tv Question Time CSPAN July 12, 2017 7:20pm-8:03pm EDT
economically have done so with little or no political influence. and groups that have enjoyed early political success have tended to rise more slowly. so it's not that you can't take the political route. you can. but chances are you're going to rise more slowly than you would taking other routes. >> for more of this weekend's schedule, go to booktv.org. >> uk first secretary of state damian green took questions at the house of commons where british prime minister theresa may who was meeting with the king of spain. mr. green was asked about the status of brexit negotiations sand further trade deals with the european union. >> for the questions to the prime minister, caroline flint. >> question number one, mr. speaker. >> mr. damian green.
>> mr. -- mr. speaker i've been asked to reply, my right honorable friend the prime minister is in attendance on her majesty the queen welcoming their majesties king felipe and queen letitia of spain. isn't today's report that the national grid made $3 billion pounds profit in 2015-16 at the expense of households further evidence that the government is not delivering fair energy prices? will the government agree to an immediate rebate for overcharging? and will the government now commit to an energy price cap for the 17 million households on the most expensive tariffs? >> the right honorable lady is right to identify the issue of energy prices and i'm sure she will welcome the announcement in the queen's speech that the government will insure fair
markets for consumers, this will include bringing forward measures to help tackle unfair practices in the energy market to help reduce energy bills. i'm sure this is an issue on which we can work across the house together. >> mr. speaker, yesterday you kindly hosted two important talks on the future of health and social care and their funding. including by my honorable friend. who knows that the lhs? staffordshire and stoke delivering fine care can. i encourage the government to bring together people from across this house to make this parliament the one that puts the nhs and social care on a firm and sustainable firm foundation. >> i'm grateful to my honorable friend and i know he's been campaigning vigorously on behalf of health service in his constituency. including his local hospital and he's absolutely right to do so. he and i i'm sure both welcome
the fact that the government has committed an extra 8 billion pounds off this parliament to the nhs and we're also committed to having a full debate across the house and indeed much wider with people about how we can improve our social care system because this is indeed one of the big issues facing this country. >> emily thornberry. >> thank you, mr. speaker, let me welcome the first secretary to his new role. by my reckoning in the 20 years since he first joined this house, he is the 16th member of the party opposite to be represented at prime minister's questions. so how about i give him until the end of the session to be able to name all the others? in the meantime, i'm, i'm sure that, that he and the whole house will join me congratulating jerry couldn'ter and the british and irish lions on their recent historic achievement. >> on the subject of british and
irish cooperation. practicalities of the common travel area. on that basis, can he tell the house what will happen to the irish land border if no deal is reached between britain and europe by the end of march 2019? >> i'm grateful to the right honorable lady for her kind remarks. i might take up her often to try to name all 16 in the tea room later rather than delay the house now. there are many, many distinguished people of both sexes who have done it in this party because we of course elect women leaders. i'm also. >> i share her view about the british and irish lions, although it strikes me as particularly a british thing to do to celebrate a drone series.
quite as hard as we have. that's the way we do sport. mr. speaker we'll be keen in following joe conte's progress through wimbledon as well as andy murray. let's hope we have two finalists over the weekend. on the questions you ask about the irish border, she will know that it is the aim of this government to make sure that we get the best deal for britain and as the prime minister set out in her lancaster house speech, one of the key issues which we want to bring forward and have brought forward at the start of the negotiations, is precisely the issue of the irish border, because it is extremely important not just for our own citizens in northern ireland. but for the irish republic that we get that right. and indeed, i've already had meetings with my opposite number, on this matter and other matters. >> emily thornberry. >> i mentioned at the outset that he's the 16th member to
represent his party since 1997. only three of those have been women and the last one before the current prime minister was 16 years ago. i believe we've had three women labor mps doing this job in the last three years alone. but if i may turn to the next question, my question was not what deal do we hope to get. my deal was not my question was not what deal do we hope to get what happenes if we get no deal at all? this isn't some sinister nightmare dreamt up by remainers, it was the prime minister who first floated the idea of no deal, the foreign secretary who said it would be perfectly okay. the brexit secretary who said we'd be prepared to walk away. but since the election the chancel ever has said that that would be a very, very bad outcome. is a and a former minister has told sky news that no deal is dead. will, will the first secretary clear this up? our ministers just making it up as they're going along.
