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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takeaway. Nick Robinson shared fish and chips with voters from Elton in
south London. People who are just about managing, known as the Jams.
The people who are in work but still struggle to make ends meet,
to pay those bills at the end of the week.
How will they make up their minds how to vote?
We've come to the suburbs of south London to find out.
Well, it's fish and chips for the latest of my
Well, it's fish and chips for the latest of my election takeaways.
We are in the south suburbs of London with a group of voters
who are going to tell us how they are making up their minds
Just to start us off, what issues in this area,
before we talk about the country, what things all thinking
about when you think of who to vote for?
When you are concerned about this area, what are the things
that are bothering you, making you make up your minds?
One of the things I'm worried about is the school dinners.
We've had the milk taken and now they are going to take
the school meals and something about the breakfast.
My child has breakfast before she goes to school.
I think for me it has to be health care.
If we looking at most of the services we get
at the moment, take away some of the GPs, it was easy to get
Ring up in the morning, you know when you want to go and see them.
Now, it's 'what's wrong with you?' OK, call back at 8am.
You ring back at 8am, you can't get through.
And when you do get through, you get an appointment at 1030
We are overstretching accident in emergencies.
So having to take myself up to A E which could be looked at by my GP.
I work in a school, and I have concerns about the school dinners
But I also coach at a scheme in Stoke Newington.
One of the biggest things locally is the knife epidemic
Whichever party comes in, wins, has to have something steel cast
in place to combat that because it's a problem.
I work a lot with young children, an academy school in south London,
My head spends 60% of her time dealing with social media issues
which then spill over into the classrooms, the playground,
Social media, people losing their temper with each
When I was at school, many years ago, the bullying started
Nowadays, with social media, it's 24-7.
The generation that is coming through lives their lives through
Are you watching the election much at the moment?
Promises that they never follow through with.
Promises that they never follow through with.
I listened keenly because I like to hold people accountable,
so I will listen to what you've got to see.
When the time comes, if you implement those policies
and then if you don't, I've got a starting point
to say well, you did say this in the beginning.
The Lib Dems with the tuition fees cuts.
That upset me even though I was past the student stage,
I was fortunate enough to get through before this happened,
I thought it was very deceitful of them to make such a policy
I think, day by day, it gathers momentum.
I think today use the Theresa May, for the first time, start to look
Also, a couple of weeks back, you had Diane Abbott did
I found it embarrassing listening to that, you know.
Did it tell you anything did you just think,
There is no concrete foundation to what they are saying.
They are coming in with these wonderful ideas, hooks to get people
engaged but in actual fact, they have not thought it through.
I looked today and they are talking about tuition fees.
How on earth are they going to pay for this?
More students than ever wanting people to go to university.
Blair in 1997 wanted 50% of students to go to university.
I want to start the wider conversation a bit by just asking
If you had to describe how you were, how you were doing in your family,
does it feel like it's pretty easy at the moment?
Things are comfortable, you are shaking your head?
Every single month, you are constantly thinking can
I afford ?20 on my Oyster card, ?10 on my Oyster card if you want
Even when you do the weekly shopping, it comes up to over
?100 you are thinking, can something give?
You constantly got multiple financial plates on the go
In London, no. I get high in the six at night, having got up at 413
morning. -- I get home at six o'clock at night. Is it tough times,
Daniel? I work for the local Government. You
would say it was a good salary, and a single mum. Childcare costs are
joke. I'm lucky that I'm coming back out of that. If I was thinking about
having another child at any time... The childcare costs alone because
there three times a mortgage price almost. I think the problem with
salaries of local Government, teachers, they haven't stayed in the
bracket of the increase of what the cost of living has. What about for
you? And struggling every year -- I am struggling every year. I have
three children. It's with the same for me at the end of the year. You
have to take out a loan, an overdraft. What do you do?
I can't really give my kids 100%. I have to struggle to make them happy.
