16/02/2014 Sunday Politics West


16/02/2014

Andrew Neil and David Garmston with the latest political news, interviews and debate.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 16/02/2014. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Good morning, folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics. It would be

:00:38.:00:44.

extremely difficult, if not impossible, for an independent

:00:45.:00:47.

Scotland to join the European Union, so says the President of the

:00:48.:00:51.

European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, in a significant

:00:52.:00:56.

development in the independence debate. It's our top story. He has

:00:57.:01:00.

the power to bring travel chaos to the nation's capital. Bob Crow

:01:01.:01:09.

joined us for the Sunday interview. Another by-election

:01:10.:01:17.

The blame game over flooding. A local MP calls the chair of the

:01:18.:01:20.

Environment Agency all sorts of rude look at his decisions and priorities

:01:21.:01:22.

with the help of his chief of staff. With me, the best and brightest

:01:23.:01:41.

political panel in the business The twits will be as incessant and

:01:42.:01:43.

probably as welcome as the recent rain. A significant new development

:01:44.:01:48.

in the debate over Scottish independence this morning, the

:01:49.:01:49.

President of the European Commission, President Jose Manuel

:01:50.:01:56.

Barroso, has confirmed what the Nationalists have long denied, that

:01:57.:01:59.

an independent Scotland would have to reply to join the European Union

:02:00.:02:02.

as a new member, that it would require the agreement of all 28

:02:03.:02:07.

member states and that would be in his words, extremely difficult, if

:02:08.:02:10.

not impossible. In case there is a new country, a new state coming out

:02:11.:02:15.

of a current member state, it will have to apply and, this is very

:02:16.:02:21.

important, the application to the union would have to be approved by

:02:22.:02:25.

all of the other member states. Countries like Spain, with the

:02:26.:02:32.

secessionist issues they have? I don't want to interfere in your

:02:33.:02:37.

democratic discussion here, but of course, it will be extremely

:02:38.:02:40.

difficult to get the approval of all of the other member states, to have

:02:41.:02:45.

a new member coming in from one member state. We have seen that that

:02:46.:02:53.

Spain has been opposing even the recognition, for instance, so it is

:02:54.:02:57.

a similar state. It is a new country. I believe it is great to be

:02:58.:03:00.

externally difficult, if not impossible. Well, he says he doesn't

:03:01.:03:07.

want to interfere, but he has just dropped a medium-sized explosive

:03:08.:03:10.

into the debate on Scottish independence? A huge story. Alex

:03:11.:03:14.

Salmond must be wondering what is going to go wrong next. His pitch to

:03:15.:03:19.

the Scottish people is based on two things, the currency union with

:03:20.:03:22.

England and the rest of the United Kingdom, which was blown apart last

:03:23.:03:29.

week, and this morning, his claims that Scotland would automatically

:03:30.:03:41.

get into the European Union has been dynamited. He's not only saying that

:03:42.:03:47.

they would have to apply, it is also saying it might be impossible to get

:03:48.:03:54.

the agreement of all 28 members to allow Scotland in. That's even more

:03:55.:03:58.

significant than the application? The reference to Spain is

:03:59.:04:02.

interesting, we talk about Catalan independence, an economic and active

:04:03.:04:07.

area that Spain does not want to be independent. About five other

:04:08.:04:11.

countries are blocking Kosovo's accession to the EU. There is no

:04:12.:04:14.

reason they would want to encourage the secessionist in their country by

:04:15.:04:20.

letting Scotland do the same. If Scotland does have to apply, and it

:04:21.:04:24.

does get in, it solves the currency problem because all new members have

:04:25.:04:31.

to accept the Euro? At the moment, the SNP are rejecting that quite

:04:32.:04:33.

strongly. What an interesting intervention today. However, I know

:04:34.:04:39.

that those arguing that Scotland should stay in the union are worried

:04:40.:04:44.

that the polls are tightening. A lot of these interventions, parents care

:04:45.:04:51.

arguments, they don't look like they are convincing the Scottish people.

:04:52.:04:57.

We haven't had any polls yet? We haven't, but we have since the

:04:58.:05:00.

currency debate was reignited in the last few weeks and it shows the

:05:01.:05:05.

polls tightening slightly. I think Alistair Darling's campaign would

:05:06.:05:08.

prefer to be much further ahead at the stage. They are worried that

:05:09.:05:11.

these technical commandments are not having much sway. Are the polls

:05:12.:05:16.

tightening slightly? They could be within the statistical margin for

:05:17.:05:22.

error. They are, but not much. Alex Salmond's main page is one of

:05:23.:05:27.

reassurance. He wants to say you can vote for independence, a pound in

:05:28.:05:30.

the pocket will be the same as before and you will still be a

:05:31.:05:33.

member of the European Union. In the last three or four matter days, both

:05:34.:05:39.

of those claims have been blown apart. Angus MacNeil has already

:05:40.:05:46.

told BBC Radio 5 Live that the remarks are nonsense and he is

:05:47.:05:49.

playing more politics. We hope to speak to the SNP's finance minister,

:05:50.:05:54.

John Swinney, a little bit later in the programme. It is not just the

:05:55.:05:58.

constant rain that London commuters have had to deal with. There was

:05:59.:06:01.

also a strike on the tube that disrupted the travel of millions. A

:06:02.:06:06.

second stoppage was on the cards, but it was called off at the last

:06:07.:06:09.

minute. The leader of the biggest

:06:10.:06:13.

underground workers union, the RMT, is Bob Crow, who has led his members

:06:14.:06:18.

into 24 strikes on the tube since 2005, as well as disputes on the

:06:19.:06:23.

national rail network. Under his leadership, the union's membership

:06:24.:06:27.

has grown from 57,000 in 2002 to more than 80,000, at a time when

:06:28.:06:30.

union membership overall has been shrinking. The current dispute has

:06:31.:06:35.

seen Bob Crow squaring up to Boris Johnson over the mayor's plans to

:06:36.:06:40.

close tube station ticket offices. The 48-hour stoppage at the

:06:41.:06:43.

beginning of this month is estimated to have cost the London economy ?100

:06:44.:06:48.

million. The two sides have agreed a truce, for now, but Mr Crow has

:06:49.:06:52.

threatened further action if the mayor imposes his changes.

:06:53.:06:57.

Bob Crow joins me now for the Sunday interview.

:06:58.:07:05.

Welcome to the Sunday Politics. You have suspended the strike for the

:07:06.:07:13.

moment. What will it take to call it off entirely? Want to know first of

:07:14.:07:18.

all wider booking office has to close. The Mayor of London made it

:07:19.:07:20.

quite clear in his election programme that the booking offices

:07:21.:07:24.

would remain open. It was strange, really, because Ken Livingstone

:07:25.:07:28.

wanted to close them down and the mayor thought it was popular to keep

:07:29.:07:31.

them open and put in his campaign to keep them open. However, we have not

:07:32.:07:37.

the news figures. We are being told only 3% of people use the booking

:07:38.:07:40.

offices. That's not true. In research done, if somebody does to a

:07:41.:07:44.

booking office with somebody sitting there and asks for a ticket of less

:07:45.:07:47.

than ?5, they are not allowed to sell them a ticket, it is madness.

:07:48.:07:54.

Do you use the ticket office? When it is open, yes. You said to ITV

:07:55.:07:59.

that he didn't. I don't know what I said to ITV, I don't know what time

:08:00.:08:04.

people use them, sometimes they are open and sometimes they are closed.

:08:05.:08:07.

People make out that these ticket office staff are people that sit

:08:08.:08:11.

behind barriers like a newsagent. I'm not knocking a newsagent,

:08:12.:08:14.

however, these people were the same people treated like Lions when they

:08:15.:08:20.

were helping people named in the terrorist incidents, taking them out

:08:21.:08:26.

of the panels. Suddenly they are lazy people that sit in ticket

:08:27.:08:29.

offices. My understanding is that the people would come from behind

:08:30.:08:34.

and be out and about now. It is the management wants to run the

:08:35.:08:38.

underground without ticket offices, isn't that their prerogative? They

:08:39.:08:43.

are paid to manage, not you, not your members, they are the managers?

:08:44.:08:49.

Managers are there to manage, and we want good managers. But we've got

:08:50.:08:52.

some really bad managers that are not looking at the railway as a

:08:53.:08:55.

whole. This is a successful industry, not an industry in

:08:56.:08:58.

decline, one of the most successful in Britain. It is moving 3.4 million

:08:59.:09:02.

people a day. All of the forecast is or it will move to 3.6 million per

:09:03.:09:06.

day. The mayor wants to run services on a Friday and Saturday night. We

:09:07.:09:11.

are not opposed to that. However, it does not make sense that if more

:09:12.:09:14.

people are going to be using the tube on Friday and Saturday, coming

:09:15.:09:19.

home at two o'clock three o'clock in the morning, a lot of people

:09:20.:09:21.

drinking, a lot of people not dragging, why take 1000 people of

:09:22.:09:29.

the network that come to the aid of people that are looking to people? I

:09:30.:09:33.

want to show you this picture. This is you. Taking a break in Brazil, I

:09:34.:09:40.

think it is. I was trying to copy you. You deserve this break because

:09:41.:09:44.

you have done a fantastic job for your members. Yes, I don't see what

:09:45.:09:50.

that has got to do with it. Let s get every editor of the daily

:09:51.:09:53.

newspapers and see where they go on their holidays, I would like to

:09:54.:09:57.

know. What I choose to do... I'm not attacking you for doing that...

