tv Westminster in review BBC News July 29, 2018 2:30pm-3:01pm BST
this is bbc news, the headlines... an emergency has been declared in northern california as wildfires continue a rampage through the state, killing people and damaging hundreds of homes. at least 1a people have been killed on the centre and knees in island of lombok, over 100 people have been injured due to an earthquake. here, online trolls who intimidate election candidates or campaigners could be barred from public office. a move has been considered after social media abuse was found to be rife during an investigation into the election last year. qatar's successful bid to host the football world cup in 2022, more on those stories, now it's time
for westminster in review. hello and welcome to a hot and sultry westminster where the temperature has been rising inside the chamber and out. coming up on this programme, government and opposition mps harangue ministers as the government grapples with the uk's exit from the european union. a strong, independent, self—governing britain that is genuinely open to the world. not the miserable, permanent limbo of chequers. theresa may insists she has a plan for a principled and practical brexit. but there is drama in the commons and the lords as the government faces a series of knife—edge votes. the ayes to the right, 301. the noes to the left, 307. also on this programme, ministers promise an end to what is called the hostile
environment to immigrants in the wake of the windrush scandal. and as the government promises more money for england's nhs, the opposition asks, who's paying? her figures are so dodgy they belong on the side of a bus. we have consistently put extra money into the national health service. but first, the uk is set to leave the eu in march 2019 but the government has some crucial legislation to get through before then. first and foremost, the bill putting eu law into uk legislation to stop a legal black hole opening up after the brexit and giving ministers the option to change those laws once we have left. but the seemingly simple aim of the eu withdrawal bill led to a parliamentary battle that went on for nine months. the bill had passed through the commons before easter with just one defeat inflicted on it. a demand by mps for a vote on the final deal struck with brussels.
but when it got to the lords, peers took scissors to the bill, inflicting defeat after defeat after defeat on the legislation. coming back to the commons, concessions and compromises were reached, but there was still one big sticking point. having secured a vote on the final deal, there was a call for parliament have an even bigger say with the power to direct the government on what to do if we left the eu without any deal at all. the mp leading the battle explained why it was flawed. we cannot allow a situation in which there is no mechanism for dealing with no deal. the minister intervened several times to try to offer a compromise until the speaker had had enough. this isn't a private conversation with another member. i want the whole house to hear what the honourable gentleman wants to blurt out, preferably briefly. dominic grieve disappeared from the chamber for yet another meeting with ministers.
after some frantic negotiations, the rebels thought they had an acceptable compromise. but when they saw the small print after the vote, they weren't happy. so, when the bill went back to the house of lords, a conservative peer took up the cudgels demanding that parliament have greater say. but a conservative brexiteer thought that wasn't all lord hailsham wanted to do. could he say whether it remains his position that he wishes at all costs to destroy brexit and that in fact... man in background: you are an idiot. ..could he say on a point of clarification whether he wishes to destroy brexit, that's not a very parliamentary gesture, if i might say so, noble lord. and that this amendment is in fact about sabotaging brexit. .. but lord hailsham argued this issue was bigger than party politics. this is the high court of parliament! and we are not party hacks. and when it came to the vote, peers insisted on parliament having a say,
sending the bill to the commons again. cue more frantic negotiations and a last government compromise that mps would have a meaningful vote in the speaker ruled in favour of one. the concession was put to a final tight vote. pregnant mps were summoned and one mp who had been receiving hospital treatment was wheeled through the commons, covered in a blanket and carrying a sick bowl. at the end of it all, the government won the day, just. the ayes to the right, 303. the noes to the left, 319, so the noes have it, the noes have it. unlock. and all that meant, the bill finally received royal ascent, turning it into law at the end ofjune. so how bruising a battle has all this been and how is anyone supposed to keep up with the ins and outs of brexit? questions i put to bbc political correspondent jonathan blake.
