07/05/2017 Sunday Politics West


Andrew Neil and David Garmston are joined by Labour's shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon and Ukip's Neil Hamilton to discuss the local election results.

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


The local election results made grim reading for Labour.


With just a month to go until the general election,


will promising to rule out tax rises for all but the well off help


The Conservatives have their own announcement on mental health,


as they strain every sinew to insist they don't think they've got


But is there still really all to play for?


And tonight we will find out who is the next


President of France - Emmanuel Macron or Marine Le Pen -


of England's first ever Metro mayor. ended with a hack attack


What can we expect from the new man in the new role?


elections but we are looking at the potential impact in marginals next


month. If Ukip support continues to evaporate...


And joining me for all of that, three journalists ready


to analyse the week's politics with all the forensic


focus of Diane Abbott preparing for an interview,


and all the relaxed, slogan-free banter of Theresa May


It's Janan Ganesh, Isabel Oakeshott and Steve Richards.


So, the Conservatives are promising, if re-elected, to change mental


health laws in England and Wales to tackle discrimination,


and they're promising 10,000 more staff working in NHS mental health


treatment in England by 2020 - although how that's to be


Here's Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt speaking


There is a lot of new money going into it.


In January, we said we were going to put an extra ?1 billion


Does this come from other parts of the NHS, or is it


No, it is new money going into the NHS


It's not just of course money, it's having the people


who deliver these jobs, which is why we need


Well, we're joined now from Norwich by the Liberal Democrat health


This weekend, they've launched their own health announcement,


promising a 1% rise on every income tax band to fund the NHS.


Do you welcome the Conservatives putting mental health onto the


campaign agenda in the way that they have? I welcome it being on the


campaign agenda but I do fear that the announcement is built on thin


air. You raised the issue at the start about the 10,000 extra staff,


and questions surrounding how it would be paid for. There is no


additional money on what they have already announced for the NHS. We


know it falls massively short on the expectation of the funding gap


which, by 2020, is likely to be about 30 billion. That is not


disputed now. Anyone outside of the government, wherever you are on the


political spectrum, knows the money going in is simply not enough. So,


rather like the claim that they would add 5000 GPs to the workforce


by 2020, that is not on target. Latest figures show a fall in the


number of GPs. They make these claims, but I'm afraid they are


without substance, unless they are prepared to put money behind it.


Your party's solution to the money problem is to put a 1% percentage


point on all of the bands of income tax to raise more money 20-45. Is


that unfair? Most pensioners who consume 40% of NHS spending, but


over 65s only pay about 20% of income tax. Are you penalising the


younger generations for the health care of an older generation? It is


the first step in what we are describing as a 5-point recovery


plan for the NHS and care system. So, for what is available to us now,


it seems to be the fairest way of bringing in extra resources, income


tax is progressive, and is based on your ability to pay for your average


British worker. It would be ?3 per week which is the cost of less than


two cups of coffee per week. In the longer run, we say that by the end


of the next Parliament, we would be able to introduce a dedicated NHS


and care tax. Based, probably, around a reformed national insurance


system, so it becomes a dedicated NHS and care tax. Interestingly, the


former permanent secretary of the Treasury, Nick MacPherson, said


clearly that this idea merits further consideration which is the


first time anyone for the Treasury has bought into the idea of this.


Let me ask you this. You say it is a small amount of tax that people on


average incomes will have to pay extra. We are talking about people


who have seen no real increases to their income since 2007. They have


been struggling to stand still in terms of their own pay, but you are


going to add to their tax, and as I said earlier, most of the health


care money will then go to pensioners whose incomes have risen


by 15%. I'm interested in the fairness of this redistribution?


Bearing in mind first of all, Andrew, that the raising of the tax


threshold that the Liberal Democrats pushed through in the coalition


increased the effective pay in your pocket for basic rate taxpayers by


about ?1000. We are talking about a tiny fraction of that. I suppose


that you do have to ask, all of us in this country need to ask


ourselves this question... Are we prepared to pay, in terms of the


average worker, about ?3 extra per week to give us a guarantee that


when our loved ones need that care, in their hour of need, perhaps


suspected cancer, that care will be available for them? I have heard two


cases recently brought my attention. An elderly couple, the wife has a


very bad hip. They could not allow the weight to continue. She was told


that she would need to wait 26 weeks, she was in acute pain. They


then deduct paying ?20,000 for private treatment to circumvent


waiting time. They hated doing it, because they did not want to jump


the queue. But that is what is increasingly happening. Sorry to


interrupt, Norman Lamb comedy make very good points but we are short on


time today. One final question, it looks like you might have the chance


to do any of this, I'm told the best you can hope to do internally is to


double the number of seats you have, which would only take you to 18. Do


you think that promising to raise people's income tax, even those on


average earnings, is a vote winner? I think the people in this country


are crying out for politicians to be straight and tenet as it is. At the


moment we heading towards a Conservative landslide... -- tell it


as it is. But do we want a 1-party state? We are electing a government


not only to deal with the crucial Brexit negotiations, but oversee the


stewardship of the NHS and funding of our schools, all of these


critical issues. We need an effective opposition and with the


Labour Party having taken itself off stage, the Liberal Democrats need to


provide an effective opposition. Norman Lamb, thank you for joining


us this morning. Thank you. Labour and Tories are anxious


to stress the general election result is not a foregone conclusion,


whatever the polls say. Order you just heard Norman Lamb say


there that he thought the Conservatives were heading for a


landslide... But did Thursday's dramatic set


of local election results in England, Scotland and Wales give


us a better idea of how the country Here's Emma Vardy with


a behind-the-scenes look at how Good morning, it's seven o'clock


on Friday, May 5th... The dawn of another results day.


