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Morning folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics.
Theresa May says she wants to help people who are
"just about managing" - so should she reverse
George Osborne's cuts to benefits that are supposed to help people
Prominent London Imam Shakeel Begg is an extremist speaker,
says the High Court, after claims made on this programme.
So why is Mr Begg still being allowed to advise the Police?
Hillary Clinton fights back over the FBI's renewed investigation
into her use of a private email server - is this the boost
Donald Trump needed to reignite his chances of winning the White House?
Now it is just a question of building that runway with the
political problems that lie ahead. And haunting the studio
on this Halloween weekend, the most terrifying political
panel in the business - Tim 'Ghost' Shipman,
'Eerie' Isabel Oakeshott and First this morning, two
new models of car to be built, securing 7,000 jobs at the car plant
in Sunderland and a further 28, 00 The news from Nissan on Thursday
was seized on by Leave campaigners as evidence that the British
economy is in rude health This morning, the Business
Secretary, Greg Clark, was asked what assurances were given
to the Japanese firm's bosses Well, it's in no-one's the interest
for there to be tariff barriers to the continent
and vice versa. So, what I said is that our
objective would be to ensure that we have continued access to the markets
in Europe and vice versa, without tariffs and without
bureaucratic impediments. That is how we will approach
those negotiations. We're joined now from Newcastle
by the Shadow Business Welcome to the programme. Labour has
been a bit sceptical about this Nissan decision. Can we begin by
making it clear just what a great achievement this is, above all for
the workers of Sunderland who have some of the highest productivity in
the world, have never been on strike for 30 years, and produce cars of
incredible quality. This is their victory, isn't it? Andrew, you are
absolutely right. The Nissan plant in Sunderland is among the most
productive in the world. The workers of Nissan are amongst the most
productive as well. And it's really a victory for them and for the trade
unions and the business organisations, and everybody who
campaigned to make sure that the government couldn't ignore their
future. It's our future. I'm the MP for Newcastle. It makes a huge
difference to the region. We are a region that still likes to make
things that work. It is a huge part of our advanced manufacturing
sector. So it's really something we welcome as well as the job security.
I'm glad we have got that on the record from the Labour shadow
business secretary. But your Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell, claims
the government is ignoring manufacturers and cares only about a
small banking elite. In what way is safeguarding 30,000 industrial jobs
in the North safeguarding a financial elite? As I said, we're
really pleased that the campaigning by trade unions and the workforce,
and business organisations, meant the government felt they couldn t
ignore Nissan workers. Let's also be clear that we want that kind of job
security for all of those working in manufacturing and in other sectors
as well. And sweetheart deals for one company, no matter how important
they are, that does not an industrial strategy make. Why'd you
say it is a sweetheart deal? Greg Clark told the BBC this morning that
what was assured to Nissan is an assurance he gives to the whole
industrial sector? I was really pleased to see Greg Clark felt he
had to say something, even though it's sad that we having our
industrial strategy, you like, or our approach to Brexit delivered
piecemeal to the media rather than to the British people and Nissan,
actually. But he want published the letter. He said he has told us what
is in the letter and that reassurances given on training, on
science and on supporting the supply chain for the automated sector. You
must be in favour all -- of all of that? We are in favour of an
industrial strategy. Greg Clark unlike Sajid Javid, cannot say
industrial strategy. I'm still puzzling to find out what it is you
disagree with. Let me put the question. You said the assurances he
has given to Nissan are available to the car manufacturing sector in
general and indeed to industry in general. What is your problem with
that? Two things. Let him publish the letter so we can see that, let
him have the transparency he's pretending to offer. But also, we
need an industrial strategy that values -- that is values based and
joined. He talked about electric cars and supporting green cars. That
was in regard to Nissan. At the same time the government has slashed
support for other areas of green technology. So what is it? That is
not to do with the Nissan deal. Labour implied at some stage there
was some financial inducement, some secret bribes, that doesn't seem to
be the case. You are not claiming that any more -- any more. Then you
claimed it was a sweetheart deal for one company. That turns out not to
be the case. What criticism are you left with on this Nissan deal? I
would be really surprised if all that Nissan got was the reassurances
that Greg Clark is shared with us. He didn't answer the question of
what happens if we can't get continued tariff free access to the
single market, if we are not within the single market or the Customs
Union. Do you really think a negotiator like Nissan, who are very
good at negotiating, they would have excepted making this significant
investment without some further reassurances? Do you think there is
some kind of financial bride and if so what is the evidence? I would
like to see the letter published and I would also like to understand what
would happen... There are 27 countries which need to agree with
the deal we have from Brexit. What will Nissan, how will Nissan remain
competitive? How will the automotive industry remain competitive? Greg
Clark says he reassured them on that. But how will that be so if we
do not get access? We haven't heard anything about that. He talks about
reassurances given to Nissan. We need to make -- to know where we're
going to make sure Brexit is in the interest of all workers, not only
those who work for a Nissan and not only those who can get the attention
of Greg Clark. He assured Nissan that Britain would remain a
competitive place to do business. That was the main assurance he gave
them. He would help with skills and infrastructure and all the rest
Since you are -- intend to repeal the trade union laws that have made
strikes in Britain largely a thing of the past, and you plan to raise
corporation tax, you couldn't give Nissan the same assurance, could
you? We could absolutely give Nissan the assurance that we will be, our
vision of the future of the UK, is based on having a strong
manufacturing sector. Repealing trade union laws? As we have seen at
Nissan, the industrial sector is dependent on having highly trained,
well skilled workers. -- highly skilled, well-trained. You don't
have that by getting -- having an aggressive policy and trade union
laws or by slashing corporation tax and not supporting manufacturing
investment. Remember, the last government took away the
Manufacturing allowances which supported Manufacturing and slashed
corporation tax. That is their solution. It is a low tax, low skill
economy they want. Thank you. Sorry I had to rush you.
