05/03/2017 Sunday Politics


05/03/2017

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

:00:37.:00:42.

The Chancellor says that to embark on a spending spree

:00:43.:00:45.

in Wednesday's Budget would be "reckless".

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But will there be more money for social care and to ease

:00:48.:00:50.

The UK terror threat is currently severe,

:00:51.:00:56.

but where is that threat coming from?

:00:57.:00:59.

We have the detailed picture from a vast new study of every

:01:00.:01:01.

Islamist related terrorist offence committed over the last two decades.

:01:02.:01:06.

What can we learn from these offences to thwart future attacks?

:01:07.:01:12.

The government was defeated in the Lords on its

:01:13.:01:14.

We'll ask the Leader of the House of Commons what he'll do if peers

:01:15.:01:19.

In London this week a shake-up in education funding could lead

:01:20.:01:24.

to 70% of schools losing money in the capital.

:01:25.:01:27.

All that coming up in the next hour and a quarter.

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Now, some of you might have read that intruders managed

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to get into the BBC news studios this weekend.

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Well three of them appear not to have been ejected yet,

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so we might as well make use of them as our political panel.

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Tom Newton Dunn, Isabel Oakeshott and Steve Richards.

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They'll be tweeting throughout the programme.

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Philip Hammond will deliver his second financial

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statement as Chancellor and the last Spring Budget

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for a while at least - they are moving to the Autumn

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There's been pressure on him to find more money

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for the Health Service, social care, schools funding,

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But this morning the Chancellor insisted that he will not be

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using the proceeds of better than expected tax receipts to embark

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What is being speculated on is whether we might not have borrowed

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quite as much as we were forecast to borrow. You will see the numbers on

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Wednesday. But if your bank increases your credit card limit, I

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do not think you feel obliged to go out and spent every last penny of it

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He is moving the budget to the autumn, he told us that in his

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statement, so maybe on Wednesday it will be like a spring statement

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rather than a full-blown budget. Tinkering pre-Brexit and in November

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he will have a more clear idea of the impact of Brexit and I suspect

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that will be the bigger event than this one. It looks as if there will

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be a bit of money here and there, small amounts, not enough in my

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view, for social care and so on, possibly a review of social care

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policy. A familiar device which rarely get anywhere. I think he has

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got a bit more space to do more if he wanted to do now because of the

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politics. They are miles ahead in the polls, so he could do more, but

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it is not in his character, he is cautious. So he keeps his powder dry

:03:46.:03:51.

on most things, he does some things, but he keeps it dry until November.

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But also, as Steve says, he will know just how strong the economy has

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been this year by November and whether he needs to do some pump

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priming or whether everything is fine. He said it is too early to

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make those sorts of judgments now. What is striking is the amount of

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concern there is an Number ten and in the Treasury about the tone of

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this budget, so less about the actual figures and more about what

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message this is sending out to the rest of the world. I think some

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senior MPs are calling it a kind of treading water budget and Phil

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Hammond has got quite a difficult act to perform because he is

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instinctively rather cautious, or very cautious, and instinctively

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slightly gloomy about Brexit. He wanted to remain. But he does not

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want this budget to sounded downbeat and he will be mauled if he makes it

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sound downbeat, so he has to inject a little bit of optimism and we may

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see that in the infrastructure spending plans. He has got some room

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to manoeuvre. The deficit by the financial year ending in April we

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now know will not be as big as the OBR told us only three and a half

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months ago that it would be. They added 12 billion on and they may

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take most of that off again. He is under pressure from his own side to

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do something on social care and business rates and I bet some Tory

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backbenchers would not mind a little bit more money for the NHS as well.

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He is on a huge pressure to do a whole lot on a whole load, not just

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social care. There is also how on earth do we pay for so many old

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people? There is the NHS, defence spending, everything. But his words

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this morning, which is I am not going to spend potentially an extra

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30 billion I might have by 2020 because of improved economic growth

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was interesting. You need to hold something back because Brexit might

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go back and he was a bit of a remain campaign person. If you think

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Britain is going to curl up into a corner and hideaway licking its

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wounds, you have got another think coming. That 30 billion he might

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have extra in his pocket could be worth deploying on building up

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Britain with huge tax cuts in case there is no deal, a war chest if you

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like. He will have more than 27 billion. He may decide 27 billion in

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the statement, the margin by which he tries to get the structural

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deficit down, he will still have 27 billion. If the receipts are better

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than they are forecast, some people are saying he will have a war chest

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of 60 billion. That money, as Mr Osborne found out, can disappear. He

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clearly is planning not to go on a spending spree this Wednesday. It is

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interesting in the FTB and the day, David Laws who was chief Secretary

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for five minutes, was also enthusiastic about the original

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George Osborne austerity programme and he said, we have reached the

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limits to what is socially possible with this and a consensus is

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beginning to emerge that he will have to spend more money than he

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plans to this Wednesday. This is not just from Labour MPs, but from a lot

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of Conservative MPs as well. People will wonder when this austerity will

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end because it seems to be going on for ever. We will have more on the

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budget later in the programme. Now, the government was defeated

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last week in the House of Lords. Peers amended the bill that

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will allow Theresa May to trigger Brexit to guarantee the rights of EU

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nationals currently in the UK. The government says it will remove

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the amendment when the bill returns But today a report from

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the Common's Brexit committee also calls for the Government to make

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a unilateral decision to safeguard the rights of EU

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nationals living here. If the worst happened,

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are we actually going to say to 3 million Europeans here,

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who are nurses, doctors, serving us tea and coffee in restaurants,

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giving lectures at Leeds University, picking and processing vegetables,

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"Right, off you go"? No, of course we are not

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going to say that. So, why not end the

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uncertainty for them now? will help to create the climate

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which will ensure everyone gets to say because that's

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what all of us want. That is why we have unanimously

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agreed this recommendation that the government should make unilateral

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decision to say to EU citizens here, yes, you can stay, because we think

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that is the right and fair thing to do.

