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tv   The Week in Parliament  BBC News  September 15, 2019 5:30am-6:01am BST

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as just another blessing of st elizabeth. this is bbc news. the headlines: the us secretary of state has blamed iranfor us secretary of state has blamed iran for the drone strikes which set fire to two major oil facilities in saudi arabia. houthi rebels in yemen said they carried out the attacks but mike pompeo said there was no evidence for that claim. saudi oil production will be halved. forensic scientists in mexico say they have managed to identify 44 bodies found ina managed to identify 44 bodies found in a well outside the city of guadalajara. it had been filled with 119 bags containing body parts. work continues on the remainder. the region is blighted by violence between warring drug cartels and police. former wales rugby captain gareth thomas has revealed he is hiv positive. our thomas, who ten years ago came out as gay, is thought to be the first british sportsperson to go public about living with the virus.
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coming up next, the week in parliament. hello, and welcome to a special programme looking at the dramatic last days of an extraordinary session of parliament. coming up, mps force a change in the law aiming to stop a no—deal brexit. what unites us is a conviction that there is no mandate for no deal, and that the consequences for the economy and for our country would be highly damaging. borisjohnson tries and fails twice to call an early general election. if you really want to delay brexit beyond october 31, which is what you seem to want to do, then vote
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for an election and let the people decide! the prime minister is running away from scrutiny. running away from scrutiny with his blather and his shouting. and a defiant speaker announces he is standing down. i have sought to increase the relative authority of this legislature for which i will make absolutely no apology to anyone, anywhere, at any time. historic, unprecedented and quite, quite extraordinary. how else to describe five days in parliament unlike anything in living memory? five days which saw the governments lose every vote it put to the commons, mps force through a bill ministers didn't want, and the surprise resignation of the commons speaker. borisjohnson became prime minister just before pa rliament‘s summer break in july,
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so it wasn't until september mps got the chance to put him, his government and his policies to the test. from the first day back it was clear he was in for a torrid time. for many mps, the number one priority was to stop the uk leaving the eu without a deal on its scheduled exit date, october 31. they asked the speaker for an emergency debate and vote, which if they won, would allow them to take over the commons timetable, creating space to debate a law ruling out no deal. opposition and some government mps stood to show they backed the request. conservatives set out the case. the government's intention or willingness to lead the country into a no—deal exit is a threat to our country. the prime minister is much in the position of someone standing on one side of the canyon, shouting to people on the other side of the canyon that if they do not do as he wishes, he will throw himself into the abyss. that is not a credible negotiating strategy.
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and it is also not a responsible strategy, given that the rest of us are to be dragged over the edge with the prime minister. order! mps backed the demand that they should be able to take over the commons timetable, borisjohnson losing his first commons vote by a clear majority. the ayes to the right, 328, the noes to the left, 301. the government's reaction to that was swift and brutal. 21 rebel conservatives were thrown out of the party. former chancellors philip hammond and kenneth clarke were gone, as was winston churchill's grandson, sir nicholas soames. one conservative, phillip lee, had already crossed the floor, publicly defecting, walking to sit with the lib dems. the loss of those mps left boris johnson without a majority.