:09:58.:10:02.

You've got a picture up there, I've got to say, why don't they go and

:10:03.:10:05.

follow Boris Johnson when he was away on holiday, when the riots were

:10:06.:10:09.

taking place in London, and he refused to come back? Why don't they

:10:10.:10:13.

go and view the editors of newspapers, where they go on

:10:14.:10:16.

holiday? Why do they look at you when you go on holiday? They

:10:17.:10:20.

sometimes do, actually. The basic pay of a tube driver will soon be

:10:21.:10:27.

?52,000. Ticket office workers are already earning over ?35,000. Never

:10:28.:10:31.

mind a holiday on Copacabana beach, or membership by your house for what

:10:32.:10:35.

you have done for them? When you look at the papers this morning I

:10:36.:10:39.

see that Wayne Rooney is going to get a ?70 million deal over the next

:10:40.:10:43.

four deals. I see NHS doctors are getting ?3000 a shift. I see a lot

:10:44.:10:51.

of people that do a lot of people that, in my opinion, don't do

:10:52.:10:55.

anything for society. The top paid people in this country should be

:10:56.:10:58.

doctors and nurses. Unfortunately, we live in a jungle. If you are not

:10:59.:11:02.

strong, the bosses will walk all over you. The reason why we got good

:11:03.:11:06.

terms and conditions is because we fought for them. The reality is all

:11:07.:11:10.

of these three political parties, liberals, Tories and Labour, they

:11:11.:11:15.

have all put no programme that to defend working people. So we have to

:11:16.:11:19.

do it on our own. And that is why you have done such a great job for

:11:20.:11:22.

your members and why union membership has been rising, people

:11:23.:11:24.

want to be part of a successful operation. But it has come at a cost

:11:25.:11:29.

for less well-paid workers, who travel on the cheap? If everyone

:11:30.:11:36.

believes if London Underground tube workers take a pay freeze they are

:11:37.:11:38.

going to redistribute the money to the rest of the workers that work on

:11:39.:11:42.

the cheap... But the people that travel on the tube, let's look at

:11:43.:11:47.

some of them, they are the ones that suffer from your strike action. The

:11:48.:11:52.

starting salary of a cheap driver now, ?48,000. The starting salary

:11:53.:11:57.

for a nurses only ?26,000, ?22, 00 for a young policeman, ?27,000 for a

:11:58.:12:03.

teacher starting out. As your members have spread, they have had

:12:04.:12:09.

to live through 24 strikes in 1 years to push up your members

:12:10.:12:17.

wages. It's I'm all right Jack? The have put a pay freeze on by

:12:18.:12:23.

conservatives and liberals. The police constables, so have the

:12:24.:12:26.

teachers. We have had the ability to go and fight. The reality is, at the

:12:27.:12:31.

end of the day, as I have said before, no one is going to put up

:12:32.:12:36.

the cause for workers. Not one single party in parliament are

:12:37.:12:40.

fighting the cause for workers. They all support privatisation, they all

:12:41.:12:43.

support keeping the anti-trade union laws, they all support illegal wars

:12:44.:12:47.

around the world. Unless they have a fighting trade union, our members

:12:48.:12:52.

pay would be as low as some others. You said we could not care less if

:12:53.:12:56.

we have 1 million strikes. But these people, the lower paid people who

:12:57.:13:00.

travel on the tube, who need it as an essential service, they care Of

:13:01.:13:06.

course they care, I've said before that I apologise to the troubling

:13:07.:13:10.

public for the dispute that took place. 24 strikes in 13 years? It

:13:11.:13:17.

two to tango. If the boy never imposed terms and conditions on us

:13:18.:13:21.

against our will... But you've got great terms and conditions! But it's

:13:22.:13:25.

a constant battle, they are trying to change them. Drivers are having

:13:26.:13:32.

their pay going up to ?50,000. You said they are making it worse, it is

:13:33.:13:37.

going up. They are trying to make things worse for workers. You said

:13:38.:13:40.

at the start of the interview that the tube strike cost ?100 million in

:13:41.:13:45.

two days. It means that when members go to work for two days it is worth

:13:46.:13:49.

?100 million. That demonstrates what they are worth. Only a fighting

:13:50.:13:54.

trade union can defend workers out there. Your members should enjoy

:13:55.:13:57.

what you have got for them, because it's not going to last, is it?

:13:58.:14:03.

Technology will change the whole way your business operates. As Karl Marx

:14:04.:14:08.

says, you said I was a mixture of Karl Marx, Only Fools And Horses and

:14:09.:14:11.

the Sopranos. I thought that was quite funny... The Karl Marx part of

:14:12.:14:16.

it, the only thing that is constant is change. We have been crying out

:14:17.:14:24.

for new technology. But for who To put people on the dole, so they

:14:25.:14:28.

can't do anything and do anything for society, or technology so

:14:29.:14:32.

everybody benefits, lower fares better service and better terms and

:14:33.:14:36.

conditions for the workers. But you have made Labour so expensive on the

:14:37.:14:39.

underground that management now has a huge incentive to substitute

:14:40.:14:43.

technology for Labour. And that s what it's going to do, it is closing

:14:44.:14:48.

the ticket offices and very soon, starting in 2016, the driverless

:14:49.:14:54.

trains coming. What I am saying is that your members should enjoy this

:14:55.:15:02.

because it's not going to last. Driverless trains are not coming

:15:03.:15:12.

in, it is not safe. We have them in Nuremberg, Shanghai, Sao Paulo, it

:15:13.:15:18.

is not safe? These are new lines that have been built so that when it

:15:19.:15:24.

breaks down, people can get out of the tunnel. Would you want to be

:15:25.:15:27.

stuck on a summers day on the Northern line? A pregnant woman who

:15:28.:15:35.

cannot get off the train? Absolute panic that takes place, the reality

:15:36.:15:40.

is simple, it is a nonsense. It s not going to happen because it is a

:15:41.:15:45.

Victorian network. On Docklands railway for example it is driverless

:15:46.:15:54.

but when the train breaks down, it is above ground on a very small

:15:55.:16:00.

section. All of these other cities managed to have it. You remind me

:16:01.:16:05.

about Henry Ford in the 1930s when he said, you see that robot over

:16:06.:16:21.

their, he cannot buy a car. All sorts of new jobs are being created

:16:22.:16:26.

all the time in other areas. Come back to the ticket offices, not many

:16:27.:16:32.

people use the ticket offices any more, what is wrong with getting the

:16:33.:16:37.

stuff out of the ticket office on to the concourses, meeting and

:16:38.:16:41.

greeting, helping disabled people and tourists and making it a better

:16:42.:16:46.

service? They can do more on the concourse than they can in the

:16:47.:16:52.

ticket office. Andrew, he took the decision to close down every single

:16:53.:16:59.

ticket office. You cannot compare for example Chesham with the likes

:17:00.:17:06.

of Heathrow. Are you telling me people are going to be on a long

:17:07.:17:12.

transatlantic flight, arrived at Heathrow and cannot get a ticket.

:17:13.:17:17.

The stuff will be redeployed on the concourse. The simple problem is

:17:18.:17:23.

that it is not just about the booking office, it is about people

:17:24.:17:29.

having a visual. If you are partially sighted, you cannot use

:17:30.:17:34.

the machines. If British is not your first language, you cannot use the

:17:35.:17:42.

offices. How many languages do your members speak? I don't know, I

:17:43.:17:51.

struggle with English. The machines can speak many different languages.

:17:52.:17:56.

They are dehumanising things. You phone the bank, all you hear is

:17:57.:18:04.

press one for this, two for that. People want to hear it human being

:18:05.:18:08.

and what makes the London Underground so precious is that

:18:09.:18:15.

people want to see people. Having well-dressed, motivated people out

:18:16.:18:19.

on the concourse, what part of that don't you like? They will be on the

:18:20.:18:24.

concourse and they will have machines. The fact is that London

:18:25.:18:28.

Underground did a risk assessment of closing down their booking offices

:18:29.:18:32.

and it is clear that if you are disabled, if you are partially

:18:33.:18:36.

sighted, London Underground becomes more dangerous. You are posing the

:18:37.:18:43.

closing of ticket offices, opposing driverless trains, when you opposed

:18:44.:18:52.

to the Oyster card when it came in? No, Oyster cards, it is how you deal

:18:53.:19:06.

with it. It is not the only way They should supplement the staff and

:19:07.:19:11.

the job. If more people used the London Underground system, you want

:19:12.:19:17.

more staff to deal with them. Let's look at your mandate to strike. Of

:19:18.:19:25.

your members who work on the Tube, only 40% bothered to vote. Only 30%

:19:26.:19:34.

voted for the strike, so 70% actually didn't vote to strike of

:19:35.:19:39.

your members, but the strike went ahead. Isn't it right to have a

:19:40.:19:45.

higher threshold before you can cause this disruption? It would be

:19:46.:19:49.

lovely if everyone voted but the Tories took that away. We used to

:19:50.:19:55.

have ballots at the workplace. What I'm trying to say to you is that we

:19:56.:20:01.

used to have a ballot box at the workplace and the turnouts were

:20:02.:20:08.

higher. The Tories believe that if they can have a secret ballot where

:20:09.:20:13.

ballot papers went to people's home addresses, where they could be

:20:14.:20:18.

persuaded by the bosses, votes would be different. Let's go back to the

:20:19.:20:23.

workplace ballot because you get a bigger turnout. Will the RMT

:20:24.:20:31.

re-affiliate to the Labour Party? I have no intention to. We got

:20:32.:20:35.

expelled from the Labour Party. But you will give some money to the

:20:36.:20:44.