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And we're joined now from Buckinghamshire by the leader

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of the House of Commons, David Lidington.

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Welcome back to the programme. The House of Lords has amended the

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Article 50 bill to allow the unilateral acceptance of EU

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nationals' right to remain in the UK. Is it still the government was

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my intention to remove that amendment in the comments? We have

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always been clear that we think this bill is very straightforward, it

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does nothing else except give the Prime Minister the authority that

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the courts insist upon to start the Article 50 process of negotiating

:09:23.:09:26.

with the other 27 EU countries. On the particular issue of EU citizens

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here and British citizens overseas, the PM did suggest that the December

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European summit last year that we do a pre-negotiation agreement on this.

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That was not acceptable to all of the other 27 because they took the

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view that you cannot have any kind of negotiation and to Article 50 has

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been triggered. That is where we are. I hope with goodwill and

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national self interest on all sides we can tackle this is right that the

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start of those negotiations. But it is not just the Lords. We have now

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got the cross-party Commons Brexit committee saying you should now make

:10:08.:10:13.

the unilateral decision to safeguard the rights of EU nationals in the

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UK. Even Michael go, Peter Lilley, John Whittington, agree. So why are

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you so stubborn on this issue? I think this is a complex issue that

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goes beyond the rise of presidents, but about things like the rights of

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access to health care, to pension ratings and benefits and so on...

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But you could settle back. It is also, Andrew, because you have got

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to look at it from the point of view of the British citizens, well over 1

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million living elsewhere in Europe. If we make the unilateral gesture,

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it might make us feel good for Britain and it would help in the

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short term those EU citizens who are here, but you have got those British

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citizens overseas who would then be potential bargaining chips in the

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hands of any of the 27 other governments. We do not know who will

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be in office during the negotiations and they may have completely

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extraneous reasons to hold up the agreement on the rights of British

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citizens. The sensible way to deal with this is 28 mature democracies

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getting around the table starting the negotiations and to agree to

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something that is fair to all sides and is reciprocal. What countries

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might take on UK nationals living in the EU? What countries are you

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frightened of? The one thing that I know from my own experience in the

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past of being involved in European negotiations is that issues come up

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that maybe have nothing to do with British nationals, but another issue

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that matters a huge amount to a particular government, it may not be

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a government yet in office, and they decide we can get something out of

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this, so let's hold up the agreement on British citizens until the

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British move in the direction we want on issue X. I hope it does not

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come to that. I think the messages I have had from EU ambassadors in

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London and from those it my former Europe colleague ministers is that

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we want this to be a done deal as quickly as possible. That is the

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British Government's very clear intention. We hope that we can get a

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reciprocal deal agreed before the Article 50 process. That was not

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possible. I understand that, you have said that already. But even if

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there is no reciprocal deal being done, is it really credible that EU

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nationals already here would lose their right to live and work and

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face deportation? You know that is not credible, that will not happen.

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We have already under our own system law whereby some people who have

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been lawfully resident and working here for five years can apply for

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permanent residency, but it is not just about residents. It is about

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whether residency carries with it certain rights of access to health

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care. I understand that, but have made this point. But the point is

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the right to live and work here that worries them at the moment. The Home

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Secretary has said there can be no change in their status without a

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vote in parliament. Could you ever imagine the British Parliament

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voting to remove their right to live and work here? I think the British

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Parliament will want to be very fair to EU citizens, as Hilary Benn and

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others rightly say they have been overwhelmingly been here working

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hard and paying taxes and contributing to our society. They

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were equally want to make sure there is a fair deal for our own citizens,

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more than a million, elsewhere in Europe. You cannot disentangle the

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issue of residence from those things that go with residents. Is the

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Article 50 timetabled to be triggered before the end of this

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month, is it threatened by these amendments in the Lords? I sincerely

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hope not because the House of Lords is a perfectly respectable

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constitutional role to look again at bills sent up by the House of

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commons. But they also have understood traditionally that as an

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unelected house they have to give primacy to the elected Commons at

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the end of the day. In this case it is not just the elected Commons that

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sent the bill to be amended, but the referendum that lies behind that. It

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is not possible? We are confident we can get Article 50 triggered by the

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end of the month. One of the other Lords amendments

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will be to have a meaningful vote on the Brexit deal when it is done at

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the end of the process, what is your view on that? What would you

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understand by a meaningful vote? The Government has already said there is

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going to be a meaningful vote at the end of the process. What do you mean

:15:33.:15:38.

by a meaningful vote? The parliament will get the opportunity to vote on

:15:39.:15:41.

the deal before it finishes the EU level process of going to

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consideration by the European Parliament. Parliament will be given

:15:45.:15:51.

a choice, as I understand, for either a vote for the deal you have

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negotiated or we leave on WTO rules and crash out anyway, is that what

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you mean by a meaningful choice? Parliament will get the choice to

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vote on the deal, but I think you have put your finger on the problem

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with trying to write something into the bill because any idea that the

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PM's freedom to negotiate is limited, any idea that if the EU 27

