BBC Parliament's programme looking back at the week in Westminster, presented by Mandy Baker.
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Hello and welcome to
the Week In Parliament,
coming up, Theresa May tells MPs
Russian diplomats will be expelled
after Moscow fails to give
an explanation for the nerve agent
attack in Salisbury.
They've treated the use of military
grade nerve agent with...
The Labour leader condemns
the attack, but he doesn't put
the blame on the Russian
Our response must be decisive and
proportionate and based on clear
And YouTube gets a dressing down.
This isn't about perfection, this is
about you being the wrong person
before this committee and not having
a clue what you're talking about.
It was the first time a nerve agent
had been used offensively in Europe
since the Second World War and it
happened on British soil.
The attack on the former Russian spy
and his daughter in Salisbury
dominated the week in Parliament.
On Monday afternoon,
the Prime Minister came
to the Commons to update MPs.
It is now clear that Mr Scrip can --
Skripan and his daughter... Russia's
record of conducting state-sponsored
assassinations and our assessment
that Russia views some defectors as
legitimate targets for
assassinations, the Government has
concluded that it is highly likely
that Russia was responsible for the
act against them. She said there
were two possibilities. Either this
was a direct act by the Russian
state against our country, or the
Russian government lost control of
its potentially catastrophically
damaging nerve agent and allowed it
to get into the hands of others.
Angie demanded an escalation from
Should there be no credible
response, we will assume that
this... Jeremy Corbyn condemned the
attack. The investigation into the
events must reach its conclusions,
we need to see both the evidence and
a full account from the Russian
authorities in light of emerging
evidence that the Prime Minister has
just referred to.
The Labour leader
turned to party funding, claiming
there had been large donations from
We are all
familiar with the way huge fortunes
often acquired in the most dubious
circumstances in Russia sometimes
connected with criminal elements
have ended up sheltering in London
and trying to buy political
influence in British party politics.
Meddling in elections as the Prime
Minister put it, there has been over
£800,000 worth of donations to the
Conservative Party from Russian
oligarchs and their associates.
Well, that febrile mood persisted
when the Prime Minister returned
to the despatch box on Wednesday.
The deadline she'd set
the Kremlin of midnight had
passed without a response.
Theresa May set out
the Government's position.
They have treated the use of a
military grade nerve agent in Europe
with sarcasm, contempt and defiance.
So Mr Speaker, there is alternative
conclusion. Other than that the
Russian state was culpable for the
attempted murder of Mr and his
daughter. Under the Vienna
convention, we will expel 23 Russian
diplomats who have been... They have
just one week to leave. This will be
the single biggest expulsion for
over 30 years, and it reflects the
fact that this is not the first time
that the Russian state has acted
against our country.
The attack and
Salisbury was an appalling act of
violence. Nerve agents are
abominable if used in any war, it is
utterly reckless to use them in a
civilian environment. Our response
has to be both decisive and
proportionate. And based on clear
When it became clear that Jeremy
Corbyn was not going to blame the
I couldn't understand a
His behaviour demeans his
office. There was a terse response
by the Prime Minister.
It was clear
from the remarks that were made by
backbenchers across the whole of
this House on Monday that there is a
consensus across the back benches of
this House. I'm only sorry that the
consensus does not go as far as the
right honourable gentleman.
Who could have taken the opportunity
as the UK Government has done the
contempt the culpability of the
Russian state. -- to condemn.
Many on the Labour backbenches
spoke out in support
of Theresa May's action,
including one MP who explicitly
condemned his own leader's response.
Responding with strength and resolve
your country is under threat is an
essential component of political
leadership. There is a Labour
tradition that understands that. And
it has been understood by prime
Ministers of all parties who have
stood at the despatch box.
Spokesmen from other parties
with the Government.
There has to be a robust response of
the use of terror on our streets. We
must act in a measured way to show
that we will simply not tolerate
We welcome the
decisive action that's been taken by
the Prime Minister today it sits in
contrast with the policy of
appeasement that we've heard from
the front backbench of the Labour
But it was a senior Conservative
who emphasised the seriousness
of the whole situation.
It's just a question of expressing
anger about Salisbury. This is
actually a serious threat to the
safety of the Western world, a
lesson to do something together...
In a newspaper article on Friday,
Jeremy Corbyn warned against rushing
into a new Cold War with Russia
before there was conclusive evidence
that Moscow was behind
the nerve agent attack.