Anticipation hung in the air. Early results from the local


elections in England suggest there's been a substantial swing


from Labour to the Conservatives. While the pros did their thing,


I needed breakfast. Don't tell anyone, but I'm


going to pinch a sausage. The overnight counts had delivered


successes for the Tories. But with most councils


only getting started, there was plenty of action


still to come. It's not quite the night


of Labour's nightmares. There's enough mixed news


in Wales, for example - looks like they're about to hold


Cardiff - that they'll try and put But in really simple terms,


four weeks from a general election, the Tories are going forward


and Labour are going backwards. How does it compare being


in here to doing the telly? Huw, how do you prepare yourself


for a long day of results, then? We're not even on air yet,


as you can see, and already in Tory HQ this morning,


there's a kind of, "Oh, I'm scared this will make people


think the election's just I think leave it


like that - perfect. I want the Laura look.


This is really good, isn't it? Usually, we're in here


for the Daily Politics. But it's been transformed


for the Election Results programme. But hours went by without Ukip


winning a single seat. The joke going around


Lincolnshire County Council today from the Conservatives


is that the Tories have eaten We will rebrand


and come back strong. Morale, I think, is inevitably


going to take a bit of a tumble. Particularly if Theresa May starts


backsliding on Brexit. And then I think we will be


totally reinvigorated. There are a lot of good people


in Ukip and I wouldn't want to say anything unkind,


but we all know it's over. Ukip press officer.


Difficult job. Ukip weren't the only ones


putting a brave face on it. Labour were experiencing


their own disaster day too, losing hundreds of seats


and seven councils. If the result is what these


results appear to indicate, Can we have a quick word


for the Sunday Politics? A quick question for Sunday Politics


- how are you feeling? Downhearted or fired up for June?


Fired up, absolutely fired up. He's fired up.


We're going to go out there... We cannot go on with another


five years of this. How's it been for you today?


Tiring. It always is, but I love elections,


I really enjoy them. Yes, you know, obviously we're


disappointed at some of the results, it's been a mixed bag,


but some opinion polls and commentators predicted we'd be


wiped out - we haven't. As for the Lib Dems,


not the resurgence they hoped for, After a dead heat in Northumberland,


the control of a whole council came The section of England


in which we had elections yesterday was the section of England


that was most likely to vote Leave. When you go to sleep at night,


do you just have election results The answer is if that's still


happening, I don't get to sleep. There we go.


Maybe practice some yoga... Thank you very much


but I have one here. With the introduction


of six regional mayors, Labour's Andy Burnham


became Mr Manchester. But by the time Corbyn came


to celebrate, the new mayor We want you to stay for a second


because I've got some I used to present news,


as you probably know. I used to present BBC


Breakfast in the morning. The SNP had notable successes,


ending 40 years of Labour What did you prefer -


presenting or politics? And it certainly had been a hard day


at the office for some. Ukip's foothold in local government


was all but wiped out, leaving the Conservatives


with their best local So another election results


day draws to a close. But don't worry, we'll be doing it


all again in five weeks' time. For now, though, that's your lot.


Now let's look at some of Thursday's results in a little more detail,


and what they might mean for the wider fortunes


In England, there were elections for 34 councils.


The Conservatives took control of ten of them,


gaining over 300 seats, while Labour sustained


While the Lib Dems lost 28 seats, Ukip came close to extinction,


and can now boast of only one councillor in the whole of England.


In Scotland, the big story was Labour losing


a third of their seats, and control of three councils -


while the Tories more than doubled their number of councillors.


In Wales, both the Conservatives and Plaid Cymru made gains,


There was some encouraging news for Jeremy Corbyn's party


after Liverpool and Manchester both elected Labour mayors,


although the Tories narrowly won the West Midlands mayoral race.


We're joined now by who else but elections expert John Curtice.


You saw him in Emma's film, he's now back in Glasgow.


In broad terms, what do these local election results tell us about the


general election result? First we have to remember what Theresa May


wants to achieve in the general election is a landslide, and winning


a landslide means you have to win big in terms of votes. The local


election results certainly suggest Theresa May is well on course to win


the general election, at least with four weeks to go, and of course


people could change their minds. We all agree the Conservatives were


double-digit figures ahead of Labour in these elections. However, whereas


the opinion polls on average at the moment suggest there is a 17 point


Conservative lead, and that definitely would deliver a


landslide, it seems the local election figures, at least in


England, are pointing to something close to an 11 point Conservative


lead. That increase would not necessarily deliver a landslide that


she wants. The truth is, the next four weeks are probably not about


who wins this election unless something dramatic changes, but


there is still a battle as to whether or not Theresa May achieves


her objective of winning a landslide. She has to win big. The


local elections as she is not sure to be there, and therefore she is


going to have to campaign hard. Equally, while Labour did have most


prospect of winning, they still at least at the goal of trying to keep


the conservative majority relatively low, and therefore the Parliamentary


Labour Party are alive and kicking. Interesting that the local election


results don't produce a landslide if replicated on June 8th, but when I


looked at when local elections had taken place a month before the


general election, it was in 1983 and 1987. The Tories did well in both


local elections in these years, but come the general election, they


added five points to their share of the vote. No reason it should happen


again, but if it did, that would take them into landslide territory.


Absolutely right, if they do five points better than the local


elections, they are in landslide territory. We have to remember, in


1983, the Labour Party ran an inept campaign and their support ballet.