Labour councils? Those that support our basic policies get money, we

:20:45.:20:53.

don't give money directly to MPs, we give it to constituencies. Are you

:20:54.:20:58.

going to stand for re-election in 2016? I might do, I might not. You

:20:59.:21:08.

haven't decided yet? No, but more than likely I will do. And will you

:21:09.:21:15.

stand again as an anti-EU candidate? Yes, I am standing in London, and

:21:16.:21:22.

right across, completely different to UKIP's policies. They are

:21:23.:21:27.

anti-European, they believe all of the faults of Europe are down to the

:21:28.:21:33.

immigrants. We are anti-European Union. If London Underground is as

:21:34.:21:40.

badly run as you think, why don t you run for mayor? That is down the

:21:41.:21:47.

road, it has not come up yet. I m not ruling anything out. I'm not

:21:48.:21:52.

ruling out getting your job on the Sunday Politics. You have got to

:21:53.:21:57.

retire as well, you have got to put your feet up. I will get you to

:21:58.:22:04.

renegotiate my package. Shall we go on strike first? If I could have

:22:05.:22:10.

your wages, I would have two trips to Rio every year. Good luck. And if

:22:11.:22:21.

you're in the London region they'll have more on the Tube strike later

:22:22.:22:28.

in the programme. Let's get back to those comments from Jose Manuel

:22:29.:22:33.

Barroso, and reaction to these comments from John Swinney. Scottish

:22:34.:22:39.

Nationalists denied all along you would have to reapply, we have now

:22:40.:22:45.

heard it without any caveats, you will and you might not get in. I

:22:46.:22:52.

think Jose Manuel Barroso's comments were preposterous this morning. He

:22:53.:23:00.

compared the situation to the one in Kosovo. Britain is the member,

:23:01.:23:06.

Scotland is not the member. If you go independent, you will have to

:23:07.:23:12.

reapply, he says. All of the arrangements we have in place are

:23:13.:23:15.

compatible with the workings of the European Union because we have been

:23:16.:23:20.

part of it for 40 years. The propositions we put forward work

:23:21.:23:26.

about essentially negotiating the continuity of Scotland's membership

:23:27.:23:30.

of the European Union and that position has now been explained and

:23:31.:23:36.

debated and discussed and reinforced by comments made by experts. We are

:23:37.:23:49.

talking about the president of the European commission and we have

:23:50.:23:52.

spoken to him since he gave that interview on the BBC this morning,

:23:53.:23:57.

it was an intervention that he made that he wanted to lay out that

:23:58.:24:06.

Scotland should be in no doubt that if they vote for independence they

:24:07.:24:13.

will have to apply for European membership and they may not get it

:24:14.:24:18.

if it is vetoed by other members. What he didn't say is that no state

:24:19.:24:22.

of the European Union have indicated they would veto Scottish

:24:23.:24:29.

membership. The Spanish foreign minister has. They have said that if

:24:30.:24:34.

there is an agreed process within the UK that Scotland becomes an

:24:35.:24:38.

independent country, then Spain has got nothing to say about the issue.

:24:39.:24:43.

That indicates to me clearly that the Spanish government will have no

:24:44.:24:48.

stance to take on the Scottish membership of the European Union

:24:49.:24:51.

because it is important that Scotland is already part of the

:24:52.:24:56.

European Union, our laws are compatible with the European Union

:24:57.:25:01.

and we play our part. The only threat to Scotland's participation

:25:02.:25:06.

in the European Union is the potential in/out referendum that

:25:07.:25:16.

David Cameron wants to have in 017. It has not been a great week for

:25:17.:25:22.

you, has it? Everything you seem to want, the monetary union, that has

:25:23.:25:28.

been blown out of the water by the Westminster parties, now Jose Manuel

:25:29.:25:32.

Barroso has said you will have to reapply to the European Union, it

:25:33.:25:39.

has not been a good week. You will follow the debate closely, and the

:25:40.:25:45.

Sunday newspapers are full about the backlash taking place within

:25:46.:25:48.

Scotland at the bullying remarks of the Chancellor and his cohorts. Is

:25:49.:25:57.

Jose Manuel Barroso a bully is well now? He is making an indirect

:25:58.:26:01.

comparison between Scotland and Kosovo. If you vote for independence

:26:02.:26:08.

and you do have two apply again to join, if you do get in it solves

:26:09.:26:14.

your currency problem because you will have to accept the euro. We

:26:15.:26:21.

have set out an option on the currency arrangements which would be

:26:22.:26:29.

to establish the currency union You would have to adopt the euro. That's

:26:30.:26:36.

not rate because you have to be part of the exchange-rate mechanism for

:26:37.:26:40.

two years before you can apply for membership and an independent

:26:41.:26:43.

Scotland has no intention of signing up to the exchange rate mechanism or

:26:44.:26:48.

the single currency. We are concentrating on setting out our

:26:49.:26:52.

arguments for maintaining the pound sterling, which is in the interests

:26:53.:26:59.

of Scotland and the UK. Thank you for joining us this morning.

:27:00.:27:05.

This week's least surprising news was that Labour won the safe seat of

:27:06.:27:08.

Wythenshawe and Sale East in a by-election, following the death of

:27:09.:27:11.

the MP Paul Goggins. With the result so predictable, all eyes were on

:27:12.:27:14.

whether this would be the sixth time this parliament that UKIP would come

:27:15.:27:17.

second. And whether they'd chip away at Labour's vote, not just the

:27:18.:27:21.

Tories and the Lib Dems. Adam stayed up all night to find out what it all

:27:22.:27:31.

meant. Forget the hype. Forget the theorising. And yes - everyone has a

:27:32.:27:42.

theory. UKIP are learning from us. What have they picked up from you?

:27:43.:27:49.

To be silly. Thanks to this week's by-election we've got some hard

:27:50.:27:52.

evidence in paper form that helps answer the question: How are UKIP

:27:53.:27:55.

doing? Turns out the answer is well, but not well enough to beat Labour.

:27:56.:28:05.

I'm therefore claim -- declare that Mike Cane is elected. So UKIP have

:28:06.:28:11.

come second and increased their share of the vote quite

:28:12.:28:13.

significantly. But their performance isn't as good as their performances

:28:14.:28:16.

in some of the other by-elections this parliament. Just don't suggest

:28:17.:28:19.

to them that their bandwagon has ground to a halt. A week ago you'd

:28:20.:28:30.

told me you were going to win, what happened? No, I didn't, I said I

:28:31.:28:39.

wanted to win. My mistake. How are you feeling? It is a Labour

:28:40.:28:43.

stronghold, we always knew it was going to be a fight. Labour were

:28:44.:28:50.

running scared of letting us present our arguments. UKIP's campaign in

:28:51.:28:54.

Wythenshawe didn't point to the right but to the left, with leaflets

:28:55.:28:57.

that branded Labour as a party of millionaires who didn't care about

:28:58.:29:00.

the working class. It wasn't a winning strategy but it did help

:29:01.:29:04.

them beat the Tories who focused on dog mess and potholes instead.

:29:05.:29:09.

Professional UKIP-watcher Rob Ford from Manchester Uni thinks they

:29:10.:29:15.

could be on the right track. He s analysed the views of 5,000 UKIP

:29:16.:29:18.

voters for a new book, which could confound the received wisdom about

:29:19.:29:29.

the party. The common media image of the typical UKIP voter is a ruddy

:29:30.:29:36.

faced golf club and -- member from the south-east of the UK and many

:29:37.:29:42.

UKIP activists do resemble that stereotype to some extent, they do

:29:43.:29:46.

pick up a lot of activists from the Conservative party, but UKIP voters

:29:47.:29:51.

are older, more working class, more likely to live in Northern, urban

:29:52.:29:57.

areas, and they are much more anti-system than anti-EU. And

:29:58.:30:00.

they're precisely the voters that the Tory MP David Mowat needs if

:30:01.:30:04.

he's to hold on to his narrow majority in the constituency just

:30:05.:30:17.

down the road. Do you have a UKIP strategy in your seat? Our UKIP

:30:18.:30:20.

strategy is to point out that if they want a referendum on if they

:30:21.:30:24.

want to be in the EU or not, there is one way to get it, for the

:30:25.:30:27.

Conservatives to form their next government and for me to be their

:30:28.:30:33.

MP. UKIP could accidentally destroy what they want? I'm not sure it will

:30:34.:30:39.

be accidental. People need to realise that if Ed Miliband is the

:30:40.:30:42.

Prime Minister, there will be no referendum on the EU and UKIP may

:30:43.:30:47.

have made their point but they would not have got their referendum. Over

:30:48.:30:55.

at UKIP local HQ, it is tidying up time. Not helping, Nigel? I had

:30:56.:31:03.

major surgery on the 19th of November and I am still weak as a

:31:04.:31:07.

kitten. I can barely lift a pint with my right hand, it is as serious

:31:08.:31:11.

as that. The answer is, Carreon chaps, you're all doing a very good

:31:12.:31:16.

job. There will be carrying on to the European elections in May, which

:31:17.:31:20.

will provide more evidence of if the UKIP and wagon is powering on or if

:31:21.:31:26.

it is just parked. -- bandwagon With me now is the Conservative MEP

:31:27.:31:31.