it's baffling enough for those of us whose job it is to cover the process of brexit on a daily basis. i think people watching and listening and reading and trying to understand what is going on could be forgiven for being a bit confused and we have seen the government's position change, still, we hear that ministers disagree within the cabinet on whether that is the right way forward. and what about theresa may's style of government? has that it had an impact? i think theresa may's style of leadership means it can be difficult to get a handle on where the process ends up. she's not someone who sets out a big, bold vision and sticks to it no matter what, she is much more collegiate, day by day sort of leader whose position evolves over time and we have seen that throughout the process of brexit up until this point and of course the white paper that has been forward, the deal the government wants to get, is effectively a wish list and that position is going to have to evolve through the negotiations as both the uk government and the eu make concessions.
jonathan blake. we will be hearing more from him later in the programme. it might be hard to believe that the last three months hasn't been all about brexit. the government found itself on the back foot over a scandal that had been building for years, the treatment of the windrush generation. it affected thousands of people who were invited to come to the uk between the 1940s and 70s on ships like the hm windrush to help rebuild post—war britain. their landing cars were later destroyed and when immigration rules were tightened earlier this decade, they found they didn't have the paperwork to prove their legal right to be in the uk and access benefits and healthcare. as the row rumbled on, amber rudd told mps there were no targets for removing illegal immigrants but it later turned out such targets did exist. ms rudd came to the commons. the integration arm of the home office has been using local targets for internal performance management. these were not published targets
against which performance was assessed but if they were used inappropriately then i am clear that this will have to change. this home secretary is presiding over a department out of control marked by cruelty and chaos. will she stop shielding the prime minister? will she do the honourable thing and resign? we now understand that people have been removed because of targets and she said she didn't know. i say with all conscience, is she really the right person to lead this office of state? and it turned out she wasn't. ms rudd resigned over the issue and was replaced a few days later by sajid javid who promised and change in immigration policy. thank you very much indeed... a few weeks later, members of the windrush generation told of their nightmare of being detained. i opened the door, they asked me my name, i said my name's anthony bryan, they said
they were arresting me. i said what? they said they were arresting me. i asked who they were and they said immigration. they said to get some clothes together because i wasn't able to stay there, they were going to take me to detention. isaid, could i make a phone call? they said no. the mps asked what would have happened if he hadn't had family outside detention? if it wasn't for her, i'd have given up a long time. i'd have given up. it was too hard, too hard. and what, paulette, would have happened if you hadn't had natalie there? i'd be injamaica. marching out of the home office and telling them what was going on? i'd be injamaica all alone, no—one to... i did not know anybody over there. so it was like, are they sending me to die, or? i give thanks for having daughter like the one i've got. if it weren't for her, i wouldn't be here. paulette wilson.
theresa may announced injune that england's nhs was to get an extra £20 billion per year by 2023. as to where the money was going to come from, she said some of it could be from the so—called brexit dividend. brexit campaigners had famously claimed that after brexit, money coming back from brussels could be used to fund the health service. jeremy corbyn pressed theresa may for more details. they can be no brexit dividend before 2022, economic growth is the slowest since 2009, so which taxes are going up? the prime minister quoted an unnamed labourmp. he said, "we will use the funds returned from brussels after brexit to invest in our public services." it was him, the right honourable gentleman, the leader of the opposition! her figures are so dodgy they belong on the side of a bus. until this government can be straight with people where the money is coming from, why should anyone, anyone, anywhere, trust them on the nhs?
for the 70 years of the nhs, for 43 of these years, it has been under the stewardship of a conservative government. we have, despite taking difficult and necessary decisions on public spending in 2010, as a result of the deficit left by the last labour government, we have consistently put extra money into the national health service. theresa may. staying with prime minister's questions, there was a moment of high drama in mid—june. the scottish and westminster governments were at odds over the eu withdrawal bill and what it might mean for devolution. the scottish national party reckoned that the westminster government was launching a power grab to try to hold onto powers that were coming back to the uk from brussels. the row spilt over into westminster.