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were to play hardball, that somehow that means parliament would take

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fright, reverse the referendum verdict and set aside the views of

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the British people, that would almost guarantee that it would be

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much more difficult to get the sort of ambitious mutually beneficial

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deal for us and the EU 27. Your idea of a meaningful vote in parliament

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is the choices either to vote to accept this deal or we leave anyway,

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that is your idea of a meaningful vote. The Article 50 process is

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straightforward. There is the position of both parties in the

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recent Supreme Court case that the Article 50 process once triggered is

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irrevocable. That is in the EU Treaty already but we are saying

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very clearly that Parliament will get that right to debate and vote. I

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think the problem with what some in the House of Lords are proposing, I

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hope it is not a majority, is that the amendments they would seek to

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insert would tie the Prime Minister's hands, limit and

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negotiating freedom and put her in a more difficult position to negotiate

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on behalf of this country than should be the case. One year ago you

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said it could take six to eight years to agree a free-trade deal

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with the EU. Now you think you can do it in two, what's changed your

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mind? There is a very strong passionate supporter of Remain, as

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you know. I hope very much we are able to conclude not just the terms

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of the exit deal but the agreement that we are seeking on the long-term

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trade relationship... I understand that, but I'm trying to work out,

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what makes you think you can do it in two years when only a year ago

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you said it would take up to wait? The referendum clearly makes a big

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difference, and I think that there is an understanding amongst real the

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other 27 governments now that it is in everybody's interests to sort

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this shared challenge out of negotiating a new relationship

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between the EU 27 and the UK because European countries, those in and

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those who will be out of the EU, share the need to face up to massive

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challenges like terrorism and technological change. All of that

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was pretty obvious one year ago but we will see what happens. Thank you,

:19:10.:19:12.

David Lidington. Now, the Sunday Politics has had

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sight of a major new report The thousand-page study,

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which researchers say is the most comprehensive ever produced,

:19:17.:19:22.

analyses all 269 Islamist telated terrorist offences

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committed between 1998-2015. Most planned attacks were,

:19:28.:19:30.

thankfully, thwarted, but what can we learn

:19:31.:19:32.

from those offences? For the police and the intelligence

:19:33.:19:34.

agencies to fight terror, Researchers at the security think

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tank The Henry Jackson Society gave us early access to their huge

:19:44.:19:51.

new report which analyses every Islamism related attack

:19:52.:20:00.

and prosecution in the UK since 1998, that's 269 cases

:20:01.:20:03.

involving 253 perpetrators. With issues as sensitive

:20:04.:20:07.

as counterterrorism and counter radicalisation, it is really

:20:08.:20:09.

important to have an evidence base from which you draw

:20:10.:20:12.

policy and policing, This isn't my opinion,

:20:13.:20:14.

this the facts. This chart shows the number

:20:15.:20:18.

of cases each year combined with a small number

:20:19.:20:21.

of successful suicide attacks. Notice the peak in the middle

:20:22.:20:25.

of the last decade around the time of the 7/7 bombings

:20:26.:20:28.

in London in 2005. Offences tailed off,

:20:29.:20:31.

before rising again from 2010, when a three-year period accounted

:20:32.:20:35.

for a third of all the terrorism cases since the researchers

:20:36.:20:38.

started counting. What we are seeing is a combination

:20:39.:20:43.

of both more offending, in terms of the threat increasing,

:20:44.:20:46.

we know that from the security services and police statements,

:20:47.:20:49.

but also I believe we are getting more efficient in terms

:20:50.:20:52.

of our policing and we are actually A third of people were found to have

:20:53.:20:55.

facilitated terrorism, that's providing encouragement,

:20:56.:21:03.

documents, money. About 18% of people

:21:04.:21:06.

were aspirational terrorists, 12% of convictions were related

:21:07.:21:09.

to travel, to training And 37% of people were convicted

:21:10.:21:16.

of planning attacks, although the methods have

:21:17.:21:24.

changed over time. Five or six years ago,

:21:25.:21:28.

we saw lots of people planning or attempting pipe bombs and most

:21:29.:21:32.

of the time they had Inspire magazine in their possession,

:21:33.:21:35.

that's a magazine, an Al-Qaeda English-language online

:21:36.:21:37.

magazine that had specific More recently we have seen

:21:38.:21:39.

Islamic State encouraging people to engage in lower tech knife

:21:40.:21:44.

beheading, stabbings attacks and I think that's why we have

:21:45.:21:47.

seen that more recently. Shasta Khan plotted with her

:21:48.:21:50.

husband to bomb the Jewish In 2012 she received

:21:51.:21:54.

an eight-year prison sentence. She's one of an increasing

:21:55.:21:59.

number of women convicted of an Islamism related offence

:22:00.:22:04.

although it is still overwhelmingly a crime carried out

:22:05.:22:07.

by men in their 20s. Despite fears of foreign terrorists,

:22:08.:22:10.

a report says the vast Most have their home in London,

:22:11.:22:12.

around 43% of them. 18% lived in the West Midlands,

:22:13.:22:21.

particularly in Birmingham, and the north-west is another

:22:22.:22:24.

hotspot with around 10% Richard Dart lived in Weymouth

:22:25.:22:26.

and tried to attend a terrorist He was a convert to Islam, as were

:22:27.:22:33.

60% of the people in this report. He was a convert to Islam, as were

:22:34.:22:43.

