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tv   HAR Dtalk  BBC News  October 31, 2019 4:30am-5:00am GMT

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social networking site twitter says it's decided to stop carrying all political advertising from next month. in a series of tweets, its founder and chief executive jack dorsey said the reach of a political message should be earned by gaining followers, rather than being bought. the us military has published the first images of the raid in which the leader of the islamic state group was killed. the video shows troops targeting militants on the ground as they flew towards the compound where abu bakr al—baghdadi was hiding — before they moved in. firefighters in the suburbs of los angeles are battling a new wildfire that erupted early on wednesday. the blaze in california's simi valley tripled in size in around two hours and almost engulfed the ronald reagan presidential library. its director said the building was out of danger. now on bbc news, it's hardtalk.
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welcome to hard tour, i'm stephen sackur. perhaps inevitably, britain's unresolved brexit agony has led to a general election. the current parliament couldn't find a path out of the morass so the people must now elect a new one. brexit has exposed deep tensions in britain's vaunted system of democracy, raising questions about the relationship between the people, parliament, government and the courts. my guest ‘s businesswoman gina miller, who led to legal challenges to the government's read brexit strategy and won both times. how come this non— politician is at such an impact upon britain's political landscape?
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gina miller, welcome to hardtalk. lovely to be here. it seems something very important happened to you after that june 2016 something very important happened to you after thatjune 2016 referendum which saw a majority voting for brexit. you cease to bejust which saw a majority voting for brexit. you cease to be just a concerned citizen looking at the politics of written. you became an activist determined to use the law to make an intervention. what prompted that change? so the idea of becoming an activist injune 2016 is not actually, there is a back round
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to me which is of activism of the last 30 years but not in the political arena slide been an activist when it's come to civil rights or in the charity sector and the investment world were up by my business. activism is something i've been part of but i've also been very interested in the way our politics has been operating in terms of secondary and primary legislation and powers going all the way back to the tony blair government and look at what happened there. so i've been reading hansard, keeping up with debates and actually looking at how something called henry viii powers and secondary legislation had been used and it was causing me a lot of concern because what we were seeing, 01’ concern because what we were seeing, or what i was seeing, was a lack of transparency and scrutiny and that actually underlies the majority of my campaign, is the idea of transparency and scrutiny. to try to make this as accessible as possible to either non— constitutionalists or lawyers, you, as of that boat and
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the government, it was theresa may at the time, the government's handling of this mandate from the people for brexit, you saw, did you, and over mighty executive? exactly. what i saw was going to happen because we have this unwritten constitution, very peculiar in the ukfora constitution, very peculiar in the uk for a modern democracy to still have an unwritten constitution, if theresa may as prime minister had bypassed parliament and used her power, this royal prerogative power to trigger article 50... power, this royal prerogative power to trigger article 50. .. let's be clear to people not following the ins and outs, article 50 is the mechanism by which the government triggered the process to leave the european union. that was a legal requirement to trigger the beginning of leaving and mrs may was going to do that by bypassing parliament and that would have changed and notjust oui’ that would have changed and notjust our constitution but actually the powers that sit in with the executive and the prime minister going forward because when you don't have a written constitution, its president and procedures that then set what happens next and so it was
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very alarming to me that we were going to in effect close down parliamentarians voices, close the door of parliament. reading up on your background for this interview, it is striking to me the degree with which you talk about your father, but your father's commit to the law, he was a barrister in british guyana. and eventually attorney general. and instilling in new the notion that as you live far away as a child, that written was somehow the model of a sort of much vaunted parliamentary democratic system governed by the rule of law. do you think now that you reflect on what you've done over the past three yea rs, you've done over the past three years, that somehow you are following your father's values. it's very interesting because through my campaigning, i have intended to look back but i've had cause to do so now and what i realised is how strong that sense is in me and you're absolutely right because growing up, his view was very much when there was instability and society, culture and democracy, the rule of law is