a series of commons votes on brexit meant debate on crucial issues returning powerfrom brussels to the scottish parliament was cut short tojust 18 minutes. at prime minister's questions the next day, the snp‘s westminster leader will be cowed. the people of scotland will not be disrespected by this parliament. mr speaker, under the circumstances, given the disrespect that's shown, i have got no option but to ask that this house now sits in private. a call for the house to sit in private is a way to disrupt business and to register a protest. it means that the public and the press galleries have to be completely cleared. it requires a vote and after some confusion, the speaker ruled that vote could be taken at the end of the session, not immediately in the middle of pmqs as ian blackford wanted. mr blackford objected noisily and john bercow wasn't having that. resume your seat, mr blackford, no.
no, you're not moving anything! resume your seat! mr blackford continued to object. in light of the persistent and repeated refusal of the right honourable gentleman to resume his seat when so instructed, i order the right honourable gentleman to withdraw immediately from the house for order for the remainder of this day's sitting. ian blackford stiffened his shoulders, turned, and marched towards the exit. a moment later, all the other snp mps followed him. the tories jeered as they walked past. later at what appeared to be a prearranged press conference, he said his party would use parliamentary procedures to best effect to protest against what he said was devolution being ripped up as powers are being repatriated from brussels. still, if the snp were angry, things were not
exactly sweetness and light within the cabinet. theresa may was under pressure to come up with a plan for our future relationship with the eu. an eu summit at the end ofjune agreed the pace of the brexit talks needed to be accelerated and intensified. after that came familiar weekend reports of bitter infighting over brexit among conservative cabinet members and the news that the prime minister was to propose a new option on the vexed subject of a future uk customs arrangement with the eu. a plan that was unveiled to her covenant at a crunch meeting at her country retreat of chequers. it proposed a common rulebooks of goods to avoid a hard border in northern ireland and the uk collecting eu tariffs, taxes on imports, eight uk borders on the eu's behalf. after a day's debate, the cabinet agreed the blueprint and mrs may agreed the collective responsibility within the covenant had returned.
two days later the brexit secretary david davis resigned, and foreign secretary borisjohnson quit the following day, both unable to sign up to the prime minister's compromise. personal statement, mr borisjohnson. in his resignation statement, borisjohnson said theresa may's plan amounted to brexit in name only. it's not too late to save brexit. we have time in these negotiations. we have changed tack once and we can change again. a strong, independent, self—governing britain that is genuinely open to the world, not the miserable permanent limbo of chequers, not the democratic disaster of ongoing harmonisation with no way out and no say for the uk. borisjohnson. but despite the resignations and the disagreements, part of the chequers agreement were turned into the customs bill on uk—eu cross—border
trade after brexit. but brexiteer mps didn't like that, and put down amendments to the bill, which the government later accepted. but that upset the remainers, who thought those amendments undermined the chequers deal. it led to some feisty and highly personal exchanges later. it was margaret thatcher that championed free trade as a proud conservative. and i am a tory. i believe in business. i believe in capitalism. i believe in enterprise. i knew margaret thatcher. i worked for margaret thatcher. my honourable friend ain't no margaret thatcher. pathetic! is that the best you can do? can i say to my right honourable friend that i don't pretend to be able to walk in margaret thatcher's boots. if we do not deliver
frictionless trade, either by a customs union or indeed by some magical third way that the prime minister thinks she can deliver on, and good luck to her on that, if we do not do that, thousands ofjobs will go. the former brexit secretary made his first speech since his resignation. the risks and costs of having a customs border are less than is being claimed. and what we are giving up to join a customs union is much more than is imagined. the european union is a slow and not very effective negotiator of free trade. yet we keep hearing about their negotiating power. actually, the fact that they represent 28 different countries means they come up with suboptimal outcomes all the time. this idea that somehow or other every good that comes into the eu via northern ireland and then through the republic will have to be stopped, it doesn't even match with common day practice. and of course when it comes to collecting taxes.