You had to start telling stories, rosy stories. Is that for everyday
things? It they want something, and I don't
have the money, I have to tell the next week. Had you heard this
phrase, just about managing? Yes. Is that you? Yes. I feel blessed
sometimes though because I wouldn't be able to afford my house now. We
are managing, and if some people are worrying about how to feed their
children, food banks, it makes you think well, there is a whole world
is under this that struggling even more. We chose you because you are
all Jams. It's not just coincidence. You become more resource baubles the
big you want to go to the football, the cinema or music or the theatre,
you think yourself, how can I do it on the budget? You might think, can
I get half price tickets. Who is doing all right? You! MPs! You are
only jealous because I put a pickled onion! We have had no pay rises that
MPs have. All the scandals, the public scandals. It's at the top. I
asked you about that phrase, Jams. If you know you for certain who is,
don't say. Do you know who earns more? Who said that phrase?
Churchill. Jeremy Corbyn. If it was him I would be pleased. Theresa May.
Theresa May. Isn't that interesting. She said that these were the people
she wanted to help. Really? Who does she think they are? Talk is cheap,
she'll sit round this dinner table with her cronies and they will tell
you that they are just about managing with their two houses in
their 160 grand cars that we are paying for! Why are they taking the
school dinners away then? That's contradicting yourself there, isn't
it? It seems like a race to the bottom in so many areas. I got a
friend who is an super taxi driver. I got a friend who is
an uber taxi driver. The tax system discourages people
from working because the more you work, the more they tax. When I sit
down in my house, some people are ready to work but when you think
about it, the tax doesn't feel fair. It doesn't feel fair. They should be
in courage in people to work. If you want people to work, relax the tax.
If you are trying to balance the books each month, do the right
thing, working 55-60 hours per week, all of a sudden, you are worse off.
It doesn't make sense. It's like quicksand. The more you try, the
harder it is to make ends meet. You hearing anything from any of the
leaders that makes you think, they kind of get it. -- are you hearing
anything from any of the leaders? I think the nationalisation of
railways by Jeremy Corbyn is something good. Every year, the
fares have been going up, I can't get a seat and sometimes you
couldn't even get on your train, in my head I used to think, I just want
this nationalised, and then it got privatised and it has gone down
since. He reminds me of a normal person. He would sit around this
table with us. I couldn't see myself eating fish and chips with Theresa
May but I could with Jeremy Corbyn. I could say to him, here is my
spreadsheet. I would ask him how he could help me. I think his demeanour
tells me that he would ask us how we wanted things to be, so if Labour
came back in, I think for a start doing a might start asking a bit
more. I don't think he has leadership credentials. I can't put
my finger on it. Don't you admire his honesty though? He is on his. He
lives by a lot of the things he believes in. Whether he's a good
leader is another matter, but he lives by what he believes. Is that
the rights... Is that the test you set for a Prime Minister? It needs
to be somebody you can relate to, warm up to and believe what they are
selling you. It's like a sales pitch, who are you going to go for?
I believe him but I felt let down by Brexit, I felt like he hid, he
disappeared. What have you heard from Corbyn so far under the
nationalisation of the railways? Jewish and fees. Except -- tuition
fees, although it seemed unbelievable by September that you
could get through it. That would be good. I got three children, three
girls. They all want to go to college. The fees are so high that
are not in a position that I could help them as much as I want to. Do
you think he can do it? I hope so. It's like I say, you vote for them
and you can never tell. I think mathematically it is possible my
only problem is that in order to do that, does that mean that the
student loans are going to go up so that cost of paying it back is going
to go up? It's taken me a while to pay that back, so I'm wondering if
you're going to subsidise in one area, if you reduce somewhere then
something else has to increase. I would like for the NHS to get back
to normal, giving nurses a chance. Page in the NHS? Yes. Nurses are not
being appreciated. They need a pay rise? Yes. I think the police, with
the climate, we need more police. Who is more honest with you? It's
looking like Jeremy to be honest. I won't lie, I liked Theresa May at
first, in terms of the iron fist of Margaret Thatcher although she
destroyed everything... I tend to gear towards strong people and I did
like Teresa at first, but there are too many things that make me think,
you called this election, why did you do that? What about promises
that the Tories have made to help you out? Everything she says puts me
off further and further. They are going through the best for Britain
with the negotiations Brexit, but we don't know. She's been singing the
immigration song for many years. Nothing personally? Capping the
price of energy? We've heard that before. We've been hearing that for
years. Petrol is going to be capped... It never does. I like the
idea, obviously. It sounds good but is it going to happen? That's one of
the more obvious points you can rule out. Anyone with half a brain cell
would know that we're talking about private companies. Since when did
anything work telling private companies what to do. It's never
worked. The rail system, it hasn't worked. The Government have tried
and tried and tried to intervene but they are private company so they've
failed. Has anybody not voted Labour? I wish I had. I've always
voted Labour. Corbyn is not really for me, massively.