16% of the people in this report. Like the majority of cases,

:22:44.:22:46.

he had a family, network. What's particularly interesting

:22:47.:22:48.

is how different each story is in many ways,

:22:49.:22:52.

but then within those differences So your angry young men,

:22:53.:22:55.

in the one sense inspired to travel, seek training and combat experience

:22:56.:23:03.

abroad, and then the older, recruiter father-figure types,

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the fundraising facilitator types. There are types within

:23:11.:23:11.

this terrorism picture, but the range of backgrounds

:23:12.:23:15.

and experiences is huge. And three quarters of those

:23:16.:23:20.

convicted of Islamist terrorism were on the radar of the authorities

:23:21.:23:22.

because they had a previous criminal record, they had

:23:23.:23:26.

made their extremism public, or because MI5 had them

:23:27.:23:29.

under surveillance. To discuss the findings of this

:23:30.:23:35.

report are the former Security Minister Pauline Neville-Jones,

:23:36.:23:42.

Talha Ahmad from the Muslim Council of Britain, and Adam Deen

:23:43.:23:44.

from the anti-extremist group The report finds the most segregated

:23:45.:23:59.

Muslim community is, the more likely it is to incubate Islamist

:24:00.:24:05.

terrorists, what is the MCB doing to encourage more integrated

:24:06.:24:10.

communities? Its track record on calling for reaching out to the

:24:11.:24:14.

wider society and having a more integrated and cohesive society I

:24:15.:24:18.

think is a pretty strong one, so one thing we are doing for example very

:24:19.:24:23.

recently I've seen we had this visit my mosque initiative, the idea was

:24:24.:24:28.

that mosques become open to inviting people of other faiths and their

:24:29.:24:30.

neighbours to come so we were encouraged to see so many

:24:31.:24:36.

participating. It is one step forward. Is it a good thing or a bad

:24:37.:24:43.

thing that in a number of Muslim communities, the Muslim population

:24:44.:24:48.

is over 60% of the community? I personally and the council would

:24:49.:24:51.

prefer to have more mixed communities but one of the reason

:24:52.:24:54.

they are heavily concentrated is not so much because they prefer to but

:24:55.:24:59.

often because the socio- economic reality forces them to. But you

:25:00.:25:05.

would like to see less segregation? Absolutely, we would prefer more

:25:06.:25:08.

diverse communities around the country. What is your reaction to

:25:09.:25:13.

that? Will need more diverse communities but one of the

:25:14.:25:17.

challenges we have right now with certain organisations is this

:25:18.:25:21.

pushback against the Government, with its attempts to help young

:25:22.:25:25.

Muslims not go down this journey of extremism. One of those things is

:25:26.:25:30.

the Prevent strategy and we often hear organisations like the MCB

:25:31.:25:33.

attacking the strategy which is counter-productive. What do you say

:25:34.:25:39.

to that? Do we support the Government have initiatives to

:25:40.:25:44.

counteract terrorism, of course we do. Do you support the Prevent

:25:45.:25:50.

strategy? We don't because it scapegoats an entire community. The

:25:51.:25:56.

report shows that contrary to a lot of lone wolf theories and people

:25:57.:25:59.

being radicalised in their bedrooms on the Internet that 80% of those

:26:00.:26:03.

convicted had connections with the extremist groups. Indeed 25% willing

:26:04.:26:23.

to Al-Muhajiroun. I think this report, which is a thorough piece of

:26:24.:26:29.

work, charts a long period and it is probably true to say that in the

:26:30.:26:34.

earlier stages these organisations were very important, of course

:26:35.:26:38.

subsequently we have had direct recruiting by IS one to one over the

:26:39.:26:44.

Internet so we have a mixed picture of how people are recruited but

:26:45.:26:48.

there's no doubt these organisations are recruiting sergeants. You were

:26:49.:26:52.

once a member of one of these organisations, are we doing enough

:26:53.:27:00.

to thwart them? If we just focus on these organisations, we will fail.

:27:01.:27:09.

We -- the question is are we doing enough to neutralise them? The

:27:10.:27:13.

Government strategy is in the right place, but where we need to focus on

:27:14.:27:18.

is the Muslim community or communities. The Muslim community

:27:19.:27:24.

must realise that these violent extremists are fringe but they share

:27:25.:27:28.

ideas, a broad spectrum of ideas that penetrate deeply within Muslim

:27:29.:27:32.

communities and we need to tackle those ideas because that is where it

:27:33.:27:36.

all begins. Are you in favour of banning groups like Al-Muhajiroun?

:27:37.:27:43.

Yes, it was the right thing to do and I can tell you the community has

:27:44.:27:48.

moved a long way, Al-Muhajiroun does not have support. Do you agree with

:27:49.:27:56.

that? Yes, but it is very simplistic attacking Al-Muhajiroun. ISIS didn't

:27:57.:28:03.

bring about extremism, extremism brought about ISIS, ISIS is just the

:28:04.:28:07.

brand and if we don't deal with the ideological ideas we will have other

:28:08.:28:12.

organisations popping up. The report suggests that almost a quarter of

:28:13.:28:19.

Islamist the latest offences were committed by individuals previous

:28:20.:28:25.

unknown to the security services. And this is on the rise, these

:28:26.:28:29.

numbers. This would seem to make an already difficult task for our

:28:30.:28:31.

intelligence services almost impossible. Two points. It is over

:28:32.:28:39.

