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tv   Tuesday in Parliament.  BBC News  March 6, 2019 2:30am-3:01am GMT

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hello there, and welcome to tuesday in parliament. coming up, there is more pressure on the transport secretary chris grayling over the cost of his no—deal preparations. £33 million of public money, taxpayers‘ money has been wasted. could hejust stand up and say sorry to them? mps hear how online gaming can become addictive. the most i ever played was 32 hours straight in university, first year. i did not eat or sleep or anything and i did not leave my room. and a conservative says the law should be changed so daughters can inherit hereditary titles if they are born first. it seems to me to be a very natural step to take after amending same principle for the royal family.
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but first, the transport secretary chris grayling says he will not resign over the decision to settle a legal case with eurotunnel and pay the company £33 million. in december, the department for transport contracted three suppliers to provide additional freight capacity on ferries for lorries in the event of a no—deal brexit. but eurotunnel says the contracts were handed out in a secretive way. wasn't as part of the gimmick of a secretive wife wasn't as part of the agreement, eurotunnel has agreed to make some improvements to the firms awarded ferry contracts, one had already had still cancelled after the irish company backing it pulled out. chris grayling, who has faced criticism for not turning up to the commons on monday to answer questions, explain how the decision been made. we collectively across government
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as a result of decisions and cabinet committees took a decision to go to the ferry industry to secure capacity to guarantee delivery of drugs to this country in the event of a no—deal brexit. that was a conscious decision, it was the right decision and what we did, i will not, will not come on we did was we talked to all of the current ferries operators operating across the north sea and the english channel plus any other operator that has had tangible plans to do so. that is where the procurement came from. i give way. thank you for giving way on that point. the key question however, did he have advice from his officials that negotiations so late with ferry companies would result in a legal challenge by eurotunnel which ultimately he has now paid off by £33 million investment from taxpayers? mr speaker, we knew in the procurement process that there was a legal grounds so that has been highlighted in the report. however, it was myjudgement and the judgement of my accounting officer and those of those who vetted across government that this was a risk that we should take given the need to ensure that we had a supply of drugs
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into the country in the event of a no—deal brexit. the thing that really surprises and shocks made if the fact that there is a complete lack of humility when the grasp of the fact that £33 million of public money, taxpayers money has been wasted. could he just stand up and say sorry to them? i'd very much the fact that we were taken to court. i very much regret that we were taken to court. it was a rescue we now as was there, but i stand by the decision to make sure that we could guarantee the supply of drugs to the nhs in the event of a no—deal brexit. mr grayling was in the comments because the snp's alan bryan asked for an emergency debate. i have called and his process several times that you should do the right thing and step aside and mr speaker was abundantly clear that his handling of this shambles has been truly shameful. here the despatch box, i for one have no confidence in his handling of this in any real issue and he should think about walking. before this he was a secretary wasn't and never met rick and he made a constant mistake thereto.
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the record of the secretary is that of a departmental wrecking ball. almost every decision he is made to secretary of state forjustice was damaging and eventually reversed as a secretary wasn't and never met rick and he made a constant mistake thereto. the record of this rental secretary is that of a departmental wrecking ball. almost every decision he is made to secretary of state forjustice was damaging and eventually reversed and certificate cost of but to at £2 million bailout for virgin trains on the east coast. his failure to prepare airports for drone attacks, awarding contracts to karelia when the company was on the verge of collapse, the rail timetable and chaos, the privatisation of probation services and by banning books from prisons, the list goes on and on. research into the total cost of the secretary of state's mistakes both in his current role and the department ofjustice cost the taxpayer £2.7 billion.