It's the policies, uncle between the two. We vote every four years, we
should be voting every 14 years, by the time we look at education again,
we have to get the people out, the policy in, by the time you're done,
the four years is up. You vote for Cameron, you don't like Corbyn. You
don't mind him? And thinking of voting Labour. The change of
policies. How much will they try and pull over people's eyes. What will
tomorrow's story be? They keep changing on a daily basis. Who
things Jeremy Corbyn will be our next Prime Minister? I'd like to
hope... Nobody said yes. I think it will be closer than people think.
I'll bet you this pickled onion. I hope we go into a coalition with
Labour leading. Kettings Theresa May will win? I think she will win. I
I think she will, I don't want her to though.
When Theresa May came in, I thought Girl Power. I thought she was on the
money, but for me now, it's a trust issue. She's done a lot of
backtracking. Can I trust the? She's lied about the snap election. Then
she turns around, can you trust someone like that? You need someone
around you to advise you before you speak? Are they sitting down before
they make these announcements? What's the general thinking? That is
what I would like to know. It is enough to change your mind? I was
sitting on the fence, but now I think I know exactly what I'm going
to do. It is another bad story would you change your mind again? I was
genuinely sitting on the fence for a while, but now I'm 100% aware of
what I'm going to do. Which is? I'm not telling. What words would you
apply to Theresa May? I don't think she's stable. Flaky. Rattled! And
trustworthy. Professional. When I look John Major, everyone
slated him. But I think Theresa May's the company 's best interest
that heart. -- countries best interests at heart. I think she has
been found out though. I see your point though, I've never looked at
it like before. She's not particularly flash. Do you mean that
as a compliment? Not a big flashy PR machine. Not like Boris Johnson. If
he was there, forget it. Not for me. I think she's straight down the
line. I think she knows what she wants. And for me, that's going a
long way. I worked in the police when she was Home Secretary, and she
just used to push things through. She was stick to things and that
scares me. Will that make her rigour tough that I shed a? No. It may be
good for Brexit, but in other aspects, she could be a bit softer,
things like the NHS, see the bigger picture rather than just her road
map for success. One last question. A lot of you like Jeremy Corbyn. Is
there anything that makes you worry about him? Not really. The only grey
area with him and the Labour Party is they just have to get their maths
right. I'm not talking about the Diane Abbott thing, I'm talking
about in general. If you are going to see what you are going to say
then you need to demonstrate where this will come from and how you
think you will get this back. You need to know the numbers? That's all
it is. Will he get the Brexit deal right for us if he goes into power?
Why might he not? I felt like he disappeared when it was kicking off
he disappeared. There was nothing to see that he was pitting his backing
to it. He wasn't there for me. Will Theresa May be goods in most Brexit
negotiations? She's doing her best but she's stubborn. One or two
words, not sentences. Maverick. Friendly. Honest. Genuine. Trusting.
Perfect! Gut feeling. That's what you feel good about. Very good.
Thank you all very much for being here. Time to finish off the pickled
onion. That's all from the
In the last 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.