02/06/2013 Sunday Politics South West


02/06/2013

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Conservatives urge Cameron to understand their policy concerns.

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Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2448 seconds

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And the battle between countryside on the Sunday Politics in the South

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West: The constituency chairman who says Conservative grassroots won't

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tolerate being labelled "loons". There are a lot of committed people

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here, so to refer to them in that way, that is completely

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unacceptable. And for the next 20 minutes, I'm joined by UKIP MEP

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William Dartmouth and Gary Streeter, the Conservative MP for South West

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Devon. This week, the government's identified four road schemes in the

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region which will benefit from �165 million of funding. Is David Cameron

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finally being nudged to think about infrastructure? No, I think we have

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been doing infrastructure all the way through. This is just more of

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the same and it is very welcome. know that UKIP are keen to see

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something done about potholes. are keen that they are mended, but

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we are also very keen that there is an appropriate amount of of money

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spent on infrastructure. The Southwest probably does not have its

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fair share. The multiple billions being spent by the coalition

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government does absolutely nothing for the Southwest. If anything, the

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reverse. I do not agree with that. I have said so myself in the comments.

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The government this week turned up the pressure on local authorities to

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build more homes. The Planning Minister was reported in a national

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newspaper as saying house building would create more human happiness

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than empty green fields. Not an uncontroversial idea in the rural

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South West. Janine Jansen caught up with the Minister in Devon this

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week. The planning bigwig came to the Southwest this week. He gave the

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team a pat on the back for its enthusiastic attitude to house

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building. For him, the more it, the merrier. Depending Mister made

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front-page news this week with his controversial comments. -- the

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Planning Minister. I do not write the headlines but I stand by

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everything I have said, which is that we need to build more houses.

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We have a crisis for a younger generation. People, particularly

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people who have been brought up your and are working locally and may not

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have huge salaries, do they not have a right to have a home and a bit of

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a garden for their kids to grow up in? But one place the Minister did

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not visit is this 3-acre site. There are controversial plans for homes

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here and arguments are still raging about the choice of this site. And

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it is one of the reasons that this counsellor left Tories to become an

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independent. My age or concern is that the plan is for too many

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houses. The growth forecast has shown that there is a decrease in

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the population and that has been ignored. The latest census Leicester

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said that only 3000 people had lit -- move here in the last ten years.

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But he stands by his can-do attitude to help young people and has the and

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their families. I think there is a lot of hysteria about the fact that

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people are moving down into the South West. My family dates back to

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the 1700s here, and I am proud to be local. We are building houses for

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local people and I am very proud that we are able to do so. One local

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and he says that the biggest issue in her patch is housing, but she

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knows that it is a double-edged sword. Clearly, we must maintain

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what is so special about England, and that is our green land and our

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farmland and our farmers. That is what we need to preserve. Clearly,

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clearly, clearly she is not going to be able to please all of the people

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all of the time. Let us pick up on that thought at the end. Your

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colleague is saying that we must do everything we can to protect the

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countryside. But you cannot have both, can you? It is about getting a

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balance. I think the Minister was wrong and his choice of words about

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houses being more important fields. I grew up on a farm in this area.

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There is nothing greater than looking out over open landscape. We

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need to preserve that, but we do need to build more houses as well.

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In some cases that will be on a greenfield. If I look back over the

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time I was at Westminster, the biggest thing that has faced my

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constituency in the last two years is affordable housing for local

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people. Our children and grandchildren. We have to build to

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accommodate their wishes. When macro William, UKIP does believe that

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housing demand is -- UKIP does believe that the housing demand is

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caused by immigration. There has been an increase of 13% and that is

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why there is the need for more housing. It is driven by mass

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immigration. We have had, in one year, 2010, I think this is a very

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important point because this is the background, in one year, 2010, more

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people integrated into the UK then from 1066 up until 1950 altogether.

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There is mass immigration. We have open borders and we will continue to

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have open borders and that has an effect on housing on the education

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and welfare. Gary has had plenty of constituents coming to him, local

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families and people who have families and his constituencies. We

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have had countless people on this programme and other programmes in

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saying that they know local people are seeking affordable housing. You

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are saying those people are wrong. am not saying that at all. I am just

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saying that councils provide the housing on a basis of what is called

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predict and provide. They see with the population projections are, and

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on that basis they provide the housing. Where does the prediction

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come from? The answer is that it comes from mass immigration, and the

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fact of the matter is that according to the government does not own

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statistics, the population for the South West as a whole will increase

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by 70% by 2030. That results in more houses. Immigration has been too

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high in this country. But is it driving the high in this country.