or is it still the government's clear policy that no deal is an option? >> the, i recommend the right honorable lady read the prime minister lancaster's speech. that's the basis on which we're negotiating. but we're also saying that it is conceivable, that we would hav d would be offered a kind of punishment deal we want to have a deal, we want to have a good deal. it is her leader and her party's position that whatever son offer, they will accept it. that is a terrible way. that is a terrible way to go into a negotiation. and all i can, congratulate them on is their consistency. they have been consistency in favor of unilateral disarmament. they only only apply it in
military matters, they clearly apply it in matters of negotiation on britain's future prosperity as well. >> emily thornberry. >> well the first secretary apparently didn't get the prime minister's memo. you're supposed to be building consensus, man. and if we -- if we ignore the political bluster, if we ignore the political bluster, i think what we heard was though deal is indeed still an option. if that is the case, can we turn to what i might call the east india club question? because before the member from newton abbott turns herself into nick griffin, this is the question she was trying to ask. what does no deal actually mean? for our businesses, for our people and for issues such as the irish land border? so can the first secretary address this question now? what does no deal look like in practice? >> i'm very happy to address her
first point about consensus, i'm always, as you know, moderate person keen on consensus, so i very much look forward to sharing the labor party's views this morning on the unemployment figures. unemployment, unemployment is now down to its lowest level since the early '70s. there are many members of this house who weren't born when unemployment was as low as this government has made it. i would hope that she can bring herself in the course of her questions actually to welcome lower unemployment. on the substance of her question, as she knows, we are seeking a good deal for britain that will enable us to trade as freely as possible with the european union to protect our prosperity, at the same time as getting trade deals with other important markets around the world. in the last week alone.
both the united states and australia have said they would like to sign trade deals with britain as fast as possible. so i'm happy it to report to her that negotiations are going well, and that her fear of no deal is probably overstated. emily thornberry? >> if he wants to talk about -- if he he wants to talk about unemployment. let me ask you him -- specifically will he publish the treasury's assessment. of the impact of the no deal outcome would have on jobs in growth in britain? will he publish that today? i don't think so. so let's continue. if the first secretary won't tell the house, what -- >> order, order. the honorable lady must be heard and she will be. as will first secretary green. members must calm themselves. emily thornberry. >> thank you, mr. speaker. if the first secretary won't
tell the house what no deal means, can he clear up the confusion over whether a plan for no deal actually exists? because yesterday the foreign secretary told me that indeed no, there was no plan for no deal. two hours later, number 10 fought back and they said there was a plan. the brexit secretary might be laughing, but i'm turning to him next -- the brexit secretary was so busy fighting with himself, that on march 12, he said that there was a plan. on tmarch the 17th he said ther wasn't. on may 19th. he said he spent half his time thinking about it and yesterday he said that he wasn't prepared to comment. so can the first secretary clear up the confusion today, is there a contingency plan for no deal or isn't there? and if there is, will he undertake to publish it? >> the honorable lady says she's
happy to talk about unemployment. i notice she can't bring herself to welcome falling unemployment news. we will, we will clearly have to try harder to establish consensus on what i would hope would be something that genuinely unites all sides of this house, on the issue of the report, the obr is publishing its fiscal ricks report tomorrow so if she could be patient, she will see the report she wants. >> emily thornberry. >> so let's be clear. the first secretary seems to be saying that no deal is still on the table. but he won't say what it means. and there is, there is a no deal contingency plan, he's not going to publish it, this really is two steps forward and two steps back. after all if the government seriously wants open cross-party debate about the best way forward for brexit, surely they have to spell out what all the options look like.
so can the first secretary at least provide some clarity on one issue and let's try to make some progress today. he has said repeatedly that we want to avoid a cliff-edge brexit. but under a no deal scenario, he knows that must be impossible. because the prime minister can hardly storm out of the negotiating room saying she won't accept the deal and then pop her head round the door again and say can she have two more years to prepare. because that's not how it works. does he accept no deal also mean no transitional arrangements? >> i think we both want a deal. that she wants a deal at the end of this the reason why i'm optimistic is because of our negotiating stance and the position set out by the prime minister we will get a deal. is that we have for example made a fair and realistic offer about citizenship to try to remove that problem.
