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tv   Dateline London  BBC News  June 3, 2017 11:30am-12:01pm BST

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a warm welcome to all of you. let's start with the fact that in just a few days from now voters in britain go to the polls in an election called unexpectedly by theresa may after she had been on a walking holiday with her husband over the easter break. in the first couple of weeks of campaigning, the word "landslide" was heard repeatedly in relation to her conservative party — less so now. let's assess the state of the parties and consider the difficult task ahead, because whoever ends up in 10 downing street has to navigate britain's departure from the eu. steve, a few weeks ago on this programme, we were calling this election boring — not now. it has been the most interesting election in recent decades, i think, because it has been so unpredictable in so many ways, and i think there is something shakespearean in politics, which is that when a prime minister calls an early election, they kind of break or challenge the natural order of things. and then,
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having been in control, they find that they have lost control and have unleashed forces out of their control, like macbeth, kingly and people like that. so when ted heath did it in 197a, people like that. so when ted heath did it in 1974, when he had quite a big majority, the election went wholly against what everyone assumed would happen, and the same in terms of the campaign has happened now. i am not saying the result will be the same, when ted heath lost, but all the assumptions that your panel had four weeks ago have been turned on their head, and that is fascinating, and there are deep currents that explain why. maria eagle have written that this is the strangest election you have followed, british election. yes, for some of the same reasons that steve is talking about, a few weeks ago everyone was saying corbyn was hopeless, of course theresa may will win a landslide, and we have seen the polls narrowing dramatically. just watching the
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television debates and the way the two leaders are performing on the stump, we are seeing theresa may increasingly anxious, nevis, ill at ease, and jeremy corbyn really seeming to relish it, partly because he is being allowed to say what he actually thinks, that this is one of the few elections recently where we have a party leader not endlessly triangulating, predicting what they wa nt triangulating, predicting what they want the electorate to hear, but saying what he believes. what is it that has changed so dramatically? i know that is a big question, but to maria's point about authenticity, is that what is playing in here? as someone that what is playing in here? as someone got something right or another party got something wrong? two things have changed, we must be careful about the opinion polls, they changed, they showed a 25 point lead for the tories, and they now suggest a significant narrowing. with all the caveats. i think they should be banned during elections,
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because all we end up doing is talking about polls, and they may be com pletely talking about polls, and they may be completely wrong. the other thing that has changed is that theresa may, before calling the election, was seen may, before calling the election, was seen as a may, before calling the election, was seen as a figure of great solidarity, the strong and stable leadership praise was not marked, the ubiquity of the phrase was marked, but not the message. now she doesn't their use it, so that is the other significant change that has happened over the campaign, she is a rather shy public figure, unusual in british politics. as shown in a lot of public appearances. british politics. as shown in a lot of public appearanceslj british politics. as shown in a lot of public appearances. i think she finds it awkward. most relish the public stage, many were actors. jeremy corbyn is not an actor, like her and he cannot dissemble in a way thatis her and he cannot dissemble in a way that is attractive but politically risky. but he is a campaigner, he has campaigned all his life, so he is utterly at ease with a public platform, being challenged — he can
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do as well. whereas she clearly hates that side of politics, and so, ina way, hates that side of politics, and so, in a way, i think, as with ted heath in 1974, the decision to call an early election, even if she wins by a huge majority, which is still possible, was a mistake, because i think it has altered perceptions of hope. john, how have you been writing about it? well, i have actually been busy doing other things, but the first caution i would enter here is have we not learned from elections on both sides of the atlantic, and referendums, not to trust political correspondence and not to trust polls? we have shown again and again a tremendous capacity to misread things. it seems to me that this election was fundamentally impacted by something we have not mentioned, which was the manchester bombing. george bush the elder used to say that momentum was everything in politics, and i think it is broadly