Vicky fraud and UKIP director of medication is Patrick O'Flynn. He

:31:32.:31:35.

will also be a candidate in the upcoming European elections. You

:31:36.:31:37.

came second in Manchester, but it was not a close second. -- Vicky

:31:38.:31:44.

Ford. There is nothing that is a game changer? I think it is very

:31:45.:31:50.

unusual for any insurgent party like the liberals used to be, to

:31:51.:31:54.

actually win a safe seat of the opposition. Those shocks, going back

:31:55.:32:04.

to Walkington etc, it tended to be winning seats against an unpopular

:32:05.:32:09.

government. We did extraordinarily well in Wythenshawe. Labour

:32:10.:32:13.

compressed the campaign down to the shortest possible time and maxed out

:32:14.:32:16.

the postal vote. Whatever we think about Labour, they do have an

:32:17.:32:20.

efficient machine, lots of union activists signed a lot of people

:32:21.:32:26.

with a lot of know-how. It pushed you into third place and showed the

:32:27.:32:30.

increasing irrelevance of the Tories in the North? Tory minded voters in

:32:31.:32:34.

the North Sea more inclined to vote for UKIP than you? I think

:32:35.:32:39.

by-elections are by-elections. The same day, we took a seat from Labour

:32:40.:32:44.

in Birmingham. Well, that was a by-election as well, so we should

:32:45.:32:49.

discount that as well. You should learn from them, and we need to look

:32:50.:32:53.

forward to the elections in 201 . That is in May this year, when we

:32:54.:32:57.

have a chance to really grab this change in Europe, grab this change

:32:58.:33:04.

that we were talking about just now. You don't worry, particularly in the

:33:05.:33:08.

north, if people want to vote against Labour your supporters are

:33:09.:33:13.

drifting to UKIP? I think people vote UKIP in a European election and

:33:14.:33:17.

they have done that for many years. They vote that because they want

:33:18.:33:21.

change. The problem is, Patrick s party have had MEPs since 1999 and

:33:22.:33:26.

they cannot deliver that change They can't because they don't have

:33:27.:33:31.

seats in Westminster. It was on that video, the only way we are going to

:33:32.:33:35.

get the change we want in Europe is to have that referendum and have the

:33:36.:33:39.

renegotiation, and that means vote Tory. What do you say to that? Let's

:33:40.:33:49.

get real, the Conservative Party has not won a Parliamentary majority in

:33:50.:33:54.

22 years. But the only way you will get a referendum, if that is what

:33:55.:33:58.

motivates you, and with UKIP it is, the only way it will be a referendum

:33:59.:34:02.

on Europe in this country as if there is a majority Conservative

:34:03.:34:05.

government at the next election And you could well stop that from

:34:06.:34:09.

happening? I don't accept that. I believe, just as we forced David

:34:10.:34:14.

Cameron and into a referendum pledge he explicitly ruled out making

:34:15.:34:17.

before through our success, and I was there in PMQs, when his MPs

:34:18.:34:20.

asked him and he said it would not be in the national interest because

:34:21.:34:24.

he didn't want to leave, our electoral success forced that

:34:25.:34:28.

pledge. I believe by winning the European action this May we can

:34:29.:34:31.

force Ed Miliband, again, against his will, to match that pledge.

:34:32.:34:35.

Then, whatever formulation varies in the next Parliament, we will get a

:34:36.:34:42.

referendum. Labour MPs have just had the chance to say we want a

:34:43.:34:46.

referendum. They refused to do it. The only way you are going to get a

:34:47.:34:51.

renegotiation, a change in our relationship with Europe and an in

:34:52.:34:55.

or out referendum is to have a Conservative Government. Please

:34:56.:34:58.

UKIP, stop pretending that you can deliver, because you don't deliver

:34:59.:35:04.

and you don't... We have delivered, we forced David Cameron to give a

:35:05.:35:08.

pledge for a referendum he didn t want to make. We will know if you

:35:09.:35:14.

are right about Ed Miliband or not, you will have to tell us going into

:35:15.:35:17.

the campaign. If you are wrong, what do you do then? There are still

:35:18.:35:23.

loads of reasons for people to vote UKIP. A referendum is one thing

:35:24.:35:27.

David Cameron, and I asked him directly, thermally wants to stay

:35:28.:35:33.

in. He wants to be the Edward Heath of the 21st century. The Tories are

:35:34.:35:39.

going to say, vote UKIP, get Ed Miliband. What would you say to

:35:40.:35:44.

that? I would say we have probably maxed out the Tory vote we are going

:35:45.:35:46.

to get because David Cameron has been incredibly helpful in sending

:35:47.:35:50.

them in our direction. Our potential for growth now, would we are

:35:51.:35:57.

concentrating on, his those disenchanted former Labour voters

:35:58.:36:01.

and more and more of them are coming towards us on things like

:36:02.:36:07.

immigration and law and order. We want to renegotiate our relationship

:36:08.:36:10.

with Europe. We need to have people who are going to turn up to

:36:11.:36:13.

negotiate with people like Barroso. That meant a Prime Minister that is

:36:14.:36:17.

not Ed Miliband but David Cameron. UKIP MEPs do not turn up to

:36:18.:36:27.

defenders. If President Hollande is as good as his word and says there

:36:28.:36:31.

will be no substantial renegotiation, certainly no treaty

:36:32.:36:36.

change this side of 2017 when he is up for the election, what do you do

:36:37.:36:42.

then? He is a French Socialist Prime Minister, I don't expect him to

:36:43.:36:46.

agree. But you can't bring anything of substance back with these

:36:47.:36:54.

negotiations. Then people will vote to leave. The Prime Minister has

:36:55.:37:01.

been very clear that British public opinion is on a knife edge and

:37:02.:37:04.

unless we get what we want from a renegotiation, we will leave. You

:37:05.:37:10.

would vote to leave? Let's see what we get with the deal on the table in

:37:11.:37:14.

2017. If the status quo was what we have today, I would vote to leave.

:37:15.:37:19.

But I want to renegotiate. We will have to move on. For those viewers

:37:20.:37:25.

lucky enough to live in the East of England, they will be seeing more of

:37:26.:37:28.

Patrick in a moment. You are watching Sunday Politics. Coming up

:37:29.:37:32.

in just over 20 minutes, I will be talking about, what else, the

:37:33.:37:35.

weather, with our Thank you, Andrew. Good morning and

:37:36.:37:52.

welcome to the Sunday Politics here in the West. Once again, the

:37:53.:37:55.

floodwaters have washed in another wave of politicians. But did the

:37:56.:37:58.

arrival of the Westminster welly brigade make a jot of difference to

:37:59.:38:02.

those waist deep in flood water As the political classes point the

:38:03.:38:05.

finger of blame at each other, we will consider why we always need a

:38:06.:38:09.

scapegoat in a crisis. Well, here to discuss this week's political

:38:10.:38:12.

weather we have two darlings of the right. Conservative Jacob Rees`Mogg

:38:13.:38:16.

has been dubbed by some as the right honourable member for the 19th

:38:17.:38:19.

century. He is also the current MP for North East Somerset. And Gawain

:38:20.:38:23.

Towler is a new face on a show. He is running for UKIP in May's

:38:24.:38:26.

European elections. Welcome to you both. Let's start with overseas aid

:38:27.:38:30.

and calls for that money to be used for flood victims here. What is the

:38:31.:38:33.

justification for that? The justification is pretty simple. The

:38:34.:38:36.

money that the Government raises for assistance of those in need is money

:38:37.:38:39.

for assistance for those in need. It's not Bangladesh though, is it?

:38:40.:38:43.

However bad it is? No, it is the UK and people in the UK are in need and

:38:44.:38:48.

that's why we believe that in this crisis, in situations like this

:38:49.:38:51.

that some of the money that is currently earmarked to be sent

:38:52.:38:54.

abroad... And remember this is particularly development aid, not

:38:55.:38:56.

humanitarian aid, there is a truism that it is for rich people in rich

:38:57.:39:00.

countries trying to support poor people in poor countries. Better

:39:01.:39:03.

that money is spent at home, looking after our own. Jake, the Prime

:39:04.:39:06.

Minister has completely ruled that out? the Prime Minister has a

:39:07.:39:09.

manifesto commitment to increase the overseas budget and won the

:39:10.:39:12.

election. I never happened to believe that was a good promise I

:39:13.:39:15.

think overseas aid is an inappropriate use of taxpayers'

:39:16.:39:18.

money. I think the best way to get poor countries to be rich is to

:39:19.:39:33.

trade with them. And that overseas aid is a matter for private charity,

:39:34.:39:47.

not for taxpayer money. And the rain keeps on falling and there is still

:39:48.:39:50.

no end in sight for those affected by the flooding. Tempers have been

:39:51.:39:53.

getting frayed with many people including politicians, looking for

:39:54.:39:56.

someone to blame. The Bridgwater MP has not minced his words, calling

:39:57.:40:00.

the chair of the Environment Agency a g`i`t and threatening to flush his

:40:01.:40:10.

head down the toilet. Ruth sent this support from the Somerset levels on

:40:11.:40:15.

the blame game. You know, people said he was OK but I find him an

:40:16.:40:19.

arrogant out`of`touch and a really rather sad man. It is fair to say

:40:20.:40:24.

