tv Dateline London BBC News July 28, 2019 2:30am-3:01am BST
the money for it. labour says the plans have been "announced time and time" again by the conservatives. the russian interior ministry says more than 1,000 people were detained during a street protest in moscow. the protesters are angry that about 30 opposition politicians are not being allowed to stand in local elections. the authorities claimed that signatures on their applications to become candidates were not valid. violent clashes between police and protesters in hong kong have continued into the night. bricks thrown by protestors were met by police tear gas and rubber bullets. earlier, thousands had taken part in a march in an area where pro—democracy activists were attacked by an organised gang last sunday. now on bbc news: dateline london.
hello. welcome to dateline london. i'm carrie gracie. this week — banished doomsday is and glimpsed as the awesome foursome if optimism packaged in a soundbite were the packaged in a soundbite were the package to taking brexit, boris johnson would be the choice of many. but is it enough? my guests: it is political commentator alexa deane, us television journalist, well, nadine journalist, us television journalist, well, nadinejournalist, geoffrey us television journalist, well, nadine journalist, geoffrey kaufman, brian o'connell, and developed rams only. welcome to the wild. so the ball comes loose from the back of the scrum, that is a rugby phrase
borisjohnson himself once used to talk about the opportunity to become party leader and prime minister. the ball came loose, it is now in his hands, but there is a lot standing between this player and his drive. parliament has blocked the brexit deal agreed by his pet assessor, but nor is parliament prepared to tolerate no deal. the eu says the deal it agreed to is not up for renegotiation. the public remain profoundly divided, the pound is weakening. the new prime minister is boxed in by unforgiving political and economic realities. a chameleon, and economic realities. a chameleon, a joker at a moment, which demand strategy and execution. and yet and yet, alex, does this first week of borisjohnson in yet, alex, does this first week of boris johnson in office yet, alex, does this first week of borisjohnson in office suggest that behind thejoker‘s mask borisjohnson in office suggest that behind the joker‘s mask there borisjohnson in office suggest that behind thejoker‘s mask there is borisjohnson in office suggest that behind the joker‘s mask there is a steely strategy? i think it's been an amazing start. there is a sense of purpose and dynamism and energy which has really transformed
westminster. it feels like an entirely different political environment. you see it in the way journalists are responding to these discussions and the enlivened situation in the press conference you guys were discovering live. this is not what we have had for the last few years, with no disrespect to theresa may or her government, it feels like this administration has had a real shot in the arm of positivity which i think is all good. the other thing of the act emphasises this, that the british electorate, leave or remain, is pretty sick and tired of talking about brexit. so in this first hundred days any politician focuses on, boris' domestic agenda, with his new cabinet ministers, has been received exceptionally positively because it's talking about what we're going to do as a country in addition to brexit. i think all of those things, whether it be more police officers, finding in schools oi’ police officers, finding in schools or resolving things in a different way for brexit, i think those are
all positive steps in the right direction. do you agree with alex, do you see this is a good week?|j think do you see this is a good week?” think all of the policies he's coming up with at the moment are a clear destruction from the overwhelming issue of brexit. he is trying to give the impression he won't get stuck in government jobs and involving things, but the one thing that is high on peoples' mine is that single issue of brexit and thatis is that single issue of brexit and that is what his administration will be judged on. i think there is a fascination in watching the boris johnson administration unfold, but i can't pretend it is a positive fascination, it is a rather chilling and freakish aspect. 0n the one hand, it is by far the most viciously right wing and indeed british conservative government any of us can remember, and then on the other hand they are making out that
day have the sensitivity to sort out one of the most divisive issues in british history. the reality is a restrained british government has held ms ridley does make failed miserably —— failed miserably to deliver brexit, now the idea that he can sort it out by halloween? he has a tiny majority in parliament, most of his competent ministers, potential ministers, have either resigned or have been sacked and humiliated, and the eu has made it abundantly clear that they don't wa nt abundantly clear that they don't want to negotiate anymore. there is a distinctly trump style feel to this government. and yet mrjohnson things that the sheer power of his personality can now change everything. the truth is he is himself, a very divisive figure and he surrounded himself with politicians who are even more so. jeffrey, we've heard two contending realities painted, which do you
