a member of the European Union.

:56:25.:56:30.

In the key negotiating, it is the staying within the economic area.

:56:31.:56:36.

That suggests that the key battle ground in terms of economics or any

:56:37.:56:40.

future independence referendum is not going to be as it was the last

:56:41.:56:44.

time like the currency but there will be trade and access to trade

:56:45.:56:49.

and access to markets. That is what the UK Government is jeopardising

:56:50.:56:53.

and what an independent Scotland should secure. To answer a question

:56:54.:56:57.

that you asked at the beginning of that and set, the answer to why

:56:58.:57:03.

perhaps change the position in Europe. We know a lot of yes voters

:57:04.:57:11.

voted to leave the European Union. It is a difficult sell for you to

:57:12.:57:16.

say that you won the Brexit vote even though you were sympathetic to

:57:17.:57:20.

independence. We want you to vote to break up the UK and join the

:57:21.:57:23.

European Union you've just voted to leave. Independent membership of the

:57:24.:57:32.

European Union and Scotland has was been the most popular of the range

:57:33.:57:37.

of constitutional options available to the country. I don't think it is

:57:38.:57:42.

a difficult sell at all. Nicola Sturgeon emphasised as a priority,

:57:43.:57:48.

continuing membership of the European economic area. I saw one of

:57:49.:57:52.

your programmes a few weeks ago when Kevin Pringle made them -- made a

:57:53.:57:58.

point in terms of company of independent Scotland and people who

:57:59.:58:01.

independent -- believe in independence, believe that the

:58:02.:58:03.

highest priority. Therefore should be much more amenable to being

:58:04.:58:10.

galvanised for an independence campaign and people who bought other

:58:11.:58:14.

priorities first. I would be confident that the progress we are

:58:15.:58:19.

seeing in support of independents can continue if the campaign is

:58:20.:58:26.

pitched in the right way. Should there be another yes campaign nor

:58:27.:58:35.

should it run itself? There should be another campaign. There should be

:58:36.:58:39.

cross-party and open to people of no party. There will be some lessons to

:58:40.:58:44.

learn from a first campaign. I don't share the view and you will

:58:45.:58:48.

understand why. We didn't win the vote that we put on 15% that the yes

:58:49.:58:56.

vote Gerry McCann pain. If we put on another 15%, the result will be

:58:57.:59:00.

overwhelming. I don't think we should beat ourselves up about the

:59:01.:59:04.

structure of the campaign. There are some key lessons to learn and no

:59:05.:59:08.

doubt let Nicola Sturgeon will learn them and deploy them if we get into

:59:09.:59:12.

the situation of the second independence referendum. One lesson

:59:13.:59:17.

is you will not argue that keeping the pound no matter how the British

:59:18.:59:20.

government says you are not going to.

:59:21.:59:25.

If you call the second debate, the BBC debate with Alistair Darling,

:59:26.:59:32.

the position I outlined in that was rather more successful than the

:59:33.:59:36.

earlier position. Nicola Sturgeon knows her own mind and should be

:59:37.:59:40.

able to outline the range of currency options open to Scotland.

:59:41.:59:45.

The key argument I see coming in this referendum, in terms of

:59:46.:59:50.

economics, will be what secures Scotland's trains -- trade, our

:59:51.:59:56.

access to markets. Independence has a winning argument, framework. I

:59:57.:00:01.

expect to see it deployed by Nicola a winning argument, framework. I

:00:02.:00:08.

Sturgeon. It looks like you have cut the grass already but maybe do some

:00:09.:00:09.

streaming at the back there. Scottish Labour found itself at odds

:00:10.:00:16.

with the national party this week. In Westminster, in defiance

:00:17.:00:17.

of Jeremy Corbyn's three line whip, the party's only Scottish MP

:00:18.:00:20.

Ian Murray voted against In a symbolic vote at Holyrood

:00:21.:00:22.

the party's MSPs did likewise. Well, I'm joined now

:00:23.:00:25.

by former Labour special Labour's problems. Where do you

:00:26.:00:37.

start? Used with Jeremy Corbyn who was biggest problem. -- you start.

:00:38.:00:47.

Showing the difficulty, you want to be in touch with what public opinion

:00:48.:00:54.

is that you don't need to follow it. They look quite cowardly in what

:00:55.:00:58.

they have done. There should have been more amendments and they should

:00:59.:01:03.

have pushed for a second vote if not a second referendum. They didn't do

:01:04.:01:07.

that. That is a big problem for people like Ian Murray. Jeremy

:01:08.:01:14.

