tv Question Time Leaders Special BBC News November 20, 2019 12:30am-1:01am GMT
in city. —— look at peterborough. in 2017, ukip said, we won't stand against stuart jackson, we don't wa nt to against stuart jackson, we don't want to split the vote. a large number of voters who voted ukip went back to the labour party and labour w011 back to the labour party and labour won the seat, not the conservatives, and that is because there are 5 million labour get leave voters out there in this country, and many of them wouldn't vote conservative if you paid them. that is historical regions. it is not an easy thing to do, not wholly popular. i did it because boris went much further than that deal in brussels. here said we will not have alignment with the eu, we will go for a canada style trade deal. a promise is one thing, and boris is very good. do you trust that promise?
do you trust that promise? well, look, boris is good at making promises and not always keeping them. but it would have been madness, i think, to stand against the government of the day if they're effectively saying the same thing that you are. so what we will now do is target labour seats. we need to get a brexit party voice in the house of commons to hold him to those promises. and in other seats, where the conservatives are the challengers to labour, actually the labour vote we get in those constituencies will, in fact, in many ways make it easier for borisjohnson. david cameron would not have had a majority in 2015 if it hadn't been for the impact of the brexit four million votes. and when you hear national pollsters who say, "well, the brexit party take ten conservative votes for every six labour votes," that may be the national picture, but the regional differences and the seat differences are enormous. so, no, i'm convinced this is the right strategy. i want brexit to happen. i think it's vital for our democracy that that referendum result is upheld. but, by attacking labour, not only will we get brexit, but i hope we're going to get the right brexit.
the man there, yes. how can you say that you're standing up for democracy when you yourself are an unelected leader in probably the most undemocratic party in the uk, who's refusing to stand in a constituency yourself? applause we're a tech startup. applause there is no parallel. there is no parallel to the brexit party. i never wanted to be a career politician ever, ever. when the referendum was successful in 2016, everybody acknowledged it was because of the strength of ukip but cameron made that promise that in the end he had to conduct. when everyone said after the referendum, "we're going to honour the result and deliver brexit," i was happy. i stepped back away from politics. but, nigel farage, you say... i came back into this in the spring of this year because it looked like brexit was gone. lost in the weeds. a second referendum was coming down the track. so i set up the brexit party in the space of a few weeks.
i launched it. we won a national election within six weeks of launching, and i did that, hands up, in an autocratic way. there wasn't time to build a democratic party. that is how we did it. i've got no regrets about it at all. as the brexit party develops over time, it will democratise, but we were a start—up in 2019. i would argue we've had a very dramatic effect on politics already. but you say you didn't want to be a career politician, you tried seven times to be one. once, in reality. you also said, just coming back to the question here... fiona... let me finish. you said in 2015, "it's frankly just not credible for me to continue to lead a party without a westminster seat of my own." if that was the case in 2015, why is that not the case now? i regret that bitterly. i was hunkered down
in one constituency. i didn't have the chance to go around the country. i wasn't doing the same thing again. i would say this to you — i've only once challenged for parliament seriously. all the previous times were to put a message out, a message being that we should be free of the european union. i used elections to do it. and all right, it might have taken over 20 years, but it worked. the man there in the sweater. you said you formed a political party quickly. how do you manage to do that? who's funding you? arron banks? robert mercer? applause no, no, no, no. honestly... can we... i'm surprised you haven't mentioned the russians! you know, i mean, this endless conspiracy theory that we get. we are regulated, as every uk party is regulated. mr mercer is an american, so therefore we couldn't take his money. arron banks hasn't given a single penny to the brexit party, and you know full well that we managed, when we launched back in the spring, £3 million came in online in £25 donations. that's been done before in america. obama, in many ways, you know, set the pace for that, and we did it. that was real citizen engagement in democracy, something i think we should be encouraging in this country rather than parties being funded by big donors or indeed the trade union movement.