13,000 lorries per year across the border, carrying drink to other parts of the united kingdom. there is duty to be collected on it. not one of them stopped, because the duty is collected. we are two years on and no real progress has been made. tory rivalries, leadership ambitions and factionalism is making this country a laughing stock and they should be ashamed. the uk government will not support things that have been put forward by anybody who supports remain. the labour frontbench will not support anything that has been put forward by the conservative remainers. the dup don't support anything except what they are told to by the uk government on the basis they are being paid to do so. mr speaker, it is a complete shambles. kirsty blackman. that was just the start.
the next day mps debated the trade bill, where pro—eu conservatives put down amendments demanding that the uk stay in a customs union with the eu if the brexit talks failed to come up with an alternative by january 2019. the move was defeated by a whisker. the ayes to the right, 301. the noes to the left, 307. but there was no sigh of relief for ministers. the government was defeated over moves to keep the free flow of medicines between the eu and uk. much of the brexit argument has been about how far the uk will be free to do trade deals with other countries once we have left the european union. the government is keen to capitalise on our relationship with the united states so the prime minister invited the president to the uk after the nato talks injuly. 0n the eve of being greeted by theresa may, the sun printed an interview with donald trump where he said that staying close to the eu would make such a uk—us trade deal very unlikely.
just for good measure, he added that he would like to meet up with the former foreign secretary, borisjohnson, and added that he would make a good prime minister. well, those comments caused outrage, as did the fact that the president was coming to the uk at all, with tens of thousands of protesters taking to the streets across the uk to object to the president's policies on migration and his attitude to women. while his visit had much of the formality and tradition of a state visit, it was described as a working trip. there was dinner with the prime minister and a group of business leaders before a trip to windsor for a meeting with the queen and tea inside windsor castle. but not everybody thought the visit a great success. trump looks more comfortable straddling the world stage next to putin then he did beside the prime minister. how can she justify sabotaging our secure economic relationship with ourfriends in the eu, and curry favour with a man who prides himself on shredding the rules—based order? i will say to the
honourable lady that is not a question that can be answered, for the precise reason that the basis of the question is entirely wrong. a frantic few months for the government that has weaved its way through crunch votes, crisis, division and opposition, with a few unwelcome interventions thrown in. i asked jonathan blake if it was possible to predict where we would be on exit day in march next year. although that date is in everybody‘s diary for the 29th of march, 2019, when the uk is scheduled to leave, under the rules of article 50, which are very slim, that could be extended. the date could be put back, the transition agreement which we are expecting to lastjust under two years could also be extended. still it is very difficult to predict who will be in power, even. there might well be a general election between now and when the uk is scheduled to leave
the european union. donald trump made a rather pointed intervention, notjust about how he thought brexit should be done, but also who should be doing it. was that a storm in a teacup or was it something more serious? there is no doubt president trump's comments, the prospects of a trade deal between the uk and the us were all but dead in the water, but was an absolute bombshell and caught a lot of people at westminster offguard. people in government were horrified he would come here and say that in such clear terms. the prime minister was quick to dismiss it, we're told, from what the president said in a news conference. "don't worry, mr president, it's only the press." but those words caused real concern, and there was much relief, i think, when the president walked back his position considerably when the complexities of brexiteer be made clear. he also said borisjohnson would make a good prime minister. how did that go down? yes, to be standing next to the prime minister and saying that in his opinion, borisjohnson, who had recently resigned as foreign secretary after making life pretty tricky for theresa may as prime minister,
and let's not forget he was a challenger to her, to the conservative leadership, alongside her, there is no doubt that the president standing there and saying borisjohnson would be a good prime minister in his eyes was an uncomfortable moment for theresa may. and i think that is understating things slightly. donald trump left the uk and went on to meet president putin in helsinki, later announcing a plan for the russian president to visit the white house in the autumn. but the uk's relations with russia remained frosty after two people were poisoned in wiltshire with the same nerve agents used on the former former spy sergei skripal and his daughter yulia in march. dawn sturgess and charlie rowley picked up a small bottle thought to have been discarded by those behind the attack on the skripals. the uk government continues to point the finger at russia for the poisonings. dawn sturgess later died and sajid javid said this was now a murder investigation. with this incident we must be
led by the evidence, and frankly it is hard to see there is no other plausible expiration. mps finally gave the go—ahead to plans to expand london's heathrow airport. the new runway will increase the annual capacity of the airport, europe's busiest, from 85 million passengers to 130 million. construction is unlikely to be finished before 2026. all five of london's main airports will be full by the mid—2030s. heathrow is full today. what is actually happening, madam deputy speaker, is that we are seeing business leave the united kingdom and go to airports like frankfurt, amsterdam, paris, which have made additional capacity provision. this proposal for a third runway at heathrow was first published in 2002. hong kong published theirs in 2011. theirs will be built within five years. if we are to remain internationally competitive, does my right honourable friend not agree we should get on and build it? if you were asking me to come up with the
most backward—looking, ill—thought—through, poorly— nutted—out, badly—articulated, wing—and—a—prayer, bad—value—for—money, most polluting airport plan i could find, this would be it. 4000 homes will go. 8000 to 10,000 people forcibly removed from their community. the biggest forcible removal of human beings since the scottish highland clearances. a church, a temple, community centres, open spaces, even at hospice is now threatened. heckling in the commons is just one of those things that ministers have to learn to cope with. but updating mps on the battle against the islamic state group, the defence secretary, gavin williamson, discovered a new type of heckle. heckling himself using his own mobile phone. the syrian democratic forces... siri: i've found something on the web for syrian democratic forces.