on the equations. that is a first indication of how we will approach these negotiations, we approach them in a positive state and we believe it is the not just in the interest of great britain, but also in the interest of the other member states of the european union to reach a deal with what is their one of their biggest trading partners. it is in everyone's interest to reach this deal. she said nothing constructive that might contribute to a deal so far, but i will give her another chance. >> emily thornberry. >> i know the right honorable gentleman is new to this. but the way the rules work -- >> i don't know whether it's spontaneous or orchestrated and i don't really care which. but whichever it is, the idea that it's going to stop the honorable lady asking her questions is for the birds. so members are wasting their vocal cords, we'll carry on as long as necessary to accommodate
the back-bench member who is i wish to accommodate. >> the way it works is that i ask the questions and he answers them. >> it's all -- and we're quite happy, queer quite happy to swap places with them and frankly if he doesn't want to continue under these rules, i'm sure there's plenty of other people on the front bench who would love the opportunity to audition as prime minister. i do appreciate, i do appreciate all the first secretary's answers and but they do just serve to illustrate what a mess the government has got itself into. by threatening to walk away even before talks began. isn't the truth now, that we've got a no-deal option on the table. but they won't tell us what that means? they've got contingency plans, but they won't let the public see them. we've got a chancellor demanding transitional arrangements, which
a no-deal option makes impossible. a foreign secretary making it up as he's going along. we've got a brexit secretary so used to overruling his colleagues that he started overruling himself. and we've got a prime minister who is so bereft of ideas she started putting suggestion boxes around parliament. but as a country, as a country we have got 20 months to go until brexit. we absolutely have got to get a grip. and if the party opposite hasn't got the strength for the task, then we absolutely got to get rid of them. >> i think there may have been a question somewhere in that. can i assure the right honorable lady of two things? first of all that this government is already in the negotiation. she will have seen that we have started negotiations, they are going well. we said that the first thing we
wanted to do was negotiate citizens' rights that was the first item on the agenda of the first meeting. we want to make sure that european citizens in this country and equally importantly, british citizens living in other european countries have as much certainty about their rights as soon as possible. that is what we are negotiating. that is the sign of a practical pragmatic government getting on with work in the interests of the british people what we would have as we've seen from the labor party. they've so far i've counted, had nine different plans on europe. they want to be both in and out of the single market in and out of the customs union. they said they wanted to remain, they voted for article 50. they split their party on that. and she made one point about whether she would prefer to be at this dispatch box rather than at that dispatch box. i would also remind her of the other event that's happened recently where the conservative party got more votes and more
seats than the labor party and won the election. >> david morris. >> thank you, mr. speaker, mr. speaker, i do welcome the jobs that have been announced. furthermore, mr. speaker, after 65 years, in my constituents have talken about to link road. there's an enterprise business park that i'm trying to attain and we've had a very productive meeting with the powerhouse and the first minister of the isle of man who i believe is here today. to insure that this business park does become a reality to create more jobs and more income? >> i agree with my honorable friend. he'll be interested to know that in the northwest of england, employment has increased by 2.5%. over the past year. and the labor benches may wish
to welcome that rather than heckle it. he's right to highlight the importance of having business parks and enterprise zones as drivers for economic growth. i wish him well in his campaign and i'm sure my right honorable friend the business secretary will be happy to look into the matter. >> thank you, mr. speaker i'm sure the whole house would want to joining with me in my colleagues in marking the 22nd anniversary of the sad events in v srebrenica and make sure we never forget. will the first secretary of state confirm that devolved administrations will not face a diminution of powers as a result of the repeal bill? >> here, here. >> i join the honorable gentleman in commemorating the dreadful events at srebrenica. i'm happy to reconfirm what my right honorable friend the prime minister and others have said that yes, under the terms of the brexit deal that we will
negotiate, that there will be no diminution of the devolved administration's powers and indeed that we look to devolve more powers, as a result of the process. >> >> ian blackburn. >> there will be a cast-iron guarantee that all powers that come back into the united kingdom on devolved matters will be returned? and furthermore, does the united kingdom government intend to amend schedule 5 of the scotland act to change any aspect of the devolved competencies the scottish referendum of the 1997? >> here here. >> as i said i can only keep repeating the assurances we've already given. i'm slightly surprised at the scottish nationalist approach in that my understanding of their position they want the powers
taken from london to he hadd hadborough -- edinborough so they can give them back to brussels. as i understand it that's their position. perhaps their inability to explain the logic of that position might explain the recent general election result they have. >> thank you very much mr. speaker. earlier this year, a brilliant new hospital salutes my constituency. but the old scottish hospital which it replaces tans an important unique war memorial. will the first secretary agree with me. that however the nhs redevelops the site, it's grital that that war memorial is preserved in a fitting way so that future generations can remember the sackry figss for those who came before us? particularly at the moment when we're about to commemorate the terrible battle of
