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tv   Dateline London  BBC News  December 17, 2017 2:30am-3:01am GMT

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this is bbc news, the headlines: authorities in california have issued new evacuation orders, as a huge wildfire flares up again in santa barbara county. meteorologists said fresh northerly winds were likely to drive the flames from the fire towards the pacific coast. the blaze is the third—largest in the state since records began. the un security council is considering a draft resolution, saying any unilateral decision on the status ofjerusalem should be rescinded, following president trump's move to recognise the city as israel's capital. diplomats say it has the backing of most council members, but is likely to be vetoed by washington. the far—right freedom party in austria has been put in charge of the foreign and defence ministries and the home office. it has formed a coalition government with the conservative people's party, which won elections two months ago, but failed to achieve a majority. now on bbc news, dateline london.
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hello and a very warm welcome to dateline london, i'm jane hill. this week we are reflecting on some movement, finally, in the brexit talks and ask whether the election of a democrat in alabama really is a blow to donald trump. my guests this week, the american writer stephanie baker from bloomberg markets, the british political commentator yasmin alibhai—brown, suzanne lynch from the irish times and thomas kielinger from germany's die welt
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to you all. we've seen the end of the beginning! it was confirmed this week that the brexit talks between britain and the eu can finally move to the second phase. what a week for britain's prime minister theresa may — losing a parliamentary vote in london, but getting a round of applause from leading eu figures in brussels. althuogh by friday, jean claude juncker and angela merkel were among those pointing out that phase two of the negotiations will be much harder than phase one. talks move injanuary to discussion of the transition period. yasmin, theresa may very much soldiers on... you have to admire her when you think she is down and out, somehow she brings out something in her. she is also... i can't imagine what it feels like to be in her position. she is battling on many fronts within her own party
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all these issues. i think one has to admire that she didn't collapse into a heap and stop crying. they applauded her strength. i think the europeans have been so civilised, i have to say, through all of this. they are a very civilised bunch. i don't think we are very civilised when we are talking about them. theresa may has been, which is why she got a round of applause. jean—claude juncker said she was polite and friendly. she started that in florence and started that new tone with her speech. the madness of this place was not getting us anywhere. she did say, "we want to be friends and good for europe." she comes to this mad house that is the conservative party and she has do negotiate quite a lot. what is to come is so difficult. god help her and us.
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there is a very important cabinet meeting and that goes to the heart of what she has to address. britain is too big a country to fail. they need to come to their sense and realise his is a dividing moment in the own history and we need to come together. the can't be brutal and bloody minded about britain. there is a reason for europe to be civilised because their own house is not totally in order. there are certain aspects of the summit meetings in brussels which were not reported as much because everyone was focused on brexit. there are huge problems waiting with the migration issue, the eu is by no means a hard and fast currency to sustain itself.
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they need new economic rules to make sure the currency survives and there are plans that the french have put forward of a budgetary harmonisation in europe which the germans are dead set against. germany, there is no reason for angela merkel to be civilised because she has no government at the moment. where are with that at the moment? none of this has been reported in the uk. it looks pretty bleak because the total mess and total division of opinion inside germany is such that nobody seems to agree on anything with anybody. i wonder why in western democracies, the outcome of elections are similarly murky and indecisive. the voters don't trust politicians enough to give any party a clear majority to rule the country. that is at the heart of the problem. iagree. this idea of europe being civilised,
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but europe is quite divided both on brexit, where there are very different views, but within its own entity. migration, there was a huge debate about that on thursday night in brussels. other talks about eurozone governance, but tax. countries like ireland, the netherlands, luxembourg, they are very worried about harms the taxation. that is a real blow and the loss of britain as a huge member of the eu will have more subtle implications in years to come, not least with the idea of trade and free market. britain was always good standing up to the french. a protectionist idea of europe. the implications there of britain
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leaving are more nebulous but they will be felt for years to come. i think that is a good thing for europe because we have not been a good member of the eu. we have never committed to this relationship and the low tax and... in what specifics? we have always had this argument. for as long as i have been here, we don't want to be part of this. the new liberal model is bust and i think the low tax economy like the one you are talking about, they have to rethink. this goes to the heart of it. in eu treaties you have national sovereignty over your tax. it will probably not change, but i wouldn't agree with that entirely. britain may have played the role of being an outsider,
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but officials in brussels were very clever in making a lot of the rules. also the other irony of brexit was britain had the best of both worlds. it had an opt out from a lot ofjustice legislation. it was always half in. there was quite a good deal, many people think. as time went on, more people in this country felt european. there was an emotional bond that we feel has now been severed. partly because they wanted it all, i still feel the eu—wide action they want to take on the tax paid by the internet giants is a good thing. it is a very good thing. a lot of countries don't believe that. they say tax is soverign matter. it is not simple. that the eu will be homogenous.