In 1987, David Owen and David Steele could not keep to the same lines. --


their support fell away. That underlines how well the opposition


campaign in the next four weeks does potentially matter in terms of


Theresa May's ability to achieve their objective. It is worth


noticing in the opinion polls, two things have happened, first, Ukip


voters, a significant slice going to the Conservatives, which helped to


increase the Conservative leader in the bowels. But in the last week,


the Labour vote seems to have recovered. -- in the polls. So the


party is not that far short of what Ed Miliband got in 2015, so the


Conservative leader is back down to 16 or 17, as we started. So we


should not necessarily presume Labour are going to go backwards in


the way they did in 1983. I want to finish by asking if there are deeper


forces at work? Whether the referendum in this country is


producing a realignment in British politics. The Scottish referendum


has produced a kind of realignment in Scotland. And in a different way,


the Brexit referendum has produced a realignment in England and Wales. Do


you agree? You are quite right. Referendums are potentially


disruptive in Scotland, they helped to ensure the constitutional


question became the central issue, and the 45% who voted yes our been


faithful to the SNP since. Although the SNP put in a relatively


disappointing performance in Scotland on Thursday. Equally, south


of the border, on the leave side, in the past 12 months and particularly


the last few weeks, the Conservatives have corralled the


leave vote, about two thirds of those who voted leave now say they


will vote Conservative. Last summer, the figure was only 50%. On the


remain side, the vote is still fragmented. The reason why Theresa


May is in the strong position she is is not simply because the leave vote


has been realigned, but the remain vote has not. Thank you for joining


us. You can go through polls and wonder who is up and down, but I


wonder whether the Scottish and Brexit referendums have produced


fundamental changes. In Scotland, the real division now is between the


centre-left Nationalist party and the centre-right Unionist party.


That has had the consequence of squeezing out Labour in the


argument, never mind the Greens and the Lib Dems. In London, England,


Wales, the Brexit referendum seems to have produced a realignment of


the right to the Tories' advantage, and some trouble for the Labour blue


vote -- blue-collar vote. It works for the pro Brexit end of the


spectrum but not the other half. In the last century, we had people like


Roy Jenkins dreaming of and writing about the realignment of British


politics as though it could be consciously engineered, and in fact


what made it happen was just the calling of a referendum. It's not


something you can put about as a politician, it flows from below,


when the public begin to think of politics in terms of single issues,


dominant issues, such as leaving the European Union. Rather than a broad


spectrum designed by a political class. I wonder whether now Remain


have it in them to coalesce behind a single party. It doesn't look like


they can do it behind Labour. The Liberal Democrats are frankly too


small in Parliament to constitute that kind of force. The closest


thing to a powerful Remain party is the SNP which by definition has


limited appeal south of the border. It is hard. The realignment. We


don't know if it is permanent or how dramatic it will be, but there is


some kind of realignment going on. At the moment, it seems to be a


realignment that by and large is to the benefit of the Conservatives.


Without a doubt, and that can be directly attributed to the


disappearance of Ukip from the political landscape. I have been


saying since the referendum that I thought Ukip was finished. They


still seem to be staggering on under the illusion... Some people may have


picked up on Nigel Farage this morning saying that Ukip still had a


strong role to play until Brexit actually happens. But I think it's


very, very hard to convince the voters of that, because they feel


that, with the result of the referendum, that was Ukip's job


done. And those votes are not going to delay the party -- to the Labour


Party because of the flaws with Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, they are


shifting to the Tories. I agree. The key issue was the referendum. It has


produced a fundamental change that few predicted at the time it was


called. Most fundamental of all, it has brought about a unity in the


Conservative Party. With some exceptions, but they are now off


editing the Evening Standard and other things! This is now a party


united around Brexit. Since 1992, the Tories have been split over


Europe, at times fatally so. The referendum, in ways that David


Cameron did not anticipate, has brought about a united front for


this election. In a way, this is a sequel to the referendum, because


it's about Brexit but we still don't know what form Brexit is going to


take. By calling it early, Theresa May has in effect got another go at


a kind of Brexit referendum without knowing what Brexit is, with a


united Tory party behind her. We shall see if it is a blip or a


long-term trend in British politics. Now let's turn to Labour's big


campaign announcement today, and that was the promise of no


income tax rise for those earning less than ?80,000 -


which of course means those earning more than that could


face an increase. Here's Shadow Chancellor John


McDonell on the BBC earlier. What we are saying today, anyone


earning below ?80,000, we will guarantee you will not have an


increase in income tax, VAT or national insurance contributions.


For those above 80,000, we are asking them to pay a modest bit more


to fund our public services. A modest bit. You will see it will be


a modest increase. Talking about modest increases, so we can have a


society which we believe everyone shares the benefits of.


We're joined now by Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Burgon, in Leeds.


Mr McDonnell stressed that for those earning over 80,000, they would be


paying more but it would be modest. He used the word modest 45 times.


But there is only 1.2 million of them. -- 4-5 times. So that would


not raise much money. This is about the key part of this tax policy for


the many, not the few. We are saying that low earners and middle earners


won't be paying more tax under a Labour government, which is not a


policy the Conservatives have committed to yet. As John McDonnell


also said in his interview earlier, if there is a tax rise on the top 5%


of earners, earning over ?80,000, it would be a modest rise. I am trying


to work out what that would mean in terms of money. If it is too modest,


you don't raise much. What will happen is the Labour Party's


manifesto, published in the next couple of weeks, wilfully set out


and cost it. I can't make an announcement now. -- will fully set


out and cost it. Moving on to the local elections, Mr Corbyn says he


is closing the gap with the Tories. What evidence is there? John Curtis


just said there was an 11% gap in the results, Labour 11% behind. The


polls before that suggested Labour were anything up to 20% behind. Was


it a great day for Labour? Certainly not. Is there a lot to do between


now and June? Sure, but we are relishing every moment of that.