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while the commons timetable takeover meant mps could debate a bill demanding the prime minister ask for a brexit extension until the end ofjanuary unless a deal was signed or no deal accepted by parliament by october 19. in effect, shutting off no deal. one of those thrown out of the party said he was proud but slightly bemused to now be an independent. the obsession that my party has developed may have sought to devalue my past as a friend of the eu, of our sister centre—right parties, and of many friends, and it may have curtailed my future. but it will not rob me of what i believe, and i will walk out of here looking up at the sky, not down at my shoes. applause. another former tory rejected claims that backing the bill was playing intojeremy corbyn‘s hands. i would sooner boil my head than hand power to the leader of the opposition. the purpose of this bill is to instruct this government and this
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administration how to conduct the uk's future arrangements with the european union. it is not an attempt to remove this government. it is certainly not an attempt to hand power to the leader of the opposition. the bill had been put forward by a senior labour mp, who said it had cross—party support. what unites us is a conviction that there is no mandate for no deal, and that the consequences for the economy and for our country would be highly damaging. the best way to stop any damage at all is to revoke article 50. i have written an amendment to that and. it needs one signature, that of the prime minister. and this nightmare is over in that length of time. a lib dem who took a seat from the tories in a summer by—election in brecon and radnorshire made her first speech. currently, if farmers in brecon
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and radnorshire export to the eu, export tariffs are — well, let me have a think. they're zero. a no—deal brexit would mean 40% of tariffs go on welsh lamb exports. this would risk putting farmers in my constituency and right across wales out of business. the brexit secretary explained his objections to the bill. there is no incentive on the eu to move, because the bill gives the eu complete control of the outcome of these talks. those on the other side of the negotiation do not want the uk to leave. they don't want to lose the 12% of the financial contribution to the eu budget that the united kingdom pays, £1 billion a month that this extension will cause, and therefore, in short, there will be no incentive for the eu to move. he said the bill would lead to purgatory and delay. but mps did not agree, voting by 329—300 for it to clear its first commons hurdle — defeat number two for the government.
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the legislation later passed all its commons stages and went off to the lords, where we will catch up with it injust a moment. borisjohnson has repeatedly said he wants to leave the eu on october 31 come what may, and with mp5 having passed that bill blocking no deal, he came to the commons to ask for an early general election, arguing it was time for the people to have their say. in my view, and the view of this government, there must now be an election on tuesday the 15th of october, and i invite the right honourable gentleman to respond to decide which of us goes as prime minister to that crucial counscil on thursday october 17. i don't want an election. the public don't want an election. the country doesn't want an election. but this house has left no other option than letting the public decide who they want
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as prime minister and i commend this motion to the house. the offer of the election today is a bit like the offer of an apple to snow white from the wicked queen. because what he is offering is not an apple or even an election, but the poison of a no—deal. the truth, mr speaker, is that this motion from the prime minister is about playing a disingenuous game, unworthy of his office. mr speaker, we will not be party to the prime minister's games. we will not allow the prime minister to use an election to force a no—deal brexit through the back door. simply put, the snp cannot support this motion tonight, because we do not trust the prime minister. we could have a general election. and i say to the prime minister, such an election should be held in a responsible, calm and orderly way, not with the threat of crashing out of the european union with no deal, either during the campaign
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or in the immediate aftermath. so if he wants an election, extend article 50 for the purposes of having a general election, and bring it on. for borisjohnson's election motion to pass, two—thirds of mps had to vote for it, but he didn't get enough support. the ayes to the right, 298. the noes to the left, 56. so the ayes have it, but the house will be aware that the motion has not obtained the majority required under the fixed term parliaments act 2011. unlock. defeat number three. the prime minister made a statement and mocked the labour leader for failing
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to back the election. 48 hours ago he was leading the chants of "stop the coup, let the people vote." now he's saying, "stop the election, stop the people from voting." i can only speculate as to the reasons behind his hesitation. the obvious conclusion is, i am afraid, that he does not think he will win. borisjohnson. down the corridor, it was the peers' turn to get their teeth into the bill ruling out no deal. even in the normally serene house of lords there were guerrilla tactics and bad—tempered exchanges as peers who backed brexit tried to stop the bill even being discussed. they put down dozens of changes or amendments to a motion limiting the time for debate on the bill in the lords. the cunning plan being to keep peers voting for so long that the no deal bill itself would never get to the wicket. there were threats of all—night sittings, and keeping peers in the chamber for days on end. but eventually a late—night truce
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was reached, and on thursday, after a few hours of sleep, peers moved on the bill itself. parliament has, i regret to say, sought to prevent the implementation of the decision of the british people. and this bill is but the latest instalment of that said sad endeavour. my lords, this is actually a simple and quite straightforward bill. but that doesn't make it unimportant. because what it seeks to prevent, a no—deal crash—out on the simple say—so of the prime minister, has major implications. it is taking back control for parliament in action, rather than in empty rhetoric. she has talked about the coalition of people who have grouped together to propose this bill, which essentially delays brexit for a minimum of three months. can she tell us, please,
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what the coalition of people intend to do with those three months? the coalition is perfectly open about the fact they have coalesced on a specific, narrow purpose, to prevent massive harm to the people of this country. beyond that, they will be further discussion about how to proceed. the only way, if we leave the customs union and the single market, of solving the problem in ireland, is to have a border down the irish sea and cut ireland off. is that what the conservative and unionist party wishes to do? that statement reveals the sort of manichaean approach, "the only way." there are in fact controls that are already in place on animals, livestock, down the irish sea. when it came to the vote, peers backed the bill without a formal division. a fourth defeat for borisjohnson. the legislation passed through all its remaining stages in the lords the next day, clearing the way for it to become law at the start of the following week.