passchendaele, it's very important that we consider the significance of war memorials. the to remember the horrors of war and honor the memories of those who died. in this case i understand that the war memorial is protected by an historic england grade ii listing so specific consent would be required to relocate the memorial as part of any future plans. >> my constituent serious mental ill health and has had 50 separate admissions to psychiatric care. she has requires regular monitoring. she could access support under dle, but stands to lose 110 pounds per week under p.e.t. will the secretary of state look at this case and change the law that leaves vulnerable people without the continuous support that keeps them safe? >> obviously the house will be
concerned to hear about the case of her constituent as i am and she will know that one of the effects of the transition from dla to p.e.p. is that more people are eligible for support, particularly those as it happens with mental health problems. so the secretary of state for work and pensions will have heard they are point and i have no doubt if she contacts him he will look into the case personally. >> some of the most distressing cases that i and other members see in my constituency surgery are those involving domestic violence. the queen's speech has promised a bill to help strengthen the confrontation of this problem. i wonder if the first secretary could tell us when we could expect this legislation, urgently needed and what the government is doing about thousand this problem while we await it. >> i agree this is a hugely important issue and he's right. we've committed in the queen's speech to introduce a domestic abuse bill in this session which
i hope will be a landmark in this very important area. what we want to do in the bill is set in motion, a transformation, not just to protect and support victims, but to recognize the life-long impact domestic abuse can have on children and to make sure that the agencies respond effectively to domestic abuse. we'll be consulting with all the relevant professionals and voluntary groups on this but we're determined to press ahead with this very, very important legislation. >> jarvis. >> little max johnson is nine, he's in hospital and he's urge lnt i waiting for a heart transplant. his mom, emma and his brother, hary, join us today to support max. but also the 10,000 people around country who they'd an organ transplant. we can do more to help them in wales they've already moved to the opt-out system and scotland plan to do the same. can the first secretary of state say whether he agrees with me
that in england, we should change the law to one of presumed consent for organ donation to give max and all those other people the best chance of life? >> i'm sure that the thoughts of members across the house are with max. and his family at this incredible difficult time and i agree with him that organ donation is clearly a hugely important part of our system. >> i'm pleased there are more than 23 million people on the organ donor register. we saw the highest ever donor and transplant rates in the uk. but of course there is more that can be done and as he says, the law is different in other territories inside the uk. and absolutely i can commit the department of health is looking at the impact of those changes to see if cafes can give rise to further improvements in the number of available organs we
have. >> is my friend aware that the greater manchester chambers, economic survey predicts economic growth at 3.25% annually as it has been broadly since 2013. is he further aware that manchester airport is planning a billion-pound investment in the coming years? doesn't this indicate a welcome rebalancing of the economy underpinned by sound economic management? and will he undertake to continue that sound economic management that's so necessary to our country? >>? my honorable friend makes a number of important points, particularly about manchester airport which i know has been a significant driver of the excellent growth figures of the increasingly excellent economy of manchester and the surrounding areas. everything he says is true and i think it is a tribute to the work that's been done on the
northern powerhouse that we are spreading the prosperity across the north of england. >> dr. rupa sharp. >> first secretary said the other day we need to have a national debate on tuition fees and he admitted that student debt is a huge issue. account p.m. looking for ideas can i recommend page 43 and ask that they adopt labor's pledge to abolish tuition fees. >> i don't remember the contents of page 43, so i would quite like to hear this. >> can i recommend that they consult page 43 of our manifesto and commit to labor's policy of the abolition of tuition fees. >> people often stand at the dispatch box and say i'm pleased she raised that question. i'm genuinely pleased she raised that question. it allows me to point out the slight problem with her
argument. which is that her own education spokesman has admitted that the tuition fees policy has a 100 billion -- has admitted that there is a 100 billion-pound hole, black hole in labor's student fees policy. s that as much money nearly as we spend on the nhs in a year. that's two years' worth of disability benefits. labor in this area were particularly incredible at the general election. i'm astonished they want to bring it up at prime minister's questions, i would remind them in particular, that misleading students and young people is a very dangerous thing to do. if they don't believe me, they can ask the liberal democrats. >> miller. >> mr. speaker, just one in five of our public art sculptures and statues is of a woman. next week to mark 200 years
since the death of the world-renowned novelist jane aust austen, the first-ever statue will be unveiled in basingstoke. will my right honorable friend join me to call for more places to do what basingstoke has done and celebrate their daughters. >> i'm welcome this statue of jane austen in basingstoek. i'm astonished that there isn't a statue of jane austenor in else anywhere else in the country. i would be happy to echo her desire to have more statues of britain's greatest women around the country.
>> whatever tomorrow may bring, the prime minister isn't even here today to mark the end of her first year in power. and i note for the first time since she's become prime minister, that she, she, listen you might tlik hear this. for the first time since she has become prime minister her image has now been removed from the front page of the conservative party website. come the first -- can the first secretary tell us why she has gone from being the next iron lady to the lady vanishes. >> the honorable gentleman is ingenious in asking very personal questions. i commend him for it. unfortunately he has got his own record on the subject. as recently as june last year, the honorable gentleman said that the visa of the labor party is not destined to become prime minister and called on him to resign. i suggest he might want to make peace with his own front bench before he starts being rude
about ours. >> tomlinson. >> today's jobs figures show that we have the highest employment rate since comparable records began. we have more people in full-time employment and we are touching on the lowest youth unemployment since records began. in light of the matthew taylor review and the modern working practices, what more can be done to ensure that this record continues and that low youth unemployment continues and we rid this country of this scourge. >> my honorable friend is exactly right, specifically on the subject of youth unemployment. one of the particularly welcome figures of the consistently low and falling unemployment figures over which this government has presided is the fact that youth unemployment is now at historically low levels and lower than many other comparable economies. we will continue this not just with our moves on more apprenticeships in this parliament but also with the
introduction of new and better technical and vocational education which is key to providing long-term prosperity not just for the economy as a whole but for everyone in this country. >> gracie cooper. >> how can the government continue to justify not providing fair and equitable funding arrangements for west lanker shirr to support the drainage boards to help protect homes and agriculture and horticulture industries critical to the local economy instead of causing e.a. to threaten to turn off the old crossings pumping station? >> the honorable lady raises a reasonable point about the environment agency. it is the environment agency's duty to ensure that our water supplies are good and safe. i am sure if she wishes to bring this issue up with my right
honorable friend the deputy secretary he'll be happy to talk to her about it. >> zero energy homes at below-market prices are being built by a british architect with the support of the building research establishment. given the potential to help people find affordable housing, what more can the government do to help expand this type of housing as part of our commitment to both enterprise and social justice? >> i know my honorable friend is an energetic campaigner for social justice. this is a good example of how having a dynamic and flexible economy is not just good for the economy. it's good for the whole of society. i am happy to join him in welcoming this type of innovation. the firm is a good example of such innovation. i know it's been supported by the government's enterprise investment scheme so the government is doing its best to
support this type of measure and we're stimulating the growth of the off-site sector to allow more houses to be built through the accelerated construction program. this is an important issue to make sure we spread the benefits of prosperity around the country. >> i wonder if the first secretary might imagine what it feels like to be a parent forced to uproot their children from their once settled home to flee war and persecution as millions of refugees around the world have done. then would he imagine further how it might feel for those who become separated from their family members with one family member making it, for instance, to the united kingdom, needness needlessly kept apart from their families due to cruel and unnecessary barriers to family reunification. will the government endorse the bill in the other place to bring the desperate families back
together? >> the right honorable gentleman raises an important issue. he will be aware that this government, this country, has done a huge amount, particularly in the region but also here at home, to help refugees from countries such as syria. we have expanded the vulnerable persons resettlement scheme, so we make sure our doors continue to remain open to people who most need our help. and in particular we work closely with the unhcr to identify and refer the most vulnerable refugees. that's the most sensible, humanitarian way we can help these very desperate people. sings i can also say, i suspect as leader of this party can i wish him a fond farewell from that job and say i am delighted that the liberal democrats are taken so seriously the government's follow working life strategy which is about
providing more jobs for older workers and they are about to skip a generation in their leadership. >> vara. >> thank you, mr. speaker. at the recent g-20 meetings there were excellent trade discussions with the leaders of india, china, japan and america, which collectively represent 43% of the world's population and six times the population of the european union. would my right honorable friend agree with me that this demonstrates the potential for a prosperous and positive future for britain, post-brexit and it's really time for the pessimists to look at the cup being half full rather than half empty? >> i am happy to endorse my honorable friend's approach. and just to emphasize him -- to him and the house that it's really important to do both. we need a good trade deal with the european union. it is still a hugely important
trading partner for us. but also we need to take the opportunity to strike trade deals with economies around the world, not just currently advanced economies but those that are growing very fast as well. that's the root to future global prosperity for this country. >> judith cummins. >> mr. speaker, we've had two general elections for the government promised investment for the northern powerhouse and within weeks they u-turn on it. is the one billion pound deal to keep the pm in power being funded at the expense of investment in the north? >> not at all. the money that has gone for infrastructure in northern ireland is richly needed there. we have signed, for example, city deals in england, scotland and wales but none yet in northern ireland. she is right about the
importance of the northern powerhou powerhouse, and we will continue with that hugely important program. as she has already heard in this session, what we see is unemployment falling consistently in the north of england as a sign of how the economy in that part of england is going as well as anywhere else in the country, and we are determined to continue that. >> mr. speaker, i know that the first secretary will be delighted to see that parliament square now displays every flag of every british overseas territory to welcome the king of spain this week, including the flag of gibraltar. we ask my right honorable friend the prime minister remind the king of spain that gibraltar is bsh and their sovereignty will remain paramount. >> i assure my honorable friend that the government's position on gibraltar and the primacy of
the wishes of its' inhabitants which are overwhelmingly to stay british are respected by the government. >> what assessment has the government made of the effect on radiotherapy for cancer patients of its decision to withdraw from uratum given that the royal college of radiologists said this week that half a million scans a year are done using imported radio isotopes and that thousands of patients could be affected by this decision? >> i am genuinely, again, happy to answer this question because it is a very important issue. and there has been some unnecessary worry caused to cancer patients by speculating on this. let me set out the position. the import or export of medical radio isotopes is not subject to any particular uratum licensing requirements. it places no restrictions.
so after leaving urattum our ability to access medical isotopes produced in europe will not be affected. i hope that clears up and reassures cancer patients around the country that the scaremongering that's going on is unnecessary. >> order! . >> well, it's a hopeful try by be the honorable lady but points awarded will come after the statement. during his confirmation hearing, fbi director nominee christopher ray was asked abo about -- wray was asked about the ongoing russia investigation. here is an exchange between wray and senate committee judiciary member lindsey graham. you say that mueller is a good guy, right. >> that's been my experience,
yes. >> and you'll do anything necessary to protect him from being interfered with when it comes to doing his job. >> absolutely. i think -- >> do you believe that, in light of the done junior e-mail and other allegations, that this whole thing about trump campaign and russia is a witch hunt? is that a fair description of what we're all dealing with in america? >> senator, i can't speak to the basis for the comments. i can tell you my experience with director mueller. >> i am asking you as the future fbi director, do you consider this endeavor a witch hunt? >> i do not consider director mueller to be on a witch hunt. >> thank you. can the president fire director mueller? does he have the authority in the law to fire him? >> i don't know the law on that. >> can you get back to us and answer that question? >> i would be happy to take a look at it. >> okay. do you realize that you're stepping into the role of the director at fbi at one of the
most consen shus timtentious ti history of american politics? >> there have been a lot of contentious times in american politics but i understand this certainly ranks up there. >> do you understand the challenge that lies ahead for you because institutions in the eyes of the american people are suffering and the last thing we want to happen is for the fbi to fall out of trust with the american people? >> i fully understand that this is not a job for the faint of heart. i can assure this committee i am not faint of heart. a recent study found that the number of americans being diagnosed with opioid addiction escalates. a congressional hearing looks at the epidemic next. remarks from the outgoing president and ceo of amtrak, charles mormon. later, a look at international charter schools.