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speaking truth to say that, in this election, all the momentum was with theresa may until the manchester bombing. difficult to work out how much of an impact it might have had, but i think, amongst other things, it's so shook national confidence, it's so shook national confidence, it caused people to look again at mrs may, who as we were reminded again and again during the coverage, was home secretary with principal responsibility for dealing with counterterrorism. and you think that will factor into how people...? well, the whole landscape of the election was different afterwards. before we came on air, steve was saying, in 2015, the polls shifted away from labour in the last week, andl away from labour in the last week, and i right? no, no, even at the very end, the polls suggested a
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parliament with labour the biggest parliament, it was the exit poll. parliament with labour the biggest parliament, it was the exit pollm seems such an improbable thing that mr corbyn, rejected by very large numbers of his own parliamentary party, who know him certainly better than we do, could somehow triumph and bring this country back to the socialism of the 1970s. itjust seems to me, on the whole, improbable. yes, mrs may has not run a particularly good campaign, she has made some mistakes, she has changed her mind about things, seemed uncertain, and as you say, strong and stable has disappeared from the conservative vocabulary, but it seems to me that we are still more likely to see a conservative majority, and probably a larger one than she had entered the election with. marc? that is one of the problems, she has been at the home 0ffice, problems, she has been at the home office, and she has not been a leader of the opposition, unlike all
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the predecessors. the election is so social economic issues, may be international, but not only an immigration, andi international, but not only an immigration, and i think that was her mistake. also, i was particularly interested in the brexit thing, who will be the best to get a good deal? that is how it was framed, an election about brexit. she had to get that out of the way. i think, on the whole, that is what i wrote, that it is may or corbyn, the europeans don't care, because at the end of the day, the europeans have been united about this jingoistic, europeans have been united about thisjingoistic, nationalistic, narrow—minded attitude of the british pre—negotiation, and when angela merkel said, and it was a direct message to mrs may, we will ta ke direct message to mrs may, we will take our destiny in our hands, i say, yes, it is our turn after the
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referendum. interesting, iwill say, yes, it is our turn after the referendum. interesting, i will come to you in a moment, maria, but you'll thought is that, in terms of a lot of major european countries looking at this, they really don't mind who ends up in number ten? they don't mind. because the british ship has sailed. yes, because mrs may has shown that she is not a very good candidate, corbyn has been a better candidate, corbyn has been a better candidate, and it doesn't matter, they will both face the european union completely united in making britain pay — and a hard for quitting the european union. as an example to others, partly that. quitting the european union. as an example to others, partly thatm is even not the question, because today europe is united, macron in france, merkel in germany, to make europe work without britain. it is finished, practically. europe work without britain. it is finished, practicallylj europe work without britain. it is finished, practically. iwas europe work without britain. it is finished, practically. i wasjust going to ask you whether you don't think that maybe corbyn's mork and silly and tree approach to europe,
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which he has been talking about in the last few weeks, may be more effective in that case. —— more conciliatory. i am sure that the europeans preferred to deal with a conciliatory, but if it is mrs may, who is very hard, no deal is better than a bad deal, they will go with it, but they are united. and that is the thought of theresa may, she tried to divide, but her attitude is all over the campaign has made the europeans say, we are united. marc your confidence in the european union is admirable, and is as consistent as your disparagement of this jingoistic, consistent as your disparagement of thisjingoistic, as you call it, country that i call home. it seems to me that you are somewhat pollyanna—ish, if i can use that
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american phrase, warning about george soros and the vociferous pressures there will be in the european union over unresolved questions... all these and resolve questions... all these and resolve questions will be put aside, because the british has made us united. as merkel said, take our destiny into our hands. my experience travelling in europe is that britain enjoy is an enormous amount of in europe is that britain enjoy is an enormous amount of goodwill in france, germany, italy and elsewhere... not when it comes to money! they will pay what they owe the european union. to return to the parochial matter of this british general election, it is interesting, the role that brexit played, because i think the beginning, it was going to work for theresa may in that i think people in this country do want, ina think people in this country do want, in a very ill—defined way, change, and it looked as if brexit was going to be the chosen vehicle
