Nick Robinson sits down for dinner with a group of voters to examine how different parts of the electorate are making up their minds ahead of the general election.
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In this election campaign I'm speaking to several groups of voters
about how they are making up their mind.
Today I will be talking to people who voted Remain.
How will that choice affect the choices they
We have come to Bedford, a Tory held seat which is
The people we are speaking to have been selected for us by the
Of course no small group can tell us how this
place will vote, let alone the country as a whole but it can
flesh out those findings you find in the
Let us go inside to the corn exchange where
Jim Davidson and Ken Dodd have played for the latest of Nick's
Today's takeaway, a nice bit of Thai food.
Let me ask you all first, what do you think of the issues that are
In Bedford, what are the important issues for
A place that I have lived for 18 years with a very diverse
Children here from a diverse background.
And actually been a very pleasant place to live and
educate children who are now going back into London.
Recent times have made one question how you feel about
it and how you feel about the general population, how they are
feeling, in a way I have never thought before.
I mean just the recent last year has made me feel
differently about Bedford and about Britain.
I will come onto that because I think I know what you mean.
Bedford first of all, what do people think
I think at the moment the hospital situation.
I think it is important to me, my husband has a
Having no services available, thinking about having a
The potential of A shutting, maternity services
not being there anymore, it is quite frightening to think
we might have to go afield for things which we
have been able to access course for such a long time.
Accident and emergency being degraded.
It worries us, the fact that services are going.
I want to be able to get all the services I
If they are degraded, will they be far off?
That is a big worrying point from my perspective
A lot of people are accessing the foodbank.
I asked how much food they give every
month, over six tonnes and Bedford is a small town.
Cuts in services, NHS and statutory services, from the
I cannot think outside Bedford because
I am always dealing with people in Bedford
who are facing problems on a
day-to-day basis which is affecting their way of living.
Has anyone else had any experience with the NHS where
My son has a friend who are a couple of
friends who are working in the local hospital,
a Greek doctor has been a year for a year.
They took him to the accident and emergency, the Greek doctor was
so shocked that this lady was bleeding next
to my son who is 17 or
They sat there for several hours, a lady who could been
in Greece, such a thing could not happen.
Someone who needed such care would not be
allowed to sit there in
Is that the big issue nationally or other other
We should have a good deal in place after leaving
Of course NHS is one of the big issues but if we do
not get a good deal, it affects our economy.
This means we cannot fund the NHS so the most important issue
at this moment for me is getting a good Brexit deal.
It is very important for me as well because my job depends on
If our company cannot make it work, we have to think about what we
It could put obstacles in the way for example or
they could affect our production factory in Italy.
We essentially buy from our production site and bring
So for you the way is if there will be taxes.
It will be harder for us to make a profit and
it will be a strain on us as a company.
For me it is the biggest issue in this election.
For me we need the strongest campaigner.
To be involved in the Brexit process and get the best deal
So you are looking for someone who still wants us to
Someone to get the best possible outcome.
Although I voted Remain, the situation where we are
leaving so we need the best we can get now.
You all voted Remain, that is why we asked
We are interested to know about people who voted
I feel somewhat sad about it but it is the next
My daughter graduated on the day before they went to vote.
She had a very bad feeling it would go in that
I was certainly shocked because it's not just for us
now, it is for our children's future, when they want to travel
around Europe and get a job outside the UK,
In my work, because I am 26, I work with a lot of older
I work in an estate agent, I am a secretary.
Being young, compared to them, I've felt that their decision was made
Things that will not necessarily impact on them will impact me and my
There was all this bravado, if we leave now it will be better.
I voted Remain not for the economy at all but because I had a fear of
the increase of hate crime. That was my only reason why. Not for the
economy but I was scared that if we voted out, it gives a platform
because of the campaigning, it would give a platform for people to incite
hatred and xenophobia. And no it has happened? Now we are dealing with a
lot of hate crime. Really, in Bedford? Yes, there is an increase.
I was right to be frightened and I will still be frightened. That fear
will not go for a long time because we can see it happening all around
us. Lots of people who you are this will see we have not changed as a
country just because we voted in a way you do not like. We have to deal
with it and that is why the government has to try and protect
and safeguard these people, the communities that are being attacked.
I spoke to people in this town who are, I would
say not necessarily politically minded who within 24 hours said they
These are fairly nice people who within a day were saying,
they did not really know but voted Leave.
When you started asking them questions, they
had not thought of so many of the aspects of what that really meant.
I feel also the campaign was led by, the way the campaign was led,
appealed to certain baser instincts in some and in others, they were
left naively not knowing what was going on.
Think of now rather than then, we're going to get on with it
That is like a fire in your house saying, it
You still think the fire could be put out?
The way that the government and the people who are leading the
government literally fell away the moment it was voted in. They just
disappeared. You don't think that? As I say, I like to get with it. We
want someone who will get the best deal after Brexit. We want either of
them who will give us the best possible opportunities in the future
with the deal which is beneficial to all. You say the two of them, you do
not have to vote Labour or Tory. There are other parties. Let us do
it again. Would you voted Labour? I don't think that is necessary, just
get on with it. I also said maybe there should be people potentially
getting more of the see because we are voting in the general election
but we will still be voting on something we have not had an
opportunity to have a say on. So it might be a great deal but we will
not know until it happens. You are I Remain as well what is your view,
take a get on with it? If the country is to vote for a party which
decided to have another referendum, the outcome might... We would get to
the point where the government might say, we like this answer so we will
get on with it then. For referendums. You are not convinced.