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that money, that money could have paid for the annual salaries of 118,000 nurses, 94,000 secretary school teachers instead it has been squandered. but he was defended by conservative mps. one of the points of debate has been the speed at which the chancellor of the exchequer has been prepared to release funding to individual departments in order to facilitate those preparations. does he think it would be helpful if in future the chancellor of the exchequer would lean forward a bit more to make sure that all those preparations are fully funded in good time? i think i'll leave my honourable friend to make his point. i don't want to start discussing that in government. many of these have a considerable respect for the secretary of state. we believe that he was urging his colleagues for the last two years to make a plan for no—deal and he was frustrated by other people, perhaps in the cabinet, they did not want to do so and if mistakes are to be made because his decision
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had been taken at the last minute, it is in default of my right honourable friend but he's too much of a gentleman to actually argue this in his own defence. sir edward lee. now british politics has sunk to a new low in the view of labour's shadow chancellor. john mcdonnell claim government's application for england's industrial towns was really about securing the votes of labour mps for theresa may's brexit agreement. at treasury questions, the chancellor was first pressed about the possible effects of brexit. but will the chancellor agree that the 1.6 billion set aside for towns is a pale imitation of the regional growth fund it set up under the coalition and would he therefore look at establishing a brexit redundancy fund of up to £7.5 billion to help the 750,000 people investment who stand to lose theirjobs in a no—deal scenario? well, as i have told the house many times before
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and i will elaborate more next week, in what i now think is the unlikely event of a no—deal exit, the government has both fiscal and monetary tools available to it to support the economy. but of course the likely shock would be on the supply side of the economy. and we would have to be careful in fiscal interventions that were made that they did not merely stimulate inflation. so if we were to find ourselves in that situation, we have the firepower and we have the clear intent to intervene to support the economy. one of mr hammond's colleagues initially answered the shadow chancellor. when the conservatives lost their majority in the last election, the chancellor conjured up £1 billion bonded to the dup to buy the tories back into office. yesterday, with the announcement of the towns bill, we have reached a new low in politics in this country with the intent
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by the government to purchase the votes of labour mps to vote for the brexit deal. pork barrel politics has become the new norm under this government. so can i asked the chancellor if the price of the dup vote has been £100 million each, how much is a vote from the labour mp's going to cost? well, the government has been investing in our cities across the country with interventions such as the transforming cities fund and a £2.5 billion investment. we believe it is important to mirror those investments to drive productivity and economic growth in our towns. i can understand why the chancellor has broken convention today, not responding because i think it would be ashamed of responding. because let me tell them what the answer is. if the dup is worth £100 billion, then what the labour mps were offered yesterday was a £6 million for the chancellor to undertake another calculation. seven days ago, he was forced to publish the government's
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assessment again of a no—deal brexit. publish the government public assessment again of a no to brexit. how much it would cost this country. it came in at £200 billion. how much of a threatened cost to this country will it take this chancellor to find a backbone to stand up to the prime minister and the erg to prevent a no deal or a bad deal. or is the secretary of state for work and pensions the only cabinet minister willing to put country before career? oh dear, oh dear, as the right honourable gentlemen knows very well, i have been working tirelessly to ensure that we avoid a no deal exit, that we leave the european union in a smooth and orderly fashion to a new negotiating partnership that allows our complex and important trade relationships to continue to flourish in the future. that is what i spend every working day doing.
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millions of people play games online, but for some, an obsessive hobby can turn into an addiction. two young men have been speaking to mps about how they became addicted to online games. many of which involve role—play in a fantasy world while playing against random strangers. at the greatest extent of your gameplay, how many hours in a session did you play? for me, it could range from anywhere from four hours until the most ever i played was 32 hours straight in university first year. i did not eat or sleep or anything, did not leave my room, just 32 hours. for me, it would be anywhere from four to maybe 12 at the most, i think 12 was the biggest streak i have played. and what was the trigger
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for you both in recognising that this was becoming harmful and something you wanted to do something about? for me, it was dropping out of university. i was studying physics and suffered from quite a bad depression as well as a result of that. and everything just started cascading down, down as a result of me escaping my problems through gaming and got to a point where i stopped. for me, it was a break—up with a girlfriend, which we had because of me playing games and spending a lot of time on my computer. and i think that was the wake—up call when she said i was not spending much time with her, she broke up with me. they explained the impact of playing
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games online on their lives. first thing, i was very comfortable online, playing games and would go outside for a lecture and would not know how to interact with friends around me. it is a feedback loop. you go online, you are doing well, you feel good and then you go outside and it is stressful and you do not know how to relate to people so you go back and play a little bit more. you feel happy. it is self— perpetuating in that way. university was a big catalyst because you no longer have parents tell you to go to bed, to do work and whatnot. so i had all this free time for me tojust sit in a room in the dark and play games until 3am in the morning. i don't think in my first year i could complete coursework before 2am in the morning of the day before it was due. because i was playing video games. and eventually it starts to have an effect on your physical health, your mental health, because things don't give you as much joy as video games. rebecca powell found their revelations shocking. as a mum with three children,
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i am listening and i am very sad. i battled with one child who could have had this tendencies but we managed it. what would you say you missed? what do you think you might have missed? well, i had a great childhood, i was active and a big part of scouts and all these different things. i was always playing sports. where i really missed that was towards college. like 15, 16 onwards i started really getting into it. it affected so many of my relationships, girlfriends of the time, started losing contact with my friends and i no longer was in contact with them just because i lost myself. both recovered from their addiction to gaming with the help of the online support forum game quitters, but it was not an easy process. james experienced withdrawal symptoms.
