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tv   Newswatch  BBC News  June 14, 2019 7:45pm-8:01pm BST

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jones. hello and welcome two —— newswatch. on the programme, why is the bbc showing a debate for contenders in the conservative party leadership race when most of us cannot vote for the candidate we like best? and what sort of negotiations with politicians with borisjohnson were involved in getting the programme off the ground ? first, the bbc has faced a barrage of protest this week following its decision to restrict free television licences for the over 75 to those who claim pension credit. the corporation has said maintaining the benefit universally would cost £750 million. but some viewers think abc news could pay a role in planning that financial gap. —— bbc news.
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david marshall asked, why do you go to the enormous expense of sending news p rese nte i’s to the enormous expense of sending news presenters abroad when you already have reporters based in these countries? televised debates between politicians have a tortured history, with broadcasters attempts to get or main party leaders to take part failing at the last two general elections. more recently at the end of last year, plans for a head—to—head between each may and jeremy corbyn over brexit fell apart and led to disagreement. undeterred,
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the bbc has announced a programme featuring all the remaining contenders in the leadership contest. our next prime minister, presented by emily late list will be shown at eight o'clock next tuesday evening on bbc one, by which time the current list will have been whittled down even further. but there are a couple of odd things about this programme. first, it was announced before nominations have opened so without any guarantee that anyone would take part. secondly, unlike ina anyone would take part. secondly, unlike in a general election or a referendum, the audience were to be able to act on what they see unless they are members of the conservative party. that concerned rob spencer who asks... then there is the issue of the programme's content. will it focus on policy? or the character and
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previous misdemeanours of the candidates? emma samuels feels it has already been too much coverage of the latter. the bbc‘s executive producer for next tuesday's programme isjonathan munro and he is with us for now and thank you forjoining us on newswatch. let's pick up on that point from rob spencer, the decision on the winner of this contest is ultimately going to be made by conservative party members. so, what is the point of presenting the different candidates viewpoints on prime—time tv —— bbc one, when the vast majority of people can't vote? yes, the electorate is really small for this vacancy at number ten but we are all affected by it, it is going to be an election effectively and directly for the prime minister, not just for the conservative
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and directly for the prime minister, notjust for the conservative party. that is actually quite rare. when she may took over, there wasn't an election, there was effectively a coronation. —— theresa may. you have to go back tojohn major for this. all of the audiences will be affected by who the next prime minister is. why did you announce the programme before you even knew who was standing, let alone whether they would agree to take part or not? there is always a bit of a debate about when you announce the intention to have a programme of this sort. is it early in the —— or late? we don't want to be caught up ina late? we don't want to be caught up in a clash with other events to do with the conservative party's own campaign hustings, this is an independent bbc reduction. —— production. secondly, when you are building a prime—time schedule for channel, you need to do this in
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advance. to get it out publicly enabled the candidates to know, even though they didn't know which ones would still be standing by next tuesday, and they will be fewer than by now, but it also enables us to plan properly for a peak—time show. i take your point about planning but is it also that you wanted to bounce participants? all of them had said they will participate, which is a great position for us to be in, for the audience to see the great range of candidates, and all but boris johnson had said that more than 2a hours ago. their view is that the credibility of the prime minister is enhanced by public scrutiny. how much of a headache it has been how much of a headache it has been how much —— wondering whether boris johnson would take part? it is not a headache, we are delighted he is taking part. we wouldn't have gone down the route of having an np chair
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ona podium down the route of having an np chair on a podium or any of that sort, —— an empty chair. but we would obviously, harry chose not to take part, had told the audience that we had invited him and he had declined the invitation. but he is coming, and it will be the first televised debate he has done and it will be fascinating for everybody. can you give us a sense of how the behind—the—scenes negotiations worked to get him to agree? i should imagine they have been quite complicated. we tried to keep them as simple as we could. he made the point at the beginning of the programme that they have been a number of debates over the last few yea rs number of debates over the last few years so we number of debates over the last few years so we have learnt lessons from those. at no stage was this a push pull negotiation, we will only come if you do x or y. it is pull negotiation, we will only come if you do x ory. it is a pull negotiation, we will only come if you do x or y. it is a present to format so viewers can question the candidates. there has been no