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to top it all off, there was another blow for boris johnson, when this man, his younger brotherjo, announced he was quitting as a minister and mp, saying he was torn between family loyalty and the national interest. mps returned on monday for their last sitting day before a controversial five—week suspension or proroguation of parliament. it was an expectant house that gathered for a day of political argy—bargy, but first came a surprise announcement from the speaker, john bercow. i would like to make a personal statement to the house. on the eve of the 2017 election, i promised my wife and children that it would be my last. this is a pledge that i intend to keep. if mps voted later that night for an early general election, he would stand down then. if not, he would go on until october 31,
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which as well as being halloween, is the day the uk is currently scheduled to leave the european union. john bercow‘s ten years in the chair have been controversial. once a conservative, he has faced fierce criticism from brexit supporters who have questioned his impartiality. he has also been at the centre of bullying allegations, which he robustly denies. throughout my time as a speaker, i have sought to increase the relative authority of this legislature, for which i will make absolutely no apology to anyone, anywhere, at any time. to deploy a, perhaps, dangerous phrase, i have also sought to be the backbenchers' backstop. he said he couldn't have done it without colleagues, friends, and family.
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and, above all, my wife sally, and our three children, to deploy a, perhaps, dangerous phrase, i have also sought to be the backbenchers' backstop. he said he couldn't have done it without colleagues, friends, and family. and, above all, my wife sally, and our three children, oliver, freddie, and jemima. applause. there were tributes from all sides. in your role as speaker, you've totally changed the way in which the job has been done. you've reached out to people across the whole country. you visited schools, you visited factories, you visited offices, you've talk to people about the role of parliament and democracy. it is the case that this evening i shall vote, with many of my colleagues, for an early general election. i hope you won't take that
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personally, mr speaker, because i have no wish to prematurely truncate your time in the chair. because it is the case, however controversial the role of a backstop has been in other areas, your role as the backbenchers' backstop has certainly been one that's been appreciated by individuals across this house. john bercow paid a tribute of his own to the speaker's chaplain, rose hudson—wilkin, who he said he'd appointed despite opposition from bigots. they hadn't met rose, they didn't know her, they couldn't form a view, they had a stupid, dimwitted, atavistic, racist, and rancid opposition to the reverend rose. i was right, they were wrong, the house loves her. applause. john bercow insisting he was right all along. those tributes tojohn bercow lasted well over an hour. then it was down to business. one of the conservatives thrown out
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of the party move to force the government to release internal communications on the controversial decision to suspend or prorogue parliament for five weeks. ministers insist it's to allow for a new queen's speech setting up the government's plans for the next year. opponents reckon the unusually long suspension is a cynical move to keep mps away from westminster in the run—up to brexit. dominic grieve demanded to see all the communications between ministers and special advisors. we have seen documents which show that although on the 23rd of august of this year number 10 downing street and the prime minister denied considering the idea of proroguing at all, in fact, internal government documents reveal that this matter was under consideration some ten days before. he said a remarkable memo had shown the prime minister was happy with that and thought the idea of mp
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sitting in september unnecessary and contemptible. it's also rather noteworthy that when we found what was under the redaction it turned out he condemned mr david cameron's belief in having a september sitting as being a "girly swot" which i suppose was meant to be contrasted with his manly idleness. but the government did have supporters. it is important that civil servants have space and safe space to speak truth to power. and i think that by his actions today he is damaging the civil service's ability to communicate and discuss freely matters with ministers. does he not see the damage he is doing? one mp worried the government wouldn't release the information regardless of the commons vote. the daily mailjust reporting right now, quote, "downing street is not in any