Comparing equivalent elections in 2013, the Tories increased their


share of the vote by 13%. You lost 2%. That's a net of 15%. In what way


is that closing the gap? We have gone down to 11 points behind. Am I


satisfied? Certainly not. Is Labour satisfied? Certainly not. A week is


a long time in politics, 4-5 weeks is even longer. The local elections


are over, the general election campaign is starting, and we want to


put out there the policies that will improve the lives of low and middle


income earners. And also many people looking to be well off as well. You


lost 133 seats in Scotland. Are you closing the gap in Scotland? The


journey back for Labour in Scotland, I always thought, wouldn't be an


easy one. Since the council election results and Scotland that we are


comparing this to, there has been an independence referendum and the


terrible results for Labour in the 2015 general election. So it is a


challenge, but one hundreds of thousands of Labour members are


determined to meet. That is why we're talking about bread and butter


policies to make people's lives better. These local elections took


place midtown. Normally mid-term was the worst time for a government. --


took place midterm. And the best for an opposition. That is a feature of


British politics. So why did you lose 382 councillors in a midterm


election? As Andy Burnham said when he gave his acceptance speech after


his terrific first ballot result win in Manchester, it was an evening of


mixed results for Labour. Generally bad, wasn't it? Why did you lose all


of these councillors midterm? It is not a welcome result for Labour, I


am not going to be deluded. But what I and the Labour Party are focused


on is the next four weeks. And how we are going to put across policies


like free school meals for primary school children, ?10 an hour minimum


wage, the pledge not to increase tax for low and middle earners, 95% of


earners in this country. And saving the NHS from privatisation and


funding it properly. These are just some of the policies, including by


the way a boost in carers' allowance, that will make the lives


of people in Britain better off. Labour are for the many, not for the


few. But people like from political parties aspiring to government is to


be united and to be singing from the same song sheet among the leaders.


You mentioned Andy Burnham. Why did he not join Mr Corbyn when Jeremy


Corbyn went to the rally in Manchester on Friday to celebrate


his victory? First of all, Andy Burnham did a radio interview


straight after his great victory in which he said Jeremy Corbyn helped


him to win votes in that election. Why didn't he turn up? As to the


reason Andy Burnham wasn't there at the meeting Jeremy was doing in


Manchester, it was because, I understand, Andy was booked into


celebrate his victory with his family that night. I don't begrudge


him that and hopefully you don't. The leader has made the effort to


travel to Manchester to celebrate one of the few victories you enjoyed


on Thursday, surely you would join the leader and celebrate together?


Well, I don't regard, and I am sure you don't, Andy Burnham a nice time


with his family... -- I don't begrudge. He made it clear Jeremy


Corbyn assisted him. I can see you are not convinced yourself. I am


convinced. The outgoing Labour leader in Derbyshire lost his seat


on Thursday, you lost Derbyshire, which was a surprise in itself... He


said that genuine party supporters said they were not voting Labour


while you have Jeremy Corbyn as leader. Are you hearing that on the


doorstep too? I have been knocking on hundreds of doors this week in my


constituency and elsewhere. And of course, you never get every single


voter thinking the leader of any political party is the greatest


thing since sliced bread. But it's only on a minority of doorsteps that


people are criticising the Labour leader. Most people aren't even


talking about these questions. Most people are talking about Jeremy


Corbyn's policies, free primary school meals, ?10 an hour minimum


wage. Also policies such as paternity pay, maternity pay and


sickness pay for the self-employed, that have been hard-pressed under


this government. So I don't recognise that pitch of despondency,


but I understand that in different areas, in local elections,


perspectives are different. That was Derbyshire. The outgoing Labour


leader of Nottinghamshire County Council said there was concern on


the doorstep about whether Jeremy Corbyn was the right person to lead


the Labour Party, and even Rotherham, loyal to Mr Corbyn, won


the mail contest in Liverpool, he said that the Labour leader was more


might on the doorstep. -- the mayor contest. Does that explain some of


the performance on Thursday? I am confident that in the next four


weeks, when we get into coverage on television, that people will see


further the kind of open leadership Jeremy provides. In contrast to


Theresa May's refusal to meet ordinary people. She came to my


constituency and I don't think that a single person who lives here. And


also she is ducking the chance to debate with Jeremy Corbyn on TV. She


should do it and let the people decide. I don't know why she won't.


Finally, the Labour mantra is that you are the party of the ordinary


people, why is it the case that among what advertisers call C2s, D


and E', how can you on the pulse of that social group, how can you do


that? Our policy is to assist, protect and improve the living


standards of people in those groups and our policy is to protect the


living standards of the majority... They do not seem to be convinced? We


have four weeks to convince them and I believe that we will. Thank you


for coming onto the programme. But the wooden spoon from Thursday's


elections undoubtedly went to Ukip. Four years ago the party


won its best ever local government performance,


but this time its support just Ukip's share of the vote


plunging by as much as 18 points, most obviously


benefiting the Conservatives. So is it all over for


the self-styled people's army? Well we're joined now


by the party's leader in the Welsh Assembly,


Neil Hamilton, he's in Cardiff. Neil Hamilton, welcome. Ukip


finished local elections gaining the same number of councillors as the


Rubbish Party, one. That sums up your prospects, doesn't


it? Rubbish? We have been around a long time and seemed that I'd go


out, go in again, we will keep calm and carry on. We are in a phoney


war, negotiations on Brexit have not started but what we know from


Theresa May is that in seven years, as Home Secretary and Prime


Minister, she has completely failed to control immigration which was one


of the great driving forces behind the Brexit result. I'm not really


looking for any great success in immigration from the Tories, and a


lot of people who have previously voted for Ukip will be back in our


part of the field again. They don't seem to care about that at the


moment, your party lost 147 council seats. You gain one. It is time to


shut up shop, isn't it? You are right, the voters are not focusing


on other domestic issues at the moment. They have made up their


minds going into these negotiations in Brussels, Theresa May, as Prime


Minister, needs as much support as she can get. I think they are wrong


in this respect, it would be better to have a cohort of Ukip MPs to back


her up. She was greatly helped by the intervention of Mr Juncker last


week as well, the stupidity in how the European Commission has tried to


bully the British government, in those circumstances the British


people will react in one way going the opposite way to what the


Brussels establishment one. She has been fortunate as an acute tactician


in having the election now. I struggle to see the way back for


your party. You aren't a threat to the Tories in the south. Ukip voters


are flocking to the Tories in the south. You don't threaten Labour in


the north. It is the Tories who threaten Labour now in the north.


There is no room to progress, is there? The reality will be is that


once we are back on the domestic agenda again, and the Brexit


negotiations are concluded, we will know what the outcome is. And the


focus will be on bread and butter issues. We have all sorts of


policies in our programme which other parties cannot match us on.