Ian Liddell Grainger and Lord Chris Smith aren't the best of mates. He

:40:25.:40:29.

is an out of touch, arrogant man. He is a quango king of the worst type.

:40:30.:40:33.

It's a no`brainer. He can't be that stupid. Ian Liddell Grainger isn't

:40:34.:40:37.

the only one pointing the finger and the chair of the Environment Agency

:40:38.:40:40.

isn't the only one at the receiving end. There are lots of others

:40:41.:40:46.

responsible for fund work also. All are likely to be

:40:47.:40:59.

All are likely to be sucked into the blame game as time goes on. This is

:41:00.:41:05.

North Curry on the Somerset Levels, where some homes and businesses are

:41:06.:41:08.

under water for the second time in two years. Local people are looking

:41:09.:41:12.

for someone to blame. It is a coping strategy, I believe. It's so bad out

:41:13.:41:17.

here. All the locals are saying it has never been anywhere near as bad

:41:18.:41:20.

down here and I think having something to focus on, blame, it

:41:21.:41:24.

helps. There's a lot of talk about blame. Do you blame anyone? Oh,

:41:25.:41:29.

definitely the Environment Agency. After the 2012 flooding, they were

:41:30.:41:32.

told by all the local people about the rivers needing dredging. They

:41:33.:41:37.

took a gamble and it has failed and we are paying for the consequences

:41:38.:41:41.

now. We all can't be wrong blaming the Environment Agency. Meeting

:41:42.:41:44.

people like Keith, you can see why he wants someone to blame. Others

:41:45.:41:50.

say that is not constructive. Phil Stones lived in North Curry for 25

:41:51.:41:54.

years. A former district councillor, he wants action, not nasty words. A

:41:55.:41:59.

lot of people are in desperate circumstances and that's the natural

:42:00.:42:02.

reaction, to look at who is responsible. And I think the time

:42:03.:42:07.

will come for that, to look at how we got here and what we now need to

:42:08.:42:11.

do to try and ensure we don't get here in the future. And he's not

:42:12.:42:15.

convinced MPs speaking out like Ian Liddell Grainger are helpful. Some

:42:16.:42:20.

of the things that Ian said are valid but I think he is focusing too

:42:21.:42:24.

much on the blame and not enough on what positive action is now required

:42:25.:42:29.

when there is so much to be done. I mean, it's quite entertaining but

:42:30.:42:32.

it's not very constructive. The Environment Agency says it's

:42:33.:42:34.

concentrating on protecting people and properties in the extreme

:42:35.:42:37.

weather, rather than getting involved in allegations of blame.

:42:38.:42:40.

But its chair, Lord Smith, did use an article in the national press to

:42:41.:42:43.

say the Government was using his agency as a political football.

:42:44.:42:50.

People are concerned about police presence, police visibility. Are our

:42:51.:42:56.

properties secure? At a meeting for flood`hit residents near Bridgwater

:42:57.:42:59.

this week, the local MP did seem slightly repentant. You've blamed

:43:00.:43:03.

the Environment Agency, Chris Smith in particular. Is blaming anyone the

:43:04.:43:07.

right thing to be doing right now? No, and I think that's fair. There

:43:08.:43:11.

are occasions when you're up against it and even I let off steam. And I

:43:12.:43:19.

just felt it was so unfair to tell people who had been living here for

:43:20.:43:23.

generations that they have to make a choice and it was their fault in the

:43:24.:43:27.

first place. I thought that was unfair. And you look back and you

:43:28.:43:31.

think, should I have said that? And the answer is probably not but the

:43:32.:43:35.

professional side of me is that I am not prepared to have my constituents

:43:36.:43:38.

being given a choice. Their lives matter more to me, and their

:43:39.:43:41.

livelihoods, than Chris Smith. Are you looking for someone to blame so

:43:42.:43:45.

people don't point the finger at you? No, I am happy to stand up in

:43:46.:43:49.

front of everybody. That is why I'm here. You know, I am not a shrinking

:43:50.:43:53.

violet. You know that! You know that very well. No, if people want to

:43:54.:43:57.

come and shout at me, and people have, I am quite happy to take it.

:43:58.:44:01.

And he might have to take that flak for some time. The water is slow to

:44:02.:44:05.

recede and those affected desperate for someone to blame.

:44:06.:44:08.

Joining me in the studio is Doctor Tim Harries. He is an expert on

:44:09.:44:11.

human behaviour from Kingston University and he studied the impact

:44:12.:44:14.

of flooding on mental health. Thank you very much for coming in. What

:44:15.:44:17.

are the flood victims going through? Many mixed and very different

:44:18.:44:20.

emotions. I mean, shock and anger are some of the first ones, of

:44:21.:44:24.

course. We have heard lots of that on the radio and on the television.

:44:25.:44:29.

Disbelief. And what this kind of mix leads to then, inevitably, one of

:44:30.:44:33.

the things it leads to in the short term is a kind of denial. Because

:44:34.:44:38.

the shock is actually too great for us to handle easily so we need to

:44:39.:44:42.

find some way of coping, as the lady on the clip mentioned. One of the

:44:43.:44:46.

coping mechanisms is actually to blame someone else. So we all will

:44:47.:44:50.

tend to think, " Who can I blame? Who is not me? Who is not part of my

:44:51.:44:55.

little community or home?" And politicians and the Environment

:44:56.:44:58.

Agency are going to be in the front line, are they not? They are the

:44:59.:45:02.

natural scapegoats. And to some extent, it is understandable that

:45:03.:45:05.

they get some of the blame. The problem with that of course is that

:45:06.:45:09.

they are also the ones who are looking after us and protecting us.

:45:10.:45:12.

Let's bring in the politicians. Jacob, when you heard your fellow

:45:13.:45:15.

conservative Ian Liddell Grainger calling someone a git and wanting to

:45:16.:45:18.

put their head down the toilet, did it make you feel proud? Ian speaks

:45:19.:45:23.

his mind and that is a thoroughly good thing for politicians to do. I

:45:24.:45:28.

speak my mind in a slightly different way from Ian but he has

:45:29.:45:31.

made his criticisms very forcefully and I think there is an important

:45:32.:45:35.

underlying point, which is that the Environment Agency made policy

:45:36.:45:37.

decisions that made the problem worse. Now, I thought it would be

:45:38.:45:41.

useful to bring the 2008 policy document from the Environment

:45:42.:45:50.

Agency. Right. It says that directed flooding on the Somerset Levels and

:45:51.:45:53.

moors has the potential to enhance already significant nature

:45:54.:45:56.

conservation interests. So in 2 08, the Environment Agency suggesting

:45:57.:45:58.

that actually flooding the Somerset moors was an allowable thing to do.

:45:59.:46:05.

Here we are in 2014 with a serious flooding problem, mainly because

:46:06.:46:08.

because there has been a lot of rain rather than because of the

:46:09.:46:10.

Environment Agency but policy decisions made it worse. Now if this

:46:11.:46:14.

is to be put right in future, we have to examine the mistaken

:46:15.:46:17.

policies that were chosen and put new ones in place. And that is where

:46:18.:46:23.

you need some element of blame because we need to work out what...

:46:24.:46:27.

And would you also blame the local authorities who didn't contribute to

:46:28.:46:29.

dredging? The dredging stopped in 1995 and my godfather, who was a

:46:30.:46:33.

Somerset County Councilor in the 1980s, said that at the time that

:46:34.:46:36.

not dredging would lead to these problems and so once you've got very

:46:37.:46:40.

heavy rainfall, you are in a position where it was going to have

:46:41.:46:45.

a worse effect because of policy. It is interesting the Conservatives

:46:46.:46:48.

didn't come into power and override the Environment Agency. But bringing

:46:49.:46:56.

in Gawain, you blame Brussels, presumably. In part. There are. . A

:46:57.:47:01.

problem has many fathers. It is as the levels are a man`made

:47:02.:47:03.

environment, the problems are largely man`made. Yes, of course we

:47:04.:47:07.

have had the problems with the weather but the ability to deal with

:47:08.:47:11.

it has been hampered by the taking over by the Environment Agency of

:47:12.:47:13.

the responsibility of drainage from the Rivers Authority. It was once

:47:14.:47:17.

the case that the water companies were responsible for everything

:47:18.:47:25.

Then when they were privatised, that authority, that responsibility, was

:47:26.:47:28.

split between about six different agencies, most of which are

:47:29.:47:35.

mentioned in your film. The problem now is the buck does not stop

:47:36.:47:39.

anywhere. The blame is being put on Chris Smith. To a large extent I

:47:40.:47:43.

think reasonably. And I think what Jacob has brought up is key. What is

:47:44.:47:47.

driving the policy that thinks it is a good idea to flood the levels And

:47:48.:47:51.

I would say there you're looking at the habitat directive, you're

:47:52.:47:54.

looking at the water framework directive, and various other

:47:55.:47:57.

aspects. Is it simply an act of God, actually, and there is not much that

:47:58.:48:02.

any of us can do about it? I would like to just come back to the

:48:03.:48:05.

difference between blame and understanding. So it sounds that we

:48:06.:48:08.

are talking about how can we understand why Somerset has flooded

:48:09.:48:11.

so badly. Now, that is right and good as far as I'm concerned. What

:48:12.:48:15.

we often see from residents and on occasion from politicians is very

:48:16.:48:20.

emotional blaming. Now that is a negative part. Of course we have to

:48:21.:48:24.

understand if the Environment Agency can change and of course we need to

:48:25.:48:28.

see why they did what they did. With probably good intentions. But the

:48:29.:48:31.

blame potentially has quite a negative effect, in that we need,

:48:32.:48:34.

for example, a very good relationship between the Environment

:48:35.:48:36.