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for that change. and so i was picking up from labour mps in the north of england who were saying, this is a disaster, some of our brexit people are going to vote tory. but what has happened during the election is some space has opened up foran the election is some space has opened up for an alternative change, the corbyn change. now, i thought that would be blocked... completely because brexit would be the chosen vehicle of change, this ill—defined idyll. when it became clear that theresa may, as well as delivering this ill—defined idyll, would also be putting up taxes, would work out ways of paying for elderly care, all of these things in the real world, and she was brave to say some of these things, some of that sort of fa nta sy of these things, some of that sort of fantasy of brexit being a painless route of change changed in the minds of some voters. and then they look at the corbyn version. i am not saying he is going to win or
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anything, but that was one of the other changes, so brexit has played a part in this campaign, but a very ambiguous and confused one, i think. maria? what happened with the brexit vote is that we saw how badly we had been reading the landscape of british politics, have chopped up and churned up and unrepresented by the parties as they were it was. and i think that, instead of, as you said, instead of this being a straightforward brexit election, it has actually begun to be a conversation about all the things that are wrong, which are, in large part, to do with the state of public services, nhs, schools, et cetera, that conversation has opened up, which is great, but it is a very short time until the election from the beginning of that conversation to the election, which is why it feels so turbulent, i think. to the election, which is why it feels so turbulent, i thinklj to the election, which is why it feels so turbulent, i think. i and most surprised how the liberal democrats are doing badly, because they represent 48%, and they are not
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doing well because the british public wants to get out of the eu, and we accepted, there is no doubt about it, and it is much clearer, i respect theresa may for saying, we need a hard brexit, let's move onto other things, and the need a hard brexit, let's move onto otherthings, and the lib need a hard brexit, let's move onto other things, and the lib dems have got it completely wrong by asking for a second referendum. they have miss read that in your opinion, stephen, what most victory like for theresa may? if we, let's say, wake up theresa may? if we, let's say, wake up on the 9th ofjune and the conservatives are back in power, thatis conservatives are back in power, that is not necessarily enough, it depends on the majority. she has got to increase their majority. some tories tell me that even if she gets a majority of 60, that because they began with these epic expectations ofa began with these epic expectations of a landslide, well over 100, that in itself will become problematic for her, that she will be seen to have failed on one level, however
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bizarre that is, given that it will be an increased majority. clearly, if she wins a landslide, the campaign will be forgotten about within ten seconds, and she will become again this omnipotent figure, but only even then briefly, because he then has to climb the mountain called brexit, and there is trouble for her florence as she ascends that mountain, however big that majority. anything and 60 and she is in trouble. that is interesting, that is the benchmark we should be looking out for. before we talk about climate change, each of you, quickly, what do you think we will be waking up to? i wouldn't dream of making a prediction! go on! i think we will probably have, i hate predictions, but i think we will almost italy have a tory government, but i think possibly labour and the smaller parties will do better than
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predicted, and that is an important sign that, you know, in a way, that the consensus that austerity is the only way to go is crumbling, and that something different is happening in politics. marc? theresa may will have a large majority, ireland and 2015 the same thing happened, and i think it would be a good thing for europe that theresa may, if she has a huge majority, then we can start the negotiations. john? i think too much perspective of journalists has been john? i think too much perspective ofjournalists has been formed by the studio politics, the television studio politics of the last week. the debates and so on. to my mind, it may have played into theresa may's hands because of the shouty and somewhat adolescent finger—pointing and somewhat adolescent finger— pointing performances we and somewhat adolescent finger—pointing performances we saw. yes, she has been nervous, but she does, to my mind, she has shown some authenticity, including putting that
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nervousness on public display, so i would say she will get a comfortable majority. i assume that, because thatis majority. i assume that, because that is what the polls suggest, most of them anyway, and that is all we have got to rely on. the factors that were in place, like the colla pse that were in place, like the collapse of the ukip vote going to the tories, the fact that labour won't make progress of any significance in scotland, they are still in place, so even though the campaign has been fascinating, we have to work on that assumption. but i say that without really having a clue, none of us can really have a clue. and that is what is making it interesting, we will although in a matter of days. let's turn now to donald trump. he has withdrawn the united states from the paris climate accord, fulfilling an election pledge, but to the consternation of many world leaders, and some political and business leaders in his own country. the paris agreement commits nations to keeping the overall increase in global temperatures below two degrees celsius. the us hasjoined syria and nicaragua as the only countries