The talk is putting up taxes to help the health service, we would scrap


the foreign aid budget and put another ?8 billion in the health


service, no other party says that. These policies would be popular with


the ordinary working person. Is Paul Nuttall to blame on the meltdown of


what happened, no matter who is leader? These are cosmic forces


beyond the control of any individual at the moment, it is certainly not


Paul Nuttall's .com he's been in the job for six months and in half that


time he was fighting a by-election -- certainly not Paul Nuttall's


fault. We have two become more professional than we have been


recently. It has not been a brilliant year for Ukip one way or


another, as you know, but there are prospects, in future, that are very


rosy. I do not believe that the Tories will deliver on other


promises that they are now making. The Welsh assembly elections are not


until 2021, you are a member of that, but at that point you will not


have any MEPs, because we will be out on the timetable. With this


current showing he will have no end', you could be Ukip's most


senior elected representative. That would be a turnout for the books! --


no elected MPs. The Tories are not promoting the policies that I


believe them. You will see that in the Ukip manifesto when it is


shortly publish... Leaders talk mainly about the male genital


mutilation and is -- female and burqas. No, when the manifesto


launched, we have a lot of policies, I spoke moments ago about it, but


also on foreign aid. Scrapping green taxes, to cut people's electricity


bills by ?300 per year on average. There are a lot of popular policies


that we have. We will hear more from that in the weeks to come.


Paul Nuttall said "If the price of written leaving the year is a Tory


advance after taking up this patriarch course, it is a price that


Ukip is prepared to pay". That sounds like a surrender statement?


It is a statement of fact, the main agenda is to get out of the EU and


have full Brexit. That is why Ukip came into existence 20 years ago.


When it is achieved, we go back to the normal political battle lines.


Niall Hamilton in Cardiff, thank you very much for joining us.


It's just gone 11.35am, you're watching the Sunday Politics.


We say goodbye to viewers in Scotland, who leave us now


Coming up here in 20 minutes - we'll be talking about the French


Welcome to a live edition of the Sunday Politics


In the next 20 minutes we are laying on a feast of political discussion.


the election campaigns - who are the old bangers


and which parties will cut the mustard on June 8th?


I'm joined in the studio by the new Mayor for


looks at the aftermath of the Metro Mayor election.


Tim Charles Bowles is duly elected as the West of England


But straightaway, he's fighting another.


Not exactly a case of no rest for the wicked.


There never is when you're in any sort of public


It has been the same in all my years as a councillor.


Keeping fit with the Conservatives is what I call it.


It's a fitness regime that seems to work.


Outside Bristol, The West has Conservative councils,


optimistic Parliamentary candidates and now a Conservative


The Tories believe that makes it easier to get


The fact that we can go to the Government,


which is a Conservative Government and hopefully will remain


a Conservative Government, we can do that.


That helps us, when you are dealing with your own party.


We are all singing from the same song sheet on the doors


making our voices heard for the West of England.


Political opponents see it differently.


Labour's Lesley Mansell came within an electoral whisker


She says Conservative councils rarely get special treatment


It hasn't worked for Banes and South Gloucestershire.


There's been a 37% cut, we've got no council


housing being built, we've got congestion costing us


The fact they are in the same party it should be easier.


This is what you really call a political party.


Despite coming third, the Lib Dems are


They're definitely not celebrating the result.


It's effectively Conservative hegemony across the West of England


which may be an issue for the city of Bristol.


We have to watch very carefully to make sure that Tim


Bowles and his Conservative friends aren't prioritising the rural areas


We also need to make sure that they do deliver on some of the


promises they made for the West Country in terms of extra


The Centre for Cities was instrumental promoting


When you are thinking about transport, or if you're


there isn't much difference between


the Tories and Labour and the


They might quibble about some of the issues at the margins


but really all of them in the West


of England recognise the need to build


more housing, they need to address


congestion, they need to have a


better school system that enables firms to


in the middle of another election campaign.


Tim Bowles is in the studio. Metro Mayor from tomorrow morning.


Congratulations. What are your transport plans? I have been


speaking to various people throughout the region. The job has


started. Officially it is 11 o'clock tomorrow morning but we have already


started. I have been talking to people across the region in terms of


looking at short-term targets that we can attract in terms of hotspots.


We talked about this last week in terms of pinch points in the ring


parts of the region. We will also be parts of the region. We will also be


talking even more with ministers about projects like the M4 junction


18 and also addressing challenges around Bath and congestion there.


You see this might be for the benefit of the entire region, but it


will mostly affect South Gloucestershire, your patch. The


ring road feeds traffic in and out of Bristol. It will allow us with


that junction to take traffic away from rules that are going through


currently access the M4. It is a currently access the M4. It is a


junction that will benefit everybody. Picking up on the point


that Stephen Williams made in his film, but you might give precedence


to South Gloucestershire and the other Conservative controlled area,


Banes. I said throughout that I would be representing everybody in


the region. But you made it clear that Bristol would not get the


lion's share. Very clear that everybody would be looking at this


as a region and finding ways that would benefit everybody. Projects


like the M4 junction will help Bristol. Things like the sun and


mingled in Bristol will also help other parts of the region. Those


transport strategic rules will help everybody. Let us take Cribbs


Causeway, the shopping centre, they want to expand it, it is then saved


Gloucestershire. As the will decide Gloucestershire. Loss of trade and


other shops, most likely to come from Bristol, Bristol gets no


benefits, South Gloucestershire gets the benefit, Bristol gets


disadvantages. I will use meter over? I will go back to my mantra.