Agency and householders and farmers and small businesses in order that

:48:37.:48:40.

together they can actually work this through. What we have had in the

:48:41.:48:44.

past is antagonism, which has actually pushed the two parties

:48:45.:48:47.

apart. So should the politicians then be trying to smooth things over

:48:48.:48:51.

and be diplomatic, rather than going in this rather adversarial way that

:48:52.:48:54.

we have seen? It is very tempting I am sure for a politician to be

:48:55.:48:58.

adversarial but they do, if they want the best for Somerset, rather

:48:59.:49:01.

than for their own votes, they do need to be thinking about a less

:49:02.:49:09.

adversarial approach. Can I say one thing? Very quickly. I think there

:49:10.:49:13.

is a problem that so many of these responsibilities have been given to

:49:14.:49:15.

quangos. When politicians had direct responsibility, they had to defend

:49:16.:49:19.

the decision that they had made Now, we can pass it on to nominally

:49:20.:49:22.

independent third parties and I think that makes the blame game a

:49:23.:49:26.

good deal worse and cuts out the direct response policy to the

:49:27.:49:29.

politicians. We have to leave it there. I am sorry. Doctor Tim, I

:49:30.:49:41.

appreciate it. Thank you. So how many are being hurt by the Somerset

:49:42.:49:44.

floods? Most certainly tens of thousands. Not because they have

:49:45.:49:47.

been flooded out but because business is suffering. Visitors

:49:48.:49:50.

think the county is a disaster zone so are staying away. With the

:49:51.:49:53.

exception of journalists and politicians, though their presence

:49:54.:49:55.

may not be welcome. It is half term week, which usually

:49:56.:49:58.

brings a welcome influx to places like this. Tourism is worth ?1

:49:59.:50:02.

billion to the county. But 2014 is getting off to a grim start. A local

:50:03.:50:07.

guesthouse reports bookings down a quarter. The owner brings together

:50:08.:50:12.

other local businessmen who are also suffering. We have got a similar

:50:13.:50:16.

problem at the Regal theatre. We have got three shows on, three shows

:50:17.:50:19.

booked for half term, not many people actually coming at the

:50:20.:50:23.

moment. Local people are turning up but the visitors just aren't

:50:24.:50:27.

happening at the moment. People think the whole of Somerset is

:50:28.:50:31.

flooded. You know, we have had so many people who have cancelled

:50:32.:50:34.

coming down because of the floods. As they are using a booking system,

:50:35.:50:38.

we cannot stop them. Other people phoning up to enquire. It is

:50:39.:50:42.

ridiculous. The problem is more acute for places closer to floods.

:50:43.:50:46.

This village says despite reassuring people who phone that they are open,

:50:47.:50:51.

footfall is down. Business leaders say Somerset has got a real image

:50:52.:50:54.

problem. Inevitably, when people think about Somerset, they think

:50:55.:50:57.

about gloomy faces and lifeboats and the Prince sitting on a bench coming

:50:58.:51:05.

to Somerset. They think about water. And they don't think about all the

:51:06.:51:09.

other good things that are happening in the county and all the parts of

:51:10.:51:13.

the county that are functioning pretty well. These are the pictures

:51:14.:51:16.

that have mesmerised for the past month and a half, a sea the size of

:51:17.:51:20.

Bristol covering 80 square kilometres. But for all the dramatic

:51:21.:51:25.

views, the reality is that this is actually around 2% of Somerset. And

:51:26.:51:30.

of course, its thinly populated flood plain. The number of homes

:51:31.:51:34.

that have been flooded is around 100. And while it's been eagerly

:51:35.:51:37.

seized upon by the media, the public view has also been shaped by the

:51:38.:51:42.

procession of visiting politicians. On Monday it was Nick Clegg,

:51:43.:51:46.

following hot on the heels of UKIP leader Nigel Farage, just days after

:51:47.:51:50.

the Prime Minister visited. First on the scene had been Environment

:51:51.:51:52.

Secretary Owen Paterson. the Prime Minister visited. First on

:51:53.:51:54.

the scene had been Environment When he came back on Tuesday, the PM met

:51:55.:51:57.

emergency services and military personnel tackling the floods.

:51:58.:52:00.

he came back on Tuesday, the PM met emergency services and I sent in the

:52:01.:52:03.

Army to help here in Somerset and initially councils said that they

:52:04.:52:06.

didn't need that help. Now they are using that help very effectively and

:52:07.:52:10.

the army are properly stood up here in Somerset, helping repair

:52:11.:52:14.

sandbags, helping local communities. So there will be more military boots

:52:15.:52:18.

on the ground but fewer half term visitors. The bill for dealing with

:52:19.:52:21.

the floods will be huge. Somerset 's laws will be much greater. `` loss.

:52:22.:52:28.

Gawain, should we be applying for help from the European Union? Yes.

:52:29.:52:32.

After all, it's our money. So there are benefits to being in the EU

:52:33.:52:36.

Well, I am not going to say thank you will we give them ?1 and get 50p

:52:37.:52:41.

back. I don't see that as being a good deal. But yes, the money is

:52:42.:52:44.

there and we should be getting it, thank you very much. It's our

:52:45.:52:48.

taxpayers who funded it. Jacob, it is very interesting to see all of

:52:49.:52:51.

the politicians coming down. You always talk about the need for a

:52:52.:52:55.

small state, a state that does not get involved. And yet there is an

:52:56.:52:58.

emergency like this and suddenly David Cameron comes and says, well,

:52:59.:53:02.

money is no object. It doesn't make sense, does it? I think the most

:53:03.:53:05.

important visit was the visit of the Prince of Wales, actually, which

:53:06.:53:09.

made people more that the highest in the land would serve them. I did

:53:10.:53:12.

very much that he actually did that but I thought that really reassured

:53:13.:53:16.

people that the Royal family and the Queen were concerned about what was

:53:17.:53:19.

going on. The British people... I didn't ask you that, Jake! No, I

:53:20.:53:23.

know. In this small state that you have always been asking for,

:53:24.:53:26.

something happens to your people and Somerset and you want the Army and

:53:27.:53:30.

you want money to be no object? Going back to what I was saying

:53:31.:53:33.

about the Environment Agency's report in 2008 and the degree to

:53:34.:53:36.

which they made the situation worse. I do believe in free markets. I

:53:37.:53:40.

believe that if people make a voluntary decisions that have

:53:41.:53:42.

consequences, they must be responsible for those consequences.

:53:43.:53:47.

However, the failure to dredge. . The Somerset Levels have made the

:53:48.:53:50.

problem much worse and therefore, through decisions made by

:53:51.:53:54.

governments, people have suffered. Private companies aren't lining up

:53:55.:53:57.

now, I be, to dredge the rivers and to pump the water out? When there is

:53:58.:54:02.

an emergency, you need the state. You agree? Of course I agree with

:54:03.:54:06.

that. There is a role for the state but... But it has to be a small

:54:07.:54:10.

state when its other people on benefits but a large state when its

:54:11.:54:14.

farmers with airline flooded? `` with their land flooded. I think the

:54:15.:54:17.

two are completely separate things. The state is always there for an

:54:18.:54:20.

emergency. That is the whole point of the welfare system. I support

:54:21.:54:23.

welfare to help people in an emergency situation, when they

:54:24.:54:27.

cannot cope on their own. I don t support the state taking decisions

:54:28.:54:29.

for everybody about how they lead their lives. It's a balance. OK

:54:30.:54:35.

thank you. Well, let'sdim the lights. Feed up the romantic music.

:54:36.:54:39.

Because it's Valentines weekend So a good time to test whether love

:54:40.:54:43.

might be in the air between the Conservatives and UKIP. Here is our

:54:44.:54:48.

very own Cilla Black, Robert Markwell.

:54:49.:54:52.

The surge of UKIP support in last May 's local elections prompted the

:54:53.:54:56.

Conservative member for North East Somerset to drop this political

:54:57.:55:00.

bombshell. Why not do a deal with the Eurosceptic party which appears

:55:01.:55:05.

to be sporting their vote? `` splitting. I think there should be a

:55:06.:55:08.

combined election to say that we support each other across the

:55:09.:55:12.

country. I would like to see Nigel Farage replace Nick Clegg as the

:55:13.:55:15.

deputy premise. `` Deputy Prime Minister. I think that would be a

:55:16.:55:19.

better bet for conservatism and the right wing in British politics. UKIP

:55:20.:55:22.

continued to rain on the Conservatives's parade. They pushed

:55:23.:55:25.

them into third place in another by`election this week. Perhaps

:55:26.:55:28.

that's why support for a deal between the two parties is growing

:55:29.:55:33.

among the Tory grassroots. A survey by the Conservative home website

:55:34.:55:36.

revealed almost half of 1000 activists polled would back a deal

:55:37.:55:42.

with the other side. The PM isn t so sure. I don't believe in pacts and

:55:43.:55:52.

deals. So it is now to Jacob? Jacob has many good ideas, this is not one

:55:53.:55:56.

of them. UKIP has said it would be up to local branches to decide if

:55:57.:56:00.

they wished to field candidates against the Tories. Here in Wales in

:56:01.:56:03.

