13/01/2013 Sunday Politics West


13/01/2013

Andrew Neil and David Garmston with the latest political news, interviews and debate. With Communities Secretary Eric Pickles.


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In the West - tensions over our top cops. The newly elected Police and

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Crime Commissioners run into difficulties trying to appoint new

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Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2536 seconds

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Chief Constables. One even ends in Thank you Andrew. And welcome to

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our first Sunday Politics in the west of 2013. This year has started

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with a bang for one of the new Police and Crime Commissioners. Sue

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Mountstevens ends up in the High Court after a bust up with the

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Chief Constable on their first meeting. In a moment I will be

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talking to the man who dreamt up the idea of police commissioners.

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But here in our interrogation room I am joined by two likely suspects.

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They are Ashley Fox for the Conservatives. And William

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Dartmouth from UKIP. They are both Euro MPs representing this part of

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the world. This week Honda announced plans to cut 800 jobs at

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its Swindon plant, blaming weak demand across Europe. It's a blow

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to jobs and the west's manufacturing industry. Ashley Fox

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- the crisis in Europe seems to be the root of the problem. It shows

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how we are in it together in Europe. And it also shows how the internal

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market and single market are. Who knows whether on the would continue

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to invest in the United Kingdom? This is disappointing news, but

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hopefully, the British economy is healing, and these will see their

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jobs return in the due course. The European economy is in the huge

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mess, because the euro was put together so bad the. Would they

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have even come to Swindon in the first place have not been in the

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EU? And I think it is very clear that the answer is yes, because

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there is other factors. There is the skilled workforce, and there is

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the English language. The other thing is that the tariff wall

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between continental Europe and the rest of the world is approximately

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5%, been accepted in two categories, but where and textiles. -- footwear.

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It is very important that Britain resits export efforts into the rest

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of the world. We would talk more on Now to one of the biggest stories

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of the week - the very public row between the new Police Commissioner

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for Avon and Somerset and the Chief Constable. In their very first

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meeting - they fell out - and the chief constable - Colin Port says

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he was humiliated into retirement. It came to a head in the High Court

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when Mr Port unsuccessfully tried to sue. Here's Paul Barltrop. It's

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been a baptism of fire for Avon and Somerset's new police commissioner,

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just seven weeks into the job. you responsible for the breakdown

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of the relationship? The high court judge criticised her - but ruled

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against the departing chief constable. Colin Port's barrister

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argued he'd been "humiliated" by an "arbitary" decision by the new

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Commissioner, and "unlawfully induced to retire". Which are

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delighted that the High Court has decided that the commissioner's

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decisions were lawful in every respect. Colin Port may appeal -

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insisting it's vital for the position of all police chiefs.

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clashes unprecedented, and does not bode well for the future. At the

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same time, there has been strong criticism in the way the posts have

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set up. One of those people had hoped to go for the job. When

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Labour paraded their candidates for PCC last summer, they were proud of

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Bob Ashford. Politically he'd served as councillor and mayor of

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Frome in Somerset. Professionally he'd been a senior official

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advising the government on youth justice. By a was cleared by the

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Home Office, I was working on security sensitive information,

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against extremism, for instance. was working with top government

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officials. I could go to the meetings in Number Ten. I could

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talk to anyone and be trusted. a childhood offence - trespassing

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by a railway line with lads who had an air gun - meant he was barred

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from standing. Other withdrawals followed, including Falklands War

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veteran Simon Weston. The rules for becoming a PCC are stricter than

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for police officers or MPs. He's joined forces with Bob Ashford to

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launch a campaign called wipe the slate clean. I like to believe that

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it is the law of a retentive consequences. I do not believe when

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this was being legislated, they understood the full implications of

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what they were doing. That is absolutely clear. The message that

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has come from this legislation, which really must be undone, is

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that regardless of how long ago you committed an offence, how mind of

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that was, even if you have fully accepted the defence you have

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committed, you can never be fully rehabilitated. He's disappointed

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with the response he's had back from government. But the

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controversies surrounding last year's PCC elections may be a lower

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priority for ministers than the rows that have followed. Let's

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cross to Westminster. We will talk to the architect of the police and

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crime Commissioner role. You will want the job plans could set

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commissioners and chief constables on a war footing. That happened

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within a day in a firm and Somerset. Others warned that lots of things

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could happen. 15th November was a terrible day. One -- this was

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political vandalism. It would politicise the police. I think

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since 15th November, very little has happened which in any way

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damages the hopes people have for police and crime commissioners. Of

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course, there are teething problems. The Chief Constable wants to

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protect his own interests. It will now be settled, he may appeal, he

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may not. But this is only a little local difficulty in the first few

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months of an enormous change to present arrangements for policing

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this country. We have lost a raft of experienced officers. I agree,

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and I am sorry about this. I wish some of them have stayed on. Many

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felt the threat to resign rather than serve on the PCCs would derail

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the project. The Home Secretary made it clear from day one she

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would proceed with this. She fought on despite terrible opposition from

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all sides. It is now the law. I am sorry that some of the chief

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constables, who are very able indeed, say, OK, fine, you've won.

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There are large number of applicants for these vacant posts,

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but... Bay are people who want to work their way up the greasy pole.

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Most MPs are running their forces anyway! I am not worried at all. It

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is a change that was very much resisted by the Commission in early

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days. I am sorry to leave some officers experience. We have not

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run out of talent. Yours so what does briefly that voters would

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ignore the elections, and most did. Yes. I said it was very difficult

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for people to appreciate the full significance of these elections,

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and perhaps we did not get the message across. Perhaps people were

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not conscious enough of what was happening for a number of reasons.

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Elections in November. The turnout was disappointingly low. But I

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think you will find that if we had more elections next year, I am very

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encouraged by the way the new posts have come about. Let's tell talk to

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You have fallen out with your own crime panel. What has happened

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there? They are a upset about the process. We will be meeting them on

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Monday. There was a fair and open process. What happened there? While

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they are upset with you? They her do it via the media rather than

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through me. Were to do not tell them first? I did. I told them with

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a message on their answer phone. We have to confirm the employment on

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Monday. I know that. It is bad that I did not Britain before hand. I am

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sorry. They could be so you're appointment. -- the tone your

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appointment. I think the place to do this is on Monday. In front of

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the panel. We can deal with it then. I don't quite understand the FA.

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There's bring in our other guests. UKIP did not put anyone up for

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elections. On the contrary, we put up 24 candidates. We did not put

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any up in the area where you were elected. I must congratulate you

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for getting in as an independent. We were disappointed with the

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politicisation of the police. Many of these people are put in by

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establishment political parties. We just heard from the Pier. He is a

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good salesman. It is an unconvincing rationale for what has

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happened. I think the whole thing of Police Commissioner --

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commissioners is her jolly bad idea. If -- what we have bought a police

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off -- police authority he was enormous. No one knew who they were.

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This will make a marginal step forward in accountability.

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million was the cost of the elections. Was that money well

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spent? Or I think it was. Over the decades ahead, we will seek things

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improve. If you like what the commission it does, you can like

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him, and if you don't, you couldn't. I think this is a good reform.

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I think it is. It is a wonderful opportunity to do that. There will

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be things coming out in the wash. There will be early disagreements.

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But this is not a bad reform. problem was is that no one knew who

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you were, and there was no budget put out election material which

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explains the low turnout. You just have to work hard. People in

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Gloucestershire know I work very hard. I was out and about. They

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know who I am. I did it with my own funds and no donations. It was a

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good fight, and I've won, and now they have to put up with me for 3

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1/2 years, and see how I am going to do. I am going to do a good job.

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Are you convince your post will not be overturn next week? Let's hope

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the panel -- let's hear what the panel has to say. Other selected as

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the best candidate for the job in a fair and open process. -- I was

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selected. In which you very much Well now to something

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uncontroversial - Europe. Just kidding! UKIP are having a great

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time - riding high in the polls - and if large numbers of disaffected

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Conservatives switch their vote at the next election the Tories will

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be toast. Not surprisingly then, some Conservatives think they

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should do a deal with UKIP - the party that David Cameron says is

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full of eccentrics. Charlotte Callen reports. They're a party

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with a spring in their step. UKIP are riding high in the polls with

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some putting their support at up to 16% nationally - that's above the

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Lib Dems. But the party have long been a force in West Country

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politics - they came second here in the 2009 European elections with

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22% of the vote. Labour were pushed into fourth place. And here in

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Wells - this man was, according to the former Tory MP for the area

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David Heathcote-Amory, responsible for him losing in the general

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election in 2010. UKIP polled over one thousand votes here - he lost

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:57:33.:57:34.

by only 800 votes to the Lib Dem candidate Tessa Munt. The the

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Conservatives are becoming scared and realising that we are a real

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threat to their seats. I feel passionately that we do not want to

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do a deal whatsoever. Most of the people I have talked to do not want

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to do a deal with the Conservatives, and even Nigel Farage, our leader,

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does not want to a deal. Those types of deals are long gone, and

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they are going to have to reap what play so. -- reap what they so.

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Nigel Farage their leader is confident of big things for UKIP

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here in the West Country. And their success could be costly for the

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other political parties. Some Conservatives are openly worried

:58:13.:58:23.
:58:23.:58:28.

and think David Cameron should do a deal with UKIP. When you have UKIP

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at local and national elections, they have a potential to be no

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members of parliament. The party still has a long way to go to win

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seats in local and parliamentary elections. I would not be vote for

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them personally. I think Europe is a very good thing, and I am

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disappointed that other people do not agree. We go to -- we have an

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opportunity to lead in Europe. We just turn it down the whole time.

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Yes, I would consider voting Europe. The euro is a big issue. It is

:59:04.:59:08.

important for Europe -- the UK to return to the state of its own

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sovereignty. I would not vote UKIP. I do not think that they are bad or

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mad, but I would not vote for them. But just by standing in local and

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at the next general election, they could impact on who wins or by how

:59:26.:59:36.
:59:36.:59:44.