subscribe to? i think it's interesting to see a master communicator take the helm after eight may's inability to communicate authentically. in this week of an extraordinary heatwave of climate change, we have political climate change, we have political climate change to parallel it and it really reflects what has happened in the united states. we have had this pompous leader with the ability to connect with at least a certain sector of people and really mobilise that sector with impassioned rhetoric. the question is, can he actually deliver? this is a man who is extremely agile with words and it's fun to listen to him, but ultimately, as we have noted, he has 90 days to deliver brexit. we have the eu intransigent, and these are notjust the eu intransigent, and these are not just political matters, the eu intransigent, and these are notjust political matters, they the eu intransigent, and these are not just political matters, they are emotional, nationalistic matters and so emotional, nationalistic matters and so to assume that rational thought oi'i so to assume that rational thought on the eu side or here will prevail means that we are really driving
down a road through the fog. yes, let's follow, we promised we would get you there, we don't know if there's a get you there, we don't know if there'sa clip, get you there, we don't know if there's a clip, there are so many assumptions about brexit. yet there is hell or high water, full speed ahead, damn the torpedoes approach, has no consideration of the consequences stop none of us could predict what a hard brexit will do. it's fair to say it might be ok, but it might be catastrophic. yet we're being told that is where we are going. before we follow-up on jeffrey was point about the fog and the 100 days, just deal for a jeffrey was point about the fog and the 100 days, just dealfor a moment with the first week, what is your assessment? it isn't often a agree with jeffrey on assessment? it isn't often a agree withjeffrey on this programme. i do agree that it is like a breath of fresh air in a very hot and humid westminster at the moment. as jeffrey says, he is a very good communicator. having said all that, he is still in campaign mode. the campaign is over, and the delivery has to start. now, borisjohnson is
very good at campaigning, he's not very good at campaigning, he's not very good at details, he probably admitted that self, he delegated often as mayor of london and he will probably have to delegate more. but the thing is being prime minister is all about the detail. initially, i think it is a very good strategy to actually talk about the sort of things we've just seen him talking about in manchester about infrastructure, about all the other things. because people at large — the voters — are fed up listening to politicians arguing about brexit. will we will have more in the next few minutes. alex, can i get you to deal with behind the atmospherics of the first week, what about the cabinet? those were some serious charges led by nabila, what is your response to the figures we've seen promoted? being prime minister isn't all about details, it is about agenda setting and delegating, that
is an important part of the role. we welcome delegation to good ministers. i think it's remarkable, the most diverse cabinet in british history. two british asians in the cabinet, ourfirst history. two british asians in the cabinet, our first asian chancellor, two black members and james clovelly, the first black chairman of my party. and i look to what is happening in the way these people are being treated. huffington post said we shouldn't let young people cvs ministers because they are whiteness does make their internalised whiteness means they aren't really asian, that is how these people are being treated. you talk about diverse, but 64% of this government went to private schools ina government went to private schools in a country where 7% of the population does, that is not a reflection of this country.” population does, that is not a reflection of this country. i know that will never satisfy those like you who criticise our government, saying if you want diversity, look at this. they are the wrong kind of asians, they are the wrong kind of black people... their privilege... alex answered that point, though,
there is the question of socio—economic diversity, cost adversity is a real question. yes. if you satisfy one issue, the little turns of the next and say that. i'm not left, i'm just bemused that in this country that is with the mother of all parliaments, where democracy is that history, that the upper—class continues to dominate. about upper—class. i went to the school where my parents sent me, i'm sick and tired of people being blamed for where their parents sent them to go to school. it wasn't their choice. there wasn't your choice we went to school, and it wasn't my choice where i went to school. and it wasn't theirs either. let's leave that adversity point and talk about the way the cabinet divides on brexit. i think what interested a lot of people in the first week was that brexiteer is who we re first week was that brexiteer is who were having been disloyal to boris johnson were out of the cabinet, and in some cases, remainers who were loyal to borisjohnson were