80% I think were known, but it shows the intelligence services and police

:28:40.:28:47.

have got their eyes open. But the trend has been towards more not on

:28:48.:28:51.

the radar. That has been because the nature of the recruitment has also

:28:52.:28:57.

changed and you have much more ISIS inspired go out and do it yourself,

:28:58.:29:05.

get a knife, do something simple, so we have fewer of the big

:29:06.:29:10.

spectaculars that ISIS organised. Now you have got locally organised

:29:11.:29:19.

people, two or three people get together, do something together,

:29:20.:29:23.

very much harder actually to get forewarning of that. That is where

:29:24.:29:30.

intelligence inside the community, the community coming to the police

:29:31.:29:35.

say I'm worried about my friend, this is how you get ahead of that

:29:36.:29:41.

kind of attack. Should people in the Muslim community who are worried

:29:42.:29:45.

about individuals being radicalised, perhaps going down the terrorist

:29:46.:29:48.

route, should they bring in the police? Absolutely and we have been

:29:49.:29:54.

consistent on telling the community that wherever they suspect someone

:29:55.:29:59.

has been involved in terrorism or any kind of criminal activity, they

:30:00.:30:02.

should call the police and cooperate. As the so-called

:30:03.:30:10.

caliphate collapses in the Middle East, how worried should we be about

:30:11.:30:12.

fighters returning here? Extremely worried. They fall into

:30:13.:30:25.

three categories. You have ones who are disillusioned about Islamic

:30:26.:30:29.

State. You have ones who are disturbed, and then you have the

:30:30.:30:32.

dangerous who have not disavowed their ideas and who will have great

:30:33.:30:37.

reasons to perform attacks. What do we do? Anyone who comes back, there

:30:38.:30:44.

should be evidence looked into if they committed any crimes. But all

:30:45.:30:50.

those categories should all be be radicalised. You cannot leave them

:30:51.:30:55.

alone. Will we be sure if we know when they come back? That is

:30:56.:31:01.

difficult to say. They could come in and we might not know. There is a

:31:02.:31:07.

watch list so you have got a better chance. And you can identify them?

:31:08.:31:15.

This is where working with other countries is absolutely crucial and

:31:16.:31:17.

our border controls need to be good as well. I am not saying and the

:31:18.:31:22.

government is not saying that anyone would ever slip through, but it is

:31:23.:31:27.

our ability to know when somebody is coming through and to stop them at

:31:28.:31:32.

the border has improved. An important question. Given your

:31:33.:31:36.

experience, how prepared are away for a Paris style attack in a

:31:37.:31:44.

medium-size, provincial city? The government has exercised this one.

:31:45.:31:48.

It started when I was security minister and it has been taken

:31:49.:31:52.

seriously. The single biggest challenge that the police and the

:31:53.:31:56.

Army says will be one of those mobile, roving attacks. You have to

:31:57.:31:59.

take it seriously and the government does. All right, we will leave it

:32:00.:32:04.

Now, Brexit may have swept austerity from the front pages,

:32:05.:32:08.

but the deficit hasn't gone away and the government is still

:32:09.:32:11.

Just this week Whitehall announced that government departments have

:32:12.:32:14.

been told to find another ?3.5bn worth of savings by 2020.

:32:15.:32:18.

Last November the Independent office for Budget Responsibility

:32:19.:32:21.

said the budget deficit would be ?68 billion in the current

:32:22.:32:24.

It would still be ?17 billion by 2021-22.

:32:25.:32:29.

On Wednesday the Chancellor is expected to announce

:32:30.:32:32.

that the 2016-17 deficit has come in much lower than the OBR forecast.

:32:33.:32:38.

Even so, the government is still aiming for the lowest level

:32:39.:32:41.

of public spending as a percentage of national income since 2003-4,

:32:42.:32:46.

coupled with an increase in the tax burden to its highest

:32:47.:32:50.

So spending cuts will continue with reductions in day-to-day

:32:51.:32:55.

government spending accelerating, producing a real terms cut of over

:32:56.:32:59.

But capital spending, investment on infrastructure

:33:00.:33:05.

like roads, hospitals, housing, is projected to grow,

:33:06.:33:09.

producing a 16 billion real terms increase by 2021-22.

:33:10.:33:15.

The Chancellor's task on Wednesday is to keep these fiscal targets

:33:16.:33:19.

while finding some more money for areas under serious

:33:20.:33:22.

pressure such as the NHS, social care and business rates.

:33:23.:33:29.

We're joined now by Paul Johnson of the Institute for Fiscal Studies.

:33:30.:33:34.

Welcome back to the programme. In last March's budget the OBR

:33:35.:33:41.

predicted just over 2% economic growth for this year. By the Autumn

:33:42.:33:45.

Statement in the wake of the Brexit vote it downgraded back to 1.4%. It

:33:46.:33:50.

is now expected to revise that back around to 2% as the Bank of England

:33:51.:33:56.

has again. It is speculated on the future. It looks like we will get a

:33:57.:34:01.

growth forecast for this year not very different from where it was a

:34:02.:34:06.

year ago. What the bank did was upgrade its forecast for the next

:34:07.:34:09.

year or so, but not change very much. It was thinking about three or

:34:10.:34:14.

four years' time, which is what really matters. It looked like the

:34:15.:34:19.

OBR made a mistake in downgrading the growth in the Autumn Statement

:34:20.:34:24.

three months ago. It was more optimistic than nearly all the other

:34:25.:34:28.

forecasters and the Bank of England. It was wrong, but not as wrong as

:34:29.:34:35.

everybody else. We don't know, but if it significantly upgraded its

:34:36.:34:39.

growth forecast for the next three or four years, I would be surprised.

:34:40.:34:46.

It also added 12 billion to the deficit for the current financial

:34:47.:34:49.

year in the Autumn Statement, compared with March. It looks like

:34:50.:34:55.

that deficit will probably be cut again by about 12 billion compared

:34:56.:35:00.

to the last OBR forecast. It is quite difficult to make economic

:35:01.:35:04.

policy on the basis of changes of that skill every couple of months.

:35:05.:35:09.

That is one of the problems about having these two economic event so

:35:10.:35:14.

close together. My guess is the number will come out somewhere

:35:15.:35:17.

between the budget and the Autumn Statement numbers. There was a nice

:35:18.:35:21.

surprise for the Chancellor last month which looked like tax revenues

:35:22.:35:26.

were coming in a lot more strongly than he expected. But again the real

:35:27.:35:30.

question is how much is this making a difference in the medium run? Is

:35:31.:35:35.

this a one-off thing all good news for the next several years? If

:35:36.:35:41.

growth and revenues are stronger, perhaps not as strong as the good

:35:42.:35:44.

news last month, but if they are stronger than had been forecast in

:35:45.:35:48.

the Autumn Statement, what does that mean for planned spending cuts? It

:35:49.:35:54.

probably does not mean very much. Let's not forget the best possible

:35:55.:35:58.

outcome of this budget will be that for the next couple of years things

:35:59.:36:02.

look no worse than they did a year ago and in four years out they will

:36:03.:36:07.

still look a bit worse, and in addition Philip Hammond did increase

:36:08.:36:11.

his spending plans in November. However good the numbers look in a

:36:12.:36:16.

couple of days' time, we will still be borrowing at least 20 billion

:36:17.:36:21.

more by 2020 than we were forecasting a year ago. Still quite

:36:22.:36:28.

constrained. George Osborne wanted to get us to budget surplus by 2019.

:36:29.:36:34.

That has gone. Philip Hammond is quite happy with a big deficit and

:36:35.:36:39.

is not interested in that. But what he is thinking to a large extent, as

:36:40.:36:45.

you have made clear, there is a lot of uncertainty about the economic

:36:46.:36:49.

reaction over the next three or four years. He says he wants some

:36:50.:36:53.

headroom. If things go wrong, I do not want to announce more spending

:36:54.:36:58.

cuts or more tax rises to keep the deficit down. I want to say things

:36:59.:37:02.

have gone wrong for now and we will borrow. And I have got some money in

:37:03.:37:08.

the kitty. He will not spend a lot of it now. I understand the

:37:09.:37:13.

Chancellor is worried about the erosion of the tax base and it is

:37:14.:37:18.

hard to put VAT up by more than 20%, millions have been taken out of

:37:19.:37:24.

income tax, only 46% of people pay income tax, fuel duty is frozen for

:37:25.:37:29.

ever, corporation tax has been cut, the growth in self-employed has

:37:30.:37:33.

reduced revenues, is that a real concern? These are all worries for

:37:34.:37:38.

him. We have as you said in the introduction to this, got a tax

:37:39.:37:43.

burden which is rising very gradually, but it is rising to its

:37:44.:37:49.

highest level since the mid-19 80s, but is not doing it through

:37:50.:37:52.

straightforward increases to income tax. Lots of bits of pieces of

:37:53.:37:57.

insurance premium tax is here and the apprenticeship levied there, and

:37:58.:38:03.

that is higher personal allowance of income tax and a freeze fuel duty,

:38:04.:38:07.

but at some point we will have to look at the tax system as a whole

:38:08.:38:12.

and ask if we can carry on like this. We will have to start increase

:38:13.:38:19.

fuel duties again, or look to those big but unpopular taxes to really

:38:20.:38:26.

keep that money coming in to keep the challenges we will have over the

:38:27.:38:32.

next 30 years. He is going to set up a commission on social care. He has

:38:33.:38:37.

had quite a few commissions on social care. Thank you for being

:38:38.:38:39.

with us. It's just gone 11.35,

:38:40.:38:41.

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

:38:42.:38:43.

in Scotland who leave us now Coming up here in twenty

:38:44.:38:45.

minutes, the Week Ahead. First though, the Sunday

:38:46.:38:49.

Politics where you are. This week, London schools get

:38:50.:38:58.

the best results in the country. A little later on today we will be

:38:59.:39:03.

looking at the shake-up of the way schools are funded which is set

:39:04.:39:09.

to see 70% of them in With me this week is Labour MP

:39:10.:39:12.

for Hammersmith, Andy Slaughter, and the Conservative MP

:39:13.:39:19.

for Twickenham, Tanya Mattias. Let's kick off by asking

:39:20.:39:21.

about the budget on Wednesday. Let's kick off by asking

:39:22.:01:50.

need Crossrail as well. We will be poring over the entrails of the

:01:51.:01:53.

budget next week. Thank you very much indeed.

:01:54.:01:59.

So the Brexit Bill is back in the Lords next week and the Lib Dems

:02:00.:02:05.

They've ordered pizza and camp beds to encourage their peers

:02:06.:02:08.

to keep talking all night, only to be told by the Lord's

:02:09.:02:11.

authorities that their plans fall foul of health and safety laws.

:02:12.:02:18.

Laws that they probably voted for. What did you make of David

:02:19.:02:25.

Liddington's remarks on the Lords amendments, particularly not just

:02:26.:02:30.

the one on EU nationals, but on what is regarded as a meaningful vote at

:02:31.:02:35.

the end of the process? Let's be clear, as ministers like to say, the

:02:36.:02:40.

meaningful vote vote is by far the biggest thing that will happen in

:02:41.:02:45.

Parliament. It puts EU citizens into a tiny corner. It will decide not

:02:46.:02:51.

just who is going to have the final say on this, but who the EU is

:02:52.:02:56.

negotiating with. Is it directly with Theresa May or is it with

:02:57.:03:01.

Parliament? Who will decide the shape of Brexit, Parliament or

:03:02.:03:05.

Theresa May? The Lords amendment is just the first chapter. They have

:03:06.:03:13.

voiced Theresa May to give them a veto on everything she does, and

:03:14.:03:15.

there is a possible chance in the Commons could uphold this amendment.

:03:16.:03:23.

The meaningful vote amendment? The meaningful vote amendment. But is it

:03:24.:03:29.

a meaningful vote if the choice is to either back the deal or crash out

:03:30.:03:36.

of the deal? That is what the remain supporting MPs or hardline people

:03:37.:03:40.

who want to remain fear. What they want is the power to be able to send

:03:41.:03:44.

Theresa May back to the negotiating table. Why is that anathema to many

:03:45.:03:51.

Brexit supporters? They believed it would crucially and critically

:03:52.:03:55.

undermine Theresa May's negotiating hand and also create a long period

:03:56.:04:00.

of uncertainty for business. There is already great uncertainty and

:04:01.:04:04.

this could extend it. The government's position is in there

:04:05.:04:08.

was a proper, meaningful vote which Parliament could reject what was on

:04:09.:04:14.

offer, that would be an incentive to the EU to give us a bad deal? I

:04:15.:04:20.

think that is the fear. If you are saying to the people you are

:04:21.:04:23.

negotiating with that that is another authority and Theresa May

:04:24.:04:28.

will have to go back and have all of this approved, I think it would have

:04:29.:04:31.

a very significant undermining effect on her negotiating hand.

:04:32.:04:38.

Things change from day to day. We are talking about 2019 and 2018 at

:04:39.:04:44.

the earliest, but if the government lost a vote on the Brexit deal,

:04:45.:04:52.

would he not have to call in someone else? That is why the vote will be

:04:53.:04:57.

meaningful even if the amendment on this meaningful vote will be lost.

:04:58.:05:02.

You cannot do a deal on something as historic as Brexit and have

:05:03.:05:08.

Parliament against you. So, whatever form this vote takes, whenever it

:05:09.:05:13.

happens, it will be hugely meaningful. Whatever label that is

:05:14.:05:22.

given and if she lost it she would call a general election. She could

:05:23.:05:28.

not impose it. To call a general election now you need a majority of

:05:29.:05:32.

MPs which she will not have, so maybe she will not get her election

:05:33.:05:37.

after all. It would be very unlike Labour not to vote for an election.

:05:38.:05:41.

It would be very unlike Labour not to vote for an election.

:05:42.:05:44.

The elections to Stormont have given a boost to the republicans and put

:05:45.:05:47.

the long term status of Northern Ireland in some doubt.

:05:48.:05:49.

Sinn Fein's leader Gerry Adams spoke to reporters

:05:50.:05:52.

Yesterday was in many, many ways a watershed election,

:05:53.:05:57.

and we have just started a process of reflecting what it all means,

:05:58.:06:01.

but clearly the union's majority in the Assembly has been ended,

:06:02.:06:17.

and the notion of a permanent or a perpetual unionist majority

:06:18.:06:19.

Is he right? Is this a watershed? The nationalist vote in the assembly

:06:20.:06:32.

will now come to 39 and the Unionists 38. It is only one member,

:06:33.:06:38.

but it is significant. This is a very serious moment and because of

:06:39.:06:42.

everything else going on with Donald Trump and Brexit it is taking a

:06:43.:06:45.

while for people here to realise just how significant this is.

:06:46.:06:51.

Talking to someone who only recently left a significant role in Northern

:06:52.:06:54.

Ireland politics last night, they said they were very worried about

:06:55.:06:59.

what this means. It is likely there will be a call for some kind of

:07:00.:07:03.

international figure to chair the talks to try and see if there is a

:07:04.:07:08.

way of everybody working together. All sides will probably try to

:07:09.:07:11.

extract more money from the Treasury, but it is a very dangerous

:07:12.:07:16.

moment. Should we regard Michelle O'Neill, who has replaced Mr

:07:17.:07:21.

McGuinness as the leader, it is she the First Minister death probably

:07:22.:07:29.

not quite. An interesting thought. Indeed, the daughter of an IRA man,

:07:30.:07:36.

a fascinating concept in itself. But there are are still a large amount

:07:37.:07:41.

of MLAs who will not give Sinn Fein what they need. But what effect does

:07:42.:07:45.

this have on the legacy of the prosecutions and the great

:07:46.:07:48.

witchhunts which the British Government has vowed to end. There

:07:49.:07:54.

is a majority left on the Stormont assembly to end those. But some

:07:55.:08:00.

would keep them going for time continuing, which is a headache for

:08:01.:08:06.

Theresa May. You have now got 27 Sinn Fein members, 28 DUP, then the

:08:07.:08:12.

SDLP bumps up the numbers a little bit. You have got the British

:08:13.:08:18.