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But is it driving me-crisis? -- the housing crisis? Why should someone

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have to move somewhere else to find a property? It is about providing

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homes for our children. Most of the immigration into Devon and Cornwall

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is from people living in London or Manchester or Birmingham and so on.

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Most people watching this programme right now we've got here perhaps in

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their early retirement years come and that trend will continue. --

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moved here perhaps in their early retirement years, and that's trend

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will continue. The affordable conditions have gone down and down.

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The market conditions have not been favorable to first-time buyers.

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they have not. The more housing you build in an area like this, the more

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affordable it becomes, because you have more supply and prices either

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stabilize or reduce. We need that extra property. We need the housing

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generally across the board. That is for our children to live in.

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William, I know you have been critical of the government for

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taking a top-down approach to housing. What do you say to the

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leader of the council he said that he is local through and through and

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this is actually a true reflection of local need? I think we have

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established what the reasons are for the local need. Gary is absolutely

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right, there are people coming to the South West from different parts

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of the country. It is a nice place to be. But sometimes they are

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misplaced into other parts of the country through mass immigration.

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The three establishment parties, including and especially the

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Conservative Party, wants Turkey to be a member of the European Union.

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That would mean 18 million people could have the absolute right to

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come and live here. In six weeks, Croatia will become a member of the

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European Union. That is a nether 4.5 million people. We as a party are

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never going to say, you cannot have a house. You are trying to suggest

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we are saying that, I think. What have you got to say to all of these

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local families who are genuinely struggling to get affordable

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housing? We need to build more houses for them, don't we? You are

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saying that they are only needed from immigrants. -- for immigrants.

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There is an increase in population projected for Devon. That is what

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Devon County Council is working on. Your film did not cover this at all.

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Where is this coming from? You got to look at the overall thing.

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Because we are where we are, the temp one -- the UKIP takes the view

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that there should be more local influence in planning. I think the

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planning Mister the chakra Planning Minister has spoken very -- I think

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the Planning Minister has spoken very plainly about that.

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The chairman of a Devon Conservative association has threatened to resign

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if it emerges that a senior Tory really did describe activists like

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him as "swivel-eyed loons". This follows an exodus of local party

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members upset about Europe and gay marriage, as Jenny Kumah reports.

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Here, many local Conservative Party members are not happy. These local

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activists matter, because they help to raise funds for the party. It is

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them who go out, pounded the streets campaigning and giving out leaflets,

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hoping to get local conservative MPs elected. Membership numbers are in

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decline, and this is worrying the local party chairman. And the last

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six months, we have lost 55 members. -- in the last six months.

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There is nothing we can do if people die or move away, but a number of

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members have left as a consequence of government policy and how they

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see themselves being a cult of tune with government policy -- being out

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of tune with government policy. marriage is one of the issues that

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is bitterly dividing the party. Here, ten people have said they want

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to leave the party because of it. But others are passionately in

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favor. We use to get gay couples coming in and asking for

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accommodation and we would get a slip of paper out from under the

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counter and pass it to them. Things have changed now. Marriage is one of

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those things that forms a family unit, and the family unit is

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changing. To include people in it to me that has always got to be a good

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thing. Other issues, like the Coalition and grammar schools, have

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also inspired bitter debate. There has also been the matter of someone

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and David Cameron's inner circle allegedly dismissing local activists

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and describing them as swivel eyed loons. Naturally I feel very angry

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if that is true. It is an allegation. It has not been proven.

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If it is proven, and there isn't an apology forthcoming, I would

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certainly reconsider my position as a chairman, because of that has how

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people feel, I would question why I am doing what I am doing. It is not

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surprising that David Cameron has tried to smooth relations with the

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grassroots. In an e-mail to all party activists, the Prime Minister

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said he would never employ anyone who sneered at them, and he praised

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their duty and decency. But not everybody Hugh has received it has

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been impressed. -- not everyone who has received it has been impressed.

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You have called the other backbenchers swivel eyed. I broke a

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brilliant article all about this. -- I wrote a brilliant article about

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this and I said that I saw the same glint in the eye during the 1992

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election... People are saying this is the only issue that matters.