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move to bow to grieve‘s demands." number 10 source, quote, "under no circumstances will number 10 staff comply with grieve‘s demands, regardless of any votes in parliament. " labour reckoned there were two key questions. why now? why prorogue now at such a crucial time? what is wrong with november? well, we know the outcome of the negotiations and have a decision. so why now and why five weeks? the snp spokesperson revealed what her sources had told her. that what has been going on is that key figures in number 10 and the government have been communicating about the real reasons for prorogation, not through the official channels of government e—mails or government memos, but using personal e—mails, whatsapp, and burner phones, which, of course, are phones that are usually used by people who are involved in a criminal enterprise in order to avoid being traced.
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but the minister described what was being asked as for as a trawl. it is unprecedented, it takes a coach and horses through our data protection legislation. it is questionable in right of the article 8 rights that individuals have under the echr, and it would, for the first time, say that no, no, that this house of commons, by a simple majority vote, can say that any individual's communications should be rendered transparent. do members realise what they are doing? when it came to the vote, the motion calling for the release of the prorogation communications and documents on the government's no deal contingency plan, known as operation yellowhammer, was approved by 311 votes to 302. defeat number five. as the day drew to a close and with his hands increasingly tied, boris johnson came to the commons again to ask mps to vote for a general election. just before 11 o'clock at night,
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in an increasingly rowdy chamber, he set out his arguments, using the labour leader of running scared. why are they conniving to delay brexit in defiance of the referendum, costing the country next to £250 million a week for the privilege, £250 million a week for the privilege of delay, enough to upgrade more than five hospitals and train 4000 new nurses? the only possible explanation is that they fear that we will win it, mr speaker. i will it! i'm grateful, thank you so much... at one point the heckling got so loud mps complained they couldn't hear. borisjohnson move the microphone closer to him. he insisted he would try to get a deal but would not ask for another delay. if you really want to delay brexit beyond october the 3ist, which is what you seem to want to do, then vote for an election and let the people decide, let the people decide if they want to delay or not.
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the prime minister is running away from scrutiny, running away... jeering. ..running away from scrutiny with his blather and his shouting. once the threat of a no—deal brexit is removed from the table the snp will act. and we urge others to act to bring down the tories, oust this prime minister, and let the people have their say. once we are safe in the knowledge that we are not leaving the european union on halloween, the days of this government will be over. the lib dem leader confirmed if her party won the election they would halt the uk on leaving the eu. and in a general election, where we will stand to secure a liberal democrat majority, such a liberal democrat majority government would indeed provoke article 50.
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but it wasn't just the prime minister who was under attack. a former labour mp hit out atjeremy corbyn, saying he knew he'd lose the election. not because of the vast majority of the values of decent labour mps and many labour party members, but because of as a lifelong eurosceptic leading a party of remainers he's been caught out trying to have it both ways on brexit time and time again. those fiery exchanges continued until well after midnight, when the vote was finally called. the ayes to the right, 293. the noes to the left, 46. the ayes the, ayes have it. labour had abstained. meaning borisjohnson once again failed to get the two—thirds of mps needed. defeat number six. this government will not delay brexit any further. we will not allow the emphatic verdict of the referendum to be slowly suffocated by further calculated drift and paralysis.