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the one thing that can create a real sense of stability but also right and wrong and balance. all of these values was something i grew up with andi values was something i grew up with and i didn't actually appreciate how much is values and principles were being inflicted in the way i live my aduu being inflicted in the way i live my adult life. all of which really sounds, if i may say so, rather pure unrighteous but isn't there another factor which we haven't gotten to yet which is that on the night of june 23,2016, yet which is that on the night of june 23, 2016, you were personally appalled by the fact that the british people had voted to leave the european union. i think you said you felt sick to your stomach. yes. and that you, never mind all the stuff about values and the law and respect for the united kingdom, you we re respect for the united kingdom, you were just respect for the united kingdom, you werejust going to respect for the united kingdom, you were just going to do everything you possibly could to stop brexit. no, that's not correct because u nfortu nately, that's not correct because unfortunately, where people have been experiencing three, three .5
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yea rs of been experiencing three, three .5 years of this chaos we have seen with exit, my experience of it started in october 20 for dean because i was one of the people involved in the original remain campaign travelling around the country. i was travelling to most of the areas that eventually voted leave but just travelling the areas that eventually voted leave butjust travelling the country, talking to people about why we should remain and i was never a ha rd core we should remain and i was never a hardcore remainder, as some people called it but i weighed up and balanced... frankie that makes you pretty hardcore. what i'm getting at is, you are is the purest constitutional list and more deeply committed partisan in this debate. constitutional list and more deeply committed partisan in this debatelj will get to the point i was going to make which is not partisan and this is the thing. 0n make which is not partisan and this is the thing. on balance i weighed up is the thing. on balance i weighed up andi is the thing. on balance i weighed up and i would talk about why i thought remaining on being a strong voice was very important to my beliefs and what i thought was the way we should go but actually, in those months and i was going into green rooms with people on the leave
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side, i never met anybody who a, thought leave would win and b, had a plan, who told me how we were actually going to leave so what caused me my sick is in that stomach and the alarm was i was convinced and the alarm was i was convinced andi and the alarm was i was convinced and i stillam and the alarm was i was convinced and i still am that at that time, nobody was prepared for a leave vote, nobody on the leave side or politicians were prepared. it was a shock to them that we were going to leave and there was no plan in place 01’ no leave and there was no plan in place or no understanding of the magnitude of the path we were about to take on and that is what alarmed me more than anything else. so here we set, and asi than anything else. so here we set, and as i said in the introduction, we are now facing a general election in the united kingdom because the british parliament was simply unable to pass a consensual deal to get us out of the european union, it never happened. when we look at the history of the last three years, how important do you think the two cases that you pursued against the government, the executive, are going to be seen as? do you think they we re to be seen as? do you think they were of lasting significance was simply of passing significance? no,
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they are both of lasting sick litigants and the slightly different reasons. “— litigants and the slightly different reasons. —— significance. the first is without that case, article 50 would have been triggered against that backdrop of not having a plan and we would have been sent into what i believe and still a lot of politicians and commentators believe, into a chaotic situation where there is very little understanding that we won'tjust going to stop and leave but we actually have to reverse 45 years of membership. but hang on a minute, you won that decision about triggering article 50 but of course the government went through the process , the government went through the process, the supreme court demanded and got parliamentary approval overwhelmingly for the triggering of article 50 so it didn't make any difference at all. oh, it absolutely did because if we didn't have that process we wouldn't have preserved our parliamentary sovereignty which was the very thing believers were talking about. parliament is the essential core of our democracy and what would have happened is a new president would have been set in the first case that a prime minister and an executive can change our rights
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without consulting parliament would preserved parliament's without consulting parliament would preserved pa rliament‘s role without consulting parliament would preserved parliament's role in our democracy. and briefly if you would, the second case which is much more recent, this september of 2019 and which you essentially argued with your team before the supreme court that doris johnson had your team before the supreme court that dorisjohnson had no right to pro— rogue, to suspend parliament at the crucialjunction. he does have the crucialjunction. he does have the right to prorogue parliament, that sits with a prime minister but it was the intent of doing it in a 5- it was the intent of doing it in a 5— week period. it was the intent of doing it in a 5- week period. but i suppose, it made a lot of headlines, you garnered a huge amount of publicity but what difference in practical terms are historic and sixpack historians going to conclude it made? it preserved parliamentary sovereignty and is defined the separation of polymers, all the way back to the proclamations of 1610, there has been this oversight from there has been this oversight from the courts when there has been overstepped of political on the terrain that actually should be there for the courts or for the sovereignty of parliament. do you on