Government transfixed with Brexit which has huge implications for the

:08:19.:08:21.

border between North and South in Ireland, and the Irish government is

:08:22.:08:29.

pretty wavering as well and if there is an election there, Sinn Fein

:08:30.:08:32.

could do well in the Dublin parliament as well. There are a lot

:08:33.:08:37.

of moving pieces. There are and there is a danger that we look at

:08:38.:08:41.

everything through the prism of Brexit, but I found Friday and this

:08:42.:08:46.

weekend fascinating. Theresa May and Scotland were Nicola Sturgeon is

:08:47.:08:50.

framing Brexit entirely through an argument to have a second referendum

:08:51.:08:54.

on independence which she wants to hold it she possibly can. And the

:08:55.:08:59.

Irish situation with the prospect of a hard border with Northern Ireland

:09:00.:09:08.

voting majority to remain, quite a substantial majority, again a few of

:09:09.:09:17.

the instability at the moment. That is on both sides. We will be keeping

:09:18.:09:18.

We will be keeping an eye on it for sure.

:09:19.:09:23.

Yesterday, US President Donald Trump tweeted allegations

:09:24.:09:24.

that his predecessor, Barack Obama, had ordered

:09:25.:09:27.

his phones to be tapped during the election campaign.

:09:28.:09:29.

"Terrible!", Trump wrote, "Just found out that Obama

:09:30.:09:32.

had my "wires tapped" in Trump Tower just before the victory.

:09:33.:09:36.

I'm not quite sure what McCarthyism that is.

:09:37.:09:49.

He followed up with a series of tweets comparing it to Watergate.

:09:50.:09:52.

"How low has President Obama gone to tap my phones during the very

:09:53.:09:58.

The sacred election process, I think at one stage he said it was a dodgy

:09:59.:10:12.

election process, but now it is sacred.

:10:13.:10:13.

You are frightened to go to bed at night, you do not know what you are

:10:14.:10:26.

going to wake up to. Completely uncharted territory here. Little

:10:27.:10:30.

more than a month ago at the inauguration they were making the

:10:31.:10:33.

veneer of small talk and politely shaking hands. He saw Barack Obama

:10:34.:10:41.

and Michelle off on the helicopter. You do not know what is coming next.

:10:42.:10:47.

Is there a scintilla of evidence to back up Donald Trump's claims? Yes,

:10:48.:10:53.

there is, although he is very muddled about it all. I will

:10:54.:10:57.

explain. Remember what happened to Mike Flynn, talking to the Russian

:10:58.:11:09.

and Ambassador will stop they were listening. Barack Obama does not

:11:10.:11:14.

sign of warrants, but somebody else did. So why on earth would you not

:11:15.:11:18.

want to listen to the president elect himself in case he might also

:11:19.:11:26.

be breaking the law. Does that sound to you like convincing evidence or

:11:27.:11:30.

just a supposition? I think Tom should go and work for him, that is

:11:31.:11:35.

the most credible interpretation I have heard for a long time. Start

:11:36.:11:41.

tweeting the case for the tweet. What is interesting about this is my

:11:42.:11:46.

theory is he does not really like the idea of being a president. That

:11:47.:11:50.

wild press conference he gave a couple of weeks ago there was one ad

:11:51.:11:56.

lib that did not get repeated which was, I suppose I am a politician

:11:57.:12:02.

now, as if he was humiliated at the idea of being a president. He likes

:12:03.:12:06.

being the businessman with a swagger tweeting around the clock. And

:12:07.:12:11.

campaigning again. He keeps going to what looked like campaign rallies. I

:12:12.:12:16.

disagree with you about him not liking being president. I think he

:12:17.:12:20.

loves the idea of being the president, but the reality is so

:12:21.:12:24.

frustrating on every level, finding he does not have unlimited room for

:12:25.:12:27.

manoeuvre and so many things have been put in place to stop them doing

:12:28.:12:32.

things he would do in the business environment. We have had two more

:12:33.:12:35.

tweets from him this morning, I guess when he woke up. Who was it

:12:36.:12:41.

who secretly said to the Russian president, tell Vladimir that after

:12:42.:12:44.

the election I will have more flexibility? Who was that? Possibly

:12:45.:12:52.

Hillary Clinton. Is it true the Democratic National committee would

:12:53.:12:56.

not allow the FBI access to check server or other equipment after

:12:57.:13:01.

learning it was hacked? Can that be possible? This was all an issue in

:13:02.:13:05.

the campaign. He is now a president. Shall I point out the flaw in Tom's

:13:06.:13:10.

theory. They were not bugging Michael Flynn's phone, it was the

:13:11.:13:14.

Russian Ambassador's telephone they were barking. Mr Neil, I would never

:13:15.:13:24.

contradict you on this programme. But if you suspect there was

:13:25.:13:27.

criminal activity going on, as there was by Michael Flynn, why would you

:13:28.:13:34.

not want to put on a tap? I don't know. That is it for today.

:13:35.:13:39.

I'll be back next week here on BBC One at 11am as usual.

:13:40.:13:42.

The Daily Politics is back tomorrow at midday on BBC Two.

:13:43.:13:45.

But remember - if it's Sunday, it's the Sunday Politics.

:13:46.:13:53.

Andrew Neil speaks to leader of the House of Commons David Lidington about Brexit, and talks about the upcoming Budget with Paul Johnson of the Institute for Fiscal Studies. Andrew also discusses Islamist terrorism in the UK with former security minister Baroness Neville-Jones, Adam Deen of the Quilliam Foundation and Tahla Ahmad of the Muslim Council of Britain.

On the political panel are the Sun's political editor Tom Newton Dunn and journalists Isabel Oakeshott and Steve Richards.


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