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defence is another one. a number of countries in the eu are not members of nato. in the civilised language, a subtle attempt to strengthen her hand in the own country to make her look more impressive than some are saying. the middle round view will gain ascendancy in the cabinet. it is a subtle way to make sure not the mad crowd will win the day in britain. you have some grumbling saying margaret thatcher never got applauded when she won the rebate. maybe she has given up too much and she should be playing hard ball a bit more. i think whatever deal she gets out of the eu would be a reflection of where the eu is going. we need to really think about that. you saw some more positive
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conciliatory statements coming out of the continent. the belgian prime minister saying he thought canada plus should be the cornerstone of any future negotiations with the uk. it is in keeping with what david davis has said. and i think what the majority of what the cabinet supports. many people thought the canada plus plus was unrealistic and a fantasy. i think how europe handles this will be a real reflection of where it is going. david davis and his ramblings on what was decided by mrs may was a statement of intent. they have been very tough. things will be as they are until 2019. the transition period, more or less everything stays the same. we are playing them. the transition period
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is interesting. if we are looking at a two—year transition period, things are broadly the same for very many years to come. we are still part of the ec], the trade deal is going to be similar. you have been a member of the eu for 43 years, so what is another five years going to change? by the time we get to the end point, who knows? do any of us know what the eu is going to look like by the time we reach that point? they have used the time to become aware how terrible it would be to completely lose britain. you have to come up with an accommodating deal at the end of the day because britain is too big to fail in the eyes of europe. they have to make extra effort to accommodate whatever the discussion will throw up in britain. i see what you are saying,
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but i think we have a major paradox now approaching on the tracks which is today, philip hammond in china and wanted a deal that would replicate status quo. that is essentially what they are going to want. the northern ireland issue crystallised this by saying there won't be a border between northern ireland and ireland. northern ireland will stay in the customs union and single market and that has implications for the rest of uk. we are not in the single market but essentially we are. will the eu allow that? i don't think they will if they don't allow free movement. i am saying to you that the europeans have said you cannot do any trade deal independently until after this period. canada, it took them eight years. crosstalk.
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there waiting for britain. it is going to be very difficult. theresa may has been able to fudge a number of issues with this preliminary agreement. you can't fudge things in trade talks. the language needs to be specific. the language in northern ireland can mean many things to many people. she will have a tough ride and this will not be easy. ceta — canada plus plus will be a difficult negotiation. particularly over financial services, which is incredibly important to the british economy and you can see the continent making offers to paris. nevertheless, there is a sense of community in europe. a sense of growing awareness that we have to be on the positive
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and try to see if there is some way of solving this conundrum. it is a contradiction of british policies which are mind—boggling. powerful people in the tory party and some labour, for whom it is never going to be good enough. it is never going to be enough. that is what theresa may has to navigate in the coming weeks and we will see what emerges from the cabinet meeting this week. in the us, the first democrat has been elected senator for alabama in 20 years. doug jones beat roy moore, even though the republican had been endorsed by president trump. did moore lose because of the allegations of sexual harrassment against him, or does the vote suggest wider problems for the administration? the republicans now have just 51 out of the 100 seats in the senate. stephanie how significant was the alabama vote? it was very significant
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for a number of reasons. short—term, it makes it more difficult for donald trump to get his agenda through congress. they only have one vote and can lose in the senate. it strengthens the hands of moderate republicans in the senate. republicans have opposed him on a number of issues. they will get the tax bill through because doug jones will not be sworn in and they will vote on it next week. he will be sworn in after. everything from welfare infrastructure, spending, judicial appointments, there is the divisions in the republican party that great and the possibility of swing votes will be much greater. —— that's greater. long—term, some in the republican party said this was a special election. roy moore is an accused paedophile with some extreme views on a number of issues from the us
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constitution to and religion. —— to race and religion. you can't predict a democratic sweep nationwide in the november midterms. however, i think the democrats are very energised and see a roadmap from their victories in pigeon and alabama. now you have an increasing realisation amongst the democratic party that they have spent too much money on advertising and not enough on voter turnout. that is how they were able to secure doug jones‘ victory. it was a strong african—american turnout. a huge amount of money into turnout. 30% turnout of black voters which was higher than under barack obama. if they can replicate that in other races, they have a pabst of victory. —— path to victory.
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what is the future of steve bannon? he has been waging war on the republican party. a huge supporter and persuaded donald trump to back him. can the republican party cut him off or will he be allowed to continue to field these toxic candidates in republican primaries that end up in the election not able to win and not able to secure the votes from swing voters. that is the battle going forward. do they neutralise the war or does he still get the upper vote. suzanne, what was your view? i agree with a lot of what stefanie is saying. this could be a turning point for donald trump. if you look at the figures, suburban districts that voted heavily for donald trump in 2016,
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flipped and voted for a doug jones. there was also a very potent election in pigeon last month. —— virginia. same thing happened. it was a strong african—american vote and a strong suburban vote. the idea of democrats winning an election in alabama at the moment would be beyond their wildest dreams. —— was beyond. now one could predict this. there are serious questions about donald trump's judgement in terms of his decision to back this guy that everybody advised him not to back. i think this battle that has been happening within the republican party will dominate the midterms next year. do they stick with conservative republicans or the route of candidates represented
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by donald trump? they would be much more careful about who they choose in the midterms next year and it will make it more difficult for democrats, if there is a sensible republican that will be more difficult to win that seat. donald trump still has a huge following. among his base, he does. nationally, it is very low. in alabama, his base still voted for roy moore. we're not talking about a massive election win. percentage wise, it was still a small victory. there weren't as many people. a lot of them that voted for donald trump did not vote for the republican candidate. in the rural, southern parts of alabama, they did. in the suburbs and urban areas, they didn't. you actually saw people who have voted for trump then turning. donald trump's own election was very close. he didn't win the popular vote, it
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was very close. it takes something small and if these suburban voters are flipping, that is a worry for the republicans. i take great comfort from the news that he is in a difficult state because the rest of the world is wondering whether america... the unpredictability of the president is a huge burden on the international scene and for the prospect of a republican party moderating itself in voting for someone else, it is huge news. it is good news. the uncertainty that eminates from trump is... it is the whole circle. he is only a product of what they have been doing behind the scenes. the alt right influence remains very strong. he's called base is still there. ——