It is almost like, he goes up to someone says give us 250 grand for
the house. What is it like? You will find out. But what is that like, I
may not like it. Just trust us, you will be fine. That is what the
readers have done effectively? Know, what it seems to me, particularly
Theresa May has said, strong and stable leadership and I am the best
person to negotiate. You will not get as seasonal, you would just get
it. It might be it turns out there are lots of political machinations
and we do get the best deal but it seems a strange thing you could say
to Theresa May but what was a good deal look like? No one knows. If you
wanted to say, give it another go, who are you tempted by? Is there any
MP saying the things you want a year? I am very cynical about
politicians. I have not heard anything. I feel we were set up. Are
you not hearing anyone say have another referendum? Hearing how
Theresa May has got into her discussions with Europe, generally I
think the British perspective is very... I travel a lot, I go to
Europe weekly, and the Europeans are not feeling... They are feeling
quite upset and angry, they do not like the Porsche leading up to
Brexit. -- the posturing. They feel quite anti-. You do not like Theresa
May's tone. No one on the opposition benches? You have the Greens, the
Labour -- the Liberal Democrats? The chances are very unlikely they will
get in. I think I agree. I cannot see anyone in the Tory frontbencher
can negotiate their way out of a paper bag. It is really sad because
if you discount Theresa May, Jeremy Corbyn, I don't think so. Then it
goes round. I agree with you, I am getting on, it is really quite
depressing. You think there is no standout person. They say Theresa
May is strong and stable leadership but she was in charge of the Home
Office for six years and we did not see a lot of that going on. My issue
is, I think Bedford, the Tories got in with a 1200 majority no, it is
not a safe seat. If that is a national movement to vote
tactically, you are not going to vote for the Liberal Democrats
because unless that is some sort of turnover, they will not getting so
if you vote tactically, perhaps you will vote for Labour but they are
going with Brexit as well so it is difficult. What about the Greens, to
make a statement? But your statement would be like a stone dropped in a
pond, no one would see it, it would be gone, it would be frustrating. It
is first past the post so if you do not agree with the government, the
only thing to do is vote Labour. If you came into the room though, and
said I am Tim Farron, I am the new leader, I will say, do not disappear
you Remainers, we can still do it, in a couple of years' time things
will look different. What would you say to him? This is always a waste
of time, money and energy. I agree, it is a waste of time. We should
just get on with it. It will create more division. It might create more
division within society so it is done and I think the majority of us
who voted Remain have accepted it and just want to get on with it now.
Does anyone think Jeremy Corbyn would be a better person for
negotiations? Definitely not. He is a person who really cares about the
economy because he has the interest of the workers at heart and that is
what the economy is based on, that is what I personally think. I am
basing it on what I have seen in Bedford with the lack of jobs over
the years and the cutting of services. I want somebody else to
have another chance and see if they can make this go forward. You
thought Jeremy Corbyn would do well? I think his style of talking to
people, on a personal level, I think he talks to people with a little
more engagement rather than talking over people as though he will tell
people what is going to happen. I saw your eyebrows go up. I am really
sorry, Germany, he will probably be really good if he ever got the
chance but this is a chap who put a three line whip in for people to
pass the Brexit bill or whatever it was called. There was -- this was a
man who never lobbied the government whip when Labour were npower, never.
He might be a good negotiator but he has not got any principles. -- when
Labour were npower. Jeremy Corbyn, Maria said, you're saying his
empathetic? He can build a relationship? When I see him on the
television, I turnover. It is the truth. Why? He just irritates me and
he is one that bugs me. Is that because you are Tory? I don't know
if it is about that. I have watched other and labour leaders, I think it
is just him personally. Give me a few qualities, show total words. Let
us do Theresa May first. What words do you associate with her? Tough.
Strong. Xenophobic. That is what comes over as. Yes? Come back to me.
I think she is a businesswoman and cheesy to make the best of the bad
situation. -- and she is here. Donald Trump's businesswoman. I
think a lot of people are worries, not to bring up American politics,
but people are worried it is going to call the we, with the coming
election they will vote for the lesser of two evils. Do you think
they might do that now? I think people are worried go that way. She
is like a second Mrs Thatcher. You do not mean that in a good way? No,
she is a very strong person. In a good way? No. You are thinking of
voting Labour? I have not decided yet, it is based on next week. I am
intrigued, you might vote for the second Mrs Thatcher or you might
vote for Jeremy Corbyn, your words. I have always voted Labour. Nowadays
because it is so much information, so much social media, the way we saw
politics is so different to two elections before. People are
thinking about how they voted. Before it was something they
inherited from their appearance. You used to vote for a party but no, it
is not like that. I do not see that. What about words that describe
Jeremy Corbyn? Irritating. Irritating. And you are voting for
the Greens. I just do not trust him. I think he is fatally idealistic.
You will not vote for him or leave? As you said, the American election
was between the least worst candidate and it is such a shame
that in this country, it is almost like we are talking about who is the
worst -- least worst candidate. You may still vote Labour? Possibly. You
are not sure. You? Come back to me. Is that any other issue, you know
what, we have had a referendum but this issue is much more important to
me? For me it is the schools my children go to and the pressure the
teachers are under is incredible. Anybody else? Locally services,
everything locally, welfare, elderly, cuts in youth services.
Everything that you need to live on a day-to-day basis. What about
health? Is the health service so important? Yes. Is it more than
Brexit for you? The health service will not function if you do not have
a stronger economy. I think they come part and parcel. Definitely.
Like the schooling system, the NHS is and is a lot more strain, we are
living longer. Initial planning for the NHS was not to let people to
live to 104. Thank you everyone. That is it from us in Bedford. We
will have the chance to finish off our takeaway know and we will be
back next week talking to people that the Prime Minister has called
the just about managing, who will be decide to vote for? -- will they
In the second of three special programmes the BBC's Nick Robinson sits down for dinner with a group of voters to examine how different parts of the electorate are making up their minds ahead of the general election.