promoted. so believing brexit was not the defining thing for him.” think that is a good thing. he didn't say rate, this is only a government of the city is. i think that would have been to exclusionary. this is a government ina hurry exclusionary. this is a government in a hurry that wants to get things done quickly. he wanted those who had been formally remained campaign is to sign up for a collective government, something that may have been sadly missing in recent political times. saying to get them to subscribe to the belief they are bracketing on october 31. but the other thing about these cabinet points is this —— wrecks that in. we 110w points is this —— wrecks that in. we now have have cabinet members in their domestic roles rather than just around brexit. apart from michael gove who was focused on getting things banned left right and centre, there was a mix of austerity and brexit. now we have houses for
housing policy, proper attitudes and attempt to build more policing on oui’ attempt to build more policing on our streets. you can do both, and in the political environment so dominated by the brexit discussion, the domestic agenda has been dropped a bit. if as boris johnson says, he wants to renegotiate the agreement, he has about 90 days, two dozen of those will be parliamentary sitting days, he is going to have much time for doing anything else other than brexit. it has been indicated of course that parliament can sit late and can sit on days it wouldn't normally sit if required. so the days may be longer than that. and bearin days may be longer than that. and bear in mind, you can get things donein bear in mind, you can get things done in parliament if you have a will do. this is plainly a government that's got a determination to finish.” government that's got a determination to finish. i agree with you, alex, that what johnson determination to finish. i agree with you, alex, that whatjohnson is doing is what the people of the country one, talking about things other than brexit. there is no question that everyone is fed up with the single topic that has
dominated for the last three years. and how brilliant to go to manchester, saturday morning, to announce hs three connecting the north, which feels so disenfranchised and so angry at the amount of investment and infrastructure we've seen. and london, it is terrific here, but i think it is a masterful stroke. and it is actually responding to what people want. but the problem in that agenda is that there is this clock ticking and it doesn't have long and there are so many uncertainties. there's is this notion that we are going to sit reopen, maybe, but i don't see how. the iris border and the backstop, how does they get resolved? there the backstop, how does they get resolved ? there are the backstop, how does they get resolved? there are massive existential questions that need answers in three months. nabila, you go next. do you see answers emerging from what we had from the prime minister? i must dwell on the grid ability of this government, if i may. i want to focus on patel, the
home secretary, who personifies the figures nature of this government. this was someone who was a far from popular ex— lobbyist for the alcohol and tobacco industries, she is a p pa re ntly and tobacco industries, she is apparently still a lobbyist, £1000 an hour lobbyist, and clearly in breach of the ministerial... she will have to stop that is home secretary. indeed. but this is also somebody who has been forced out of government as international dell development —— development secretary, offering umana serenade to... we don't have time to spare to do the back story of ms patel. —— humanitarian aid to... where do you think the new cabinet and he himself are taking this? well, i think, of most of the new ministers in boris johnson's government have this area of manners about them, just as ms patel does and none of them have proven their record of sorting out
complicated policy problems. that is a huge problem. i think it's absolutely ludicrous to think that britain can actually break away from it's trading block it is surrounded by. the only way this clean break can happen is if britain changed its actual geographical position which of course won't happen. my prediction is mrjohnson will approach, will strike a deal with nigel for hours's brexit party for electoral support and nigel farage in return for a full—blooded brexit asa in return for a full—blooded brexit as a carrot and nigel farage being a whiny politician will have no qualms whatsoever pushing his own populist agenda injoining whatsoever pushing his own populist agenda in joining forces. sajid javid, our first asian politician, has a long track ——