This is about regional economy. Cribbs Causeway is an important part


of the visitor economy for the entire region, as indeed is M4, as


indeed is Bristol. Each of those aspects will help drive the regional


economies. We will be looking at Cribbs Causeway in the see me that


we look at visitor economy and Bath and Bristol. It is about benefits


for everybody across the region. Bristol is Labour run with our


Labour mayor. The other two Labour mayor. The other two


authorities that you have control or influence over our conservative,


will you be the tail wagging the Bristol dog? I know that ten and


Matthew work well. They genuinely do work together. I am looking forward


to being the fourth member of that team. But this is about strategic


planning for the region. It is not planning for the region. It is not


about those individual constituency parts. I will be championing


everybody. I want to come back to the point


made in the film by Lesley Mansell. In the past South Gloucestershire


and Banes, Conservative controlled, haven't got a better deal from the


Conservative Government, will you be able to get that deal for the West


of England? Will you be able to demand more resources, or if to


high? I have said it is important to high? I have said it is important to


have somebody that will work constructively with council leaders,


partners, and also with the Government. My man has never been


thumping tables, it has always been taking good positive cases to people


and making a positive case for the West of England. That is what I will


be doing. It will be an advantage to have a member of the Government as


being conservative but we have already been meeting the Chancellor,


meeting key ministers are ready, and I will be working for the benefit of


everybody, hopefully with Theresa May. The Lib Dems said you with the


Government puppet. I know who Government puppet. I know who


Stephen Kearns. It is vital we have somebody working constructively but


in the best interests of everybody. Yes, I will be challenging anybody,


at council level, as Partner level, or in Government, to make sure we're


getting the best deals all the way through. You will be at the table as


Andy Burnham who has won in Manchester, and Andy streets, who


has taken over in the West Midlands. Will you be able to pull your weight


on that table? These are strong particle and charismatic men. I have


got every confidence that the best available get good representation


from me, not just nationally but globally. It is important that


somebody is driven by that. That is mighty all along. In terms of


sitting down with people from the other regions, the West of England


is the strongest economy outside the south-east, we have got a brilliant


will be making sure I am standing up will be making sure I am standing up


and getting the right exposure. Good. Don't go away. We have more to


talk about. Of course there were other


elections on Thursday - with the Conservatives picking up 21


seats in Gloucestershire, Labour and the Liberal Democrats


both councillors and Dickon Hooper has made


a meal of it in Taunton. Voter by voter, the


leaflets are handed out. The local elections are done -


but campaigning for June isn't. The Lib Dems know


they have to do better. Despite their vote share rising,


they lost seats in Somerset. We were pleased that


we've got a rise in our That didn't translate


directly into seats. But I don't accept that


we are swept away by a What's their appetite for the party


at the general election? How are the sausages? Fantastic. How


is the politics? I have already met the Liberal Democrat candidate for


the general election who called by about one week ago. We had a


discussion. I agree with some of the things apart from tax increases. You


could go conservative on them? Yes. There is a tipping point at the end


and we are not sure what that is until nearer the time. I voted


Liberal Democrat. They are the only party that have a positive take on


the problems facing the nation. I would fall Conservative consistently


at the moment because we need strong leadership to get us through the


next five years. Strong and stable leadership? I have heard that


phrase. You are a Labour of water thinking of voting conservative and


you are a Lib Dem not convinced by then. As anything come -- is


anything certain? No. No. Enjoy the sausages.


I feel disappointed for all the people that work with you and all


the good friends that came out. I am getting emotional. We are stoical.


We move on. My good friend is standing for Parliament and we will


live to fight another day. Labour is in a weak position at the


moment. For an opposition party to still be under 30% in its share of


the vote in these contests, to still be doing as badly as it has, it


still has a long way to go. With the opposition parties playing


catch up in certain parts We're joined by Lesley Williams,


the leader of the Labour group on Gloucestershire County Council,


and also by Tessa Munt, the newly-elected Liberal Democrat


councillor in Wells. How many are you going to win by in


the general election, how many seats? I am not making predictions.


Are you going to win? We have as good a chance of winning as anybody.


Really? I do. What has been the reaction on the doorstep when you


call round to Jeremy Corbyn, is he an asset is he not an asset? The


Labour Party has grown enormously over the last few months. The


membership has elected a leader. We get behind the leader. The


membership needs to get out onto the stump, tell people what we stand


for, and we will return Labour MPs to Government. What do people say


about Jeremy Corbyn? Very little. Is that good or bad. I think it says a


lot about people's lives, but what is going on for them, that their


local concerns, I am a local County Council, I am interested in their


lives, and how they can be improved. Why did you do so really, the party,


and Gloucester? There are a number of reasons and it still has to be


analysed. But in stride we didn't do badly. But in Gloucestershire and


you did. In certain areas he did badly but in Stroud where Reid told


voters what they stood for we did well and Tories lost seats in favour


of the Labour Party and the Green Party. Overall they didn't lose


seats. Over the difference, but if you put your effort into it and tell


people what we stand for we can get people to get out and fought back.


So you didn't put effort into battle and Gloucester? I don't know. We did


put effort and there but I was working in Stroud district and my


particular division and people tie-dyed and faltered. Martin is a


working-class area of Gloucester. It should be natural territory. It is a


very mixed population. Tessa Munt, welcome, you lost in the general


election, and we have got some pictures of you losing your seat


there. And here you were on Thursday, because you have been


elected as a county councillor. That is what politics does. It is a


painful business. But is a roller-coaster. You got back as a


counsellor but there was not the Lib Dem reviver but we have been told to


expect. I don't know that that is quite true. We calibrated the number


of votes this time in the County Council, my area, our vote has gone


up by 71%. And even during the period in 2009 with Nick Clegg Arab


thought had gone up by 32%. You lost half a dozen councillors. -- in 2009


with Nick Clegg Arab vote had gone up by 32%.


We have got a good proposition. Do you accept that Theresa Villiers


will be the next Prime Minister? Not entirely. You only have to look at


the local election results. Tim, you were given a run for your money in


the Metro Mayor area. deliver serious numbers. We spoke


about this before in terms of size and scale, diversity of the region


that I was up for election for earlier this week. It has a very


different demographic and lots of areas and in terms of voting


history, it was clear to us in the Conservative Party it was always


going to be a very close fight between the Labour Party and the


Conservative Party. There are nine Parliamentary constituencies, six of


them are Tory health, you should have won easily. When you analyse


that numbers about how the votes were cast in the last general


election and local election, it was clear it was good to be a close


fight between the Conservatives and the Labour Party. The message that


we were giving us a constructive future for the region, a positive


future for the region. That is what helped win it for us on Thursday.