Corbyn causes them huge problems. Do you think Ian Murray is justified in

:01:15.:01:19.

staying outside Jeremy Corbyn's team? If you want to get Labour to

:01:20.:01:23.

get his act together, the fact that they can't have the Secretary of

:01:24.:01:26.

State for Scotland or a shadow Secretary of State was a Scottish

:01:27.:01:31.

MP, looks ridiculous. It would be difficult for it Ian Murray to stick

:01:32.:01:35.

to his principles and join Jeremy Corbyn. It would be a ridiculous

:01:36.:01:40.

position. Jeremy Corbyn is a disaster for the Labour Party. You

:01:41.:01:44.

look at whether polls are. The difficulty you have... A lot of

:01:45.:01:50.

people who support Corbyn would say it is all very well sitting there

:01:51.:01:54.

saying the polls are disastrous for Corbyn but the reason they are

:01:55.:01:58.

disastrous is his own Labour MPs take every opportunity they can to

:01:59.:02:03.

appear in television studios and on the radio saying how rubbish years.

:02:04.:02:11.

Because they are telling the truth. Members voted that Owen Smith and

:02:12.:02:15.

not Jeremy Corbyn to be the leader. He doesn't have any purchase with

:02:16.:02:22.

the Scottish Labour Party membership. It was suggested in this

:02:23.:02:26.

mythical world in which we live in where Scotland is a left-wing

:02:27.:02:31.

country and people respond to Jeremy Corbyn and vote for him. In the last

:02:32.:02:37.

poll I saw in Scotland, we were down to 12%. There is a point where we

:02:38.:02:44.

have to ask the question, is the Labour Party passed the point of no

:02:45.:02:49.

return? On mat, there was a professor of politics talking to

:02:50.:02:53.

Andrew Neil earlier and he was making the point that there is a

:02:54.:02:56.

real problem for the Labour Party now. There is two different

:02:57.:03:06.

constituencies. They are socially conservative and is economic li

:03:07.:03:09.

conservative. It has a metropolitan constituency and university towns.

:03:10.:03:16.

London is quite heavily Labour. Those two constituencies which used

:03:17.:03:19.

to coexist quite happily and vote Labour are now at odds with each

:03:20.:03:24.

other. His point was getting rid of Jeremy Corbyn isn't going to solve

:03:25.:03:28.

the fundamental problem. It won't. There needs to be thinking about how

:03:29.:03:33.

you build that coalition. Every political party if it winds is a

:03:34.:03:38.

coalition. If you look at the SNP, they have a coalition of people. The

:03:39.:03:45.

SNP coalition has a fractured in the way that Labour has. How you don't

:03:46.:03:49.

respond to that is by doing what Jeremy Corbyn has done and pander to

:03:50.:03:56.

one side, the people who voted leave. The difficulty that the

:03:57.:04:00.

Labour Party has come I found this during the referendum, like wind --

:04:01.:04:03.

I find this astonishing that there were Labour voters in traditional

:04:04.:04:09.

Labour heartlands who didn't know where Scotland, where the Labour

:04:10.:04:13.

Party stored on the question of Scottish independence. I think the

:04:14.:04:16.

difficulty is what the Labour Party doesn't do, either in the UK in

:04:17.:04:22.

Scotland, is argue its position. For too long just accepted the support

:04:23.:04:28.

without actually making an argument about why they believed in things

:04:29.:04:33.

like being in the European Union. Will get there. Thank you very much

:04:34.:04:34.

indeed. Scottish education used

:04:35.:04:38.

to be regarded as one Well, it came to terms with no

:04:39.:04:40.

longer being in the top tier some years ago, but is it now

:04:41.:04:45.

going to have to come to terms This week, at First Minister's

:04:46.:04:48.