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not party to it. john, this was an election pledge, pure and simple, and he has done it, committed to something and stuck to it. we started with a shakespearean reference, so i will try one of my own. my schoolboy recollection, henry iv part ii, the first bringer of unwelcome news hath but a losing office. in this case, i am going to assume that losing office by saying something in mitigation of mr trump which, amongst other things, will put my marriage at risk, because my wife said, if you say anything nice about mrtrump, i wife said, if you say anything nice about mr trump, i will come after you with a baseball bat! 0k! about mr trump, i will come after you with a baseball bat! ok! so the more vulgar, occasionally at times
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mischievous, malevolent, brutish figure has not occupied the white house for a very long time, but he did get 63 million votes, and it wasn't because 63 million people we re wasn't because 63 million people were stupid. they wanted the united states government to turn its attentions to the rust belt, to unemployment, to the concerns of an unattended white working and lower middle—class. trump did, in this campaign, whilst winning this election, made a very clear declaration that he would withdraw from the paris climate change agreement. because it was a strangle an american jobs, you agreement. because it was a strangle an americanjobs, you said. agreement. because it was a strangle an american jobs, you said. that is the first point, the second point that he chose not to engage very much with is that there is legitimate, even if it is minority, science which suggests that man—made
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climate change may not be quite as convincing a story as we have been led to believe. another point. the paris accord sets targets which many people, including many people who are themselves believers in man—made climate change, think are financially unachievable, financially unachievable, financially as well scientifically unachievable, and therefore it is possible that there might be a better accord available through renegotiation. so i do not think it is all bad news. and the last thing i would say about the paris accord is that if you look closely at the details of it, it is constructed in accordance with the narrative of international affairs, where we in the first world owe a debt to the poorer world, and that has led to, for example is, at arrangements
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under which india and china will be largely free to continue to pollute, notwithstanding their pledges, large tra nsfers, notwithstanding their pledges, large transfers, huge, billion—dollar tra nsfers, transfers, huge, billion—dollar transfers, particularly from the united states to the third world. and i think wejust united states to the third world. and i think we just have to get used to the fact that we are dealing with a new america, a wounded america, an america that wants to attend to its own problems, and we have grown up, since the second world war, co mforta ble since the second world war, comfortable in the belief that america will always played the good quy america will always played the good guy in international affairs. lots of international leaders and businesses have not agreed with this, emmanuel macron has done extremely well in some circles by being among those to criticise president trump quite roundly. make out president trump quite roundly. make our planet great again he said on
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twitter in english, and it went viral in the us. it is a terrible blow to american leadership, it emphasises the isolation of the new america. ina emphasises the isolation of the new america. in a way, it is great news again for us in europe, because we have carved a new alliance with china, india and all the emerging countries — the same day as trump announced that, and there is a new world order going in europe without britain, because britain again has, and steve will explain why the hell mrs may did notjoin and steve will explain why the hell mrs may did not join the and steve will explain why the hell mrs may did notjoin the europeans to criticise that. so i think, on the whole, it is a terrible thing, as everyone agrees, but, you know, the paris agreement, it is three years to get out of it, it is a fantastic agreement, it will survive
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trump, because he is out in four years — and maybe before. trump, because he is out in four years - and maybe before. why do think theresa may didn't sign that? people have been asking her. her line is that she expressed publicly and privately her opposition to what he did, but i think there is politics in this, including brexit politics, a electoral politics. she doesn't want to be seen as part of a european alliance against him in any dynamic, and she needs him after this election, because of brexit, and that puts in a rather unique position, because she has to watch what she says in terms of that relationship every second of every day. it will be a difficult one to keep going. but it is, i think it is a moment of significance. climate change can only be dealt with, in the end, by global political coordination and political leadership, and when one of the biggest leaders walks away, that is