Should UKIP to a deal with the Conservatives? Absolute not. I

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think there is a misconception in the film, which suggests that UKIP

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does not only boats for the Conservatives. It takes votes from

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Labour and the Liberal Democrats. Let's talk a about what happened in

:00:05.:00:15.
:00:15.:00:16.

Nick Wells. The UKIP guy got 1,000 You put in Tessa Munt, whose pro-

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European. In the Wells constituency, there were at UKIP candidates.

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There were candidates in 2005, 2001 and 1997. In 1992 there was a

:00:33.:00:42.

referendum Party candidate. As the BBC said, he was a casualty of the

:00:42.:00:51.

expenses scandal. What did you stay and against him? Because we eat are

:00:51.:00:56.

a political candidate -- party who stands candidates in every

:00:56.:01:05.

constituency. Mr Cameron says he is going to renegotiate with Europe on

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generate 22nd. Is that realistic? It is entirely realistic, because

:01:12.:01:16.

in two or three years' time, there will be a renewal of the European

:01:16.:01:25.

treaters. The -- Europe is not going to be -- is going to

:01:25.:01:30.

negotiate a political union. I anticipate the Conservative

:01:30.:01:34.

position will be to go ahead and form the federation. We will not

:01:34.:01:43.

stop that. But in return, we want the repatriation of certain powers.

:01:43.:01:52.

It and then he will forced to be have a referendum? I think this is

:01:52.:01:57.

part of the deal, and I think our European partners are willing to

:01:57.:02:03.

play. Why don't you leave? We do want to root remain part of a

:02:03.:02:07.

single market. That is really important. On they came to the

:02:07.:02:12.

United Kingdom because we are part of the single market. -- Honda came

:02:12.:02:16.

to the United Kingdom. We need to say to Europe, at the moment, you

:02:16.:02:21.

have too much power over how Britain is run. We want to change

:02:21.:02:26.

that relationship. British politicians have been saying this

:02:26.:02:33.

for a long time. I remember in 1975, Harold Wilson had a referendum

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saying here are some note -- new terms. What you are offering is

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that it is not on offer. The fat of the matter is that the European

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Union is a reformed and under former ball -- it is unable to be

:02:56.:03:06.
:03:06.:03:06.

reformed. The factor the matter is what is on offer is either a

:03:06.:03:11.

federal Europe, a clattering train of integration going on and on and

:03:11.:03:18.

on, all we get out. We will be much better if we got out. Instead of

:03:18.:03:28.
:03:28.:03:31.

being tied to this low-growth sclerotic declining Europe. Ribald

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to bat there if we go through and renegotiate our position with

:03:36.:03:45.

Europe. If I am wrong, if the EU says there is no change possible,

:03:45.:03:53.

then maybe William is right. But we have had ago. Should Mr Cameron

:03:53.:04:02.

have called UKIP fruitcakes? I think some of the UKIP MEPs art

:04:02.:04:12.
:04:12.:04:12.

fruitcakes. David Cameron went to head the Dow, Eton and Oxford, just

:04:12.:04:17.

like I did, and those three schools, teach you that you play the ball

:04:17.:04:24.

and not the man. It is about policy, not people. He should stop

:04:24.:04:29.

personalising politics in this way. Now it is time for our 62nd round

:04:29.:04:39.
:04:39.:04:47.

If you're a council tax payer in Bristol then your bills look set to

:04:47.:04:49.

go up. The newly-elected mayor George Ferguson says it's needed to

:04:50.:04:52.

balance the budget. He's also warned there will be some

:04:52.:04:54.

compulsory redundancies. And the city council was under fire this

:04:55.:04:58.

week for letting a four year old girl continue to stay with a foster

:04:58.:05:00.

family, despite one of the foster arents being investigated for

:05:01.:05:04.

downloading pictures of child abuse. All the rain at the end of last

:05:04.:05:06.

year has caused an estimated �2.1 million of damage to

:05:06.:05:09.

Gloucestershire's roads. The county council says most of the bill is

:05:09.:05:12.

caused by a couple of landslips and potholes.And the Wiltshire Tory

:05:12.:05:15.

Claire Perry and her 13 year old daughter Eliza are spending a week

:05:15.:05:19.

in Africa living without running water or electricity. Before flying

:05:19.:05:22.

out they were briefed by Gambians who've come to Wiltshire thanks to

:05:22.:05:30.

a twinning link with Marlborough. It is a great partnership. There is

:05:30.:05:40.
:05:40.:05:43.

lots of learning. Ironed that have Let's pick up on one of those

:05:43.:05:47.

stories. Should councillors be increasing the amount that people

:05:47.:05:55.

have to pay in these hard times? Would you think? I am rather they

:05:55.:06:05.
:06:05.:06:06.

didn't. This is his plan. He will be treated -- he will be a judge in

:06:06.:06:11.

three-and-a-half years' time. think the people will be very

:06:11.:06:20.

disappointed that cuts the tax is going to be raised. More cuts?

:06:20.:06:24.

There will be cut anyway. If we freeze cancer test, those cuts will

:06:25.:06:30.

be greater. But his judgment the mayor has to take. That is all we

:06:30.:06:35.

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