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headaches, moods, i physically had to shut myself out of the house, put my computer in the wardrobe and locked it away. i deleted all my games and passwords and my friends' passwords because i could not keep myself away from playing this game. i had so many urges. i had urges every single day. i think it was about 70 days into the 90—day initial challenge when it really became bad for me. i couldn't stay at my house all day for fear i'd just go back on my computer and play. the committee is also investigating whether social media is addictive. they took evidence from 20—year—old social media influencerjack edwards, who has his own youtube channel where he posts videos about his life at university. with over "11,000 followers, he is also asked to endorse products. i view them as an influencer and draw the line on making sure your business works,
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which relies on people spending loads of time on your particular youtube channel, and at the same time, recognising that actually that might be addictive in itself — where do you draw the line? i think one of the most interesting things that you said that i kind of picked up on in relation to social media was about the kind of endless universe of possibilities where if you go to this fantasy world, you can keep getting a new outfit for your character and stuff. in a way, social media is also this endless... when you go onto the internet, because there are so many people on the planet and a vast majority will be on a social media now, there is always someone to talk to, always someone awake, there is always someone sharing something. and there is always something to discuss and there is always nuances to that discussion that you canjust go down the rabbit hole. admitting that he always checked his phone when he woke up, he called social media
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a covert addiction. you're watching tuesday in parliament with me, alicia mccarthy. a conservative mp says the house of lords should follow in the footsteps of the royal family and allowed daughters to inherit titles. at the moment, hereditary titles are passed to the eldest son rather than the eldest child. and with 92 places in the house of lords reserved for hereditaries, that means some daughters of peers are losing out to their brothers. my bill would seek to extend the succession to the crown act, to include all hereditary titles through a straightforward piece of primary legislation consisting ofjust a few clauses. it would quite simply mean daughters will be treated the same as sons for the purposes of succession, and it seems to me to be a very natural step to take after amending the same principle for the royal family. now, iaccept, mr speaker, that this is not the most important issue facing the country. but that, in my opinion, is no reason not to put right this
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particular unfairness. some people might look at this as a game of numbers, that this change is needed to get more female hereditary peers into the house of lords, but to be clear, that is definitely not where i am coming from. i refute the notion that any institution should have a particular number of men or women in it, in the pursuit of what i believe is unrepresentative representation by tick box. so, mr speaker, this is not about men versus women. this is about true equality between men and women, and i, therefore, commend it to the house. but his plan was opposed by an snp mp. there cannot be in a parliamentary democracy that we believe that someone whose father, as i said, in the 12th century,
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chops somebody's "hed" off, not head, for hansard, but "had", has a place of honour and economic privilege and political leverage in a parliamentary democracy. it is an affront to those who have campaigned to ensure liberty and dignity for all. martin dockherty—hughes. the northern ireland secretary karen bradley has been criticised for not giving parliament enough time to scrutinise budget legislation for the province. northern ireland's executive and assembly have been suspended for two years, leaving westminster to pass its budget. the dup complained about the lack of scrutiny of spending decisions. at which point will the secretary of state accept that this is an entirely unsustainable decision, as outlined, there is no scrutiny in this process. i don't believe that anywhere in a democracy or the western democratic world, such a process would take place completely behind closed doors,
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in terms of what bids are being put forward and what bids are being accepted. she said the government should impose a direct rule, not because it was desirable, but because it was necessary. karen bradley said the bill needed to be fast tracked at westminster, so that civil servants in belfast could authorise spending. we are in a very unsatisfactory position, and i would rather we were not doing this this way. but in order to ensure that public service can continue to be delivered and in order to ensure that public servants, the civil servants of northern ireland do have the statutory underpinning they need for spending, that's why we are taking this budget bill, but i would really rather we weren't. the shadow northern ireland secretary complained that teresa may has not been as involved with northern ireland as her predecessors. the pm has not been engaged consistently since then. and i do compare that and i am bound to compare that with john major, when he was prime minister before the good friday agreement was signed
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with tony blair, when he was prime minister. david cameron, when he was prime minister. and i've got to say to the secretary of state and through the secretary of state, we have got to see more concerted action and we have got to see some ambition to see real change. now, the speaker has confirmed that a recall petition can be triggered against peterborough mp fiona onasa nya. onasanya, seen here in the plain black coat, was jailed in january for lying about a speeding offence. she had claimed someone else was driving her car when it was spotted in july 2017. well, the mp has now been released from prison, but lost an appeal against her conviction. if 10% of her constituents signed the petition, a by—election is triggered. ms onasanya will be allowed to stand as a candidate. i have received a letter this afternoon from the registrar of criminal appeals. informing me that fiona onasanya's application for leave to appeal against her conviction has been refused.