2010, the UKIP branch defied an order from the then leader, Lord

:56:04.:56:06.

Pearson, and chose to stand anyway. The Tories then lost the seat to the

:56:07.:56:13.

leads Lib Dems by a whisker. Now, with Mr Farage is tipped to top the

:56:14.:56:16.

polls in the European elections more and more Tories believe a

:56:17.:56:19.

special relationship could be the key to keeping the man in Number Ten

:56:20.:56:23.

next year. Well, let's see if there is a romantic atmosphere here.

:56:24.:56:26.

Jacob, your idea of a packed with UKIP, I took it personally to the

:56:27.:56:30.

Prime Minister on your behalf and he said no. Indeed but the week before

:56:31.:56:34.

the election, he was going around saying, " what is the biggest joke

:56:35.:56:38.

in UK politics?" To which the answer was Nick Clegg. So parties have to

:56:39.:56:41.

deal with the reality of electoral situation. The reality of electoral

:56:42.:56:44.

situation is the combined vote of the two right`wing parties is a

:56:45.:56:48.

comfortable majority. If we divide, we risk losing. And yet together, we

:56:49.:56:54.

can achieve the referendum that would give the rich, British

:56:55.:56:57.

people... `` gives the British people. So you're still in favour?

:56:58.:57:01.

Very strongly. And what do you feel about that? We feel that there are

:57:02.:57:04.

more people in the Conservative party who are interested in a packed

:57:05.:57:08.

and people in UKIP. We are on the rise. The only place that I am

:57:09.:57:12.

certain that we have had, you mentioned the idea that we have a

:57:13.:57:16.

party are saying now packed at the top but if the local branch is

:57:17.:57:19.

interested and they think they like the cut of the jet of the sitting MP

:57:20.:57:23.

or whichever then strike. Let's take the example of Wells, where there

:57:24.:57:26.

was the most Eurosceptic Tory MP there. UKIP decided to stand against

:57:27.:57:31.

him. The vote was split, he was out and now there is a Lib Dem who is

:57:32.:57:36.

European in. `` pro`European. Where is the logic? We had a very clear

:57:37.:57:40.

rule about standing down and we did stand down against some. Those who

:57:41.:57:43.

had signed the better off out. Sadly, he had not done so and so

:57:44.:57:47.

therefore the rule that was... So you've got a pro`European in there.

:57:48.:57:50.

Yes, we do for now. Well, that's brilliant then, isn't it? You want

:57:51.:57:54.

to be anti`European but you put .. We believe very strongly, in the

:57:55.:57:57.

case of Wells, the issue of his expenses and the manure heap what

:57:58.:58:00.

was probably more important than the UKIP position. Jacob, a lurch to the

:58:01.:58:06.

right now by the Conservative Party would leave the Lib Dems and Labour

:58:07.:58:10.

as frontrunners to win the election? I don't think they would.

:58:11.:58:16.

If you look at the current polling, the Labour Party is consistently

:58:17.:58:19.

ahead of the Conservatives but not clearly in majority territory. And

:58:20.:58:25.

the Lib Dems have been in freefall since the election but the

:58:26.:58:30.

right`wing vote is 45, 40 6%. `` 46%. That is combined a very healthy

:58:31.:58:35.

majority. Well, Gawain, presumably at some stage we will have to know

:58:36.:58:39.

some UKIP policies. Any idea when that might be, given as Mr Fry says

:58:40.:58:43.

the last manifesto was a load of twaddle. `` Nigel Farage. Yes,

:58:44.:58:48.

indeed. Of course we are going to be launching polishes for the European

:58:49.:58:52.

election. We are going to be fighting the European election under

:58:53.:58:54.

European policies. After that, is over, then we are going to be

:58:55.:58:58.

launching our national manifesto. So we are not going into a European

:58:59.:59:01.

election fighting on a Westminster manifesto. All right, we shall wait

:59:02.:59:05.

with bated breath. Thank you. Well, flooding again dominated the

:59:06.:59:08.

political agenda but that was not all that happened. Here is our

:59:09.:59:10.

round`up in just one minute. Weston`super`Mare and Gloucester had

:59:11.:59:21.

been identified as places needing urgent help with problem drinking.

:59:22.:59:24.

Both places have been designated as local alcohol action areas by the

:59:25.:59:28.

Home Office. It means they will receive extra support in tackling

:59:29.:59:35.

drink fuelled crime. A top European politician has warned

:59:36.:59:38.

British parties to stop pandering to the defaults. That Maxine unfolds.

:59:39.:59:45.

He made the comments on a trip to Bristol. He called for a debate over

:59:46.:59:50.

Europe based on facts and not myths. It has been revealed that Avon and

:59:51.:59:53.

Somerset police has breached data protection laws more often than any

:59:54.:59:57.

other force in the land. Over the last five years, there were almost

:59:58.:00:00.

300 breaches of the rules, like releasing names to the media without

:00:01.:00:05.

permission. And next week sees some of the

:00:06.:00:08.

West's biggest councils set their taxes. Councillors in Somerset and

:00:09.:00:11.

the all gave area will also vote on another round of spending cuts. ``

:00:12.:00:13.

the Avon area. And that's just about it from us

:00:14.:00:23.

this week. Thank you for battling through the rain to be with us

:00:24.:00:30.

today. Whatever the weather, you can stay in touch with this show on the

:00:31.:00:35.

BBCi player or two at. `` Twitter. But now, let's return to London and

:00:36.:00:40.

direction? No, in real terms now the rent is falling in London. Andrew,

:00:41.:00:48.

back to you. Welcome back. Let's start by talking

:00:49.:00:51.

about the weather. What could be more British? It has been

:00:52.:00:55.

practically the only topic of conversation for the past few

:00:56.:00:58.

weeks. This morning, Ed Miliband has made the direct link, declaims,

:00:59.:01:03.

between this exceptionally wet and windy weather and climate change.

:01:04.:01:09.

That's an interesting development, taking place. Ed Miliband is the

:01:10.:01:14.

author of the 2008 Climate Change Act, so he has to stick to that line

:01:15.:01:23.

or his life 's work goes up in smoke. When he passed it, there was

:01:24.:01:29.

Westminster consensus. Now the Tories are beginning to appeal off.

:01:30.:01:33.

UKIP has definitely peeled off. Labour and Lib Dems are sticking to

:01:34.:01:38.

their guns, there is now a debate? It has moved from consensus to very

:01:39.:01:42.

fragile consensus. It's an interesting tactic for Ed Miliband

:01:43.:01:45.

to take. He could either approach the floods talking about government

:01:46.:01:49.

failures and handling, instead he has gone for the intellectual

:01:50.:01:53.

argument, try and turn this into a debate about ideology and climate

:01:54.:01:57.

change. I think he will find that quite difficult. Partly, I don't

:01:58.:02:01.

think the public I get listening to an argument like that. Partly

:02:02.:02:06.

because only one in three of the public totally agree with him. The

:02:07.:02:09.

polls for The Times think that about one in three think that man-made I'm

:02:10.:02:14.

a change is responsible for these floods, the rest do not. I'm not

:02:15.:02:18.

sure that the interventions will be particularly well picked up. It puts

:02:19.:02:23.

David Cameron in a difficult position. He was hugging those

:02:24.:02:27.

huskies, it was going to be the greenest Government ever, and now he

:02:28.:02:32.

has an Environment secretary that doesn't really believe in climate

:02:33.:02:37.

change. Well, we don't know where he stands. That is not where he was in

:02:38.:02:41.

2010. It has always been sold to us that he is statesman-like and

:02:42.:02:46.

pragmatic, but that drifts into he doesn't really believe anything

:02:47.:02:49.

This is a worldwide phenomenon now. You've got the Canadian government,

:02:50.:02:54.

they are pretty sceptical these days. The new Australian government

:02:55.:02:58.

is pretty sceptical. The Obama administration has been attacked by

:02:59.:03:01.

the green movement across the United States, he is probably about to

:03:02.:03:06.

approve the keystone pipeline that will take over the Texas refineries.

:03:07.:03:16.

What was a huge consensus across the globe is a guinea to break down

:03:17.:03:21.

Probably started to break down about the time of the financial crisis,

:03:22.:03:24.

the age of austerity, when suddenly people had more to worry about than

:03:25.:03:29.

green issues. Even at home it is a slightly risky tactic for Ed

:03:30.:03:32.

Miliband. The idea there is a scientific consensus on this, there

:03:33.:03:35.

isn't. You look at Professor Collins this morning, climate systems

:03:36.:03:41.

expert, saying, actually, the jet stream is not operating further

:03:42.:03:44.

south because of climate change Or if it is, it is beyond our

:03:45.:03:48.

knowledge. He flies in the face of what Ed Miliband as saying. He's

:03:49.:03:54.

saying the wet weather is caused by global warming, the head of science

:03:55.:03:59.

at Exeter University says the IPCC originally looked at whether climate

:04:00.:04:01.

change could affect what happens to the jet stream and, because it had

:04:02.:04:06.

no evidence it had any effect, it decided not to include it at all in

:04:07.:04:13.

the IPCC report. The problem we have got is that any individual

:04:14.:04:15.

phenomenon is difficult to attribute to climate change. But the Labour

:04:16.:04:20.