track record in deutsche bank, in finance was not i don't know what you find threatening. let's agree that most people thought that his appointment as chancellor was going to be the most significant appointment he would make across the table. it seems you're silent on that one i would think that is a good thing. in terms of brexit and our concerns, good thing. in terms of brexit and our concerns, i view things more positively. i looked at the fact that angela merkel said, that the backstop can be overwritten. michel barnier said nothing can change was not plainly the heads of government are looking to do a deal in this closing time and you are right to point out that time is short but sometimes that is when people make moves that may negotiations come off and things happen. the other thing we need to get a result in negotiation sometimes is if you change the people at the table, you
change the people at the table, you change the people at the table, you change the negotiation. you are right and sometimes that is true and sometimes that is not and that is what scary about the next 90 days. you might be right. ithink what scary about the next 90 days. you might be right. i think all of us would be delighted to see whatever the outcome, a smooth transition to whatever and we move on and this country grows and flourishes. but the sometimes, it is a pretty big caveat. can i bring brian in on the backstop. this is ostensibly such a big issue. alex is suggesting it might not be as serious a problem for top what do you think? it is a huge problem and it is going to be a problem. i don't understand what angela merkel means when she says it can be overwritten. there is certainly room in the political declaration which is annexed to the withdrawal agreement to be, to have the writing changed. everyone from michel barnier, the irish, the germans, that negotiation is not going to be reopened. the new prime minister says... a negotiating
position? the new prime minister says he will not sit in that chair u nless says he will not sit in that chair unless he drops the backstop. but is not a good negotiating position. crosstalk. we make saying you are not going to talk about it on the other side is not a good one either so they will meet somewhere in the middle. there was a lot of sabre wrapping in the irish government. the irish government has welcomed the appointment of the chief whip and stormont. being the dissolved assembly that hasn't been sitting for two years. on the issue of the
backstop, keeping the border open and everything else, the irish actually have no room to move except to increase their no deal preparations which they are doing. they have for quite a long time been talking quite openly about what they have been doing on the east—west access, dublin port and that kind of thing. they have been talking less about the north—south border because it is more politically sensitive but that work has been going on quite intensively. the problem with the whole thing is that the backstop cannot be taken out or overwritten simply because it is the guarantee, andi simply because it is the guarantee, and i know there have been other proposals that involve the provisions and so on whereby the backstop could be negotiated further down the line, the feet does make
the agreement. it has been made clear by michel barnier out that it can't come out. are you saying, alex, when the prime minister says it needs to be abolished, that is merely a negotiating position. we have heard the other side saying it isa have heard the other side saying it is a collision course. i think we will reach a compromise and that is the art of negotiation. thinking about what that might mean, given that the whole of the withdrawal agreement past our parliament big —— except for the backstop, it is the only thing the majority in our parliament have said yes to. we can look at the withdrawal agreement and think if that is going to go through without the backstop, if we put, for argument 's sake, a time limit, even votes, five or ten years, you have a two—year transition period and then
a ten yeartime two—year transition period and then a ten year time on the backstop everyone says they don't want anyway. who knows where the irish, british or the european economy are going to be in 12 years' time? that is more certainty than what you get with any trading party. and of course there are mps in your party who won't like that, the so—called spartans, the extreme who voted consistently against the withdrawal agreement. we have to decide whether we want brexit or not in the end. what is fascinating for me as someone who clearly wasn't born here, this is the united kingdom, great britain and northern ireland and does boris johnson, great britain and northern ireland and does borisjohnson, a man who clearly loves his own image, want to go down in history as the man who forced the uk out of the eu and lead to scotland leaving great britain, northern ireland being reunited with the republic and great britain being a little britain? i can't imagine that's what... know because he has called it the awesome foursome.