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Never mind if we hand the next election to Labour on a plate, the

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only thing that matters is this vote on it Europe, and I do not see it

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that way. I haven't seen no siblings going on today. Your -- I have seen

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no siblings going on today. Your perspective as an outsider, what do

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you make of this? I were member the late, great Frankie Howard, he had a

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great phrase which is, do not mock the afflicted. The fact of the

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matter, when David Cameron became the leader of the Conservative

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Party, the Conservative Party had 370,000 members. They have less than

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that now. David Cameron is abusive to those who disagree with him. He

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has been abusive of UKIP. He and his circle have now followed it up

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rather amazingly by being abusive of their strongest supporters, who

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obviously do not like it. The Conservative Party is run by a

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rather small metropolitan elite, who all basically think the same, and

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that creates big problems when you are running a political party, and

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it creates the problems when you are a Prime Minister. You were pretty

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critical of the government last year. Recently, you have defended

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David Cameron. But William has a point, doesn't he? Yes, I think the

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people who circle David Cameron are elitist. But what is the government

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delivering? They are delivering an economy that is reducing the debt

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and we are reducing immigration by a third. The government is delivering

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very well. No-one up at Westminster is sneering. The issues that are

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causing you problems C must be of some concern. Let's hear from the

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chairman again. I have got a letter here, a very long-standing party

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member who is a member of the Young Conservatives, and he writes that he

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has not renewed his membership this time around because he finds himself

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increasingly out of tune with the conservative policies and principles

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and it covers a wide range of issues, but homosexual marriage

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would be a perfect example. That is a perfect example of the kind of

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reason that people are leaving or not renewing. If you throw in things

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like your opposition to grammar schools or your enthusiasm for wind

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farms, you are letting them steal your clothes, aren't you? I was not

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aware that we are opposed to grammar schools. David Cameron has been as

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rude to people who have been to grammar schools I've -- as he has

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about UKIP. What the chairman described is happening in my area

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also. I get areas -- letters like that as well. I think this has been

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politically disastrous. Several of us were keen, and we said to the

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Prime Minister that we need to change course. We have had our 12

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month of madness. For the next two years, we will focus ruthlessly on

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the things that really matter to his country, reforming public services,

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immigration law and order issues, and I hope that people will judge us

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more positively in two years. latter point is exactly what David

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Cameron has said. But could there be a broader problem, where you have

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David Cameron pretty determined to modernize, as he calls it, change

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the Conservative Party, and people saying, we actually liked it the way

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it is and we do not want it changed. That is part of it. I have lost

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members. Nothing like the members we have been hearing of, but we have

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lost members. The important thing to think about is, who do we want to

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lead this country? It will be a straight choice. There are no other

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options. For all of the things we have been irritated about, David

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Cameron has done a fantastic job on the issues facing our country. But

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without these people to stuff envelopes and go and canvas, that is

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going to severely lessened his chances of running the country.

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These things have not changed. Gay marriage, he is not going to back

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down on it. This has been a political disaster. I have said this

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openly. We are now going to focus once again on the things he should

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have been focusing on all the way through. Some of them are going very

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well indeed, including a reduction on immigration, and an offer of an

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in or out referendum. William, your take. What people are alarmed by

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about the Conservative Party is that air is a focus on increasing foreign

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aid, where is we -- there is a focus on increasing foreign aid. We are

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running out of time. We must move on. Now, our regular round-up of the

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political week in 60 seconds. Firefighters protested planned cuts

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to front-line services. There will got -- there will not be the service

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that there currently is. It will take firefighters longer to arrive

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:02:59.:03:00.

at incidents. Meanwhile, a new fire control centre is costing taxpayers

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�137,000 a month while it stands empty.

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Police forces across the region have agreed to share counterterrorism

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resources. There are national issues which need police intelligence, and

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this will make the whole system much more effective. By the services must

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be protected in the next government spending review says a group of Lib

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Dem MPs. And a restaurant manager is refusing to pay a �220 council fined

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for dropping a cigarette and down a drain. I think the whole way this

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thing was treated, it was as if it was more severe than what it was.

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Gary, I know that Labour have left that centre lying there, but you

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have had three years to sort that out. It is sitting there empty while

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people are paying for it. I have a lot of confidence in the top fire

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episode -- fire officers in Devon and Cornwall. I am going to find out

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what is going on. It is a bit of Gordon Brown's financial magic.

:04:10.:04:20.
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is ancient history. I am not surprised about that fine. The

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council seems to have a little sense of proportion about what is or is

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not important. They should get the gentleman not to do it again and let

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matches live. It makes no sense at all. The man in the film described

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it as ludicrous. It is deeply irritated when cigarette smokers

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throw their cigarettes on the pavement and down the drain. That is

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not right. I can see both sides of the argument. Better down the drain

:04:57.:05:03.

Andrew Neil and Martyn Oates with the latest political news, interviews and debate, including the latest on the lobbying scandal with Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude and shadow defence secretary Jim Murphy. Plus Nadine Dorries MP on MPs' expenses.


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