Questions, opposition parties seized on the latest nail in the Scottish

:04:49.:04:51.

education quality coffin, The Sutton Report -

:04:52.:04:54.

accusing the Scottish Government And Scottish and being left behind

:04:55.:05:04.

in the race for qualifications in future jobs. Scotland used to lead

:05:05.:05:09.

the world in education. Why under this Government are we always

:05:10.:05:14.

playing catch-up? Time and time again I have come here and argued

:05:15.:05:17.

that the SNP are leaving behind the poorest children. This report shows

:05:18.:05:22.

they are also holding back the brightest children. In our education

:05:23.:05:28.

system today we have record high exam passes. We have record numbers

:05:29.:05:32.

of young people going into positive destinations after they leave

:05:33.:05:39.

school, and we also do see signs of positive destinations, for example

:05:40.:05:43.

as is, or access to university, signs of the narrowing attainment

:05:44.:05:44.

gap. I'm joined now by three members

:05:45.:05:45.

of Holyrood's Education Committee. They include, here with me,

:05:46.:05:48.

its convenor the SNP's James Dornan. And in Edinburgh the

:05:49.:05:50.

Conservative's Elizabeth Smith Liz Smith, this Sutton Report was

:05:51.:06:04.

just the latest in a series of statistics reports saying that

:06:05.:06:08.

Scotland is sliding down international tables and is not

:06:09.:06:13.

doing well compared to schools in England. Everyone always says, it is

:06:14.:06:17.

nothing to do with the Curriculum for Excellence. Is that wearing a

:06:18.:06:23.

bit thin? Yes, I think it is wearing very thin. All of us in the

:06:24.:06:27.

education committee have listened carefully to a lot of evidence that

:06:28.:06:31.

has been presented to us in recent years the' -- weeks and months, and

:06:32.:06:38.

I think there is problem with the delivery of the curriculum, but

:06:39.:06:41.

let's be in no doubt, this is a decline that is taking place over a

:06:42.:06:45.

10-year period, and I have to say that the SNP is responsible for some

:06:46.:06:49.

of the problems within that 10-year period, not least of which is

:06:50.:06:54.

turning a blind eye to some of the very strong criticism that has been

:06:55.:06:58.

made by teachers and parents in the system. It is something we have

:06:59.:07:04.

listened to at the education committee, and to be fair to James

:07:05.:07:07.

Dornan, he has been blunt in a way that some of his colleagues in the

:07:08.:07:13.

SNP have not. Are you been blunt? I'm being honest. We are trying to

:07:14.:07:17.

get to the bottom of any issues we have and how we can move forward.

:07:18.:07:23.

The Cabinet Secretary has already said, we have accepted that things

:07:24.:07:26.

have to change. We have taken evidence from teachers. You have

:07:27.:07:29.

been in power for ten years and we have been going backwards. You focus

:07:30.:07:33.

on the attainment gap, but of the whole system is going down about

:07:34.:07:37.

other countries, that is not good. You had the First Minister talking

:07:38.:07:40.

about her results have improved over the last couple of years, but the

:07:41.:07:44.

important thing is we look back and decide we want to criticise

:07:45.:07:47.

everything or say, at least we now know the Government is taking this

:07:48.:07:50.

seriously and is moving forward with this review and will change things.

:07:51.:07:54.

But after ten things, can you point to one thing your Government plans

:07:55.:08:01.

to do that will make any difference? We have just seen that results have

:08:02.:08:05.

improved. We have serious action being taken on the attainment gap.

:08:06.:08:10.

We are devolving education down to the point where it should be, and

:08:11.:08:13.

that is in the schools, so that headteachers can make sure... Very

:08:14.:08:18.

few people would disagree with the idea of giving money to

:08:19.:08:22.

headteachers, maybe some would disagree, giving money to

:08:23.:08:27.

headteachers and saying, but it is not clear how giving them more money

:08:28.:08:31.

and not telling them what to do with it actually helps. By the time that

:08:32.:08:34.

money gets to the teachers there will be a framework within which it

:08:35.:08:38.

can be spent to help to improve attainment. By doing what? There are

:08:39.:08:44.

lots of things that are not just classroom learning can help

:08:45.:08:48.

children, but if it means you can bring in a classroom assistant if

:08:49.:08:51.

you think it is required, or whatever else the school requires,

:08:52.:08:55.

the beauty of it is Igls to the school, and the school then decides

:08:56.:09:00.

for their needs if that works. I see the beauty of that, the problem is

:09:01.:09:03.

that Nicola Sturgeon has staked her first ministership on dosing the

:09:04.:09:07.

attainment gap. While this might be a good idea, there is not

:09:08.:09:12.

necessarily any correlation between handing headteachers money and

:09:13.:09:15.

lowering the attainment gap. It might work, but equally it might

:09:16.:09:19.