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this notification triggers the provisions of the recall of mps act 2015, and i will accordingly be writing to the relevant petition officer to inform that person that fiona onasanya is, therefore, subject to a recall petition process. it will be for that officer to make the arrangements for the petition. the speaker. now, back to brexit, and the government gave a warning last week that many small and medium—sized businesses where unprepared for leaving the european union without a deal. at question time in the lords, that finding led some peers to urge ministers to back a brexit delay, and for others to question what firms were supposed to do. small businesses are far less able to prepare for a no deal brexit, they lack the legal and regulatory expertise to do so. and the cash and space to stockpile. they and we
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are staring disaster in the face. shouldn't we put a stop to this madness now and halt the brexit process and give everyone whose livelihoods and futures are at risk a say on the deal? my lords, i remind the noble baroness that the no deal is the legal default position as agreed by both houses, and until we agree a deal, that will remain the case. what is important, therefore, it that another place or parliament as a whole agrees a deal and gets behind the prime minister so business can have the certainty that we need. to what the noble ladyjust referred, only 40,000 of the 240,000 companies to export to the eu have currently applied for those licenses or registered for them,
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but my lords, capacity to issue the licenses is currently only for 11,000 a day. so, with march 29 getting closer, i wonder if my noble friend the minister could say what precautions are being taken to increase the capacity for issuing these essential licenses? well, my lords, the important thing is the businesses themselves get their act together and apply for the licenses. as we made clear in that document last week, and that's why we published it, there is a failing on the part of municipal businesses to apply for those particular licenses. if all 200,000 small businesses who have not yet registered do register, there is the capacity, he has assured the house there is the capacity to deal with that before the 29th of march, can the minister assure the house on that very important point the noble lady raised? my lords, i'm satisfied that there is capacity to deal with those businesses that want to or need to do so.
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the chair of ohe health committee has accused labour of trying to oust one of its former mps from her place on the committee. luciana berger quit labour last month in a row over anti—semitism. and became one of the founding members of the independent group in the commons, known as tig. sarah wollaston left the conservatives to join the group and she told the speaker she heard labour was trying to replace ms berger, who is currently on maternity leave on the health committee. she has served with great distinction as a member of the health and social care select committee, and as a spokesperson, nationally recognised for her work on mental health, i am deeply concerned to hear that the labour party had been seeking names to replace her and oust her from her position on the select committee. surely, this is unacceptable and sends entirely the wrong message about how we value maternity leave in this place, and i'm very relieved that none of her colleagues, her former colleagues, were prepared to be nominated in that way.
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but could i seek your guidance on this point, but also on the wider point that, surely, select committees are at their best when members are able to leave their narrow party politics at the door, rather than be a tool of the whips offices. the speaker, john bercow, sent out the process for changing membership at a select committee and said he was not aware of any plans to remove ms berger, but added he wouldn't necessarily know about it if there were. and that's it from me for now. but do join me tomorrow for another round—up of the day at westminster, including highlights from prime minister's questions. for now, goodbye. hello there. all our weather is going to be coming in from the west over
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the next few days. there's a really strong jet stream tracking right the way across the atlantic and that picks up areas of cloud. this one here will arrive on friday to bring some rain. this one here has already brought some rain across most of the uk. it's around that area of low pressure. those weather fronts are taking the rain further north into scotland. we are also seeing some really strong winds, especially in wales and the south—west of england. it's been another cold night across northern scotland, a touch of frost even by the morning. much milder elsewhere, but very windy, especially in wales and south—west england. but gusty winds will continue with these bands of showers. and we've got the wetter weather getting stuck across scotland and northern ireland, notjust rain, but some snow over the high ground. let us have a closer look at those showers — they are in bands, really, pushing their way across england and wales. some sunshine in between. a bit of warmth, actually, 14, maybe 15 degrees, south—east england, east anglia, and also lincolnshire. but these showers will be heavy and potentially thundery.
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and we're much colder as you move into scotland and northern ireland. and north of the central belt, we're going to find that wet weather continuing with some snow over highland and grampian. stays wet in scotland overnight. and increasingly back into northern ireland and into northern england too. further south, i think we lose a lot of those heavy showers and temperatures will dip away to around 4 or 5 degrees. it will feel colder, though, as we head into thursday. let's trace where our air is coming from, all the way from the arctic, a cold north—north—westerly wind is going to be wrapped around the area of low pressure, which, by this stage, is out in the north sea. but around the edge of the low, where we're packing in a lot of wet weather into scotland, especially eastern scotland, northern england, down into east anglia too, some more snow over the high ground and a few wintry showers will be following in behind. probably the best of the sunshine and the dry weather, southern england and south wales, 11 degrees here. but a chilly 6 or so, i think, in northern scotland. as we head into the end of the week, well, that area of
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low pressure is moving away. it's taking away those cold winds. clearing skies, light winds means friday could start with a touch of frost, and some sunshine too. but it's going to cloud over. we saw the cloud earlier on coming in across the atlantic. this is bringing the rain into northern ireland, into wales, and the south—west of england and ahead of that, those temperatures may get to 9 or 10 degrees. even into the weekend, though, it stays very unsettled, some more rain, some more snow over the hills. it will be very windy. as a result, it is always going to feel on the chilly side.
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