Are you expecting a Conservative landslide in one month's town? I was


out campaigning yesterday morning, bright and early, all through


yesterday. We think it is going to yesterday. We think it is going to


be a hard fight. We are campaigning every day. We are taking nothing for


granted. They are fighting every seat in the area. If you look at the


results that we can focus on, take Cheltenham, Thornbury, Bristol West,


there is no question, and other seats close to mine, then you will


find yourself in a situation where you have got the Dems who are


fighting close up. Are you going on the streets to see you will put up


taxes? People don't mind about that. The idea of putting a penny on


income tax, it hurts those people who are more well off more, of


course it is a good idea. More money for the NHS. When will the tax


changes take effect, how much will you have to be earning to pay the


extra penny? You start paying taxes soon as you get to 11,000 500. Simon


on 12,000, 13,000 could pay more tax. People are desperate to do


something about the NHS and the idea that that money is ring fenced and


totally for the NHS. We have heard Theresa May making packages about


mental health care. The money that she and her men -- that she and her


predecessors promised. 6 billion, a good deal of money. They have had 8


billion already. They haven't. It is not going that way. It gets cut off


in a different way. Money promised for children's mental health


services has not come through and that needs to be dealt with. Do you


feel embarrassed that it is the Lib Dem is promising to increase taxes


for local services? And you are not. Unless you are an 80,000 this what


Labour said this morning, that is when the new tax regime will come


in. That is true but I remember at the Lib Dems saying they would put a


penny on education. They tend to make promises. That didn't work


either. They make promises they can't keep. I don't know what to do


with that one. That is incorrect. Look at the promises that we did


make about income tax in 2010, David Cameron said it was impossible, and


we delivered that. The Conservatives are keeping very quiet about tax. It


is like a football match. Theresa May, the 80th minute, she is playing


it safe, she is not trying to shoot. We don't know what that Labour and


Conservative tax priorities would be. The message I am getting


throughout my campaign and certainly yesterday was about having strong


and stable leadership for the future. I promise you I will say


that only once. But honestly that is what was coming across on the


doorstep in a big way. What was important for me in the region was


showing how we are going to help improve the regional economy. That


is vital again for the country. Austerity continues under the


Conservatives. We have to live within our means. Everybody


recognises that. It is important that we live within our means, that


we develop the economy, so that we can invest for everybody. I want to


talk about how the opposition parties at the moment might position


themselves. We know that in Gloucestershire, in one seat


everybody stood aside and let the Greens go against the Conservatives


and the Greens won that particular seat. Let us hear from the Green


Party. Yes, we fought very hard. We did well for years ago at County


Council, we came second. We thought it was a good seats to target. There


are so many Greens who think they are the only green, but we were able


to bring them together and get them out to the ballot box. Let us talk


about the possibility of this so-called progressive Alliance,


would you consider doing some sort of deal between Labour, the Lib


Dems, perhaps the Greens which are not at the moment. They mentioned


Hampton, it was not one of our target seats, the Lib Dems didn't


put up a candidate. I am sure there are discussions going on. A lot of


people in my area in Somerset is no that this is always a battle between


the Conservatives and the Lib Dems. A lot of people have grown used to


tactical voting. As far as any deals are concerned that is for the Green


Party to decide what they want to do. I am not want to tell them what


to do. We had better leave it there. Thank you all very much indeed. That


is all for this week. housing associations and investment,


but we have run out of time, thank you. Andrew.


Four weeks to go until polling day on the 8th of June, what will the


party strategies be for the remaining four weeks? Let's begin


with the Conservatives. Do they just try to continue to play it safe for


four weeks? Yes, with this important qualification. Theresa May Corp this


election to get her own personal mandate partly, partly because she


thought she would win big but to get her own personal mandate. Therefore,


she needs to define it. In her own interests and to do with


accountability to the country. So clearly, they will not take risks


when they are so far ahead in the polls. What they do say in the


manifesto matters in terms of the space that she has in


the coming years to define her leadership against David Cameron 's.


She is a free figure, partly on the basis of what she says as to how big


she wins. They cannot just play it safe and repeat their mantra of


strong and stable leadership, if she is going to claim her own mandate,


they need the top policy? Yes, and what is unusual about this is that


the manifesto matters far more because of what they need to do with


it afterwards, than in terms of whether it is going to win anybody


over now. Clearly, the strategy is yes, we do have two layout out a few


things, there are interesting debates as to whether, for example,


they will still commit to this ambition of reducing immigration to


the tens of thousands, we do not know the answer yet. It is a


question on whether she is setting herself up for difficulties later


on. It will be a short manifesto, I would venture to guess? It is in her


interests to be as noncommittal as possible, that argues for a short


manifesto but what does strike me about the Conservative campaign,


aside from the ambiguity on policy, is how personal it is. I think


Theresa May, in her most recent speech, referred to "My local


candidates", rather than Parliamentary candidates, very much


framing it as a presidential candidate in France or the USA. Not


a rational on her part. Everything I hear from the MPs on the ground and


the focus groups being done by the parties, is that a big chunk of the


population personally identify with her. If you can wrap up Middle


England into a physical object and embody it in a person, it would be


her. Although Jeremy Corbyn's unpopularity accounts for a big


slice of her popularity, she has done a good job of bonding with the


public. We never saw that coming! But you may well be right. That is


happening now. Labour say it wants the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell


to play a more prominent role in the Labour campaign, he was on The


Andrew Marr Show this morning and he was asked if he was a Marxist, he


denied that he was. It surprised me as I had seen tape from before


saying that he was proud of it. Let's look now and then. Are you a


Marxist? I believe that there is a lot to learn... Yes or no? I believe


that there is a lot to learn from reading capital, that is recommended


not only by me but measuring economists as well. I also believe


that in the long tradition of the Labour Party... We need to demand


systemic change. I am a Marxist. This is a classic crisis of the


economy. A capitalist crisis. I've been waiting for this for a


generation! That was from about four years ago. No, I'm not a Marxist,


yes, I am a Marxist... I've been waiting for the Marxist revolution


my whole life... Does this kind of thing matter? Yes, but in fairness,


I think he is a really good interviewee. The Shadow Cabinet have


untested figures in a national campaign. None have ever been


exposed at any level to a national media campaign that they are about


to experience. He is the best interviewee. In fairness to him,


when he gave that clip four years ago, I bet he never dream that he


would be in a senior front bench position. But the background is


clear. They are of the left, and I think they would all have described


it. Jeremy Corbyn would have done, he is close to being like Tony Benn.