Leader just have? And The Met Office have done the same thing. It's a

:04:21.:04:24.

fragile in, but overall we can say we are getting more extreme weather

:04:25.:04:28.

than ever. The most extreme weather, hurricanes and tropical storm is,

:04:29.:04:31.

they have been in decline. Equally, we have had ten of the hottest

:04:32.:04:37.

summers in the last ten years since 1998. Overall, there is a case that

:04:38.:04:43.

can be made that we are getting more. Each individual thing is

:04:44.:04:49.

difficult to say. Until recently, almost everyone agreed with that

:04:50.:04:52.

case. Now the parties are reflecting differences. I wanted to move on,

:04:53.:04:57.

what did you make of two interesting things that happened with the

:04:58.:05:03.

interview with UKIP and the Tories, one Cory saying I am voting to come

:05:04.:05:09.

out, and the UKIP chap saying we are maxed out on Tory defectors, we

:05:10.:05:13.

can't get any more? I think that was a dangerous admission from Patrick

:05:14.:05:16.

O'Flynn from UKIP, essentially saying that their vote has peaked.

:05:17.:05:21.

Looking at the by-elections, I'm not sure that was a particularly wise

:05:22.:05:26.

reflection on that. They got 18 , 23% last year. The case he is making

:05:27.:05:31.

is that there are more votes to be gained by attracting former Labour

:05:32.:05:34.

voters than former Tories. I'm not sure that red UKIP, the bit of UKIP

:05:35.:05:39.

that tries to make benefit protection and some other kind of

:05:40.:05:42.

social issues at the heart really sits comfortably with their

:05:43.:05:46.

insurgent, anti-state message. I don't think it will do particularly

:05:47.:05:52.

well. This is why they are pushing the message, it is their response to

:05:53.:05:56.

the idea and suggestion of a Tory rallying cry that they vote for

:05:57.:06:01.

Nigel Farage, and it is really a vote for Ed Miliband. Patrick is a

:06:02.:06:06.

very good journalist, a very good commentator. He answered almost as a

:06:07.:06:10.

commentator rather than head of communications for a political

:06:11.:06:15.

party. The Government are still trying to rid itself of troublesome

:06:16.:06:21.

priests, an attack on welfare reforms from the Catholic Archbishop

:06:22.:06:25.

of Westminster. Let's have a look and see what he said. The basic

:06:26.:06:31.

safety net that was there to guarantee that people would not be

:06:32.:06:37.

left in hunger or in destitution has actually been torn apart. It no

:06:38.:06:42.

longer exists. And it is a real real, dramatic crisis. The second is

:06:43.:06:50.

that, in this context, the administration of social assistance,

:06:51.:06:54.

I am told, has become more and more punitive. If applicants do not get

:06:55.:06:58.

it right, they have to wait and they have to wait for ten days, two

:06:59.:07:04.

weeks, with nothing. Has the basic safety net disappeared? I don't see

:07:05.:07:09.

how it is possible to argue that. It is certainly the case that there

:07:10.:07:11.

have been reductions in various benefits, some benefits have been

:07:12.:07:15.

scrapped and there is a welfare reform programme. But this country

:07:16.:07:19.

is still spending ?94 billion a year on working age benefits. Excluding

:07:20.:07:28.

pensions? The idea that this equates to some sort of wiping out of the

:07:29.:07:33.

safety net is... He has gone on a full frontal assault on the Tory

:07:34.:07:38.

reforms, not the kind of attack that Labour would be prepared to make?

:07:39.:07:43.

No, they know that it doesn't play very well in the country. He's not

:07:44.:07:50.

up for election. Whether or not you agree about the safety net, I think

:07:51.:07:53.

the welfare reforms have been poorly managed and I don't think that is a

:07:54.:07:57.

full dispute. Universal credit, it is in some very long grass. It had

:07:58.:08:01.

some stupid ideas, like the idea that it would be paid monthly,

:08:02.:08:04.

instead of weekly, meaning that people are more likely to run out of

:08:05.:08:08.

money by the end of the month. It's interesting, in the past, when

:08:09.:08:12.

members of the cloth have attacked the government for welfare reforms,

:08:13.:08:16.

the Government have responded by trying to paint them as lefties

:08:17.:08:21.

ideological driven. I think that is hard in this case, an assault made

:08:22.:08:26.

deliberately in the Telegraph from somebody who feels they come from a

:08:27.:08:29.

centre-right position. I think there will be a bit of awkwardness about

:08:30.:08:33.

this intervention. It is not the kind of thing they wanted to see. Is

:08:34.:08:37.

it politically damaging for the Government? It is if it makes them

:08:38.:08:42.

look mean-spirited. But that is the problem with welfare reforms. You

:08:43.:08:46.

can say all sorts of things about Iain Duncan Smith's competence. But

:08:47.:08:51.

the whole thing springs from a moral mission, as he sees it, to liberate

:08:52.:08:55.

the poor and extend opportunity One of the worst moments for the Tories

:08:56.:08:59.

was blaming the low level of voting in Wythenshawe and sale in the fact

:09:00.:09:03.

that the constituency had, in the words of one senior Tory, the

:09:04.:09:07.

largest council estate in Europe inside its constituency boundary.

:09:08.:09:12.

The point being what? Because you live in a council estate you don't

:09:13.:09:16.

vote? That they don't see people living in council estate as one of

:09:17.:09:20.

them, not an impulse that Margaret Thatcher would have had. I think

:09:21.:09:24.

it's dangerous if they are painting is people as opponents rather than

:09:25.:09:28.

trying to win them over. When they do vote, they determine elections!

:09:29.:09:32.

The idea that there is no such thing as a working-class Tory is toxic. I

:09:33.:09:39.

want to show you a picture. There we go. It is behind me, on the 5th of

:09:40.:09:46.

February, it is all men. And then, on the next, look at that, the 2th,

:09:47.:09:53.

there are a few women. Not exactly many, but some. It is an

:09:54.:09:57.

improvement. But it is so transparent, isn't it? We phoned up

:09:58.:10:02.

one of the women that sat behind David Cameron to ask, why the sudden

:10:03.:10:06.

change? They said, I don't know why you are bothering to ask, it is

:10:07.:10:10.

completely natural, we didn't do anything to stage manage it. Did his

:10:11.:10:15.

nose gets longer? It is something that is very transparent and

:10:16.:10:18.

depressing about the way politicians choose to react to these moments.

:10:19.:10:24.

Every week they put two women behind David Cameron, so that a tight shot

:10:25.:10:31.

shows them. It is called the doughnut. They don't have many women

:10:32.:10:35.

to shuffle around, there are only four among 14 in the Shadow Cabinet.

:10:36.:10:40.

Also, the fact that women, younger women in particular, are much less

:10:41.:10:44.

likely to vote Tory than five or ten years ago. David Cameron, it drives

:10:45.:10:50.

and furious, he is obviously aware this is one of the biggest potential

:10:51.:10:56.

demographic problem is that they have. It also reminds us of how the

:10:57.:11:00.

public can actually see the wiring behind a lot of the stuff. Do they

:11:01.:11:04.

really think your blog so stupid that they will not notice that the

:11:05.:11:09.

following week the front bench is packed with women? I think it just

:11:10.:11:13.

increases contempt for the entire rocket. It is an issue where Labour

:11:14.:11:18.

seem to have pulled ahead of the other parties. We are being told

:11:19.:11:22.

that 50% of candidates in their 100 target seats will be female. It

:11:23.:11:28.

looks like the composition of Labour continues to go towards a kind of

:11:29.:11:33.

rough 50-50 split, eventually. Although that is true, I think the

:11:34.:11:38.

faces we see on the telly, Ed Miliband, Ed Balls, Chris Leslie,

:11:39.:11:42.

they are almost always men. There is a Rachel Reeves, a prominent female

:11:43.:11:47.

face that goes up a lot. But really, the number of e-mails they put up is

:11:48.:11:52.

proportionally a lot smaller. Is the Miliband team still a men's club?

:11:53.:11:59.

Behind the scenes, it is very blokey. It's been described as a

:12:00.:12:03.

kind of seminar room at a university. I think that is true.

:12:04.:12:08.

The Observer did the cutout and keep of the people behind Mr Miliband. As

:12:09.:12:14.

opposed to the Shadow Cabinet, with lots of women in it, it was very

:12:15.:12:19.

male. The one reason Labour have all of these women to put up in

:12:20.:12:21.

constituencies is all women short lists is. If Tories want to change

:12:22.:12:27.

things, I know they can be prone to minute -- and in relation, but they

:12:28.:12:39.

work. In ten years time, I think it will give Labour an immense

:12:40.:12:45.

advantage. By then, I think they will have a woman leader. Who will

:12:46.:12:51.

that be? Potentially somebody not even yet in the Commons. You can see

:12:52.:12:55.

how quickly people can rise to the top, but the Labour Party is going

:12:56.:13:04.

to be increasingly donated by women. Do you think there will be a Labour

:13:05.:13:07.

Leader before Theresa May becomes leader of the Conservatives? I think

:13:08.:13:13.

it is ultimately about Osborne trying to stop Boris. I think I

:13:14.:13:17.

would be astonished if she managed it. The first female Labour Leader?

:13:18.:13:25.

I would pick Rachel Reeves the way it is currently going, she knows her

:13:26.:13:29.

stuff and does well on TV. That is all for this week. We have a week

:13:30.:13:37.

off now. I'll be back in the week after next. Remember, if it is

:13:38.:13:42.

Sunday, it's the Sunday Politics, unless it's a Parliamentary recess.

:13:43.:13:44.

Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS