09/03/2017 The Papers


No need to wait to see what's in the papers - tune in for a lively and informed conversation about the next day's headlines.

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Hello, and welcome to our look ahead to what the the papers will be


With me are Kate Devlin, Political Correspondent


at The Herald and Peter Spiegel, News Editor at The Financial Times.


Nice to see you both, waiting patiently so we can get on air! Now


for the front pages, starting with the Guardian. It says that Theresa


May is putting off the controversial rise in national insurance


contributions for the self-employed until the autumn. The Times claims


her decision to delay the measure would be embarrassing for the


Chancellor who pledged not to show it difficult decisions on tax. The


Daily Telegraph says the Prime Minister is refusing to back down


and says she denies breaking a manifesto pledge not to raise tax.


Conservative Party whips warned Mrs May that they did not have the


numbers of MPs needed to push the budget measure through the Commons,


according to the Daily Mail. The Sun also focuses on the National


Insurance story and announces its own campaign: calling on the


Chancellor to scrap plans. Theresa May could trigger Brexit talks as


early as next Tuesday, says the express, after her trip to the EU


summit. The head of the euro bank says the outlook for Euro growth is


more optimistic. A and E waiting Times are the worst on record


according to the Daily Mail, there is data on waiting time showing 85%


of patients were seen within four hours in January and that is far


below the 95% target. We will stop with the Ferrari over


National Insurance. We begin with the Telegraph. Theresa May rejects


breaking the Tory tax promise. The PM is defiant over National


Insurance as she faces budget rebellion from 100 of her MPs. How


is this not breaking a pledge, if they said they would not raise tax,


and now they are? In the newsroom we watched press conference in Brussels


where she tried to explain why this was not the breaking of a Tory party


manifesto, I am not sure I understood it. I imagine most voters


didn't understand it either. It was interesting if you look to the


coverage of the different papers, how differently they played the


press conference. The Telegraph focused on her defending of the tax.


Others called is shifting of the date of the legislation and that it


is underhanded. Everyone has a different view. The most interesting


thing to me in the Telegraph story of the 100 Tory MPs ready to sort of


defy her. We have an amendment here being prepared with 30 MPs signing


on and that could have killed it. It seems only a matter of time before


she has to make a U-turn. She did not close off that possibility. She


left the door open that there might be a U-turn at some point. All of us


in the media today had a slightly different view of where this is


going and she didn't really help us in the press conference. Kate, you


are nodding sagely. I agree with all of that. One of the things the


Telegraph has rightly picked up on is her explanation about what had


happened. It is important to remember that this is what happened


after the general election so they are pointing to the small print


three months after voters were told something in a manifesto, and she


says no amendments or concerns were raised at the time and what she


means by that is not by ordinary voters but by MPs in the House of


Commons and it points to one of the problems which is why the Tories are


here in the first place. When you have a weak opposition you have no


one pointing out this kind of problems to you so you end up


creating a storm for yourself and really having your own MPs becoming


the opposition, and that is what we are seeing today. The Sun is in a


campaigning mode on the same story. Fight fans can, we had a spite than


man yesterday. They are saying, come on, grafters get behind us. It has


been a terrible few days for Philip Hammond. His reputation as a safe


pair of hands is very much in tatters. Just over this? I know it


is important if you are self-employed and you will face


these tax rises but is it really going to be his undoing? Tory MPs


asking tonight one of the things she announced was that she was going to


delay this and bring in a review, which they had announced, which


would look at whether self-employed people could get more benefits,


including parental leave, after they have a child. If you were in the


Treasury before the budget surely you would have linked the two


already so you wouldn't have to come up with this attempt to buy them off


24 hours later and you would've thought through the policy to start


with. The other issue, and what we have seen is the incremental, she


has left it open a U-turn. David Cameron recognised these things


quicker, he is to put his hand up and say, we need a U-turn, and


killed the story quicker. He would not have had a campaign on the front


page of the Sun. It is the Tory press who are coming after her. It


is the opposition within her own party and the press that had


supported her thus far that is coming out against her and the Sun


has decided to campaign on this, one of the most conservative papers in


the country, which tells you all you need to know about where it is


going. The Times are not quite saying a U-turn yet, they are saying


a blow to Philip Hammond is Theresa May backpedals on tax. We be talking


about this earlier on, a small backpedal but it is about the


timing. It is going to come in the autumn rather than in the spring. Is


that backpedal, I guess it. Again at the last minute we were getting


ready to set our front page and we thought it was more minor than the


Times is but this is the problem with the story, everyone is making


their own judgment on it but in any case none of it is good news for the


Prime Minister. Know, and she got asked about in Brussels as well and


she was there to talk about the summit, which we will get to. Let us


look at the FT. A new Scots poll is seen as almost inevitable, it says.


There is a picture that of Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland's First Minister,


with Theresa May. How close can they get to saying there will be a


referendum, without saying it? I think this is a very good story


because what it points to now is where the row is happening and the


pace of how much this debate has changed in the last couple of weeks


is frenetic. Now the row is becoming about when, about the timing around


when you can have a referendum and whether you can have it before or


after Brexit. We have a front-page story with the former Scottish


secretary, the man who was in charge last time the Scots went to the


polls about this, and he is saying it would fail one of the tests from


the last time, one of the three key tests, and he is saying it wouldn't


be legitimate to holder before Brexit. That is something the UK


Government also suggested last week. Yes, they need to make sure we were


out of the EU before it happens, but if you run a second referendum we


have to be sure of your numbers? The numbers are close but they still


point to a defeat. The reason we thought this was an important story


is exactly why you said it, the question of whether it is gone, and


now it is a question of when. We have the source is very close to the


Prime Minister and they see that Nicola Sturgeon is pushing for a


referendum before Brexit but they want to push it to 2019. Right now


basically Downing Street has decided this will happen and she has set all


the signals there will be a second referendum can we delay it long


enough to make it harder? If you have a referendum while you are


still in the EU there is a vague chance you never leave, whereas once


you're out, trying to get back in again, with the Spanish opposition


such as Catalonia and the thought of joining the euro it, it all becomes


more complicated. In terms of actual independence for Scotland if Britain


is out of the EU but Scotland, more people in Scotland voted to stay in


the EU, Willie not Gareth and I is the independence vote? It will


galvanise some people, but there was an interesting strain of the


Independent state and you could tout rise them as wanting to be


Independent from both the union of the United Kingdom and the union of


the European Union so there is this kind of question mark about whether


if you take out the people who voted for Brexit, are the SNP representing


the 45% anymore hasn't gone down to 27%? That is interesting. The other


thing we have learned in the last few weeks is that it is Northern


Ireland now as well as Scotland. This is even more complicated for


them because suddenly you are seeing a surge in national support because


people are worried about a hard border and what has been for 20


years rather free-flowing economic zone. It is going to become even


ever harder for her in the couple of years. Let us look at a different


story, NHS crisis, A has the worst month on record. This is waiting


Times for patients to be seen within four hours. 85% were seen in that


target time in January, which is short of the 95% target. Hospitals


are being told they have more money so they should sort it out. This


story will not go away for the government. You feel for them, they


are between a rock and a hard place. We have an ageing population of


people are showing up the hospitals will often and it is almost like a


permanent winter now and we used to long lines just in the winter but


now statistic show it will continue into the warmer months. There is


just no more money. There is nothing that can be done. A lot of people we


talked to in the Treasury said that they thought that some of the


initial money that they gave up front under David Cameron would


carry them through this Parliament and at least there would be no


crisis until the next Parliament, whipped is clearly happening now as


it is speeding up and they do not have the time and they have to find


the money from somewhere back as we learned from the budget row, you


raise taxes on anyone and it will be a problem. Where will you find the


money to fund the NHS? This will be an even bigger crisis for the


venture in the coming months than any of this stuff that we're talking


about. The Health Secretary has been saying today at a conference that if


we give you more money for health and social care, to get people out


of hospital when they are better, to support them at home, it eventually


will come down the pipe and he's going to say he wants results. He


will say that. The problem is the buck stops with him and I think that


is where the public very much as. I think it is quite a difficult one.


It is difficult to blame front-line doctors and accident and emergency


departments. The ministers don't blame them, do they? On a population


basis everybody realises there is a problem, when you are a patient


coming up against, talking to doctors, the sympathy does not lie


with the government, and that is the problem they have. Let slip of the


Times. The picture story taken at the Memorial to those who served in


Iraq and Garristown. There is Tony Blair in the middle, looking rather


grim faced. A man apart, it says. Beneath Prince Andrew is finding


some to laugh about a rather sombre occasion, which is a rather jarring


comparison, but rather discomforting moment for Tony Blair. A lot of


people say you should not have shown up, which is probably the wrong


call, but he has become a rather tragic figure. It was interesting


his speech last week when he came out and talked about trying to


reverse Brexit. He has clearly tried to repeatedly reinsert himself into


the political process and for ever he will be tainted by this. Even


people who respect him as a competent just believe that he is


now so tainted by this legacy of the war that any thing he says on


Brexit, he's the wrong guy at the wrong time and he has no credibility


and it is actually a very moving photo for that reason. It shows him


isolated and whether it was just a moment in time where he wasn't


talking to anyone but it does tell the story of a barn at a place in


his career now where he is politically isolated because of the


legacy of the war. You can understand why the picture editor


picked this. It is a man who is dammed if he doesn't and if it


doesn't as well. Were he not to be there he would have faced a lot of


criticism as well so there is just no right answer on a lot of things


if you are Tony Blair. Now for the Guardian. Cover prams against


pollution. A lot of stories of late of the levels of pollution in


cities, particularly London. Parents are now being advised to cover up


their prams, particular school run. I moved here from another country,


one of the other options I had was to move to China but my wife said it


would be too much for our kids with the asthma and bronchitis but now we


have to worry about it in London! It has gotten rather unsettling that on


the walk to school you have scientists and health experts


advising that you should cover the pram. My kids are older now and they


are not in a pram but it is unsettling and these things are


showing that they are causing rising levels of asthma and bronchitis in


children in London has become one of the most polluted cities in terms of


particular its and the things that children are breathing in. And as a


new arrival to this country, it is rather unsettling. This has been


going on for years. We have been walking to school with kids in


pushchairs and heavy traffic. What this might encourage people to do is


not to put covers on their prams but to get in their cars as they go to


school. That could make it even worse. Yes, you may indeed. Thank


you very much. We got through quite a few there. A surfeit of national


insurance but I'm sure we have not had the end of it.


Don't forget you can see the front pages of the papers online


It's all there for you seven days a week at bbc.co.uk/papers.


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