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reflection worry about the degree to which your intervention is backed by a very talented and expensive legal team, drag the courts, thejudiciary into what is and always has been essentially a political argument about whether britain should be in or out of the european union? let me be very clear. the courts were not treading on the political terrain. they have not been dragged into a political debate. both my cases, we argued on the black—and—white letter of the law on the constitution and they were very careful in both judgements. if you read both judgements, they are black—and—white, they do not mention politics or tell the government or politicians what to do. the fact is, and one could quote you, government ministers, leading commentators in the press, many people saw those decisions taken by the supreme court justices is fundamentally elliptical, whether you like it or not. yes, no, no, and i said to many
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of those commentators when i met them, have you read thejudgement? the majority of them have not. they have decided that's what the courts did. if they read the judgements, they would see, especially the second case. it's a very robust judgement, it doesn't make a political stance. but gina miller, this is where politics and the law are not the same thing and i dare say the vast majority of people in that country expect this country, the people who voted in the referendum and the people who feel their voice deserves to be heard, they would have read the rulings and they would have read the rulings and the dry legal either, they simply feel, but have a very strong feeling that the courts ended up being a pa rt that the courts ended up being a part of a process attempting to thwart brexit. and that's a very dangerous place for the courts to be. it is a dangerous place for the courts to be that part of the position of them being there is the way the politicians decided to politicise the case. if you look a day after in the judgement and actually what tory politicians in
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particular was saying, they were the ones who are politicising it. let me quote you jeremy wright, the attorney general. he accused you and your legal team of, and i quote, attempting to suit what the will of the british people. that is the most despicable thing for an attorney general to do unsafe because what he said was political and not the judgement in the case so what the politicians have done, they have propagandise to the case, if you like, and may be political. the case on its own wasn't. i say to people, if you break the law, do you think they should not be ascension? listen to the words of lord judge, a former chiefjustice. he was talking not just about the courts, he was talking about britain's key institutions. he said the lesson of history is chilling when citizens, the public, loses confidence in its own institutions, their institutions, not ours, they can be beguiled by individuals or parties, whether of left or right, that appear to offer them a route out of what they perceived to be chaos and uncertainty. was warning about the
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dangers of populism. if people lose faith in the core institutions. i would put it to you inadvertently, not because you sorted, but what you did run the risk of robbing those institutions of public confidence. and that's why we were so careful about the way both cases were actually written and the way we argued it. we were very mindful of that and the data, that may be a perception and people may say that but i always look at the data on the polls have shown after both cases that the majority of the public, especially in the prorogue case, the second case, the majority of the public, 56% felt that it was right that doris johnson public, 56% felt that it was right that dorisjohnson was held to account by the courts so it did not do that. —— borisjohnson. what it's done, the trust deficit is not in the courts. the trust deficit is in politicians and it's very important that in that environment where we have got this growing mistrust, that there is a lever of something that
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rings stability and that to my mind is the law. is there a trust deficit in you, do you think? well, some people don't agree with what i'm doing, they may not understand but as far as doing, they may not understand but as faras i'm doing, they may not understand but as far as i'm aware, there isn't. let me be more specific and i'm going to quote somebody you'll have no time for but i think his view is leading to something that it's important we have different views. brendan 0'neill important we have different views. brendan o'neill is an ardent brexiteer, right—wing commentator. he said, anyone who doubts the battle over brexit is a clash between the elite and the people should behold the figure of gina miller. no—one he said that sums up the elitist nature of reactionary effo rts the elitist nature of reactionary efforts to stop exit and by extension to stop democracy itself than ms miller. he goes on to describe you, really rather unflattering leak as a filthy rich businesswoman. i don't like the language particularly but i am interested in the idea, you used your amazing connections, network of contacts and wealth to leverage and
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use your agency through the courts. most people don't have the access that you have so doesn't that raise questions about the degree to which you were fulfilling britain's democratic my my answer is that if i have worked hard, the idea that painted is painted is that i found money growing on a tree instead of working for it. and my background has not been easy but i find myself at a place where i have, i do have that privilege. access to a network of officials and lawyers and i have the money. i am officials and lawyers and i have the money. iam not officials and lawyers and i have the money. i am not beholden to others. and in the spirit of transparency if i may because talking about your role in a political endeavour, how much have you and your associates spent on these various legal funds? there are no associates. it is just me. my senior counsel work pro bono