what a very rum business that is. i do apologise for that. it is very rare that you are heckled by your own mobile phone, so if i may proceed, mr speaker, without the help and support of siri. that's it from us for now. we will be back with our daily roundups in september without the help and support of siri. in the meantime they will be hard at work here to restore and renew the palace of westminster. many voters will be looking at the government and wondering if theresa may can do the same. but now, from me, alissia mccarthy, and an under—reconstruction big ben, goodbye. good afternoon. fresh, wet and windy. words we haven't heard much
of this summer but certainly what we are seeing today. this photo was sentin are seeing today. this photo was sent in by a weather watcher in romford, you can see a soggy seen through that window there and a 5°99y through that window there and a soggy garden in this photo sent in bya soggy garden in this photo sent in by a weather watcher in epsom, surrey. window seeing some raindrops there. that rain is attributed to two areas of low pressure. the first in the north—west and this one bringing a majority of wet and windy weather in england and wales. the rain has cleared across england and wales, some outbreaks but scotland sees some heavy bursts through the rest of today. the majority of rain in eastern scotland, you can hear the odd rumble of thunder here. some sunny spells in ireland, an improvement on yesterday. some developing across western counties, the wind remains a feature, gusting at 40 the wind remains a feature, gusting at a0 or 45 the wind remains a feature, gusting at a0 or a5 miles an hour.
temperatures where they would be at this time of year, a touch cooler in some areas, highs of 23 degrees. through the night, it is north and east. some clear spells but also outbreaks of rain, temperatures in the south staying warm, not much below 18 degrees. in the north, fresher, between nine and 13 degrees. here is how the pressure chart looks as we move into monday, that showery air mass, we will see some outbreaks of rain in the south—east but that will gradually brighten. 0utbreaks south—east but that will gradually brighten. 0utbrea ks across south—east but that will gradually brighten. 0utbreaks across the midlands and moving into yorkshire, sunny spells developing here. the heaviest showers in scotland and northern ireland, particularly in the west of scotland where we have the west of scotland where we have the odd rumble of thunder. temperatures up slightly, a brisk south—westerly breeze. tuesday starting for many of us on a dry and finite, a couple of showers moving into the west, patches of cloud but
it turns cloudy in northern ireland and scotland with rain pushing into the west of scotland. temperatures of 25 degrees. as we go into the middle of the week, in northern ireland and the northwest, high—pressure dominates, the warmest of temperatures. a fresh start of the week, we see showers in the north and the west, but gradually warming up. temperatures in the south—east reaching 30 degrees by friday. this is bbc news, i'm shuan ley. the headlines at three. wildfires rage across northern california — five people are dead, hundreds of buildings have been destroyed. thousands have fled their homes. homes were exploding. cars were exploding. i have a wife and kids and i said i'd better facetime my wife just in case. i didn't let her know why i was doing it but i wanted to see her face one more time. trolls, people who abuse others online and who try to intimidate election candidates and campaigners, could be barred from public office, the government says.