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his core base. it will not win them an election. people forget how close it was when donald trump one. it doesn't take that much to push a democrat over the line. in the midterms, you have got senate seats open in states that trump won. that would be an uphill struggle for the democrats. the other factor we are forgetting about is how this investigation is going to play out. you already see paul ryan, the republican leader, saying he is soul—searching. there is this report that he has been considering resigning and not running in november 2018. the feeling that if the republicans try to go after special counsel robert muller, does he really want to be fronting that? that will have a huge effect on how the november midterms play out. we don't know what else is robert muller is sitting
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on and what else he can come outwith. he has got with four indictments and has two cooperating with him. i would not downplay how much additional indictments could affect the prospects for the republican party going forward. also, this week. there was the alabama election. but also on a lot of conservative channels, the talk was about robert muller's investigation and there is now a theory that the investigation against donald trump is biased. trump is saying it. a lot of conservative media is saying it. he went to an fbi graduation ceremony yesterday and on his way, he gave a speech saying the fbi were disgraceful, that he was going to fix things, the hillary clinton investigation was a hoax and there was a witch—hunt against him. we have an unprecedented breakdown in relations between fbi and the executive. also we have a concerted effort
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to delegitimise the investigation. the point being, if you do is find out anything negative about donald trump, donald trump is ready to see this investigation was flawed and we don't trust them. it isa it is a very dangerous is true. —— issue. it is a serious issue. it is to do with this terrible dangerous thing that has grown both in this country and the us, that the elite is plotting against the interests of the people. they play this every time. again, it will be, oh, they are out to get donald trump, they have created this thing, this is a man who the people want and all of this rhetoric. evidence isn't going to necessarily... vladimir putin gave his press conference this week where he decried himself of the problems that donald trump is happening. mr putin himself is in deep trouble
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about disconnection with america. he has his hands dirty because of the influence and interference of russia. the fact that mr putin is on the side of the donald trump camp, makes me sure the investigation will come out all right. i read somewhere a few days ago, that they asked a group of americans outside the main big cities where russia was and three quarters of the people had never heard the word, russia. we're talking about levels of ignorance that are really striking. you talk about the vote about the tax laws. it will be before christmas. that, assuming it goes through will be trumpeted as his first big legislative victory. we know the arguments on both sides but he and the administration will portray this as delivering on his election promises. he will score a victory on that front. however, what is unclear is how much that tax cut will be felt by voters
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by november 2018. some voters will feel it immediately but it gives the democrats a platform to campaign on. that this was a massive tax cut for the wealthy and for big corporations and for trump himself. his businesses, it is remarkable how much he and the trump organisation would benefit from the tax cuts. that gives them a natural platform to campaign on and it is incredibly unpopular, this tax cut. it is both corporate and personal. $1 trillion worth of corporate tax cuts. $1 trillion goes to the corporations. the impact on the middle classes? it's 200 to 300 billion for individual tax cuts. again, a tax cut for the top
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earners, which is the latest. although it will cut taxes on middle and low income, those expire and some won't necessarily feel that until they file their tax returns the following year. we have seen from previous tax cuts under barack obama, he gave similar tax cuts, the average was 800 and most people didn't notice it. if people don't notice any real benefits from this tax cuts and democrats are campaigning that this was a massive cut for the rich, then that happens them a lot of fire power. an interesting note on which to end. that is all we have time for this week. join us next week if you can. thanks for watching, goodbye. good morning, west east divide to
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start our day. we could start out cold and frosty but in the west, a weather front is introducing cold and frosty but in the west, a weatherfront is introducing milder but wet weather for the west and some of that is heavy across western scotland. eventually, pushing into wales and south—west england as we go through the morning and it will gradually move its way south and east as we move through the date of drier and brighter through scotland and northern ireland and poor visibility with any height in northern england and wales. look at the difference. ten or 11 degrees as opposed to a court three in the
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east. the rain will clear its way south and for a time under clear skies, temperatures will fall away. actually start on monday morning. temperatures to — six degrees. a good deal of dry weather on monday and a bit of brightness as well. monday brings a promising day, cloudy at mild conditions set to be the story from tuesday onwards. enjoy your sunday. welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is lewis vaughanjones. our top stories: celebrities under threat — new evacuation orders in california as the flames spread towards the homes of the rich and famous. the un security council considers a resolution which would challenge president trump's recognition ofjerusalem as israel's capital. the family of the canadian billionaire couple found dead in their home criticise the media and the police over speculation about the cause of their deaths. and hitting new heights —
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the world's steepest funicular railways opens in switzerland. railway opens in switzerland.
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