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and when it comes to the west of it —— rest of it it has been hundreds of thousands. but that is my money and ifi of thousands. but that is my money and if i wish to do so, because one thing i have always felt but isn't that dangerous for democracy? when people with access to that money have more access? i wish the system was different and that someone who is concerned does not have to have wealth and can actually exercise their civic voice. that is a deficit of our system and it's something that desperately needs reforming. at the same time, if i have the ability to express on behalf of so many people that there is something wrong with what is happening in our politics, that a prime minister puts himself above the law. let's not forget that. you say you speak for people and you may or may not be right but ultimately you are self appointed. you are not accountable to people. i am accountable to the
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courts because if writing up those cases the court felt they did not have merit and that they were not legitimate, i can't just have merit and that they were not legitimate, i can'tjust turn up in court and bring any old case i feel like doing. it has to have a strong legal merit. and if they had decided it did not then the case would not have been heard. the cost to you and you have been frank about the high cost of it in monetary terms. the cost of it in monetary terms. the cost has been much greater than money. in the last few months and yea rs, money. in the last few months and years, actually, you have suffered a great deal of toxic abuse and it has gone beyond abuse, it has gone to threats. quite alarming and frightening threats. again, reflect with me, what impact has that had on you? having been a campaigner and a p pa re ntly you? having been a campaigner and apparently i was going to destroy the city by myself through my campaigning, iam the city by myself through my campaigning, i am used to a certain level of abuse. but i anticipated two things that i got wrong.
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firstly, when i brought the case, the first in particular, i never imaginedi the first in particular, i never imagined i would be on my own throughout the process dig i presumed if i stepped up others would join me. you think others were too frightened ? would join me. you think others were too frightened? i know that. and thatis too frightened? i know that. and that is one of the things. when they saw the toxicity of what i was getting they decided it was not the thing to do, to step up. what that meant is that i got all the abuse. and what is so alarming to me and i did not anticipate was the level at which that abuse is targeted at me because i am a which that abuse is targeted at me because i am a woman which that abuse is targeted at me because i am a woman of colour and because i am a woman of colour and because i am supposedly have no right as someone who has come to the uk to have a voice. those are very disturbing things about our society. and while i do reflect and i'm alarmed about them, they have actually meant that i will continue to do these because i don't think those are values needed in our country. but in doing so you are, by definition, having to accept that not only yourself but your family, you do have children as well, that
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they will live in a world where their freedom is compromised. their freedom was compromised now. what happens if we move in a direction of our country appears to be going in where they have to hide the colour of their skin? is it worth it that your children cannotjust of their skin? is it worth it that your children cannot just walk of their skin? is it worth it that your children cannotjust walk down the street without thinking very carefully about where they are going because of what their mother has done. i have tried to keep them out of it. you don't feel the freight level has reached a point where your whole family has to fear? there are threats that they will be taken and killed. i get those on a daily basis. but the threat levels i get is because i am speaking up against things i believe are wrong and i will do that and they understand i will do that and they understand i will do that to protect the world that they were living in the future. they must never have to hide who there. your commitment now is turning political because in this general election period you are at the forefront of a campaign to get
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the forefront of a campaign to get the various different parties who advocate remain to strategise, to maximise the impact of remain votes in the coming general election. it is complicated because we're talking about the liberal democrats, nationalist parties scotland and wales, arguably the liberal party although their position is much less clear. but how on earth do you think you will develop a strategy that wins? i did this in 2017. was the first time we had a complex political tactical voting campaign in the uk. we did not before. and i looked around the world and found that in canada they have can successfully done it. so i brought over those experts and. in 2017. i also ran one in the general election, sorry, in the eu election full it is not easy. it is not an easy thing to do better way is quite simple. i have a phrase here. a technique called multilevel regression or in post stratification
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to the can you turn that into english so you can explain to me how in any given constituency, and britain has 650 of them, you can ensure that they remain... we cannot ensure. we look at the marginal seats, there will probably be around 50 or 60 of the 650 where splitting the remain vote will mean in a first past the post system it will be difficult for that candidate to have someone from the remain, one of the remain parties to win. so by tactically voting, or lending their vote to one of the other parties, that first past the post system means that should they get the maximum votes they will be able to win full that we about values in respect to democracy. again, you are using a lot of money and sophisticated computer technology to name democracy. we are not gaming it. unfortunately i cannot fix our system but there are many of us who