absolutely full stop so he has got to navigate something rather than a ha rd to navigate something rather than a hard brexit off the cliff all that isa very hard brexit off the cliff all that is a very real possibility. on the issue of the backstop, may i say, priti patel has threatened that famine could help resolve —— the threat of famine could help resolve the problem. this is the far right, reactionary comments and low intellect soundbites we are getting from members of this new administration and i think it will bea administration and i think it will be a very short lived one and a new general election will be called shortly. i think it is the wider population needing a general election in the interest of democracy. as a us broadcaster put it, 0.13% of the uk population voted for borisjohnson to become prime minister and there is essentially elderly... crosstalk. on the backstop, this idea that started a
few years ago where the british were saying they need us more than we need them, it was all about trade. the backstop is all about trade. the backstop is notjust about the backstop is all about trade. the backstop is not just about a trading border. the reason the good friday agreement is important and therefore the backstop is important, to guarantee that that border stays open, is also about identity. which comes back to jeffrey's open, is also about identity. which comes back tojeffrey's point. open, is also about identity. which comes back to jeffrey's point. is about the identity of nationalists living in northern ireland which comes back to the breakup of the uk, the good friday agreement gives nationalists living in northern ireland the opportunity to say, "i am comfortable living in this part of the uk", because i can say — make ican of the uk", because i can say — make i can say i am british, et cetera. it is not about trade, it is about national identity and that is something that is never mentioned or understood on the british side when it comes to the good friday
agreement and the backstop. anybody understands all the stuff about the trucks going over and back across the border for trade but identity is equally as important and for the irish government as well and for people in northern ireland and for the irish clinical parties, it is at the irish clinical parties, it is at the centre of this as well. on the good friday agreement, people waft at it all the time and it is already at it all the time and it is already a tax border, a vat border. given our government and your government not putting one up and who is? possibly the eu. 0therwise, nobody. and nebula's idea that it is undemocratic because of you seem not to think about parliamentary democracy at the way it works in this country. we had an election voted by the millions and then the conservative party changed its lead of the top if you had it does make an objection to borisjohnson, you must have been outraged about gordon
brown becoming the leader of the labour party. if the tory extremists, brexiteers, are such great immigrates they want british people to take back control, a swift election is a must. you don't think the government can change its leader and private is about changing election? this is not how the country has worked hitherto. why would they follow your role? country has worked hitherto. why would they follow your role ?m country has worked hitherto. why would they follow your role? it is not my role. it is understood attainable. when you think the selection that you are talking about is going to happen, just briefly. we are running out of time. when you expect an election. why the end of the year, to be honest. he has a majority of three, probably going down to two. he is dependent on the dup for his majority. there is a drumbeat of uncertainty happening. he could lose his majority an election could be forced, he could call an election. stay tuned, watch this channel. after brexit, possibly
by the end of the year but not before brexit. s the tory party cannot go to the polls before we left to the eu. —— before we leave the eu. so we will leave the eu on 0ctober the eu. so we will leave the eu on october the 31st, in your view. and then an election next year? 0h october the 31st, in your view. and then an election next year? oh i think so. i think boris johnson knows that he is going to have to crush out. reid went as scotland leave ? crush out. reid went as scotland leave? for goodness sake... before northern ireland. it is going to fall to pieces before britain crashes out of the eu. this is ridiculous. we don't have time to a nswer ridiculous. we don't have time to answer the question, we will have to leave it. thank you all so much for being here on the panel today. quite an interesting discussion was had and we will have another one, same place, same time, next week.
goodbye. it could be brighter in the far south corner. the liveable bay area. increasingly into northern ireland. this is where rain will continue through the day. it could cause minor flooding. through the day. it could cause minorflooding. a greater through the day. it could cause minor flooding. a greater chance of a few heavy showers and thunderstorms breaking out in the far north of england and parts parts of northern scotland. feeding in the humidity. the northwest highlands could be a hot spot. 25 celsius possible. not valid behind that refined southwest england and south wales where once again the high, sunny weather dominates. the rain
slowly eases a little bit on monday. it is still wet in the same areas. clearer conditions developing across the south and when you get that clear whether to take us into monday itself, there will be a lot more sunshine, particularly across england and wales. thundery showers are set to develop quite widely. — l. -- are set to develop quite widely. — l. —— bye for now. whatsoever pushing his own populist agenda in joining forces.
welcome to bbc news, i'm reged ahmad. our top stories: more than 1,000 arrested at an opposition demonstration in moscow weeks before local elections. tens of thousands of hong kongers march against gang violence despite a police ban on protests. hello and welcome to bbc news. more than 1,000 people have been arrested in moscow, during unauthorised protests against the banning of many opposition candidates from local elections. there were scuffles as police dispersed groups of protesters