I'm grateful for you joining us I'm still struggling to see what is
left of Labour's criticism? Yeah, except for this. This was a valid
point she just made. What we know for sure is that Greg Clark could
say to Nissan, my aim is to get tariff free deal. There is no way he
could guarantee that. None of us know that. I don't think that was
enough. I think clearly there was a more detailed package involving
training and other things. He has acknowledged this, albeit we do not
know the precise mechanism. What I think is interesting about this is
if you reverse what happened this week, at a time when the government
says Britain is open for business and it is going to have an
industrial strategy, so far it is a bit vaguely defined. Nissan hadn't
made this commitment. Imagine what would have happened? It is an
impossible scenario. The government seems to me was obliged to make sure
this didn't happen. Let's not forget Nissan has invested hundreds of
millions in the north-east. It has been a huge success story. When I
spoke to workers from Nissan, they were so proud because they went to
Japan to teach the Japanese had to be more productive. The idea that
Nissan was just going to walk away from this given its track record,
its importance, wasn't really credible. The government had some
bargaining chips. Absolutely, of course they weren't going to walk
away. The majority of people in the area in which Nissan is braced -
based, voted for Brexit. Nissan knows it is in a powerful position
because it is an emotive sector Clearly the government didn't want
to have some big showdown. I honestly don't think this is a
smoking gun. The Labour Shadow minister really struggled to
articulate what exactly she thinks the government is hiding. I think
the reassurances were given were pretty anodyne, really. They were
anodyne and general. And what Greg Clark was setting out was an
objective and he made the right noises, and Nissan exercised its
right to sabre rattle. It does have a history of doing that. The one
thing that would now be clear given Greg Clark's performance this
morning on the BBC, is that if we were to discover some kind of
financial incentive directly linked to this investment, not more for
skills or infrastructure, that is fine, but some direct financial
investment, compensation for tariffs, which would be illegal
under World Trade Organisation rules, what you might call a
financial bride, the sect -- the business Secretary's position would
be untenable? He would be in a very difficult position indeed. Just
released the letter. There is nothing to hide. Put it out there.
The most revealing thing is that people are getting wildly excited
about the fact Greg Clark announced Britain's negotiating position would
be that we would like tariff free trade with Europe. This is regarded
as an insight into what this comment is doing and it says a great deal
about how little we have been told in Parliament and the media about
what they are up. Do you think it is exciting we are going for tariff
free trade? We're easily excited these days. We don't know. This is
where these things are at such a tentative phase. We don't know how
the rest of the European Union is going to respond to Britain's
negotiating hand. We know Britain once the best of everything, please.
It is a starting point. But that is not how it is going to end up. We
are getting wider than that. We have will have to see.
Now, Universal Credit, a single payment made to welfare
claimants that would roll together a plethora of benefits whilst
encouraging people into work by making work pay.
But have cuts to the flagship welfare scheme reduced work
incentives and hit the incomes of the least well-off?
Well, some of the government's own MPs think so, and,
as Mark Lobel reports, want the cuts reversed.
Theresa May says she wants a country that works
for everyone, that's on the side of ordinary, working people.
It means never writing off people who can work and consigning them
to a life on benefits, but giving them the chance to go out
and earn a living and to enjoy the dignity that comes
But now some in her party are worried that the low earners
will be hit by changes to Universal Credit benefit system
originally set up to encourage more people into work.
We also need to focus tax credits and Universal Credit
Concern centred on the Government's decision in the July 2015 budget
to find ?3 billion worth of savings from the Universal Credit bill.
Conservative MP Heidi Allen is working on a campaign to get MPs
in her party to urge the Prime Minister to think again.
I want her to understand for herself what the outcomes might
be if we press ahead with the Universal Credit,
Do you think Theresa May, right now, understands what you understand
To be fair, unless you really get into the detail,
and I have through my work on the Work and Pensions
Select Committee, I don't think anybody does.
Independent economic analysts at the IFS agree with Heidi Alan
that cuts to Universal Credit weaken incentives to work.
One of the key parts of the Universal Credit system
That is how much you can earn before your credit
As the Government has sought to save money,
both under the Coalition and now they Conservative Government,
both under the Coalition and now the Conservative Government,
that work allowance has been cut, time and time again.
The biggest cuts happened in the summer budget of 2015.
That basically reduces the amount of earnings you get to keep
It weakens the incentive people have to move into work.
What do changes to the Universal Credit system mean?
The Resolution Foundation think tank has crunched the numbers.
If you compare what would have happened before the July 2015 summer
budget to what will happen by 2 20, even if you take into account gains
in the National Living Wage and income tax cuts,
recipients will be hit by annual deductions.
Couples and parents would receive, on average, ?1000 less.
A dual-earning couple with two children under four,
with one partner working full-time on ?10.50 an hour and the other
working part-time on the minimum wage for around 20
hours a week, they would receive ?1800 less.
Hit most by the changes would be a single parent
with a child under four, working full-time
I think, if I'm honest, it is unrealistic, given
the economic climate, to expect everything to be reversed.
What I would like to see is an increase in the work
allowances to those people who will be hardest hit.
That is single parents and second earners hoping to return to work,
because they are the people we need to absolutely make
The Sunday Politics understands that about 15 to 20 Conservative MPs
are pushing for changes ahead of the Autumn Statement.
A former cabinet minister told us that they believed further impact
analysis should be done to find out if any mitigation measures
Former Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, an architect
of the system, now says the cuts should be reversed.
But his former department has told us that it has no plans to revisit
the work allowance changes announced in the budget last year.
What I would say to Heidi Allen and IDS, they got it right the first
time and they should stick to the vote they cast last year
because these reforms actually do make sense.
What interests me is the fact we are trying to move people
off welfare into work, we are raising the wages people
earn by massively increasing the minimum wage and this
People are coming off welfare and into work.
Campaigners are pushing for savings to come from other areas to relieve
The other thing we have to start looking at is the triple
Financially it has been a great policy, and it was absolutely right
that we lifted pensioners who were significantly behind,
for many years, in terms of income levels, but they have
I think it is time for us to look at that policy again,
because is costing us an awful lot of money.
With just over three weeks to wait until the Conservative leadership's
new economic plan is unveiled in the Autumn Statement,
its top team is under pressure from within its own ranks to use it
And I'm joined now by former Work and Pensions Secretary,
Welcome back to the programme. Theresa May said she is on the side
of the just managing, the working poor. But they are about to be hit
from all sides. Their modest living standards are going to be squeezed
as inflation overtakes pay rises, they will be further squeezed
because top-up benefits in work are frozen. Incentives to work are going
to be reduced by the cuts in universal benefits. So much for
being on the side of those just managing? Theresa was right to focus
on this group. The definition has to be the bottom half, in economic
terms, of the social structure. It doesn't look good for them? This is
the point I am making, it is an opportunity to put some of this
right. One of the reasons I resigned in March is because I felt the
direction of travel we had been going in had been to take far too
much money out of that group of people when there are other areas
which, if you need to make some of those savings, you can. The key bit
is that the group needs to be helped through into work and encouraged to
stay in work. There was a report done with the IFS, when we were
there, at Universal Credit. It said Universal Credit rolled out, as it
should have been before the cuts, people would be much more likely to
stay in work longer and earn more money. It is a net positive, but
that is now called into question. Let's unpick some of the detail but
first, do you accept the words of David Willets? It says on the basis
of the things I read out to you that the just managing face a significant
and painful cut in real terms if we continue on the way we are going. I
do, in essence. That is the reason why I resigned. I felt Heidi raised
that issue as well, that we got the balance wrong. It is right that
pensioners get to a certain point, when they are on a level par, doing
the right thing over five years Staying with that process has cost
us ?18 billion extra this year, in total. It will go on costing another
5 billion. Then there is the issue of tax allowances. I want to remind
you and viewers what David Cameron told the Conservative conference in
2009. If you are a single mother with two children, earning ?150 a
week, the withdrawal of your benefits and the additional taxes
that you pay me on that for every extra you earn, you keep just 4p.
What kind of incentive is that? 30 years ago, this party won and
election fighting against 98% tax rates for the Rex richest. I want us
today to show even more anger about 96% tax rates for the very poorest
in our country. Real anger, and effective rate of over 90%.
Universal Credit reduces that. Some will still face, as they lose
benefits and pay tax, a marginal rate of over 75%. That is still too
high? Yes, it is the collision between those going into work at the
moment they start paying tax. A racial Universal Credit is set at
65%. You can call that the base marginal tax rate. 1.2 million will
face 75%? That is the point about why the allowances are so important.
The point about the allowances which viewers might not fully understand
is that it was set, as part of Universal Credit, to allow you to
get certain people, with certain difficulties, as they cross into
work, to retain more benefit before it is tapered away as they go up in
hours. A lone parent, who might have various issues, you want her to have
a bigger incentive than a single person that does not have the same
commitments. It is structured so that somebody who has difficulty
going to work, they all have slightly different rates. What
happened is that last year a decision was taken to reduce tax
credits, and, on the back of that, to reduce allowances. I believe
given everything that happened now, we need to restore that to the point
where it helps those people crossing over. You say a decision was taken,
it was a decision by the former Chancellor George Osborne in the
summer budget. Other decisions were taken in successive Budgets to raise
the Universal Credit budget, which resulted in the disincentive being
higher than many people wanted. Do you accept that has been the
consequence of his decisions? I was in the Government, we take
collective responsibility. I argued this was not the right way to go,
but when you are in you have to stay with it if you lose that argument.
There was another attempt before the spending review last year to
increase the taper, so the marginal rate would have gone up. I managed
to stop that. I'm Sibley saying what we made as a decision last
year, given the circumstances and given that the net effect of all of
that, I think it is time for the Government to ask the question, if
we are in this to help that group of people, Universal Credit is
singularly the most powerful tool. One of the Argentine aid in the
paper published on Thursday, we are set going on doing two more races of
the tax threshold, taking more people out of tax. That has a
diminishing effect on the bottom section. Only 25p in that tax rate
will help any of those. Most of it goes to middle income? You and I
will benefit more from that. With Universal Credit, every pound you
put into that will go to the bottom five tenths. That is why I designed
it like that. He pressed the button and immediately start to changed
circumstances. Should the cuts in Universal Credit that Mr Osborne
introduced, against your argument, should they be reversed? I believe
so. I believe you can do it even if there is concern about spending I
don't believe you need to go through with the continuing raise the tax
threshold. Cost is dependent on inflation, but give or take. It is
in the Tory manifesto? Has more than doubled. What is in the manifesto,
and Lasse Prime Minister made this clear in conference, we want to
improve the life chances of people. Today's announcement on the Green
paper is what I wrote over the last two and a half years. Big changes
necessary to how we deal with sickness benefit. That can now be
done because of Universal Credit, because people can go back to work
and it tapers away their benefits. It is the most powerful tool to sort
our people that live in poverty Universal Credit. We need to make
sure it lands positively. If Mr Osborne's cuts were reversed, what
you and some of your backbench Tory colleagues want to do, how would
that improve the incentives of the working poor, as they try to get on
in life? They have to pay more tax, they lose some benefits. How would
it improve it? Would many still face a 75% rate? The key question is
first and foremost, as people move through income to the point where
they are getting taxed, that group will be enormously benefited by the
re-emergence of these allowances at the right level. That is what the
IFS have said, that is what the Resolution Foundation are saying,
and the Centre For Social Justice is saying. You have to get that group,
because they are most likely to be drifting into poverty and less
incomes are right. Would it help those who face a 75% margin? We
don't face that. Exactly right. People much poorer than us do. I
would love to get the marginal rate down to testify percent, and lower,.
-- down to 65%. It is a balance of how you spend the money. I would
prefer to do that rather than necessarily go ahead with threshold
razors. I think the coronation of the marginal reduction of 65%,
getting it down to 60%, plus more allowances, will allow Universal
Credit to get to the group that is going to be, and the report written
by the IFS and ourselves, it shows it is going to be the most dynamic
and direct ability of a Government to be able to influence the way that
people improve their incomes in the bottom five deciles. Would you take
on extra work if you knew you were going to lose 75% of it? Even 6 %?
This has been my argument all along. Universal Credit can help that
enormously. One point that goes missing, 70% of the bottom five
deciles will be on Universal Credit. Whatever change you make to
Universal Credit has a dramatic and immediate effect I am arguing,
genuinely, it is time to rethink this. The Prime Minister wants to
make this a priority. I am completely with her on this. I think
she made a really good start. To deliver this, we need to... You have
a lot of work to do to deliver it. Because it is a manifesto
commitment, or because they want to do it, stopping increasing the
personal allowances are not acceptable, what about bringing to
an end, by the end of the parliament, the pension triple lock
that pensioners enjoy to improve and put more money to the working poor?
What about that? Well, you are absolutely right that there is now
the danger, I think, of a mess balance between the generations
Quite rightly at the beginning, when we came in, we have a commitment as
a Conservative Party in a manifesto to get pensions back onto earnings.
It was moved to a triple lock that guaranteed a minimum. What about
ending up now? I understand it is a promise through the Parliament, but
after 2020? I am in favour of getting it back to innings and
allowing it to rise at reasonable levels. Moving from earnings to the
triple lock has cost ?18 billion this year. Here was a high, under
pressure, as the Government was scratching around to pay more money
out of working age areas, when the budget was almost out of control on
the pension side. I'm in favour of helping pensioners, but now they are
up to a reasonable level, at a steady rate, that can be afforded by
Government, which takes the pressure off, working age people have to pay
for that. In years to come, time to end the triple lock
and use the savings to help these people we have been talking about?
As part of a load of packages, yes. It would also help with the
intergenerational fairness argument. Thank you for being with us.
Now, a prominent London Imam called Shakeel Begg -
who is Chief Imam the Lewisham Islamic Centre - is an extremist.
That was the verdict of the judge in a libel action that Mr Begg took
against the BBC, after we described him as an Islamic extremist
Mr Begg had complained about a short segment in an interview in November
2013 with Farooq Murad, the then head of the Muslim Council
of Britain, an organisation which claims to represent British
In that interview, we described Mr Begg as an extremist speaker
who had hailed jihad is the greatest of deeds.
From his base of the Lewisham Islamic Centre, Mr Begg has been
involved in a number of community organisations, including
the Police Independent Advisory Group in Lewisham,
Lewisham Council's Advisory Council on Religious Education
and as a volunteer chaplain at Lewisham Hospital.
But in his judgment, Mr Justice Haddon-Cave called
Mr Begg a Jekyll and Hyde character - a trusted figure in his local
community, but when talking to predominantly Muslim audiences
he shed the cloak of respectability and revealed the horns of extremism.
The judge cited one speech made by Mr Begg at a rally
outside Belmarsh Prisonm- the high security prison that houses
terrorists - as particularly sinister.
The judge said the imam was expressing admiration and praise
Following Friday's judgment, the hospital trust have told us that
Mr Begg's status as a voluntary chaplain has been terminated.
We have been told by Lewisham Council he is no longer
on their Religious Education Committee.
The Metropolitan Police have confirmed that
Mr Begg remains a member of their Independent Advisory Group
in Lewisham, as well as the borough's faith group.
I am joined by Haras Rafiq, chief executive of the Quilliam
Foundation. Welcome to the programme. I have here in my hand a
statement from the trustees of the Lewisham Islamic Centre. They reject
the judge's ruling as fanciful and say they are unequivocal and
unwavering in their support of Shakeel Begg as their head imam
What do you make of that? To be honest, it doesn't surprise me. At
the end of the day he is only the imam of that mosque because he
belongs to the same theological fundamentalist views that the mosque
would portray. If they were to say he was an extremist, they would be
saying in fact that they have allowed extremist preaching and
extremist theology within their walls. I think this is a very
important decision and a very important judgment by the judge
First of all, these people like to operate in a linear, under a veneer
of respectability. When that veneer is taken away, there are a number of
things that can happen. First of all, the BBC did very well to stand
by their guns and say, we're not going to be intimidated by somebody
who is threatening to taking -- to take us to court for potential
libel. Many other media companies have done that in the past and
people have capitulated. Also, this has exposed him. Legally now, here's
some deal can be classified as an extremist preacher, somebody who
promotes religious violence. I think the mosque really needs to take a
step back and say, how we part of the problem that we are facing
within society? Or are we going to be part of the solution? It really
concerns me. The High Court judge says that Mr Begg's speeches were
consistent with an extremist Salafist is the most worldview. What
is Salafist is and how widespread is it in UK mosques? -- mosque. It
comes from the Middle East. It is from Saudi Arabia. The enemy for
them was the old colonial Ottoman Empire. There is the quiet Salafist
to get some with their lives, lives outside society. There is a
revolutionary who tries to convert other people to their worldview And
then there is the Salafist jihad ease. People like Islamic State etc.
We have seen of increased in recent decades because of money that has,
growing from the Middle East. When that is mixed with a political
ideology, it becomes potent. Do we have a political -- particular
problem in Britain with this in our mosques? Absolutely. Without the
theology that says hate the other, hate other Muslims, that
excommunicate other people, that says it is OK to fight and is good
to fight when you have got an enemy, we wouldn't really have a jihadi
problem. Really that is something we have to tackle. The number of
mosques and institutions supporting Salafist and Islam is has been on
the increase. Do we have a problem with what the judge called Jekyll
and Hyde characters who hide their extremism except when they are
speaking to specific groups? Absolutely. One of the things we
have focused on in the past, a number of hate preachers now in
prison, people like Anjem Choudary, and everybody focused on them. But
there is a range of people operating under that level. People who will
show one face to the community because they actually need that for
a respectability. They need that for a legitimacy. They need that to
operate. When they are behind closed doors and talking to their
constitution, that is when you will see the real face of what these
people believe. It is an increasing phenomenon. We are seeing it more.
And we're going to carry on seeing it. Not just has the Lewisham mosque
stuck by him, but given the clarity of the judge's ruling, are you
surprised that the Metropolitan police would wish to continue with
Mr Begg as an adviser? I'm absolutely shocked that that
decision. What Uzzy going to do Advise them on how to deal with
extremist preachers and promote religiously motivated violence? I
don't know what he's going to advise them on. Because we now have a judge
that has ruled against him and actually classified him as an
extremist and somebody who promotes religious violence, we actually have
a possibility for the CPS to actually prosecute him. There is a
law that has been in place since 2005 called religiously motivated
violence. If he has been classified as somebody who promotes this, there
is a potential for the CPS to prosecute. I want to called into
question other organisations, interfaith organisations, other
Muslims groups, who say they want to fight extremism, I call on them to
say, this guy is an extremist preacher, we should cut our ties
from him. This was a very high risk strategy by the BBC. The exposure
could have been over ?1.5 million of licence payers money. Will this make
it more difficult for Jekyll and Hyde characters to behave as Mr Begg
has behaved? Absolutely. It will do. One of the things they will now have
to make sure is that they are a lot more careful. Careful with what they
say to their own constituency. It won't solve the theological problem.
But it will actually stop other people from operating in this manner
and allow other media organisations to have the confidence to expose
them when they do. Haras Rafiq, thank you for joining us.
It's just gone 11.35, you're watching the Sunday Politics.
We say goodbye to viewers in Scotland, who leave us now
I am Lucy Fisher. the Week Ahead.
Coming up on the Sunday Polhtics in the south-west.
The devolution party is over, as councillors hoping for more
money and power are told they must have a mayor.
And for the next 20 minutes I'm joined by St Ives MP Derek Thomas,
Let's start with the 70 child refugees brought to North Ddvon this
Welcomed by many in Torrington, but not all.
We are a local, small, close-knit community
We cannot look after our own, so why look after everybody else?
Apparently they will not be here very long, sent
Wednesday, I was told, but that is too long.
So, this man's is not the only point of view but there are
a significant number of people who feel the same as him.
I have been an MP for 18 months and I have had many, many...
The refugee crisis has been a live issue.
I have had many people cont`ct me and see me and e-mail me.
They have all wanted to do the best we can.
Whenever there is a crisis we and the government
I think it is really import`nt that we make sure the resources
are there to help these young people, and we're talking
about girls, young girls and children under 13,
There has been some discusshon about the ages and how well
You say that there haven't been people who have
spoken to you in that way, but there was a Facebook page
that was taken down this wedk because of the number
Will you be listening to those people?
Firstly, they are not coming to me, but it is important to note
that the unaccompanied children are mostly the vulnerable ones.
The ones we saw on TV a couple of weeks ago people who havd
But we're talking about young lives that for whatever reason have got
in a horrendous situation because of things out
of their control and out of other peoples control.
Linda, what would you say to these people?
Well, first of all can I just say I think there will be so many people
in Torrington who will be shck to see their community
represented by somebody with views like that.
In some ways, I kind of feel sorry for that man.
I do, because when he says it is not our problem,
actually we are an ageing population in this peninsul`,
Our health service is staffdd by a large number of people who come
here seeking work as refugeds and asylum seekers.
We need to have a lot broader minds
Here is the Prime Minister touching down at Newquay on Thursday.
Cornwall's airport was named as one of six which could get
new London landing slots because of Heathrow expansion.
Mrs May had a roundtable discussion with local businesses
about the new opportunities her decision to expand
The announcement had them dreaming in Plymouth as well,
where campaigners are battlhng to reopen the city's airport
But their hopes have been ddalt a blow by the leaking
of a long-awaited government report which says they need a ?9 mhllion
Five years after it closed, the future of Plymouth airport
But only this week campaigndrs bidding to reopen were given renewed
hope when the government announced that Heathrow will get
To get back into Heathrow once again, it would be transforlational
and underline the future of the airport for decades.
There have been various studies with opposing views.
But now the BBC can reveal that a new draft report from
the Department for Transport, which reviewed all the prevhous
studies, has concluded therd is not sufficient demand to operatd
commercially viable passengdr services from a reopened
Plymouth City Airport without government subsidy.
That is effectively saying ht is not viable again, isn't it?
No, they are not published at the moment, but what thex said
was would not be viable without government support
That is because we said we would like to see region`l air
connectivity fund support for developing the routes,
to get them to break even in the early years.
Suffer them to come back and say we do not know how it can
be viable seems to me a strange kind of language.
Fly Plymouth claimed they could reopen airport
without any subsidy, yet the plan they submitted
to the Department for Transport would require ?4 million
in government loans at launch, and a further ?5 million to cover
Looks to me and anyone else, you are asking for 9
You have to distinguish between the nature of subsidies
If it were to reopen the government would reasonably expect to be
involved in supporting the start-up of that to profit to ensure it
Government regularly supports the start-up and recommissioning
of new transport projects, so I think the two are very
The local MP Johnny Mercer wants the final report published `s soon
as possible to bring an end to the uncertainty.
The government has made it clear, as has the local authority,
that no subsidies are avail`ble for this airport, so that c`nnot
operate without a subsidy, then I think we need to havd a look
at that and decide where we go from there.
So, for now the uncertainty continues.
The Department for Transport says the final study will be
Plymouth City Council says while it is seeking to protdct
the airport in its local pl`n, its future will ultimately be
decided by an independent inspector next summer.
And Sutton Harbour Holdings which leases the airport
from the council says it will continue with its plans
Meanwhile the Prime Minister touched down at Newquay airport on Thursday,
which will benefit from Heathrow's expansion.
As she announced increased health funding for the south-west,
it looks more like Plymouth airport's malaise could be terminal.
Derek, you were with Theres` May yesterday in Newquay.
Do you think to some extent that she is hoping we will forget
about our train line by makhng announcements about the airport
I was delighted to welcome the prime to Cornwall so soon
so soon after becoming PM, it was a fantastic indication
But actually I do not think that was her intention at all.
There is a real mix of transport infrastructure we must get
right in the south-west, including the railway and roads
and including obviously the flying with aeroplanes.
Is new slots to Heathrow the solution here, could yot not
expand so that you actually have more flights abroad without having
Certainly we would welcome `nything we can to improve the econoly
and get people moving to Cornwall, in particular West Cornwall,
but I think we still need to link to London and I think the ilproved
the improved rail journeys, both the times...
Well, you asked about whethdr airport was a distraction from
Yes, with the Dawlish section of line and the improvements.
A task force has been working on the strategy, we are going to be
presenting that to the government this autumn, and we're ambitious
It is going to take time, but transport is about all these
things, the roads, the A30 being a dual carriageway
all the way to Penzance, that is what I'm arguing for.
When you were an MP in Plymouth the airport
Do you think Plymouth will now suffer at the hands of Newqtay,
money will go to Newquay rather than Plymouth City Airport?
Well, it was that in the beginning which undermined Plymouth when
Flybe started running flights in front of the ones
that hopped over from Plymouth
to Newquay, got enough passengers to keep it going.
I have an adjournment debatd in Parliament, I championed airport,
and there were I think 130 plus thousand people flying
Fly Plymouth will obviously be mindful that they would havd that
kind of cooperation again in order to get the numbers up.
Do you think it can ever happen can we forget Plymouth City Airport
and concentrate on the two others, Exeter and Newquay?
There are loads of hurdles to overcome and that one.
We thought we had come to the point where we were given
The railway is absolutely vhtal not just about improvement but
about keeping that bit of connectivity,
and our connectivity is fragile, open.
Back to the three airports, do we need them or should
Well, I think Fly Plymouth obviously have to put
They have owned up to the f`ct that they need some sort of subsidy,
We are talking 9 million, Ddrek to reopen Plymouth airport.
It actually doesn't sound like that much money.
But you will be familiar with the helicopter link,
or what was, from Penzance to the Isles of Scilly.
I tried to get some subsidy for that, which is a really
important link, but it was not available or forthcoming.
Sometimes we have to stop looking always to the government
or the councils to give grants and make the business case.
It is galling for people down here, I know we had assurances th`t
infrastructure will be lookdd at, but to see the kind of monex
being spent on HS2 and up to the north, when you cannot get
the money to prop open your airport or to fix the link at Dawlish.
Well, that is absolutely right, and if we're going to get the khnd of
growth we have potential for, and productivity, then we need to solve
these problems and get coopdration both from government but also within
the communities, to make our connectivity across the piece is
good it -- as good as it can get. If the people of Plymouth can lake this
happen, that will be good for the economy, but we the governmdnt needs
to concentrate on really good road infrastructure, rail infrastructure.
But the money has to come from somewhere. And there is mondy.. It
was very disappointing that Theresa May was not giving more substance to
the money that will be needdd for the Dawlish bit of the line. That is
important for you in Cornwall as well. But the strategy is not before
the government yet. She is talking about much less money than hs needed
to do it. So we're still wahting to hear the confirmation of th`t.
Council leaders in the South West have reacted angrily to comlents
made by the community secretary during a visit to is Exeter last
week. Sergei Javid told thel that if they wanted more money and power,
south-west powerhouse lead by one south-west powerhouse lead by one
person. He said the devoluthon deal was not ambitious, and if the
council wanted to make a difference, they had to have a major.
July seemed to bring a new dawn for local government. This is a very big
deal. Cornwall is the first county to get these new powers. Cornwall
had just secured the first lajor devolution deal outside the big
cities. Powers over adult training, economic development, bus rdgulation
Lingle Don. I was delighted to Lingle Don. I was delighted to
travel down with the Prime Linister to celebrate it and to do so over a
paint that evening. In fact, the government spent a year and more
toasting the flagship Cornish devolution deal, and suggesting the
county's trailblazing for uncle rural areas wanting to get ` slice
of the action. Suddenly, thd beer now seems to have turned rather
sour. Unambitious deal, and frankly the Cornwall one was not ambitious,
did not include any money, had few hours, so they will no one that got
away with not having a mayor, so you have got to ask yourself wh`t is the
point of going down this ro`d in unless you want to make a
difference, and if you do, xou have to have a mayor. I very much object
to being threatened and being told we will do this with you but only if
you organise it this way. I think that is wrong. We do not do that. We
talked about what the deal would be and what we can relinquish, we talk
about how we can do things, but we do not say, but you must do it in
this manner, and I do not think government should be saying that to
us either. It is the cider drinking counties of Devon and Somerset who
have been warned by the comlunity secretary not to drink from the same
cup as the unambitious Cornhsh. They want to secure a joint devolution
deal for the two counties, but the one thing they will not swallow is
an elected mayor. Three months ago it was all smiles and celebrations
as the government assure thdm they did not need to have a mayor. But
the party is over now. From anyone who wants ambitious and deal, they
have to have a mayor. He made it clear at the beginning that for in
order for us to have the money and power, we had to have a mayor.
Afterwards I spoke to him, `nd said Afterwards I spoke to him, `nd said
that this is a nonstarter. @mong the collective hangover, voices in the
business community say that accepting a mayor could be the only
way to make the good times roll again. This is the important message
for the public sector leaders. If we're going to unlock the btsiness
investment, and it is a hugd appetite to do that, business will
invest, they need strong le`dership, they need to steer from a cdntral
person, the mayor, to make sure they understand exactly where we are
going with our plans for thd future. With the community secretarx's
comments casting a long shadow over the South West's existing ddvolution
plans, councillors seem detdrmined to walk their own regardless. The
question, whether that is ddstined to see them run into the sand. So,
what is this obsession the Tories have with Mayers question -,
mayors?. The money and the power goes with the mayor, you cannot have
the money empowered if you do not have one, why? This was passed by
all parties. But why? They have decided that is the way to get the
economy working better. If xou look at the Cornish council, we have an
independent party led counchl, and over the last four years, I do not
see much they have done to help business. So many things thdy have
done of hindered business. H get so frustrated of people saying they are
not understanding --... Perhaps this is not the best way to go forward.
Which way do you see of going forward here? Do you think ht would
be beneficial for Devon to have a mayor? No, I do not. It is clear
that all people who have bedn working on the plans for thd
combined authority have identified what they cold the golden
opportunities. They have got a very clear idea of what they want to
deliver with new powers and money. And I think, I do not know what
constituents Sajid Javid represents, because we do not need top-down
and Cornwall Police is saying that and Cornwall Police is saying that
this is what we want to do `nd this is what we want to do it, then
hopefully MPs will be standhng up that. -- people in. An easidr
solution would settle all this. We have a council election in Lay, let
us ask the people of Cornwall whether they want a mayor are not.
It does not need to be a referendum, it could be what each polithcal
party sets before the peopld. It was rejected in Plymouth when there was
a request to foist a mayor on as. a request to foist a mayor on as.
And in Torbay it has not bedn a success. I am closely involved in
the devolution deal with John Pollock, and I know that many of the
things in these meetings do not things in these meetings do not
represent what people are tdlling me out and about, and people are
unclear about what the devolution deal is. We are serious abott health
and social care integration. That is because it is top-down, and the
structures are there aren't being developed, and listening to people
in a constructive way, but `t the moment somebody top-down from the
metropolitan elite telling people in Devon and Cornwall Police to do and
how is not what we need mord of Sounds like the opposite of
devolution, someone telling Devon devolution, someone telling Devon
and Cornwall what to do. As we heard, the first area to have a
devolution deal, and there `re number things round transport,
Sergei Javid said it did not involve Sergei Javid said it did not involve
money, what is the point of going down that route? -- Sajid J`vid I
cannot see why it would be ` problem. I was on the progr`mme with
the leader when this was behng put forward. The problem with the deal
is because they went early `nd too quickly. They put it togethdr in a
hurry, and I said at the tile that I didn't think it would be a good
thing for them to be amongst the first. They seem to think it was a
good idea but I think they would have been better waiting, crafting
it together more carefully. If it is not working now, I do not think that
is lack of the mayor, it is lack of care and attention to getting the
programme right in the beginning. We have to move on. It is time for our
round-up of the political wdek in 60 seconds.
On a visit to Cornwall, the Prime Minister says decisions abott
cutting health services must be made locally. We're going to see over the
next two years, up to 2020, a significant amount of extra money
being put into the south-west for health services. What the hdalth
service is now doing is talking to local areas about how that hs going
to be spent and what servicds will be provided in different ardas. A
council decision to paint the double yellow line in the middle of a road
is raised in the Commons by the South East Cornwall MP. Can you tell
nobody can do about this? Tdll them to vote Conservative! The pdople of
Torquay be tall -- are told there will be no Christmas lights this
year after the responsibility for funding them was handed to the
Chamber of Commerce. That mhght mean job losses and shops closing, it
might mean developers will take one look at Torquay and say we do not
want to know. OK, Linda, we heard Theresa May say that there would be
more money for the region for health services, albeit that difficult
decisions would have to be lade locally about it. Where you
reassured by that? I thought she would very uncomfortable herself
when she said that, and it hs very when she said that, and it hs very
sad that some quite good pl`ns for the transformation of the hdalth
service are being made against a background of cuts. She is seeing
more money, but more money when exactly? Is it now or later? Is an
hour later? I do not think ht is a lot because she was seeing difficult
decisions would have to be lade I have been involved in the
transformation plan, and I see it not as a way to cut the cost of
funding but to integrate services so you prayed I'd better service to
people. -- back to provide. Once we have the transformation plan
together, there is a pot of money, ?8 billion, available for us to bid
so we can transform services before we see others. That is not `ll for
Cornwall. There were MPs lining up to attack plans to cut beds and
hospitals. If you look at Cornwall, most people agree that we h`ve beds
in the wrong place and not dnough in the right place. So what we are
arguing for those looking at what beds we have across the system and
making sure they really work. I need to stop because we want to talk
about the Christmas lights hn Torquay briefly. No Christm`s
lights. Is listening sample of weird it would have been better to have
left it to the council? I think a lot of people will be saying yes,
but clearly the right hand hasn t been speaking to the left and people
have not been getting together. I think it is desperately sad and hope
that local people can be innovative and coming up with ways. It seems so
sad. Voluntary groups do a fantastic Barely more than a week
now until polling day, and a new revelation rocks the US
Presidential election campaign. If it wasn't bizarre enough, it just
got more bizarre. The FBI have reopened their
investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of private email servers
whilst she was Secretary of State, after the discovery
of further emails. Though not on her laptop or even the
State Department. Donald Trump is saying that it's
bigger than Watergate - so could it swing the election
in his favour? We spoke to top US
pollster, Frank Luntz. The FBI investigation is happening
so late in the election process that it would be very difficult
to derail a Clinton victory. That said, if there is one thing
that could keep Hillary Clinton from the presidency,
it's an FBI investigation. But there's still only four states
that really matter, Florida, Ohio, Right now, Clinton has
beyond the margin of error leads This would have to have a truly
significant impact for the election There is a point about a week ago
when I was prepared to say that Clinton had a 95% chance
of winning this election. Based on what has happened
in the last 48 hours, It is still very likely,
but I wouldn't bet on it. I thought the 2000 election would be
the best election of my lifetime, And then I thought 2008 would be
amazing, because we had two challenger candidates and the first
African-American President. It is ugly, it's painful,
it is as negative as anything The public is angry,
the country, overall, is frustrated. But for entertainment value,
these candidates probably should have charged us money,
because it's better than any movie at ever seen, it's
better than any TV show. That was Frank Luntz. He may be
right or wrong about Mrs Clinton still having an 80% chance of
winning. I would bet on an 80% chance? Yes, absolutely. I spoke to
a high-profile American pollster and strategist last night and he took a
rather different view to Frank Luntz. He thought, and I think some
other high-profile commentators agree, that this is actually much
more serious than some people realise. There are an awful lot of
undecided voters out there looking for an excuse to vote Trump. They do
not like what they see in either candidate. But because this FBI
probe is not going to conclude before the election, the question,
the doubt over Hillary Clinton, gives them an excuse to back Trump.
The thing that will play on the minds of the voters is, could the
100 day honeymoon turning to the 100 day divorce? Which even be
impeached? It may give some people an excuse not to vote for Mrs
Clinton. It could provide a problem in terms of energising her base The
battle ground almost matters more than the polls. Florida and
Pennsylvania have been trending to Mrs Clinton. Mr Trump needs to win
both. He does not get in without both. He needs both. Just coming up
in the latest BBC News, the Washington Post tracking poll, Mrs
Clinton is now only one point ahead in the national poll. One point
Even given my caveat that the state battles are most important. That is
incredibly close? It is. Polls yesterday showed Trump nationally
closing of. -- up. There is a clear trend and movement. This has
reinforced everything that people who have a problem with Hillary
Clinton know about Hillary Clinton. Trump is running this insurgent
campaign. We have seen at here with Brexit. If you are running an
insurgent campaign, you want to be against the ultimate establishment
insider and that is what Hillary Clinton is. I suggested it was
bizarre. Fathoming the behaviour of the FBI is interesting as well. This
is a separate investigation into a former congressman, Anthony Wiener,
who had done all sorts of things. He seemed to be sex text thing a minor.
A 15-year-old girl. The FBI investigate. They get his laptop to
see what else he has been too. In the course of that, his wife, now
separated, the closest adviser to Hillary Clinton, they find on the
laptop e-mails involving the Clinton server to her. And yet the FBI
cannot, it needs now a separate warrant to access these e-mails It
hasn't got that yet. It has got a warrant to do the congressman
e-mails. On the basis of not knowing the content, this has happened.
Yeah. Who knows? He is a Republican, this guy. Earlier this year he was
being praised to the hilt by Democrats. Absolutely. The timing is
a nightmare for her. You described the whole sequence. There is nothing
definitive to doubt in this sequence. All he is saying is he has
discovered more e-mails in effect. They are from the congressman's
former wife. On Anthony Wiener's laptop, which apparently she used
sometimes. But what that shows is that for all the scrutiny of modern
politicians, they cannot escape caricature. And as Tim was just
saying, her weakness is perceived to be secretive, elitism and
complacency about that elitism. And so just the announcement of a
reopening of the investigation so fuels that caricature, you have just
revealed a poll giving her a 1% lead. That must be related to what
has happened. It is without a shred of evidence that she has done
anything wrong. You can see how because people only see things
encourage kids, that is deadly serious. -- in caricature. An
American friend of mine said we have got our October surprise but we
don't know what it is. The FBI must surely come under massive pressure.
It did its -- it did this against the Justice Department. The
difficulty the FBI had was that this information, for what it's worth, it
came to them. Were they not to have said something and it worked to have
come out later, they would have been accused of a massive cover-up. They
are dammed if they do, dammed if they don't. There is still time for
another surprise. And early November surprise. Who knows if there might
still be something that comes out on Donald Trump? This is the first
election where I can remember we have had two October surprises
already. There are is stuff about tapes knocking around about Donald
Trump saying racist things. The Clintons have got a lot of friends.
It would be a big surprise if we did not see anything else in the next
few days. Just when you think it could not get
more interesting, it has. There has been plenty in the papers lately
about the Ukip leadership saying unpleasant things about each other.
But what about Mr Farage himself? What's he up to?
Well, on BBC Two tonight we may find out the answer.
Well, I'm led to believe she's very experienced.
But I don't think Strictly Come Dancing is for me.
That is, unless, of course, you fancy popping a cheeky zero
No, I don't think Strictly Come Dancing is for me.
Well, you tell Mr Balls he has just lost your programme one viewer.
I might have nothing to do these days but, realistically,
Well, that wasn't Nigel Farage. It is a BBC comedy on tonight. Nigel
Farage gets his life back. A number of runners and riders. Let's come
straight down to it. Who would be the next leader of Ukip? Probably
Paul Nuttall. He is the favourite. The one who has the backing, not
very enthusiastic backing, is Rahim Cassandra. And also Aaron Banks a
big donor. The best of a rather weak lot. I think Paul Nuttall should
squeak through. I interviewed all three of them this week. Mr
Cassandra is a lively character and he knows how to make a few
headlines. With a bit of money behind him, anything is possible.
This is a guy who has been to the States, who has literally studied
what Trump has done. Pees on secondment for the time being. The
guy who is his line manager is one of Donald Trump's campaign stop He
is extraordinarily right-wing. I am told he kept a picture of Enoch
Powell by his bed. Barry Goldwater is one of his heroes, for example.
There are other candidates. I would suggest, put out as a hypothesis,
Paul Nuttall is Labour's worst nightmare. They are more vulnerable
in the North. Paul Nuttall is from Merseyside, a working-class
background, performs well on television. He is a really good
interviewee. He is one of the best around in politics at the moment.
However, I think whoever gets it has a massive task. The clip of this
Nigel Farage satire partly shows why. His dominance was overwhelming.
He, in many ways, did a brilliant job at keeping the show on the road.
The trouble for all new political parties is keeping it going is
tough. A very different party, the SDP, with all those glamorous
figures in it, lasted eight years, something like that. I think they
are in real trouble at the moment because of the implosion we have
been seeing in front of our eyes and the ideal -- ideological splits
Whoever gets it will face a tough tussle. All three of the main
contenders want to put Nigel Farage in the House of Lords. They were
falling over themselves to soak up two farads. That is how you win this
election. Mr Aaron Banks, who is he putting
his money on? He said he supports Rahim. I know Mr Banks is utterly
fed with the shenanigans in Ukip. He thinks it is terribly disorganised,
dysfunctional and doesn't want a great deal to do with it for the
foreseeable future. It is not quite Trump the Clinton
but it is interesting. That is it. The Daily Politics is back tomorrow.
And all of next week. Jo Coburn will be your next Sunday because I am off
to the United States to begin to rehearse presenting the BBC's US
election night coverage on the th of November. It will be here on BBC
One, BBC world, BBC News Channel and BBC
online. Remember if it's Sunday,
it's the Sunday Politics.
Andrew Neil and Lucie Fisher are joined by Iain Duncan Smith, Chi Onwurah and Haras Rafiq of the Quilliam Foundation. The Daily Mail's Isabel Oakeshott, commentator Steve Richards and Tim Shipman of The Sunday Times are on the political panel.