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negotiation about that at all, none of the candidates have pushed back in any significant way at all on that, so it has been relatively simple entry. you mention format, there is no studio audience, why? we thought the most important thing was to allow bbc viewers and listeners to allow bbc viewers and listeners to connect directly with the person who may be prime minister of this country. we can deliver a network of newsrooms across the uk where we can get viewers and listeners into our newsrooms to question the candidates directly. a studio audience creates other problems. how many of the audience would be conservative party members, who as your own viewer pointed out, can only vote, or should it reflect the broader electorate? should we wait the audience in some way? in this example, we have a few days to go before the programme, but touch wood, simple format seems like it has served us well. some viewers say
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there has been a lot of focus on personality and past behaviour, how much will that feature in the debate and how much will it actually be that policy? our objection will be that policy? our objection will be that this is a policy led discussion. we have not seen all the questions yet, we cannot tell whether they will be a huge volume of questions... but you choose the questions to be asked. yes, we will choose them on policy areas, there is so much policy to talk about. we have laid down one condition, so all questions have to be asked to all candidates, so any question about a previous record in taking drugs wouldn't be question that is allowed, it wouldn't be a legitimate question for a policy debate. policy will come first. if boris johnson's media will come first. if borisjohnson's media appearances lately have been rather elusive, he did invite some questions from journalists at his campaign launch on wednesday. when laura
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kuenssberg's turn came, she didn't hold back. you suggested brexit would be as straightforward when win and actually it has been a chaotic mess. as foreign secretary, you offend the people at home and abroad, you have reputation for being cavalier with vital information and already were telling some supporters you will do everything to avoid leaving the eu without a deal and others that you would gladly do that, a simple question, if you want to be prime minister, can a country trust you? yes, of course, laura. the answer in that great minestrone of observations as one substantive question which was that the newswatch crouton. he can't joke his way out of controversy, though. there were some cheers. when he was challenged about remarks on muslim
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wedding. that response in the room prompted the bbc‘s political editor to write later on the news website, and his supporters acknowledge tonight that allowing the crowd to cheer journalists who were tonight that allowing the crowd to cheerjournalists who were asking legitimate questions was a mistake. but the response from viewers was divided. vivian kim thought... but gordon simpson saw it
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differently. thank you for all your comments this week. if you want to share your opinions on bbc news and current affairs or even appear on the programme, do e—mail us. oryou can find us on twitter. you can call us. do have a look at our website. that is all from us. we will be back to hear your thoughts about bbc news coverage next week. in the meantime, thank you for watching and could buy. —— goodbye. the weekend isn't
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looking as wet as it has been. fans of shower will be coming our way on a breezy but not physically warmer weekend but not as warm as it has been. we start off on saturday morning with quite wet in northern ireland, some rain here towards western parts of scotland, towards west and wales and into western england. the showers will become more patchy as that happens but still the chance as it moves further east of catching one or two heavier ones. most of us will fall a few degrees short of that. on saturday evening, we see another disturbance
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bring in more showers, this time it looks toward south—west england and wales. claire spells elsewhere, maybe the odd shower around towards western parts of scotland as we go deep into the night. the chillier spots will be dipping down close to mid—single figures. that takes us on to pa rt mid—single figures. that takes us on to part two of the weekend. another look at the big picture. they vu, low pressure is still close by, no hurry to move away, the first of them with a few showers across northern ireland, especially north west england into south—west scotland, pushing further north across scotland, we see another one developing with potentially heavy downpours towards northern ireland. the chance of a shower elsewhere but also some sunny spells around, if anything sunday is looking a bit breezy. still close to 20 across parts of east england. most of us in the mid to upper teens. monday, showers around, heavy ones in scotland. maybe the odd spot of
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rain. south—east england looks dry on monday. next week, things turned mainly dry on tuesday and a bit warmer but wetter again for mid week and for the rest of the week a few showers around and things will turn a bit cooler once again.
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this is bbc news i'm martine croxwell. the headlines at 8pm. there's been a day of events to mark the second anniversary of the grenfell tower tragedy survivors and families say their trauma continues. here in west london, virtually in the shadow of grunfeld tower, the community has come together for prayers, for words, first songs, and shortly they will be taking part in a march to a member those who died. the frontrunner for the tory leadership, borisjohnson, says he will take part in a bbc tv debate with other contenders. two hospital patients die of listeria because of prepacked

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