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and while the opposition run from their duty to answer to those who put us here, they cannot hide forever. this government is a disgrace and the way the prime minister operates as a disgrace. jeremy corbyn. after that vote and at well past 1:00am, parliament began the ceremony of prorogation, shutting westminster‘s doors for five weeks. the senior official, black rod, arrived to ask mps to come along to the lords for the ceremony. it's normally a formality. not this time. desire the presence of this honourable house. no. no! black rod was drowned out in all the hullabaloo. mps clustered around the speaker's chair holding signs saying "silenced". there even appeared to be a slight
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scuffle as some mps tried to take control. the speaker did eventually leave the chamber to join the ceremony in the lords, but only after he made it clear that for many people he called this an act of executive fiat. the traditional procession left the chamber to cries of "shame on you" from the opposition benches. chanting: shame on you! prorogation finally complete, an extraordinary session of parliament ended. finishing on a crescendo of government defeats, opposition outrage, and the resignation of the commons' speaker. we will be back with you when parliament returns for whatever comes next. but for now, from me, alicia mccarthy, goodbye. hello. welcome along. so, latest thoughts on how sunday is going to shape up right
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across the british isles. quite a variety of weather on offer and then we will take a look at the next few days after that. sunday starting off really very windy again after a wild night across the north and north—east of scotland. some storm—force winds there. weather front producing a fair amount of cloud and some rain for northern ireland, the western and southern parts of scotland in the first part of the day. eventually that rain just moving a little bit further south, getting into the north of england, maybe into the far north—west of wales. thankfully, by this stage, clearer skies getting into scotland and the wind much reduced during the course of the afternoon. very best of the sunshine across the south—eastern quarter of the british isles, temperatures responding accordingly. further west through wales and the south—west of england, i think there'll be more in the way of cloud, and that may well be reinforced as we get on through the evening and overnight, so the remnants
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of that weather front still producing the odd bit and piece of rain will gradually ease its way into the southern half of the british isles producing quite a mild night here, but further north, underneath the clear skies, you will end up with quite a chilly do, 4, 5 degrees, something of that order. over the next few days, the week ahead, largely dry across the british isles. some pretty chilly nights to come. but there will be some rain across the far north of the british isles. monday, as i say, starts off on a relatively mild note across the south, but those colours beginning to drain away. something a little bit fresherjust trying to dominate across all parts. monday, as i say, the remnants of that weather front taking the last of the relatively mild airs away to the near continent. following on behind, the very best of the sunshine will be found across the northern half of the british isles, a pretty pleasant day. not too much in the way of wind. a high on the day of about 21 degrees. as the last of that frontal cloud slips away and the high pressure
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builds in, so tuesday will start on a pretty chilly note with clear skies, a lot of sunshine around. i think you will lose that somewhat as a frontal system just shows its hand towards northern ireland, the western side of scotland. quite a noticeable north—westerly breeze at this stage, so the temperatures struggling across the north—east of scotland. 20 still to be had across the south. as we start the new day on wednesday, high pressure centred towards the southern half of the british isles, and it allows this weather front to roll around its northern flank, producing more cloud for the northern half of the british isles and there will be some bits and pieces of rain coming in across the north of scotland on its way to the northern isles and, again, top temperature on the day around about 21 in the sun.
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good morning, welcome to breakfast with rachel burden and rogerjohnson. our headlines today: former conservative minister sam gyimah defects to the liberal democrats after being expelled from his party for rebelling against the prime minister over brexit becomes the sixth mp to defect to the liberal democrats over brexit. david cameron accuses borisjohnson of campaigning to leave the eu in order to further his own political career. former international rugby player gareth thomas reveals he is hiv positive, saying he wants to help reduce the stigma around the condition. i want to empower so many other people who are in exactly the same position as me. and probably ten


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