there's quite a few hands up. i just want to take a selection of people there. yes, the man with the glasses. you said you wanted a voice in parliament. wouldn't your voice be the best voice in parliament for the brexit party? well, we got... nigel, let me take a few people, then get back to them all. the man at the back. mr farage, in today's i paper, we are losing more to industry work in the country because of the uncertainty that brexit has created. do you not view your past 20 years as the biggest foreign policy disaster this country's faced since 1939? no, i view it... applause iwant us... i want us to have an independent foreign policy. i want us to make up our own minds on foreign policy. i want us to buttress that with our support for nato and the five eyes intelligence sharing community. i don't want to be part of a european foreign policy. i don't want to be part
of a european army. i think we should be independent and make our own decisions. now, as for the car industry, let me tell you something. if we go head long for electric cars, there will be huge job losses in the car industry and indeed in the components industry, because all you're looking at, effectively, is a body and a battery. industries change and move over time. back to the previous question the gentleman there asked. look, you know, i could have spent my time focusing on one seat, but i would not have been able because, as i said, we're a startup. this is not islington and jeremy corbyn, who only has to turn up there once and he's going to win. i took the view i'd be better off touring the length and breadth of the country supporting our candidates and i'll be doing that for the next three and a half weeks. the woman in the grey sweater. hi there, nigel. hello. for someone who now stands so strongly against the eu, and a moment ago you spoke
about democracy, now, the salary you earned from the eu, which very much suited you at the time, what percentage of that salary which you're now actually noted on paper, i think it's five million since 1999. so what percentage of that salary for something you stand so strongly on are you willing to give back to the british public and create a democracy, not this tech startup? hang on a second. are you actually saying your party is a tech startup? we're literally about to vote on probably one of the most important elections we are going to see. i think, as a person, it's patronising. i'm actually sat here and you're telling me that your political party is a tech startup. yeah. great, isn't it? innovation. it's disgusting. yeah, yeah. i'll tell you what. we're a tech startup. it's very patronising to the british public. and we founded it... we founded it on a principl... it was a complete startup. anyway, back to the question. what percentage of your salary... do you want to stand here? i don't mind, you know.
i don't know, mate, i might be able to do a betterjob. you may well. you've certainly got self—confidence. thank you. no doubt about that! let him answer the question. no, take fiona'sjob, it's fine! we founded this with a slogan, "change politics for good," and frankly i think our politics has become utterly corrupted. i think we have a voting system that is not fit for purpose, a postal voting system open to fraud, abuse, intimidation, a house of lords that frankly, should not be there in the 21st century. and many, many radical changes we need to make in this country to restore trust between voters and those that they elect. as far as the european parliament is concerned, look, i gave up a career in business. i closed down a company to do this. i didn't better myself doing it. i was actually far worse off doing it. and i point this out to you. if you look at the expenses the british mep claim,
i claimed lower, fewer expenses than any other british mep. i did not do this... laughter i did not do this to advance my career financially. i made a sacrifice to do it because i believe we should be a free country, and i believe that today more strongly than ever before. let's take a question. beyond brexit, what do the brexit party stand for? 0k, fine. firstly, losers consent. you may lose an election and not like it, but you accept it because that's how democracy works. what has happened since 2016 is two of our major political parties, many former prime ministers, refused to accept the result of the greatest democratic exercise in the history of our nation. that, i think, is a complete and utter disgrace in a country that calls itself a democracy. i really do. can we now come to the question
asked by kim black. brexit is the great political issue of our times, the defining issue of our times. what is exposed is that politics is broken. no, the question is what did the brexit party stand for beyond brexit? abolition of the house of lords, a change of the voting system to make it proportional whereby we don't have a binary choice between two minority parties. and what a farce that is. a politics where you say, "look, you don't think we're very good. look at the other bloke. he's even worse." a politics where we stand up for what we believe in and people vote accordingly. i would scrap the current postal voting register and go back to postal votes being for those that are elderly, infirm or working abroad. i want us to have the right of a citizen's initiative. if enough of us aren't happy with where westminster is going, we can call a referendum. and we're also going to have to face up to something. tony blair set up a supreme court. it is a political court. it is now acting on its own, making
up its own precedent as it goes. we are going to have to have a written constitution so that we all know where we stand. so radical political reform is the first thing that we stand for. and the second thing is, what about the five and a half million men and women in this country running their own businesses, acting as sole traders, being taxed, regulated and not free to go out and make profits? i want to stand up for the little people. it's about time somebody did. applause you say the supreme court needs a written constitution. the brexit party doesn't have a written manifesto. so how can the people here... oh, no, no. let me finish. how can the people here know what you stand for? when you look at your website, there's whole areas where there are no policies at all. are they supposed to guess? let's do a word association test. what does manifesto mean? it means a lie. we all know at the last sets of elections, parties issue manifestos because they're telling people what they think they want to hear
without the slightest intention of ever delivering them. i'll be launching this week... on friday, i'll be launching a contract with the british people where we will lay out in health, law and order, education and all those areas where we stand. 0k. well, let's see what you've got to say about this question, then, from arthur webber. you've supported moving to an insurance—based health care system in the past. how can we trust you with the nhs? well, i'll tell you what. .. applause. and this is the labour spin, and it's what people believe. let's face one thing. the nhs has a major, major crisis. what is it? it is the rapid growth of the uk population. our population is growing at half a million people every year, and we do not have the facilities to catch up with it. let's be clear. i think that if the wealthiest in society took out private medical
insurance, were encouraged to do so, we could lift maybe as much as 10% of the burden off the nhs for those who can't afford private insurance cover. it strikes me as being a rather bright thing to do. on all the other things... you know, we've got many medical professionals standing for us as candidates in this election, one or two actually rather prominent and well—known ones. we all want a national health service that works. i've had more need of it than most people, with several disasters in my life. and when it comes to emergency care, there's nothing better in the world. but i am struck by one thing. everybody says we must put more money into the national health service. with a population rising at half a million a year, they are absolutely right. so if we all agree, you know, and mr corbyn can say what he likes, but let's remember, it was the labour party that went for the pfi deals that have left the hospitals in so much trouble. it was the labour party that
privatised vast chunks of the health service. enough of corbyn's hypocrisy on all of this. if we're now all agreed that we all want a well funded, well running health service, where money is not being wasted, if we all agree, could there ever be a better subject upon which all the parties come and work together to get a health service that delivers the best for the british people? butjust so we're clear, what you're saying is you do not support the idea of an nhs free for all at the point of delivery. you think for those who can afford it, they should pay. look, i think the nhs should be free for all at the point of delivery. but i do think, given particularly waiting lists for operations... but for those who can afford insurance, they should have, so it wouldn't be free for them. well, those that... i'm not forcing people who earn over x per year to take out private insurance, i am suggesting that as a way of reducing waiting lists and lifting the burden off the health service, it would make a lot of sense. the woman with the glasses. one of the main problems the nhs is currently facing is an ageing, obese population.
that isn't the fault of our increasing population. and as far as eu workers are concerned, other eu citizens are working in the nhs, not using its services. well, some work in the nhs, yes, but millions use it as well. look, i don't get this argument. i don't see why we want to take nurses and doctors from romania, bulgaria or even worse, countries like mauritania, countries that need medical services even more than we do. and yet we're happy that nearly 40% of doctors are foreign trained. and i think, actually, perhaps the biggest investment this country needs is to invest in its young people and encourage people to train as nurses, as doctors, as engineers. that would be a marvellous investment. applause. there's lots of hands up. let me take a few points at once — the woman here with a scarf. hello, i'm a gp in peterborough. how, if you develop this model,
would you prevent a two—tier system? and how, going back to the point you just made, would you staff that, in terms of getting enough doctors? we have a gp crisis in peterborough, we can't get enough doctors. mr farage, i'm just going to take a few points at once. fine. why are you blaming jeremy corbyn and the labour party for the issues in the nhs when your best friends, the conservative party, have been in power for nine years? and jeremy corbyn has separated himself from new labour? and the man at the back. you're misrepresenting this. it's well known that we have an ageing population, and also because of technological advances, there is a funding formula of inflation plus a margin, that's not been stuck to. the national health service is a bargain. we just need to fund it correctly, and then the doctors and nurses will be able to do theirjob properly. applause. if you want to bury your head in the sand, you can. but the fact is, nobody could've predicted ten years ago that we would have a population rising by half a million a year. there was no forward planning for this level of population growth,
because we were not in control of the numbers coming in every year. they are consequences that we have to live with, and they're consequences that we now have to plan for. on jeremy corbyn. look, jeremy corbyn says, "we invented the nhs back in the 19405. whenever we've been in government, it's been fantastic. when the tories are in power, it's dreadful." he completely forgets the period of time when he himself was a labour member of parliament, when things like the disastrous pfi contracts came in. all i'm saying is, mr corbyn, stop accusing everybody else of having the wrong view on the nhs. your party did, and i repeat the point i made earlier, if ever there was an issue to work together on, you know, i really can't think of a better one than this. on the gp crisis, on the two tier system. you could argue there's a two tier system already. there is already private medical facility in this country. actually, it's something that brings in a lot of foreign money. a lot of people from overseas come to london and use private medical facilities.