not. That is the point of the review. We look to see what is

:09:20.:09:23.

working, we are looking to get feedback on the idea of clusters and

:09:24.:09:27.

making sure schools can work together and share best practice

:09:28.:09:34.

over a small geographic area. Daniel Johnson, what is your answer to this

:09:35.:09:38.

problem? Handing money to headteachers, Mayor may not be a

:09:39.:09:41.

good thing, but does not in itself mean that will reduce the attainment

:09:42.:09:48.

gap. No, and I think James is dancing around the elephant in the

:09:49.:09:55.

room. That is a new one! Years. It is funding. This Sutton Report is

:09:56.:10:01.

interesting, because it shows a clear change in performance around

:10:02.:10:08.

2006, exactly the point where the SNP started cutting funding to local

:10:09.:10:13.

authorities. Let's just take as read that things are not great but I want

:10:14.:10:17.

to focus on what can be done. Labour don't seem to have any proposals of

:10:18.:10:21.

doing anything different. You just keep saying give more money to

:10:22.:10:23.

schools or teachers or local authorities. It is clear that money

:10:24.:10:27.

is not the problem. We spend much more per capita on screwing the

:10:28.:10:31.

media in England, and England have caught up with us and are

:10:32.:10:36.

overtaking. I disagree with you. The reality is we have seen 4000

:10:37.:10:42.

teachers fewer teachers, 1000 fewer support staff, and these are

:10:43.:10:46.

critical resources that make all the difference to attainment and

:10:47.:10:54.

providing good education. We do spend much more than they do in

:10:55.:10:57.

England. I'm not saying what you are mentioning is not the problem, but

:10:58.:11:02.

what is England doing that means their education system appears on

:11:03.:11:05.

all the statistics to be overtaking hours with less money? The key thing

:11:06.:11:12.

is the direction of travel, and when you have declined and stuff like

:11:13.:11:16.

that it is pretty clear that will make it harder and harder for

:11:17.:11:19.

schools to deliver what they need to. But also the education committee

:11:20.:11:24.

has seen some pretty serious and worrying evidence that in terms of

:11:25.:11:30.

the introduction of a number of changes in terms of curriculum and

:11:31.:11:34.

qualifications, there has not been clear decision-making. There has not

:11:35.:11:39.

been an analysis and assessment of impact, and that is worrying. We

:11:40.:11:42.

have a combination of lack of resources and institutional failure.

:11:43.:11:49.

James Dornan was far too polite to point out that Curriculum for

:11:50.:11:51.

Excellence was an invention of the Labour Party. Liz Smith, would it be

:11:52.:11:56.

sensible to scrap the whole thing with that cause yet more disruption?

:11:57.:12:02.

I don't think anybody believes there is anything that is a problem with

:12:03.:12:06.

the principles of the Curriculum for Excellence. The argument is about

:12:07.:12:09.

the delivery, and that has been an utter mess. That is the strong

:12:10.:12:14.

message we have been getting from numerous presentations that have

:12:15.:12:17.

been made to us in the Holyrood committee. It is also a lot of the

:12:18.:12:21.

information that is coming through submissions to the governance

:12:22.:12:24.

review. And I think education agencies in Scotland obviously

:12:25.:12:28.

responsible for the implementation of the curriculum, there is

:12:29.:12:33.

something really wrong with the way this delivery has taken place. The

:12:34.:12:37.

very fact that John Swinney has had to scrap 20,000 pages of guidance,

:12:38.:12:45.

and the very people, may I finish this point? The very people who

:12:46.:12:50.

initiated these were the education agencies. There is something wrong

:12:51.:12:52.

if that system is going to break down. Is that right, James Dornan?

:12:53.:13:01.

There is a problem with the way... There is clearly something wrong

:13:02.:13:05.

when we have had to remove all the paperwork, remove all these

:13:06.:13:08.

different rules, because what seems to have happened is that things have

:13:09.:13:12.

improved on top of existing things instead of an ongoing process to

:13:13.:13:16.

make sure regulation was not needed any more. Can I go back briefly to

:13:17.:13:24.

appoint. Daniel said it is local authorities that are responsible for

:13:25.:13:28.

hiring or firing teachers. We have to leave it there.

:13:29.:13:32.

We're taking a break next Sunday because Parliament's in recess

:13:33.:13:40.

so I'll be back in two Sundays' time.

:13:41.:13:43.