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a moment of some significance. i heard today that the markets can do it, fossilfuels, all kinds of things. you need leadership in this, and it is interesting that you talk about this new dynamic with china and europe — without britain, but also now without america, and that will be interesting. i think it will be more important symbolically than practically, because the battle against man—made climate change will continue, i think that the movement towards renewables is economically a strong force. at this point, only 76,000 people are working in coal mining in the united states. and a lot of jobs mining in the united states. and a lot ofjobs in renewables. mining in the united states. and a lot of jobs in renewables. a lot of jobs, but it is part of trump's very aggressive and divisive style of politics, dividing america yet further by doing this, so already we have 90 mayors and ten governors in the united states saying, we will stick by the paris agreement. he is dividing america yet further from the rest of the world. somebody said america first is becoming america
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alone, and that kind of isolationism is unsettling, but i think the rest of the world might discover it can get along better than it thought without america. something underestimated in all of this is, in fa ct, underestimated in all of this is, in fact, technological change, for example, the emergence of shale gas, a huge development on the american energy scene, which we will be seeing worldwide in time, and that many of these changes, including the poor performance of renewables in terms of the contribution they are making overall to our energy needs, are changing the picture, and that paris may, in any event, be overta ken paris may, in any event, be ove rta ke n by paris may, in any event, be overtaken by all of this, and we will need a new agreement, and certainly there is a need for an agreement, i agree with that, but possibly a better one. we will either there, i am afraid. renewables are doing well, nuclear
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is the most expensive form of energy. and that is why. . .! your wife will be getting the baseball bat ready! we will form a ring of steel around you! thanks very much, a topic for weeks and months to come, join us again, same time, same place next week if you can. by then, we will know who is in ten downing street, and there will be plenty more to discuss besides. john shaun ley if you can next week for dateline london. for now, bye—bye. hello there. we've swept away a lot of warmth and humidity of the last few days. a slightly cooler, fresher feel
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this weekend, but that does not mean there is no sunshine. a lot of blue sky and sunshine around, but don't be fooled — depending on where you are in the country there could be some hefty showers at times through the day and tomorrow. the heaviest showers through the afternoon will be in northern ireland and scotland, the odd rumble of thunder in england and wales and the south—west. towards the south—east, it should probably stay dry. a closer look at four o'clock this afternoon. heavy, slow—moving downpours across scotland with sunny spells, showers easing at this stage across northern ireland, but i cannot promise a completely dry afternoon, by any means. a few showers trickling into northern england, dry and sunny weather here. the best of the sunny spells in the south east, lifting temperatures to 21 or 22 degrees. but cooler and fresher than it has been here, showers hit and miss, tending to clear eastwards by the time we get to the evening. in cardiff for the champions league
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final, it should be dry with sunny skies to start the game but by the end, feeling a little cool. it is going to be a cool night for just about all of us. not desperately cold, largely dry with showers fading away. these are the minimum temperatures in towns and cities, take off a few degrees in the countryside. more of the same, sunny spells, showers, more so than today across northern england, especially in the morning. northern ireland and scotland, more than your fair share of showers, a lot of heavy downpours here. some rain away from these areas, sunny spells and highs of 20 degrees. a change into the start of the new week. areas of low pressure and frontal systems will be swarming out west, starting to move in across the country. monday brings a band of heavy rain, strong winds in places. some showery weather with sunny spells following behind, 15—20 degrees.
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as we get deeper into the week, it remains unsettled, spells of rain at times and some sunny spells, temperatures a little lower than they have been over the last few days. the this is bbc news. the headlines: the prime minister has insisted that the conservative position on tax hasn't changed — that's after a senior cabinet minister appeared to go further than commitments outlined in the conservative manifesto. our position hasn't changed from that we sat out —— setter in the ma nifesto. that we sat out —— setter in the manifesto. the conservative party has been and always will be a low tax party. that follows theresa may and jeremy corbyn's grilling on a special edition of question time. the prime minister was criticised on nhs funding levels. mr corbyn was heckled when he avoided questions about using nuclear weapons. ariana grande makes a surprise visit to fans injured in the terror attack at her gig last week, ahead of her benefit
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concert tomorrow evening. hope for ovarian cancer patients, as a new drug shows promising results, shrinking tumours.
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