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believe that the first past the post system is not representative enough for us in the uk and hopefully we will get to electoral reform at some stage. but in the system that we have at the moment, it is very difficult. as a country, we keep hearing that we are 5248. over the last 12 months, 113 polls that we have had have not shown that sitting systematically they have shown that we are actually over 57% remain country. i don't know... we are actually over 57% remain country. idon't know... idon't know if those polls truly show 57%. they show the country is divided down the middle. it is down the middle. there is something more. if we, it is not now no longer theoretical about what our future relationship will be to we now have prime ministerjohnson's withdrawal agreement saying that that is in agreement saying that that is in agreement that will damage us economically from a rights point of view and from an environmental point of view and that is what we fight
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against. nothing theoretical any longer. less and by returning to the beginning. we spoke about your childhood and your father's influence on you and his vision of it and that played a role in your thoughts about this country. it turns out it seems to me that having been active here for so many years, particularly recently in politics, britain is not quite the place you thought it was. i wonder, particularly in the light of the threats you have mentioned, whether you ever think you do not want to live here anymore? again, quite the opposite. uri. like most people from a commonwealth country, we have a reverent view of britain and i have lived here for over a0 years and i know what an incredible country it is. and i will fight to ensure that we return to being that did because u nfortu nately we return to being that did because unfortunately in the last few years we have had a drift from a very united tolerance country into one thatis united tolerance country into one that is very divided. and if i can help get us passed this moment in history, back to the great country i think we are then i will carry on
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trying to campaign for that. gina miller. we must endeavour thank you very much for being on hardtalk. hello. south—western reaches of the uk have had relentless rain in the last couple of days — cornwall, the channel islands and devon. this was the scene sent in from one of our weather watchers from paignton yesterday. fairly solid, grey cloud and outbreaks of rain on and off throughout the day.
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still wet weather around here at the moment, but the low pressure centre responsible is going to be pulling away to the south of the uk as the day pans out. so we'll see things becoming drier, not necessarily brighter, and then we await our next weather system, this time coming from the atlantic, that will bring rain to all areas for friday. for today, though, a lot of dry weather to be had. the best of the sunshine to the north and east. the rain clearing from the south—west. quite a bit of cloud hanging back, though, across southern wales and the midlands, and the cloud thickening in the west later in the day as that next system approaches. another breezy day, particularly around western coasts. temperatures — well, we could get up to 1a in plymouth with a bit of brightness and some drier weather. we're typically looking at around 9—10 as we cast our eye further north towards scotland. if you are heading out this evening to trick—or—treat, well, central and eastern areas faring pretty well, with a dry story, just one of increasing cloud. further west, patchy rain to start with but turning heavier and more persistent as we get towards midnight. that, of course, is because our next weather system is starting to work its way in. this low pressure centre is going to stay with us notjust on friday but on to the weekend, swirling bands of rain our way.
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it is, though, also going to bring some much milder airfrom quite a way south in the atlantic our way on a south—westerly wind, so the temperatures will start to go up even though the rain is coming down. some quite heavy rain at times on friday, tending at first to come in showery bursts, then perhaps some more persistent rain running into the south later on in the day. there will be some brightness in between the showers, and with that sunshine, we could push temperatures up to 16 or 17 degrees across eastern england. we're still talking about nine or ten at this stage in scotland. friday into saturday, here's our low pressure system with us. some question as to exactly how this picture will evolve. if it goes like this, and we get this deep squeeze to the south of the low running to the south of the uk on saturday, it could be a very windy day, particularly for south coastal regions of the uk. either way, it looks like a pretty windy story really for many of us on the weekend, and outbreaks
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of rain on and off for both saturday and sunday too. the temperatures slide down a little as well.
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this is the briefing, i'm sally bundock. our top story: social networking giant twitter announces a global ban on all political advertising, beginning next month. the us military publishes the first images of the raid in which the leader of the islamic state group was killed. officials in new york vote to ban the sale of foie gras, saying its production is cruel on ducks and geese. in business, 2.8 billion forgiving friends. facebook gets bigger and richer than ever,

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