There are about four Labour campaign is being fought in this election.


Their campaign, the old Shadow Cabinet, campaigning in


constituencies, but not identifying with that campaign. There is the


former Labour leader Tony Blair. Is it damaging? I think so, if they


could be damaged any further, I could see all of the Labour MPs with


their heads in their hands. What I am hearing from Labour MPs is that


there is not one of them who do not feel that they have a horrendous


battle on their hands. These will be very individual local campaigns,


where local MPs are winning despite the party leadership and not because


of it. Already, talk is turning to what happens next. Is there anyway


that Jeremy Corbyn, giving a horrendous set of general election


results as many anticipate, may stay on all the same? It is not clear


that even if the polls are right, that Mr Corbyn will go? John


McDonnell implied it might not be the case but previously, he said it


would be. What do you make of reports that the Labour strategy is


not, I cannot quite believe I am saying this, not to win seats but


maximise a share of the vote. If they do better than Ed Miliband with


30.5% of the vote, they believe they live to fight another day? Yes, it


reminded me of Tony Benn's speech after the 1983 election where they


said as bad as the Parliamentary defeat was there were 8 million


votes for socialism. A big section of public opinion voted for that


manifesto. I wonder whether that is Corbyn's supporters best chance of


holding onto power. Whether they can say that those votes are a platform


on which we can build. That said, even moderate Labour MPs and


desperate for a quick leadership contest. I hear a lot of them say


that they would like to leave it for one year. Maybe have Tom Watson as


an acting Labour leader. He would still have a mandate. Give the top


party a chance to regroup and get rid of some of its problems and


decide where it stands on policy. Most importantly, for potential


candidates to show what they are made of, rather than lurching


straight into an Yvette Cooper Coronation. 30 seconds on the


Liberal Democrats, their strategy was to mop up the Remain vote.


Uncertain about the Brexit party in demise. Ukip. The remain as have a


dilemma, the little Democrats are not a strong enough vessel with 89


MPs to risk all ongoing for them -- the Liberal Democrats. Labour do not


know where they stand on Brexit. There is not a robust alternative


vessel for what is now a pro-Brexit Conservative Party. At the moment.


Four weeks to go, but not for France...


France has been voting since early this morning, and we should get


a first estimate of who will be the country's next President


Just to warn you there are some flashing images coming up.


The choice in France is between a centre-left liberal


reformer Emmanuel Macron and a right-wing nationalist


Marine Le Pen - both have been casting their votes this morning.


The two candidates topped a field of 11 presidential


hopefuls in the first round of elections last month.


The campaign has been marked by its unpredictability,


and in a final twist on Friday evening, just before


campaigning officially ended, Mr Macron's En Marche! group said


it had been the victim of a "massive" hack,


with a trove of documents released online.


The Macron team said real documents were mixed up with fake ones,


and electoral authorities warned media and the public that spreading


details of the leaks would breach strict election rules.


I'm joined now from Paris by the journalist


As I left Paris recently, everybody told me that there was the consensus


that Mr Macron would win, and win pretty comfortable you. Is there any


reason to doubt that? -- pretty comfortably. I don't think so, there


have been so many people left and right, former candidates who have


decided that it was more important to vote for Macron, even if it was


agreed with him, then run the risk of having Marine Le Pen as


president. I think the spread is now 20 points, 60% to Macron, 40% to Le


Pen. So outside of the margin of error that it would take something


huge for this to be observed. If the polls are right and Mr Macron wins,


he has to put together a government, and in May there is a Coronation,


then he faces parliamentary elections in June and could face a


fractured parliament where he does not have a clear majority for his


reforms. He could then faced difficulties in getting his


programme through? I think that right now, with how things are


looking, considering you have one half of the Republican party, the


Conservative Party, they are making clear sides, not only that they want


to support Macron but are supporting him actively. It means looking at


the equivalent of the German party, the great coalition. Depending on


how many seats established parties keep in the house committee may very


well have a Republican Prime Minister, rather than having an


adversarial MP, he may have someone who is relatively unknown outside of


France, and a young woman. Contended that lost the Parez mayorship three


years ago. She is a scientist and has been secretary of state. She


would be an interesting coalition Prime Minister. Finally, Marine Le


Pen, if she goes down to defeat a night, does she have the stomach and


ambition, and the energy, to try it all again in 2022? She has all of


that. The question is, would they let her? How badly would she lose?


Her niece, now 27, a hard-working and steady person, unlike Marine Le


Pen, who flunked her do paid -- debate, her niece may decide that


2022 is her turn. Yet another Le Pen! All right, we will see. Just


five years to wait, but only a few hours until the results of the


election tonight. And we will get the exit polls here


on the BBC. Given the exit polls will give as a pretty fair


indication of what the result is going to be tonight. That will be on


BBC news. That's all for today. The Daily Politics will cover every


turn of this election campaign, And we're back here on BBC One


at our usual time Next Sunday. Remember - if it's Sunday,


it's the Sunday Politics. Our crack team of experts


use pioneering research


Andrew Neil and David Garmston are joined by Labour's shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon and Ukip's Neil Hamilton to discuss the local election results. On the political panel are Isabel Oakeshott, Steve Richards and Janan Ganesh.

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