11/12/2016 Sunday Politics South


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It's Sunday morning and this is the Sunday Politics.


A row has broken out between Number Ten and former


Cabinet minister Nicky Morgan over Brexit and, believe it or not,


the price of Theresa May's leather trousers.


I feel as though I'm one of the people that


If you do that, you are likely to attract attention,


It's not just Nicky Morgan making life difficult


for the Prime Minister - we'll be taking a look at the rest


Fully paid-up rebel Ken Clarke joins us live.


Protestors disrupted a speech by Jeremy Corbyn yesterday,


but is his biggest problem Labour's miserable performance


In the South, will be a's new bus and Corbyn critic Chris Leslie


In the South, will be a's new bus services Bill mean more local


control over return fares will only think of it as an early Christmas


present from us. We guarantee you won't


be disappointed. And speaking of guaranteed


disappointments - I'm joined by three of the busiest little elves


in political journalism. It's Iain Martin, Polly Toynbee


and Tom Newton Dunn. So, we knew relations


between Theresa May and some of her backbenchers over Europe


weren't exactly a bed of roses. But signs of how fractious things


are getting come courtesy of this morning's Mail on Sunday which has


the details of a series of texts from one of Mrs May's senior


advisers to and concerning the former Cabinet


minister Nicky Morgan. Mrs Morgan is one of those arguing


for a so-called soft Brexit, and has been pressing the PM


to reveal more of her negotiation She's also apparently irked


Downing Street by questioning Mrs May's decision to purchase


and be photographed in a ?995 pair She said she had "never spent that


much money on anything apart Mrs Morgan was due to attend


a meeting at Number 10 this week But that invitation seems to be off,


after a fairly extraordinary argument by text message


with Mrs May's joint chief She texted the MP Alistair Burt,


another of those arguing for a so-called soft Brexit,


cancelling Nicky Morgan's invitation and telling him to not "bring that


woman to Number Ten again". The following day Nicky Morgan


texted Fiona Hill, saying "If you don't like something I have


said or done, please If you don't want my views in future


meetings you need to tell them." Shortly afterwards she received


the reply "Well, he just did. And according to the Mail,


Mrs Morgan, who you'll see in our film shortly,


has now been formally banned So, Tom, much ado about nothing or


telling you about the underlying tensions over Brexit? Both, if I am


allowed to choose both. It says something about British politics


today, that this is the most important thing we can find to talk


about, because the Government are not giving us anything to talk about


cs especially on Brexit because they don't have a plan as we know. There


is is a lot of truth that are being spoken from this row, one is that


Mrs May comes into Downing Street with a lot of baggage including


spectacular fall outs with Cabinet Ministers in the past. Nicky Morgan


being one. We heard about the row over banning children from school.


She fell out with Boris Johnson, so, she then enters Number Ten with


history. When you are in Number Ten you start, you cannot be


controversial and my way but the high way, which is why Fiona Hill


kept Theresa May in the Home Office. You need to behave differently in


the top job. It is surprising Nicky Morgan hats taken such a robust


line. She seemed such a gentle soul as a minister. She did, Brexit has


done funny things to people. Everything has been shaken up. It


reveals really how paranoid they are, I mean you cannot have a


situation really in which the, in which you know, Number Ten has got


realise if the Prime Minister's entire stick is her authenticity and


incredible connection, which is genuine, with voters outside the


Metropolitan bubble, when she chooses to wear ?995 leather


trousers you have to anticipate that journalists and MPs are going to


take the mickey, that is how life works, but I think they are trying


to run Number Ten as they ran the Home Office, and you see that in the


rows they have had with Mark Carney and Boris Johnson this week, now you


might be able to run one Government department in that control freakish


way but not Government will hold together for too long, if it is run


in that fashion. By try doing the whole Government like one


department. This is just the start, Polly, we are still several months


away from triggering Article 50. We, The Tory party is split down the


middle, the thing that mattered most to the nation since the last war, it


is not frivolous. It may look as if it is about trousers, it is about


the most serious thing. What was split down the middle? Aren't the


Euro-files and the Eurosceptics used to be the outliers, it is now the


Europhiles, it is not a split down the middle. They won't vote against


Brexit but they will, I think exert the maximum influence they can, to


make sure that it is not a Brexit, a self-harming Brexit, to make sure


that the country understand, when it comes to that point, that there may


be really hard decision to make, do you want a real economic damage to


be done to the country, to your own wallet, in, in exchange for being


able to stop free movement or is that trade off in the end going to


be just too expensive? We have seen polls suggesting people are


beginning to move, and not willing, a poll out now saying people


wouldn't be willing to sacrifice any money at all, for the sake of


stopping immigration. So if itself comes to that trade off, the people


are going to need to be confronted with that choice. The Irony is, I


think the Tories are in the most exceptionally strong position, I


mean what is happening here is that British politics is being realigned


and remade along leave and remain lines, if the Prime Minister's luck


hold, the Tories are looking at being somewhere 45, 46, 47% of the


vote with an opposition split between a far left Labour Party and


depleted Liberal Democrats, that sound like a recipe for something


similar to what happened in the 1980s. You are seeing extraordinary


alliances between left and right. The Scottish referendum rebuilt


Scottish politics along the lines of pro independence, anti-independence


and now Brexit maybe doing the same. So, rows within the Conservative


Party over the price of trousers might be new,


but over Europe, not so much. And this week's Commons vote


on when the Government will fire the starting gun on Brexit,


and what it will say about its plans before it does so,


confirmed that instead of the eurosceptics


being the outsiders, it's now the Remainers


who are leading the resistance. While the Prime Minister


was schmoozing in the gold-plated Gulf this week, back home


the Commons was voting on a Labour motion forcing her


to publish a plan for Brexit. Through some parliamentary


jiggery-pokery, the Government basically got its way,


but it did provide a platform for some mischiefmaking by Tory MPs


who voted to remain, We are getting somewhat tired,


are we not, of this constant level of abuse, this constant criticism


that we are somehow Remoaners that want to thwart


the will of the people, go back on it and that we don't


accept the result. I don't like the result, and yes,


I do believe the people It's not good enough


that these things are dragged out of the Government


by opposition day motions. I'm pleased that it's happened


but I wish the Government was taking Is Nicky Morgan really


listening to her constituents I think I'm one of the people


who stuck their head above the parapet so if you do that


you're likely to attract attention, you're likely to attract abuse,


but also actually levels of support. I'm having e-mails from around


the country with people saying thank you for what you are doing,


party members around the country saying thank


you for what you are doing and saying, and I and others


will continue to do that. I just think, as a backbench


Member of Parliament, you've got to be there,


particularly when we have a weak opposition, to ask the question that


government needs to be scrutinised on before we embark


on such a huge issue. Nobody comes into politics to become


a thorn in their party leader's side, but at the end of the day it's


such a massive issue that if you don't stand up


for what you believe in, I'm not sure what the point


is of going into politics. That puts her on a collision course


with activists in her local party like Adam Stairs,


a committed leader who accuses Nicky has promised me and the rest


of our Conservative association she will be voting for Article 50


and she will support the Prime Minister's timetable,


and we have just got to trust that and hope that goes ahead,


but there's a lot of people who think she's taking sideswipes


at the Government The Conservatives are very popular,


she wants to be a Conservative MP and we want to see a Conservative


government being I have no idea what she's playing


at, I think she just needs to get on with her job as an MP,


which she does very well, Now let's head to Anna Soubry's


constituency nearby to see how her stance is going down


with the voters. If Anna Soubry doesn't fully


back Brexit, what does Well, she's going to have a little


bit of a problem because the voters, especially in this area,


they voted to come out of the EU so she will definitely


have a little bit of a problem. She should stick for


what she believes in, but I guess from a democratic


perspective she does... She has admitted the fact over


and over again that she wanted to remain, but her views


at the moment, even in her e-mails, depicted the fact she's


anti-Brexit still. Theresa May will host her most


pro-European MPs at Downing Street this week to discuss


the countdown to Brexit. Although now we know not


everyone is invited. And the MP leading the resistance


in the Commons on Wednesday was Ken Clarke, he was the only


Conservative MP who voted against the Government's plan


to trigger Article 50 by the end of March and he joins us


now from Nottingham. Welcome back to the programme Ken


Clarke. Now, tell me this when David Cameron resigned after losing the


referendum, you had to pick a new leader, which candidate did the Tory


Europhiles like you put up to deliver a so-called soft Brexit, or


no Brexit at all? Well, I can't speak for the others but I voted for


Theresa May, I gave a notorious interview, it wasn't meant to be, I


was chatting to Malcolm Rifkind but somebody turned a camera on, I


called her a bloody difficult woman which the Tory party probably needs,


compared with Margaret Thatcher and said I was going to vote for her, I


gave a vote for one of the younger ones first, but I told Teresa I


would vote for her, she was the only serious candidate in my view. You


voted for somebody you thought was a difficult woman, she is being


difficult in ways you don't like, your side of the Tory party, you had


your chance to put up somebody more in line with you, instead you shut


up, so, why the complaints about it not going in your direction? I am


not making complaint, it is not Teresa's fall we are in the dreadful


mess, she was on the Remain side, she made a good speech during the


campaign on the referendum, setting out the economic case for being in,


setting out the security case for being in, which was Home Secretary,


she was particularly expert in, it wasn't her fault that not a word it


was reported anywhere, in the national media. Now, my views have


been the same, I am afraid throughout my adult life, for the 50


years I have been in politics, and my views have been the mainstream


policy of the Conservative Party throughout all that time, I don't


expect to have a sudden conversion on the 24th June, and I think what I


owe to my constituency, and to Parliament, is that I exercise my


judgment, I make speeches giving my reasons, I make the best judgment


that I can, of what is the national interest. I understand that. I would


be a terrible hypocrite if I... Of course that is not what I am asking.


How many Conservative MPs do you think you can count on to oppose


this so-called hard Brexit? Is it 40, 20, 10, 5, 1? I have no idea,


because Anna, and Nicky, who you have just seen on the video who are


also sticking to their principle, they are only saying what they are


been saying ever since they have been in politics, probably may have


more idea than me. That is three, how many more? I


don't know, we will find out. We are living in a bubble in which the tone


of politics is getting nastier and the reporting is getting sillier, so


it is all about Theresa May's trousers and whether Boris has made


some inappropriate jokes. What we need if we are going to abandon the


basis upon which we made ourselves a leading political power in the world


for the last 40 years and the basis upon which our economy has prospered


because Margaret Thatcher got the others to adopt the single market


and we benefited from that more than any other member state, so now we


need a serious plan, a strategy. What is our relationship going to be


in the modern world? How will our children and grandchildren make the


best union they can? We need Parliament's approval of a White


Paper and then start years of negotiation. This will run and run.


This interview hasn't got time to run and run so let me get another


question in. You seem to be quoted in the mail on Sunday this morning


as saying if the Prime Minister sides too much with the heart Brexit


group, she won't survive, is that your view? Yes because only a


minority of the House of Commons think it is frightfully simple and


you can just leave. The referendum campaign, the only national media


reporting of the issues were completely silly and often quite


dishonest arguments on both sides. Let me just check this, explain to


me the basis... Know, excuse me, I have to interrupt because you said


the Prime Minister won't survive so just explain to our viewers why she


won't survive. She will be in a minority she starts adopting the


views of John Redwood or Iain Duncan Smith. It's clear majority of the


House of Commons doesn't agree with that and it would be pretty


catastrophic if that is what we were going to do when we turn up and


faced 27 of the nation state, and tell them we are pulling out of the


biggest market in the world. How long do you give the Prime Minister


then? If you don't think she will survive by going for a heart Brexit?


I don't think she will go for a heart Brexit. Really, surrounded by


David Davis and Liam Fox? Do you think Liam Fox will determine the


policy of the Cabinet? Liam has always been ferociously against the


European Union although he served in a government that was pro-European


for about two and a half years. Does he not survive either? You're trying


to reduce it to my trying to forecast Cabinet reshuffle is which


I haven't got a clue whether there will be a Cabinet reshuffle, they


may be ministers for the next ten years, I have no idea. Liam and me,


but also Liam and the majority of his Cabinet colleagues don't start


from the same place. The way forward is for them to produce a White Paper


setting out the strategy on which all the Cabinet are agreed. People


should stop leaking the Cabinet papers they are getting, they should


stop leaking against each other, get down and do the work when they have


got the agreed strategy. I'm sorry to interrupt again but we haven't


got much time. We saw in our film that a number of constituency


members in those areas which are strongly Remain MPs like yourself,


in our case in this film it was Nicky Morgan, the constituency party


members are unhappy about this. What's your message to them? Don't


they deserve an MP that reflects their way of thinking? Leavers are


unhappy and Remainers are very grateful. Mine don't go in for


abuse... That's probably because you're not on e-mail, Mr Clarke. I


get more from Remainers. I'm a great fan of Anna Soubry and Nicky Morgan,


I don't agree with them on everything, but the views they are


putting forward are the ones they've always held and I think we are doing


the Government to favour by saying what it now depends on is your


success in agreeing a policy and then explaining to the public what


you want to do. I shall be surprised if they manage that by the end of


March, I think it is best to get the policy right first but we shall see.


Have you been invited then, you say you are being helpful, have you been


invited to this meeting in Downing Street on Wednesday for the soft


Brexiteers? No, because I haven't been joining any of these groups.


It's fair to say most of my colleagues know exactly what my


views are. No doubt those that haven't had this kind of discussion


with their colleagues before have been invited. I didn't expect to be


invited. I get on perfectly well with Theresa May but I haven't been


invited, but I don't think there's much significance in that. What do


you think of the way Downing Street has handled Nicky Morgan? I feel


sorry for women in politics. I'm glad to say men in politics don't


have great lead stories about what they are wearing. Apart from my


suede shoes, I'm lucky because I'm not a very snappy dresser. It is


tedious in these days that we still have a absurd pop newspaper stories


about what they are wearing. That commenting on the Prime


Minister's trousers, is it really grounds for banishment? No, of


course not. Nikki and Teresa will have serious political discussions


and if they want to have an argument about what they are wearing, their


closest friends will advise them to keep it private. It is absurd. Given


that the party appears to be deciding it has been all -- ordered


to changes policies about Britain's relationship with the world, it


needs to be taken seriously and this Lola. Is filling a vacuum before the


serious discussion starts. Thank you for filling our vacuum this morning


and of course no one would ever criticise how you dress. Of course.


Now, seasoned observers will warn against reading too much


into parliamentary by-elections, but they can provide a vital boost


for a party leader under pressure, or provide damaging ammunition


Following a disappointing result for Labour last week in Richmond,


Jeremy Corbyn may have been hoping for an early Christmas


present at this week's contest in Lincolnshire.


In Sleaford and North Hykeham, a constituency that supported Leave


in the EU referendum, there was little Christmas cheer


for Labour as it fell from second in 2015 to fourth place.


That was at least a better performance than in


Remain-supporting Richmond Park, where the party's candiate


lost his deposit after attracting fewer voters than the reported


number of local Labour Party members.


Speaking for the Labour Party this week, MP Vernon Coaker


said their policies on other major issues were "lost to an extent


Some MPs feel that a lack of clarity is holding the party back.


This week three frontbenchers were among the 23 Labour MPs to defy


the party line and vote against a motion to begin


the process of leaving the EU by the end of March.


And a number of Labour MPs we've spoken to since Thursday's vote have


said they fear the party now runs the risk of being squeezed


by the Lib Dems and UKIP, or in the words of one,


"being cannabilised, eaten from both ends".


To compound their troubles, a national poll


released on Friday put Labour at a seven-year low, trailing 17


It's still a season of joy for many of Mr Corbyn's supporters -


they point to a series of victories under his leadership,


including a by-election win in Tooting and the London mayoral


Though neither candidate was a Corbynite.


But there's a distinct lack of goodwill on the party


of his critics - although having failed comprehensively


to challenge him this summer, what they intend to do


This morning Diane Abbott played down the significance of the


results. The reports of the Labour Party's demise are exaggerated, we


are the largest social Democratic party in Europe and the surging


membership is down to the current leadership. We have the right


policies on the NHS, investing in the economy, and as you know the


Tories are fatally split on Europe. And we're joined now


by the former mayor of London Ken Livingstone,


and the former Shadow Ken Livingstone, in the most recent


by-election Labour collapsed from second to fourth place, the one


before that your party lost its deposit. What is the positive gloss


on that? There's nothing new in this, where you have got seats which


are solidly Tory, often voters switched to Lib Dem to kick other


voters out. We have had good swings that indicate a Labour government so


don't pay too much attention. It is like Orpington 50 years ago. Labour


voters switched just to kick the Tories out. Don't read too much into


these results, Labour did win tooting so it is OK. First of all I


don't think it was a problem with the candidates in the by-elections,


they did a really good job locally, but there is an issue with those


residents and their attitudes to the national party, and I just think


that when you have warning bells going off like that, we have to


listen to what people are saying. I think what they are saying is they


want an opposition party to have a plan. So yes we have got to attack


the Conservatives where they are going wrong on the NHS, running


headlong over the cliff for a hard Brexit, but we also need a plan for


what Labour's alternative will be. When do we get that plant?


Effectively you have got it already. John McDonnell has gone on


relentlessly for the need for a massive public investment. For


decades now under Labour and Tory governments we haven't invested in


infrastructure, our roads are a disgrace, a broadband is antique. We


need to be honest about this, if Theresa May can come back and say


I've done a deal, we are leaving the EU, we will control our borders, we


won't have to pay 350 million a year and stay in the single market,


well... But that won't happen. If we are going to stumble along for two


years heading for an economic disaster, that's why only eight MPs


voted to leave, because they knew the harm it would do to their


voters. If you have got a plan, why are things getting worse for you in


the national polls, 17 points behind? If you look back, when I was


leader of Chelsea my poll rating went down... But you have not been


as bad since 1983 when you lost an election by a landslide. Over the


next two years our economy will not grow strongly, it will limp along at


best, as we get closer to Brexit it will get worse. All Labour MPs


should be focusing on the economic alternative because nobody ever wins


an election without a credible economic strategy. So as long as the


country goes to hell in a hand basket, Labour will be fine. That's


not good enough. You're not a commentator any more, you are part


of the leadership of the party. It is to you. I will continue to argue


the case for credibility, particularly in our policies, but


the leadership cannot just sit back and watch this drift. On the Brexit


situation, the Conservative manifesto at the last general


election promised it would be yes to the single market, why aren't we


holding them to account for the broken promise potentially they are


about to do? If I had still been an MP, I would have been voting with


you, rebelling, because we are not going to get any good deal to leave.


Theresa May will stumble on for a couple of years trying to balance...


The party policies were heard from Diane Abbott this morning is to get


the best possible deal to leave. And I will believe it when it happens.


So you don't believe a central part of Jeremy Corbyn's policy? Jeremy


has accepted the fact people voted to leave. He now said we now need to


get the best possible deal and you don't think it's achievable. I


don't, because why would the other 27 members give us a better deal


staying outside? You've confused me, why are you such a big supporter of


Corbyn with his policy you don't think it's achievable?


Everybody knows we are not going to get a soft exit, so we either have


the hard Brexit and we lose perhaps millions, certainly hundreds of


thousands of jobs, or we have to say we got it wrong. I mean, you, a lot


of people have been saying that all Labour's unclear on Brexit, that is


why it is going wrong, I would suggest to you, that actually what


the concentration on is the Tories are unclear about Brexit, they are


in power, that is what matters, a bigger problem for Labour is whether


Mr Corbyn's leadership will cut through or not. I think the YouGov


poll this weekend not only gave us that double punch of a 17 point lead


for the Conservatives but it had a 33 point lead, 33 point, for Theresa


May over Jeremy Corbyn, so part of the plan, think, has to be to


address this leadership issue, to make sure it is also a party that is


listening to the wider public and not just the small number of members


or the trotsites in Momentum or whoever is the latest Marxist on


the... You The thing that is ox fibbing Labour. One MP said Labour


has quoted bunkum. We have has 18 months of Labour MPs stabbing Jeremy


in the back and some in the front. The vast majority of Labour MPs have


stopped undermining Jeremy. You weren't doing that well before. Can


you imagine a situation in which you have elected a new leader and the


first year it is all about getting rid of imand undermining him. I


disagree with Tony Blair on lots of policy issue, I didn't run wound


saying this man is not fit to govern. That is because you had no


support for that at the time. The idea people will take lectures from


Ken on divisiveness, that is like takes lectures from Boris Johnson on


diplomacy, you have to make sure, yes, that we find some accommodation


after the leadership election this summer, but the plan is not there


right now, and you and the rest of the leadership has to be held


accountable for delivering that, I want to hear what the plan is. It is


FDR he told us earlier. If you have got now because as we saw in the


Autumn Statement, debt to GDP ratio at 90%, you can't convince the


public by saying we will throw more money at the problem, the public


want a credible plan, where the sums add up, that you are not making


promises that won't be delivered. They want that plan. We need to


point out our history, when Labour Waugh the election in 45 Government


debt was two times that it was now.. Now.. They generated exports and


within 50 years we virtually paid off that debt. Austerity is not the


way to go. Our economy is a disgrace compared with Germany. I agree. What


we have to start saying, there is decent jobs, where are they going to


be coming from, can we have a society based on fair play and


prosperity for everybody not just the wealthy, that means saying, some


time, that people have to contribute, they have to put in, so


we have to listen to what the public are saying on issues for instance


like immigration, as they said in the Brexit referendum, but make sure


we have our approach set out clearly, so people know there is a


ability to manage, and control these things, not just ignore them. Those


tax dodgers who launder their money through Panamanian banks. If we


crackdown on what might be 150 billion a year of tax evasion and


avoidance. That is a real outlier estimate as you know, way the


highest, you cannot build the FDR programme on tax evasion revenues,


alone, but let me ask you. You can say to Starbucks, if you are not


going to pay tax on your profits we will tax every cup of coffee. Why


don't you nationalise it? I was just checking that would be the policy.


Let me ask you this. By what time do you get, start to get worrieded if


the polls haven't given to turn round? I mean, I think they will


turn round. When do you start to get worried? If they haven't? If in a


year's time it was as bad as this we would be worried. I don't think it


will be. Jeremy and his team will knows can on the economy, and that


is wins every election. Bill Clinton, remember it's the economy


stupid. People know if you are going to spend money they want to see


where it is coming from, otherwise they will think it is their taxes


that will go up and the Conservative, Theresa May, will


scare the British public over plans that are not properly... What do you


do if things haven't got better in 12 months? We lost the leadership


election in the summer but we will hold our leadership to account. What


does that mean? It means asking for the plan, testing what the proposals


are, are they properly credible, do they make sure that they meet the


test the public... You just have to bite the bottom lip now, you


privately, a lot of you think your party is heading for catastrophe. I


don't think it is acceptable that we have this level of performance,


currently, I am sure Ken agrees the opinion polls, and those by


by-election were just not good enough. We have to show leadership,


certainly on Brexit, hold the Government to account. Attack them


for the crisis in the NHS, yes and on the economy, to deliver credible


policy force, example on defending national security and making sure we


stand up for humanitarian intervention. Final point, your


party has lost Scotland. You are now in third place behind the stories --


Tories. I never thought I would be able to say that in a broadcast, if


you lose the north too, you are heading for the smallest


Parliamentary Labour Party since the war, aren't you. But that is our


weakness, we in the 13 years of the last Labour Government neglected


rebuilding our manufacturing in the way the Germans have done. Millions


of people used to have good job, we used to have 8 million jobs in


manufacturing it is down two. It is in the north, that Jeremy's strategy


has the most relevance, of actually getting the investment and


rebuilding. All right. We will see. Come back in 12 months if not before


and we will check it out. It's just gone 11.35,


you're watching the Sunday Politics. We say goodbye to viewers


in Scotland, who leave us now Coming up here in 20


minutes, we'll be talking about Boris Johnson's tour


of the Middle East after straying off message, again,


and the protestors attempting First though, the Sunday


Politics where you are. Welcome to Sunday Politics South,


my name is Peter Henley. On today's show, the


government wants to give local councils powers


to set routes for bus operators and to decide


on But crucially they wont be


allowed to run the buses So what will that mean for rural


services already hit by First, let's meet the two


politicians who are here for the Rowenna Davis was the


candidate for a leader in And of course Donna


Jones is leader of the Conservative City Council


in Portsmouth for the Conservatives. Now there is this proposal you are


teaching at the moment, having stood for Parliament, and it is for


schools in Portsmouth. There is this proposal


from independent schools to try and provide 10,000 places at cost,


they say, with the cost That sounds like a bargain


for the government. ?5,000 per term


at Portsmouth Grammar School, they will do it


for ?5,000 for the year. I think that private


schools do do some good for a lot of children


our country and I think it is great that they want to open up a little


But there are also some costs with private schools, firstly,


the stop children getting to know each other from different


backgrounds, so people from richer backgrounds can mix with those from


different backgrounds and vice versa.


And secondly, it means that you can buy a certain amount of


Now this proposal which would essentially open up the doors


of private schools a little bit more has obviously got to be welcomed,


but you still have that massive division and those huge costs in our


society that remain entrenched under that private school system.


and this is going to be a means tested thing, this will be good.


Looking from the point of view you would say, yeah, sounds good.


For those parents that is absolutely fantastic, but you always have to


ask the question, what about everybody else who can get in?


If they are going to test those students before they come


in and they will only take perhaps the cleverest students, then what


The then therefore lose out on the talent


chance to have different students in the playgrounds.


10,000 is quite a lot as well, we are known around the


world for the quality of education and private schools, the part of


Isn't just an extension of the Grammar schools principal


I think it is about money, I think it's about the


fact that the majority of independent schools in the country


are registered charities and I think the government is looking at the


charity status for what are essentially profit-making


And yes they are education providers, and I think


that what the Independent schools commission has done is gone back to


the government, post the publication of the green paper has


set actually we want to keep the charity status


because it is very tax efficient for us.


And to offset the fact that we are getting


a benefit from the Inland Revenue, we will look to dedicate 10,000


children from across the country who otherwise wouldn't


be able to afford to have an independent education.


It is being done by hints and nods and


maybe a bit of assistance and lends the minibus


out of people use the


pool, isn't this much more straightforward and a better deal


Better than building new grammar schools, maybe.


I am not sure the government will agree to the


proposals that have been put forward by the independent schools


commission, and I think as a consequence the Green paper may well


But we do have a Chancellor is firm, he is fixated on making


sure the UK exchequer gets the best deal it can and I think it is


something that we really do need to watch and wait and see


what happens with this one because I think that a


reduction in the size of the independent sector across the UK


could mean people such as myself managing local education authorities


struggle considerably if we suddenly have to take on huge amount of more


It would be a bit upset, wouldn't it, for the whole


Yes, it would be a huge change is that proposal actually


ended up going forward but I do think, this


lot about private schools, a lot of that grammar schools, it hasn't


really talked much about what it is going to do what we are changing


with the mainstream compressors education system in this country,


which is where most of her children going.


I do support the Academy provision because what happened a few years


ago was that the ability to effectively sacked underperforming


headteachers and moved from councils as the local education authorities


but the school improvement statutory requirement remained with us, so at


the moment we are in a hybrid situation where we can't actually


remove headteachers are senior management teams that are not


performing like it we are judged by Ofstead if we are underperforming


LEA, something has to change and that is why we have been


encouraging academies because with an academy


provider of can remove a head if they are not performing.


Now this is being considered as a visionary, something that will mean


shorter journey times, improvements to business


and employment prospects and help with the housing crisis.


Linking the cities of Oxford and Cambridge, the new route is


inevitably being dubbed the Varsity line, or the brain train.


It is actually restoring a line that was


But in a first for the rail industry the track and the actual service


will be run by the same company rather than split between an


I am going to establish East West rail as a new and separate


organisation to accelerate the permission


is needed to reopen the


route and secure private sector involvement in design, build and


operate the route as an integrated organisation.


This east-west rail organisation will be established


early in the New Year as chaired by the former chief executive of


Joining us now is David Williams from the Green party in Oxfordshire,


It is not just joining Oxford and Cambridge, is it?


It is not just a railway line, it is a kind of curve of


affluence and leading-edge development without any doubt, it


brings together actually about seven different universities, all have


spin off industries into science parks and mix them all together.


There are employment hearts of the way along


this particular line and


it has been fought for four generations, really.


And there will be little hubs going out?


Yes, we got from Oxford to Bicester at the moment just about to come


And then other parts are operating, taking freight


trains at the moment. So part of the old line which was


there until 1966 are still around and still operating.


It is a matter of joining the whole thing up again.


But it is more than a railway line, it is to do with developing a way


for commuters to move between these employment


hubs which are all the


way along, whether it is Milton Keynes or Bedford


are the areas that really would benefit tremendously from this.


You have argued for more public transport, and here is happening


despite all of the talk of everything going to


and the Midlands agent, we getting something down here.


I would prefer them to do both, actually, a


northern powerhouse, there are areas they are ready,


the simple principle could be applied just as easily.


We've got this, but the problem with it is


that Grayling wants it to be a privatised system where the


operators who are using the engines and the carriages are integral to


those who are actually doing the railway line.


Surely, what he says is they are overloaded.


Of course they can cope, I am sure they


have put papers in saying we can do this, what you could do here is


actively fragment the service because you have real track to


maintenance and making sure everything is safe, when the old


system was there it was quite unsafe.


But if you have this little bit with just totally privatised it


will stand out like a sore thumb in the whole system.


Something has to be done today is go through, we have


seen lots of delays with what Railtrack are up to.


Do you support this idea of one company running the


I do, because ultimately it is about money and the


government now that this east-west connectivity between Oxford and


If they waited and it went into the list of


government Network Rail schemes it would be years and they don't want


to wait so rather than waiting they know


there is economic growth and


productivity to come from connecting the east


and the West, the top of


And it can happen without giving it to real


Is it went to Railtrack and the government


has to put money into it so by opening to private investments...


Or foreign investment, you are bringing


the scheme forward and that is surely in the UK Exchequer.


There have been serious problems before


with that complete unity of the privatised system, this was


associated with a lot of the problems are potters bar and


Hatfield crashes, or of the reasons we brought in Network Rail was


because the needed to be a greater understanding of separation of those


powers to ensure safety for passengers.


I'm not entirely sure that what we are doing is going back


to stop it is not Railtrack, it is Network Rail.


Railtrack and the very, very bad record with things


These are massive crashes and they were


all traced back to one source which was underfunding


When the introduced Network Rail the various new rules


were introduced about how much they must begin to


I think it could be fatally dangerous, all of


Seriously, you are worried about the safety?


If the main thing, taking your theme of it is about


money, if it is about profit-making, it is about profit-making then


cutting costs is a major element in that and the pressure to cut costs


This is part of a wider scheme, isn't it,


across the government, that there should be handing more


power to private operators who already run a


very expensive highly overcrowded service.


The other option, put it to the back of the queue and wait


another 15 years to get the capital investment.


It is not about making profit, it is about the capital and


the government would need to give to Network Rail to build it and I'm


confident that any private operator working in this country, building


and operating a new piece of rail will absolutely be compliant with


Yes, the Network Rail was frought with issues, sorry, Railtrack,


but this is not Railtrack, this could be


overseas investment coming into the UK,


speeding up the growth area for


When it comes to investment from somewhere


else rather than government, what we have had over the last few


years, Deutsche Bank in SNCF, we have had


that really is, they have taken stakes in the existing railway


What is going to happen after Brexit with them?


They have been the major source of external investment.


Really what has got to happen here is the government have got to come


to grips with the investment which is needed, we have given 110


Wouldn't you rather take it happening now?


I want it now, we have been campaigning...


Isn't an alternative, really, is there?


Of course it is, it is basically the government simply


going to provide the investment to get this done and


If they have a private company walking around looking for


That is what happened with the Oxford to


Bicester line, at the end of the day it ended up as the government giving


It is at least going ahead as we understand it at


Staying with the transport team, remember the old saying about


waiting ages for us to come and then you get the onec?


A government bill going through Parliament is supposed


to help with that by giving local councils more power to control local


But as a reporter has been finding out, there is some doubt about


whether it will work so well outside of the larger towns and cities.


In the old days, local councils ran pretty much all local bus companies


until deregulation and the privatisation boom of the 1980s.


That led to issues over timetables and ticketing between many different


operating companies and non-profit-making writs of election


rural areas being dropped, leaving bus


passengers at the mercy of the


Now there is a move for councils to take back more


control with the bus services Bill currently going through Parliament.


The bill gives local councils greater powers to set routes for bus


operators to run, to decide on fairer level since


the introduction of smart ticketing and other


In Dorset, some innovations contained


We've now issued smart tickets to all of our schoolchildren


so we now know when to use the bus and when


That gives us the opportunity of saying, well


So other people can use those and purchase those season tickets.


This rapid transit scheme in Gosport is


being hailed as a success of collaborative working, the 20


million per project with buses by passing traffic on congested


Passenger growth has been phenomenal, just in


the past two years alone, we have seen 70% more people


travelling but the really important thing about it


is that people will use the service, 20% of them used to use the car and


That is all well and good in the towns and


Here in Bridport there is no sort of job losses serving the towns and


conurbations, east and west of here, but as with much of the countryside,


out of the rural villages it is a very different story.


And for some the bus services Bill is not going to solve


the problem of councils cutting bus subsidies.


The bus network is in its death throes, there is another


million pounds due to be cut from it within the next few months, if you


live in her village are absolutely stymied.


In Bradpole, where I'm standing, the 73 is due to be cut.


That will affect the ability of local children going past to get to


It is going to affect the lives of hundreds of


elderly people in the villages who rely on that bus to get to market,


For Roz and others, the two community bus


schemes currently running in Dorset are inadequate.


If you look at what is happening in the health service


at the moment where GP surgeries in rural areas are likely to be


towns, how are some of those elderly people in the villages who don't


have access to their own transport going to be able to get to the


This is a major issue, it is important that we find ways of


What Roz wants is the local council to


run its own bus company as they do profitably in Redding.


The problem is, there is a clause in the bus


bill which prevents any new scheme like that.


So inevitably some communities will slip through the


It might have been the solution had you got sufficient funds to be


able to set it up in the first place.


The difficulty we have is that we don't have those depths of


Had we set up a private bus Company some


years ago we would be in a different situation.


But we are not Redding and we have to cut our cloth


To try and resolve at the council will


match fund up to ?5,000 for communities to set-up their own


The mayor's office already has the power to dictate to bus


services which services to run and when.


So is that the ticket across-the-board?


We have concerns over train pricing, we believe that


the private sector working in partnership with the best way


It allows private sector operators to innovate and do things


like as happened in other parts of the South, in terms


Taking that a further step forward we have seen passenger


growth where really strong partnership works, that has to say


Rural MPs can expect to be lobbied hard when the bill goes to


the Commons in the New Year, but for some the bus services Bill


is not the sort of fare they wanted served


You could almost say it was a turkey.


Rowenna, isn't this the place really want


You want to have the appropriate bus service, not


necessarily the system they have in London or anywhere else.


Roz articulated the need for local bus


companies really beautifully, so many people depend on them, so many


people use buses than a real journeys for example every day in


Absolutely essential for work, for all the people, for


children, it is right at the heart of the community.


Therefore it would make sense to me as a local, or


provided service rather than something done centrally.


That is what is so crazy about the current


bus services Bill that is being looked at right now, that it says


sure if you have a mayor you can set up the services, but as it stands if


you're just a local authority without a mayor you can't.


And if you are somewhere like Redding when the


council is run it for years they have the money and infrastructure.


Redding and Nottingham are both local authority run, they are in


control services in the both really popular and have one great awards.


There is one caveat I would add, because there is some things in


assumption in central government that if you give something to local


authority it will therefore be closer to the people in therefore


serve them, but actually there is a real difference


Some may provide them well if they have true


passenger voice and true worker voice but others may still seem very


different so you cant assume that just because you give some thing to


local authority that it is automatically going to be better for


There has to be worked on that local authority, too, as I'm


The bus services Bill itself, the printable


that I welcome very much because actually this


is about giving local authorities the ability to franchise


buses, to work in partnership and that is exactly what should be


In Portsmouth we are paying around ?5 million a year to


bus companies in subsidies, in Southampton it is near six million


and that is not a sustainable position going forward.


We don't want to lose the vulnerable routes


as we have heard, particularly the semirural and rural ones


so giving councils the ability to franchise is


What the House of Lords has done is put


forward an amendment to the Green paper, it has been through its


reading of the Commons, it has been through the Lords and is going back


to the Commons now that they have actually put forward an amendment to


say that all local transport authorities should be allowed to


franchise, not just ones with a mayoral combined authority.


I think you would rather have a combined


Yes, in Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight have been working


with the government, we have an in principle agreement


for a solend deall and in the solent deal it includes the


Routes are closing now, on the Isle of


Wight which is very reliant on its buses,


and the trees that it does have, they need an answer now.


They do and that is why we need to get on


with our combined authority ASAP, we were hoping


the Autumn Statement, I am now hopeful of the last budget in March


2017 because it is done, we have made a false admission to the


Secretary of State, we did that the 23rd of October,


we have been through an eight-week consultation,


three councils we just mentioned, we are few


Now our regular round-up of the political week


Fining beggars isn't working in Southampton.


I have a ?100 fine because I had my hat out, on the floor.


You just don't know which ones are genuine, do you?


The council now admits the fines aren't being paid.


We need to look at what else we can do to solve this national problem.


It is cold on the streets but colder in some elderly people's houses.


Redding Council think a cold alarm could help.


This is one of the worst areas in England for excess winter deaths.


Portsmouth said farewell to a grand old lady this week.


Amateur MP wants to scrap yearly council elections,


his Bill would make them every four years instead.


And in Oxfordshire school wants a change to the law making seat


After 11 children were injured in Woodstock last month.


Now that Bill to make it elections every four years in councils


would also make it first past the post in places like London.


First of all I am against the proposal in principle.


If local council now they have to face the people and ask the vote


every single year then they are more likely to because at them


and responsive to them, more likely to engage with those


conversations and I think at a time when politics and politicians feel


quite distant from the people it is really important to do


everything we can to insure that dialogue is continuing.


And there is a lot of voters, UK voters in Portsmouth who feel


that the votes are wasted in first past the post, is that...


Running the city and one of the Conservative cities


I think that four-yearly elections is much better,


when a council is elected even an annual elections they don't face


the electorate every year, deface them once every four years


and four-yearly elections, so all in all out for the whole


council means you do not get short cameras and decisions,


because so often councils are making bad decisions


because they are so worried about how it is going to affect them


in the polls and that is not always what is best for the services


and service delivery in cancel so I support four-yearly elections.


Just quickly, HMS Illustrious, a VIP guest for the new one coming?


We were hoping for the Prime Minister and other heads of state


from other countries, we have the Carrier Alliance


going on with America but next year is the year of the carrier.


still the biggest factor. We are running out of time.


Now, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson was rebuked


by Downing Street this week - yes, again - after the Guardian


revealed he had accused Saudi Arabia of being among countries engaged


in fighting "proxy wars" in the Middle East, breaking


the Foreign Office's convention of not criticising a key UK ally


in the region and annoying the prime minister who'd just returned


The Defence Secretary Michael Fallon was asked about it


And let's be very clear about this, the way some of his remarks


were reported seemed to imply we didn't support the right


of Saudi Arabia to defend itself, and it is being attacked by Houthi


terrorists from over the border with Yemen,


didn't support what Saudi is doing in leading the campaign to restore


Some of the reporting led people to think that, and that is all...


This was simply the way it was reported and interpreted.


The way it was interpreted left people with the impression


that we didn't support Saudi Arabia and we do.


Well, Mr Johnson has been in the Saudi capital


Riyadh this morning, so how's he been received?


Our security correspondent Frank Gardner is in neighbouring


Bahrain, where Mr Johnson was earlier in the weekend.


It has probably been a long time since there has been such interest


in a British Foreign Secretary visiting the gulf region. What are


the political elites there making of it all? Well, they think to be


honest it is a bit of a storm in a tea cup this is a bit of a Whitehall


story, I think a lot of people I have spoken to tend to believe that


Number Ten have made such a fuss about this, that it has created a


story in itself. That said, though, I think that behind the scenes there


was a certain amount of damage limitation taking place between


London and Riyadh, a bit of smoothing of feathers and reassuring


and the Stade Saudis tell me they are reassured the message they are


taking is. Coming from Number Ten and they are not taking Boris


Johnson's comments to heart. He is in the dam, he has met the king, I


tweet add picture of that just a few minutes ago. He has been meeting


Crown Prince, and he is now meeting the Foreign Minister, so the Saudis


got an opportunity to brief him according to their vision of the


Middle East. They will share their security concern, which is not just


what is going on in Yemen, but they are very concerned about what they


see as Iranian expansionism, that has been a theme here at this


conference in Bahrain that Boris Johnson addressed only a day or two


ago. If we put aside Mr Johnson's supposed gaffes or even the Downing


Street slapping down of him, we have had the Prime Minister in the region


earlier this week, we have got Mr Johnson there now, can we yet divine


what the May Government strategy is in the Golf? -- Guff. In three


words, in Boris Johnson's words Britain is back. He was very quick


to say not in a jingoistic running up flags, new imperial list way,


although that is Howley be seen by some. He gave a very forceful speech


which seemed to go down well the gulf hosts here on Friday night


which said Britain made a strategic mistake in, after 1968 in


withdrawing east of Suez and it will reverse that decision, and invest ?3


billion over the next ten years in building up its military not bases


exactly but facilities -- facilities that are here in this part of the


world. There are currently 15 hundred hundred British servicemen


and women in this region, seven warships and so on. It isn't


entirely true to say Britain withdrew east of Suez because we


have had a military presence on and off here, the RAF had a base here in


Bahrain during the Gulf War of 91. In 2003, of course, British planes


and troops deployed from this area, but he and Theresa May are both


saying post-Brexit, Britain's big emphasis or one of the big pushes is


going to be to redouble its ties with gulf Arab nations, that isn't


going to come as an easy bit of new, I think, to human rights campaigners


and anti-arms campaigners because a large part of the ?7 billion of


bilateral trade Britain did with Saudi Arabia comes from arms deals


and those arms are being used in the conflict in Yemen, in some cases


with tragic consequences. Thank you very much for talking to us.


Instead of concentrating on Mr Johnson's gaffes, or Downing Street


reaction to it. Frank Gardner there has just given us a really important


development, or explained what the British are up to there now. They


want to be back in the gulf big time. Isn't that something we should


be debating and discussing? It is fascinating. It is yet another


example post-Brexit I would say this is someone who voted to Brexit, that


the world is changing, and Britain's role is going to be transformed


post-Brexit. I mean just on the Boris point, I completely agree, I


think a lot of it is ridiculous, in a Whitehall belt way stuff, but I


think what is really important about it, is that Number Ten feel


threatened by him, and the reason that these ridiculous gaffes and


many of them are not even gaffes are pounced upon is he is the main rival


for the Crown, so it is high level power play politics, and it is May


trying to keep him in his place. What do you make though, of Britain


is back in the gulf? That is the big story, is it not. Utterly bizarre,


post imperial fantasy, the idea we are back east of Suez? We are


breaking off from our closest ally, most like us, the rest of Europe,


democratic, decent human rights country, and instead we are allying


ourself to perilous, dangerous, unpleasant countries... Why should


we be back in the gulf? If that is the trade off, these are, you know,


these renasty kingdoms, petty unpleasant and unstable countries.


Don't we have to keep the straits open otherwise the oil supply


collapses and the world economy will go into the worst recession


depression ever? Don't we have to be involved in that We do, and I think


what happens is if we leave Europe and we need trade everywhere else,


we have to travel the world on our knees begging for friends from the


most unsavoury people, where ever they are, whether it is... You keep


saying we are leaving Europe, that is a geographic impossibility.


Britain is part of Europe, we are the... Not what Liam Fox is saying.


The key power in Nato, we are leaving the European Union, that is


a different Tring from Europe. I am trying to move away from Mr Johnson,


or even Downing Street to... You got yourself into a Brexit row.


Everything is through the prism of Brexit, even what you have for


breakfast, when you mix up the word like I did last week. What do you


make of what Frank Gardner told us? I am somewhere between the two. It


is a nighs the line say we are back in the Middle East and we will take


this part of the world seriously, the truth is our military is almost


tiny, it is smaller than it was in the Napoleonic wars, that is not a


huge amount more. Of course there S one of the two new aircraft


carriers, that will be deployed in the gulf, to help the Americans keep


the straits of her muz open, because it is in Europe's interest, not just


Britains, Europe's interest that these straits stay open, which is


more so than America. That is what FRANK was talking about. That is no


change, British foreign policy has been keeping the straits open... Now


we have the ability do it. We don't have an aircraft aier at the moment.


Nor do we have the fleet of ships it needs. It is a great thing to be


trade morgue with the Nice, to be turning -- Middle East, to be


turning round more tax revenues and the like. Even selling weapons. I


don't know what more can be done. You look at what has happened. BBC


has had horrific reports from the Yemen and if you look at what the


weapons are being used for, is that the trade we want? Right. Let us


move on. Mr Corbyn was giving a speech yesterday but he was


inter#ru79ded by Peter Tatchell. -- interrupted.


Peter, could we leave this to the questions please?


Peter, we are trying to make a speech here and then


Was Peter Tatchell right do that yesterday? It is a bit of a


distraction really. Jeremy Corbyn 17% in the polled is not going to be


able to change... You mean his personal rating. If you want to do


something about Syria you ought to be addressing the Government rather


than a failing Labour leader. Peter Tatchell's line was Labour in


general, Mr Corbyn in particular had not been vocal enough in condemning


what the Russians and their Assad allies are doing in Aleppo. It was


interesting Mr Corbyn had to ask Emily Thornberry if and when had


they condemned what the Russians were doing? It was unclear. Other


than Mrs Thornbury herself. There is a fascinating fault line in politics


which is the Trump administration, the way in which parts of the


British left have made themselves useful idiots once again for the


Kremlin and it its policies. I think more broadly, you consider all the


things we have been discussing, it is a national tragedy what is


happening to the Labour Party. You don't know whether to laugh or cry


watching that event. Corbyn was at a stop the war rally event only last


week, and they of course are very close to the Kremlin, they blame the


west, well they blame the west much more... They always blame the west.


And not the Russians. I agree Jeremy Corbyn having to check with Emily


Thornberry what the Labour Party's policy was on bombing Aleppo... If


and when they condemned it. He needs to no better. The fact that we are


talking about what was a pretty small scale protest, rather than


anything Corbyn said, shows he wasn't saying anything relevant. We


will get a huge amount of tweet saying the BBC are anti-Corbyn. I


understand that, that shouldn't intimidate us from saying, from


analysing what is happening, and here is one yard stick, of course it


is fundamentally the Government's choice, but it could be an indicator


of whether the Labour Party is relevant or not in only issues, in


reason pert Murdoch is making a take over bid for all of Sky and so far


you would have to bet, policy, that it is going to get through pretty


much unscathed. It is extraordinary. It is connected with Leveson, and


the fact that that has disappeared. That the idea of restraining the


press in any way at all, and virtual will I the whole of the press is


behind that, and it seems to go with allowing what wasn't allowed before.


He was judged as unfit before. He is as unfit now, to control that much


of the media, and as he was when he made the last bid for Sky. It is


time people stood up and said so. You look at the press he runs, the


cultural effect he has has on this country which has been appalling,


you know about this. Tom, I better let you have a word. I don't agree


at all Polly but the lesson for the Labour Party, is if they don't want


to have any influence at all, they have to be credible, and stand a


reasonable chance of becoming Prime Minister or becoming Government,


that is the only way they will get leverage. We need to leave it there.


I was going to say we will come back to it. We will see. The Daily


Politics will be back at noon tomorrow.


and we'll be back here next Sunday for the last show of 2016.


Remember - if it's Sunday, it's the Sunday Politics.


# We're going to have a party tonight


Andrew Neil and Peter Henley with the latest political news, interviews and debate. Former London mayor Ken Livingstone and former shadow chancellor Chris Leslie discuss Labour's electoral fortunes, and former chancellor Ken Clarke talks about rebelling over this week's Brexit vote. The Political Panel consists of Iain Martin of Reaction, Tom Newton Dunn of The Sun and Polly Toynbee of The Guardian.

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