He said police needed to confirm
that the Russian mafia
Now, most of our legislation
is made by the Government.
But it is possible for individual
MPs to change the law.
And one way is through
a Private Member's Bill.
It was this humble type of bill
that was responsible for some major
social change in Great Britain
in the 60s, the legalisation
of abortion and the abolition
of the death penalty for murder.
More recently, a law to reduce
homelessness and a ban on under-18s
using sunbeds were the result
of private members' bills.
The best chance for MPs to bring
in this kind of Bill is to finish
high up in the ballot held
at the start of every session.
The ballot drop for private members
bills in the present session is
about to take place. 461 members
enter the ballot this year. We now
come to the members who get the
first pick of the...
20 names are chosen but generally
only the top seven or so will get
a day's debate on an allocated
Debating time is limited.
And without government backing,
there's little chance
of a Bill becoming law.
Now, if you had a magnifying glass
handy then, you may have spotted
the name Angus MacNeil at the very
top of that list.
He's introducing a measure to allow
the families of refugees to join
them in this country.
And earlier, I spoke to him.
I began by asking why he'd
chosen that subject.
It's a subject that makes a
difference in people's lives. In
politics one of the things we should
be doing is helping people. I think
if all the people -- of all the
peoples in the world who need help,
refugees are those people. This
Very few backbenchers's Bill
They are held on a
Friday, there's a lot of pressure on
MPs to be away. Saying that, if they
do get the MPs to be there, it
should progress to the next edge. I
am quite nervous about that because
you can't take everything for
granted. Having them on Friday is
bad. It should be Wednesday or
Thursday, given proper time. But
there can be a variety of other
reasons the Government decides their
big hefty utility against private
members bills. That could be a
difficulty. Often, governments look
for excuses not to do it, sometimes
they wish they had thought of it
themselves. Sometimes they wish it
wasn't there. I hope the Government
eventually wishes they thought of
this themselves, I would be quite
happy if the Government adapted this
and didn't need to be done this way.
Sometimes these bills fall because
other MPs talk about, they just go
on and on and so the Bill doesn't
have enough time to get through.
That's not a dignified way of
getting rid of a bill that.
Absolutely. The best way for that to
be decided is on a boat.
don't like these bills. They are
badly drafted and this is the reason
why other MPs oppose them. You have
to be careful there's no unintended
consequences from these measures.
Absolutely, and also when people
have something against the Bill,
they will look in the detail and
spin... Indeed, Thomas can make --
commas can be quite important.
like to see more backbench bills
I think so. I think
they have to be good in the first
place, they have to commend support
but they have to be given the time
for that support. That is the
difficulty of having private members
bills on Friday. There are other
days of the week when the Government
and the business managers and
Parliament are scraping around
looking for a debate just filled the
time. You could see with the
publicity that this bill has
generated, there is greater... Some
of the things that have been debated
on Wednesday or Thursday...
And Angus MacNeil was on his feet
first thing on Friday to put
the case for his bill
in the Commons.
And after three and a half hours,
the Bill cleared its first
hurdle in the Commons.
But it'll face a trickier test
when it comes under more
detailed scrutiny by MPs.
It used to be that cometh
the spring, cometh the Budget.
The full holding up the briefcase
outside Number 11, how much a pint
was going to be and a rabbit
out of the fiscal hat.
But that was in the old
days, well, last year.
It all changed when the Chancellor
announced budgets were now
to be autumnal affairs,
with just a limited
statement in the spring.
So it was that Philip Hammond rose
in the Commons on Wednesday
with what he said would be
a short statement.
He began by characterising his mood.
If their are any in the chambers,
there, they're over there. I,
meanwhile, and at my positively most
figure like today as I contemplate a
country which bases the future with
unique strengths. This Autumn
Statement, 2016, I have committed to
£60 billion of new spending, shared
between long-term investment in
Britain's future and support for our
public services. With almost £9
billion extra for our NHS and our
social care system am a £4 billion
going into the NHS in the 18 height
in 19 alone. -- Wendy 18-20 19.
complacency today is astounding. We
face in every public service a
crisis on a scale we've never seen
before. Hasn't he listened to the
doctors, the nurses, teachers, the
police officers, the carers and even
his own counsellors? They are
telling him they can't wait for the
next budget. They're telling him to
The real tragedy is that we
are ten years on from the financial
crisis but austerity is still with
us and there was a lack of hope
given to the people of the United
Kingdom from their statement today.
The Chancellor has been very upbeat
today but why is he so upbeat when
the growth figures showed that we
have gone from near the top of the
G7 and the G20 growth lists, to the
bottom of both?
The future is
uncertain and the likelihood of
unexpected political developments
leaves to significant downside risks
to public forecast. Can I ask the
Chancellor whether he sees any of
those political downside risks
sitting directly in front of him?
Funnily enough Philip
Hammond did see risks
on the Labour front bench,
and what's more, he said,
business had told him they shared
those risks, too.
The Chancellor is always looking
for new ways to increase revenue.
The longest-serving MP,
the Father of the House,
is Kenneth Clarke, a former
himself of course.
He had a idea.
Can I suggest that he looks at some
of the extraordinary tax anomalies
he has inherited in the tax
treatment of older, prosperous
people in full-time work in this
i think i am perfectly well placed
to make my point.
One Conservative later made
the point that perhaps imposing
a new tax targeted at a core element
of the party's support may not be
a good idea after all.
And now let's have a look at some
other news from Parliament in brief.
The peer who was Britain's first
female Muslim Cabinet minister said
she won't be intimidated by letters
inciting violence against Muslims.
Her comments came after four suspect
packages were sent to MPs
from a Muslim background.
The previous day, MPs had condemned
the letters encouraging people
to take part in a
"Punish a Muslim" day.
I received a message, my lord, from
a friend. She said, please do not go
out on the 3rd of April, it is
punished a Muslim day. I will, along
with many others, be going out on
the 3rd of April because we will not
be intimidated in this way.
The Government reported
a new and worrying development
in the investigation into the fire
at Grenfell Tower.
It's nine months since
the blaze claimed 71 lives.
The cladding and insulation
on the outside of the building have
already failed all preliminary tests
by the police.
Investigators have found now that
a flat door from the building
could only hold back a fire for half
the time it was supposed to.
The door is believed to have been
designed to resist fire for up to 30
minutes, but when tested by the
Metropolitan Police, failed after
approximately 15 minutes. The
Metropolitan Police considered that
this test result might have wider
implications for public safety and
alerted my department.
Professor Stephen Hawking, who died
on Wednesday at the age of 76,
was remembered at Prime
Theresa May paid tribute
to his courage and persistence,
and his brilliance and humour,
which inspired people
across the world.
Jeremy Corbyn said, as well as being
an acclaimed scientist,
Professor Hawking was also
passionate about the NHS
and universal health care.
The International Trade Secretary
criticised President Trump's
decision to impose tariffs
on imports of steel and aluminium
into the United States.
Liam Fox told MPs he'd be working
with the European Union to win
an exemption from the tariffs.
Dr Fox said the 25% duties
could harm US industries
as well as those in other countries.
We do disagree with the US decision
to implement tariffs on steel and
aluminium imports based on national
security considerations. These
unilateral trade measures have weak
foundations in international law and
they are not consistent with the
Department of defence's own
judgement in an investigation that
was conducted on the basis of
Mistrust, anxiety and prejudice
are characterising too many
parts of the country,
the Communities Secretary has said.
Sajid Javid told MPs
there was a "lack of meaningful
mixing" between people
from different backgrounds,
as he set out a government
consultation paper on how
to improve integration.
But the plans earned a stinging
rebuke from the SNP.
This government has pandered, let's
be honest, to tabloids and Stoked
anti-immigration rhetoric for years.
He should apologise for their part
in this. This is, after all, a
government of go home vans, of a
possible -- hostile environment, a
preventing asylum-seekers from
working which we know what eight
The Scottish and Welsh First
Ministers met Theresa May
in Downing Street to discuss what'll
happen to devolved powers,
such as regulation of
fisheries and farming,
once they come back
from Brussels after Brexit.
The issues that remain between us
are not insignificant but neither
are they insurmountable. And I think
with understanding and good will on
both sides, then I think a deal can
be reached. That is not to say that
there is certainty at this stage
that it will be reduced. -- that it
will be reached.
Owners of dogs with behavioural
problems can buy collars which give
the animal an electric shock.
The idea is help train them,
but campaigners argue
the devices are cruel.
MPs called for their use
to be banned in England.
A Conservative described
what happened when one woman used
an electric collar on her dogs.
The first time he got -- the dogs
got the shock was by mistake, so
after a small dog that they were
walking past made her jump, from
then on her pet associated the
shocks with small dogs and there for
became afraid of them, so when she
described the day in July when her
dogs turned on and should suit, she
had tears in her eyes and she
stated, they connected the pain of
the electric shock with little dogs
because of the first time I used to
call her, the day that machine came
in this House, I regret.
Now then, a senior official
at YouTube has apologised to MPs
for the company's slowness
in removing extremist
and offensive videos,
in particular those produced
by neo-Nazi groups such
as National Action.
William McCants faced an
uncomfortable round of questioning
from the Home Affairs committee.
In fact, you might want to hide
behind the sofa at this point.
We apologise for those videos
being on our platform.
They should not have been there.
You should not have had to come
back to us repeatedly.
These four videos,
because they are from a proscribed
terrorist organisation, should not
have remained up on our platform.
Do you have any reviewers based
in the United Kingdom?
I believe we have a large team
of reviewers based in Ireland.
Which is not in the United Kingdom.
I'm not sure, of course, we have
full-time employees which work
on this, but if you're asking me
about contractors that we use,
I'm not sure if they're based
in the UK or not.
So you put some of these
decisions out to contract?
Certainly, and that is part
of the trouble here is that these
videos were going to people
who were not able to identify them.
That is why they're going to be
routed to specialists and why
the general reviewers
are going to be given training
in order to identify these videos.
How many of the people
who make these decisions are
actually not YouTube employees?
Generally, I don't know a number.
You don't even know where your
review teams are based,
who they are, whether they are done
through contract to other
companies or organisations
or whether it is done by YouTube.
Now, all of the statements
that you gave us at the
beginning of this evidence session
about how much it mattered to you,
personally, these things are
actually being implemented by staff
on your behalf or by
people on your behalf.
It is frankly shocking that you seem
to know so little about who
they are, where they are,
what training they've had or even
whether they are employed
by your organisation.
You have no response to that.
been brought on to deal with
counterterrorism policy. I work at a
very high level. Our trust and
safety teams are making sure that
the reviewers get the training that
When we had evidence from
YouTube in the past you were very
clear that when it was copyrighted
materials such as songs or albums,
the minute they appear you remove
them within minutes. Within minutes,
and yet you have nothing, you have
not invested anything to match that
find of copyrighted material, and
yet, this stuff is dangerous. It
leads to people losing their lives.
It is illegal.
We are putting in
every day, spending
millions of dollars to address this
problem. Our technology is getting
faster and we are expanding the
number of personnel who work on this
issue. We continue to make
improvements. Are we perfect? No.
Will we be perfect? No. Oh we will
This is not about
perfection, is about you being wrong
person before this committee and not
knowing what you're talking about.
Telling it like it is.
Now, with a whirlwind
tour of the wider world
of politics this week, here's
Julia Butler and our countdown.
At five, turning on a penny after an
outcry of treasury proposals to
review small change. Downing Street
says there are no plans to scrap
small coins. Perhaps we should all
move to Finland since the Nordic
nation has been declared the world's
happiest country. The UK rolled in a
19th. It seems like he would have
more fun with a thin. He prime Mr
adopted a more relaxed approach this
week when she visited the scene of a
narrative agent attack in Salisbury.
Angela Merkel is finally sworn in as
Chancellor of Germany. But the corks
will be staying in the campaign. It
took many days per to be approved
after political deadlock. And now,
and the Bob Neill who gave his...
will do my best to be naturally
Laughter at Bob Neill there.
How could anyone stoop so low?
Finally, MPs are always anxious
to put in a good word
about their constituency
and the ideal time to do this
is Prime Minister's Questions.
So in the very dying minutes,
one Conservative seized his chance.
The inspirational Music Man project
in South End that works
with people who have learning
difficulties has now set a world
record for tinkling the most
number of triangles ever,
so does my right honourable friend
agree with me that that is yet
another reason why South End
should be made a city?
The Prime Minister seemed unwilling
to commit to Southend becoming
a city just on the strength
of that, but...
I am very happy to congratulate
the music man project in Southend
for the record that they have
achieved in tinkling triangles.
Now there's a phrase you don't hear
a prime minister say every day.
Well, that's all for now.
Don't forget there's a round up
of the day in Parliament every night
at 11pm on BBC Parliament.
But for now, from me,
Mandy Baker, goodbye.