all i'm saying, is when i talk to gps like yourself, they all say the same thing. "we're under greater and greater pressure. our patients are getting angrier and angrier that we can't provide the service that they need." and of course, you know as well as i do that what happens is, because we don't have enough doctors and the surgeries aren't open long enough, what do they do? they go to a&e. people that shouldn't need to go a&e do. so, ifully accept we need more resource. but i do honestly believe, and i've made this point to the lady over there, let's start training more of our own doctors and nurses. that surely is the best investment we could make in the national health service. a couple of questions here. yes, the man in the blue shirt. hello. i'm a consultant in elderly medicine, and our hospitals need our care system to work so we can function properly. where are we going to get our carers from? because the majority come
from around the world, and mainly european. applause. can we just be clear what your policy, mr farage... firstly... can we just be clear what your policy is on this, because you've talked about in the past about having a cap on immigration of 50,000. yes. there are 100,000 vacancies in the nhs at the moment. is that still your policy? here's the problem, right, we are confusing two things. we are confusing work permits, people that come to britain to work, whether it's for six months or a year or whatever it is, with the right to automatic settlement. they are two completely different things. lots of those people come here to work and live. the argument to your question is, if we haven't got sufficient people to fill those jobs, we will take people in who were good enough with a work permit system. but because you come here to get a job, just as if you went to 200 countries around the world and got a job, it doesn't give you the automatic right to settle. it doesn't give you the automatic right ultimately to claim citizenship. there is a distinction between the two and it's important. and do you still want
a cap on immigration? i do not think that our quality of life in this country improves as our population heads inexorably towards 70 million, which is where it's going to be by the end of the 20205. what do you think that cap should be? we, for 60 years after world war ii, had annual net migration running at 30,000 to 50,000 a year. we actually had, i think of all the european countries, the most successful integration. things worked here well. for the last ten years, it's been running at between a quarter of a million and a third of a million every year. so, 30,000 to 50,000? we need to bring settlement down to that kind of sensible post—war number, yes. let's take a question from john airey. how do you respond to claims that you're racist? so, ok, you'll love this. applause. you'll love this. so, i was at the bbc on sunday
morning, on withjohn pienaar, left at 10am and one of the security guys said, there's a protest outside. i said, it's ok, i'm used to that. so i walked out and there they were carrying placards, about a dozen of them. "jeremy corbyn's a racist." "jeremy corbyn's an anti—semite." "jeremy corbyn's a terrorist friend." and i walk past these protesters, and they came up and asked me for selfies with them, all right? i have not had an accusation like that made for many, many years. it was made in the past. do you know why? because nobody else dared to talk about it. the issue had been brushed under the carpet, despite the fact that with time, it was the number one issue in british politics. i would suggest, sir, that in this campaign, what we ought to talk about is illegal immigration. what we ought to talk about are all those people being found dead in the back of a lorry. what we ought to talk about, are the 39 people who were picked up in the english channel yesterday who are currently in police custody, tomorrow will be in a hostel, and the day after will disappear. we need to send the message we're not open for illegal immigration. we're open for legal immigration, or a sensible work permit scheme. and that, i think, needs to be talked about in this campaign. does that satisfy you?
do you agree with that? well, i think it's definitely an accusation levelled at your party. no, it's not. we had more ethnic diversity in our candidates for the european elections than the other parties added up together. i won't have that. i don't agree with it. all right, thank you. but honestly, as far as the brexit party is concerned, as far as the brexit party's concerned, people just do not say that. the woman here with the white hair. do you not feel ashamed when you stand in front of a poster that shows refugees escaping from whatever? the "breaking point" poster is the one i'm talking about. this was in the 2016 referendum. we can go back in history if you want to. do you not feel ashamed? refugees, you say? yes, they were refugees and you said they were illegal immigrants. and they weren't illegal immigrants, they were refugees, and they were seeking asylum. i'm sorry.
and they were seeking a safe place to be. we have a safe place to be, here. even the european commission... applause. even the european commission said that only 20% of those that came in would, under any normal circumstances, qualify as refugees. and i tell you what, we don't need to take any lessons from europe or anywhere else about genuine refugees. we've done it better than any other european country. what happened there, mrs merkel made a huge mistake and said anyone that wants to come can come. and they did. where were the women? where were the children? where were the elderly? it was all males. it was all males between 18 and 30, and they'd left theirfamilies behind. they were economic migrants, the vast majority. there's a woman shaking her head there in the pale sweater. yes. i just think what you're saying is absolutely ridiculous. and i'm really going to call you out. tell me why.
so, on radio 4 this morning, they talked about net migration into this country, nick robertson and andrea leadsom, 230,000. so where's your half a million? you talk about that poster... hang on. mr farage, let herfinish. that is the most disgraceful piece of advertising i've... well, it's not even advertising. it is disgusting, and you should be ashamed of yourself. applause. very good. well, you clearly... you clearly have strong opinions, but maybe you're not listening. i said that net migration in this country over the last ten years had been between a quarter of a million and a third of a million. earlier, you said half a million. earlier on, on this stage, you said half a million a year. well, these are the people you need to persuade. i said, population growth was half a million a year, something we hadn't planned for and something the nhs at the moment simply cannot deal with. they are two separate things. if you want to drag up ancient history, we can.
that poster, as you call it, was a photograph. it was a fact. and it was, i think, the biggest political mistake angela merkel made in what had been, up until then, her long and distinguished career. who wants... well, maybe the labour party do, but who wants us to have total open borders? it doesn't make sense and it's not what the voting public want. absolutely not. the woman there. it really bothers me that you label yourself as unique and different from other politicians, because actually you are a man of wealth and privilege. you're a privately educated ex—banker. i've never worked in a bank in all my life! well, commodity trader. he laughs. you worked in the city, that's the point. you boasted that you had received £2 million in taxpayers' money to support you in your role as mep. and then in 2014, you wrongly didn't declare over £200,000 worth of gifts that you'd received in your role. now, with a background like that...
i'm so sorry, this is ludicrous. with a background like that, how on earth can you understand what it is like for the 14 million people in this country who are currently living in poverty? and that poverty... applause. i'm really sorry, i'm really sorry. the poverty is caused by austeriry, it's not about immigration or the eu. it's about austerity. and people are angry, because the government has made a conscious decision to cut the funding to public services. that has made them angry. and then what you've done really, really well is you've swooped in and you've exploited that anger. you and your friend... applause. you and your friend have come with this agenda. i explained to you earlier, that i take fewer expenses than any other british mep. if you want to talk about the cost of meps...
they talk over each other. if you want to talk about the cost of meps or mp5 employing staff, that is where the money goes. can ijust remind you, that when it comes to the massive cost of being in the european union, of having meps, i am the turkey that has voted for christmas ever since i've been there. i've done more to get rid of myjob than anyone else you can compare to. and actually, actually, my salary as an mp is nowhere near what a gp‘s is, working in peterborough. what about the £200,000? audience murmur. no, an mp‘s salary is not as high as a gp‘s salary. so, let's give this some sense of perspective. i have not enriched myself by being in politics, quite the reverse. i've done it because i believe in it. i've done it because i think we should be an independent, democratic, self—governing nation. and i think that's very fair. and if we're not a self—governing nation, what are we? a satellite of a failing european project. it doesn't work any more. 0k. man in audience speaks.
i'm really sorry. we're going to have to end it there, because our time is up, i'm afraid. our 30 minutes is up. this thursday, we will have our regular programme in bolton. the panel will be back. and then the following day, friday, that is friday the 22nd, we'll be in sheffield with borisjohnson, jeremy corbyn, nicola sturgeon and jo swinson. call 0330 123 99 88 if you'd like to be the audience, or go to the question time website and you can follow the instructions there. but for now, thank you very much, nigel farage. thank you. to the audience here for coming tonight. and of course, thank you to you at home for watching and for listening. from peterborough, bye—bye. applause.
hello everyone, and welcome. you are watching newsday on the bbc. i'm rico hizon in singapore, the headlines: is hong kong's university stand—off in its final hours? only a few protestors remain, ringed by police. there are very few protesters left in here. may bejust as there are very few protesters left in here. may be just as few as 50 or so in here. may be just as few as 50 or so still remaining near the hard core. four more witnesses testify in washington, as the impeachment inquiry ramps up pressure on president trump. it is improper for the it is improperfor the president of the united states to demand a foreign government investigate a us citizen and a political opponent. i'm kasia madera in london.
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