Ben Bradshaw

Working Hard for Exeter

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Latest Commons Interventions

On EU Nationals

Mr Ben Bradshaw (Exeter) (Lab)

The Prime Minister does not seem to understand that the election has changed everything and that her extreme, damaging Brexit is dead, so why is she making an offer that, as it affects British nationals living on the continent and EU nationals here, is far less generous than the offer that the EU made to us just two weeks ago?

​The Prime Minister

There is no “extreme Brexit” that we have been talking about. There is no hard Brexit and there is no soft Brexit; what we want is the right deal for the United Kingdom. I remind the right hon. Gentleman that over 80% of people who voted in the recent election voted for parties that were committed to taking the United Kingdom out of the European Union. We have made a fair and serious offer; I believe it is a generous offer. There is one way in which it is different from the offer that the European Union has made, and that is in relation to the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. When people voted in the referendum last year, they voted to ensure that we stopped the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice here in the UK.

 

On Brexit

Mr Ben Bradshaw (Exeter) (Lab)

All the five business organisations to which the Secretary of State refers have come out against the Prime Minister’s extreme and damaging Brexit. What is he personally doing to ensure that the Prime Minister not only hears what they are saying, but listens to it?

Greg Clark

The right hon. Gentleman will know that the five business organisations have put forward a sensible set of principles to govern the transition and the shape of a final agreement. Those suggestions seem very sensible. Part of the point of engaging with business, as I do rigorously and frequently, is to ensure that that voice is heard.

 

On NHS Shared Business Services

Mr Ben Bradshaw (Exeter) (Lab)

May I commend to the House the record of the debate I secured in November 2011, in which I warned the Government in terms about the very poor record of SBS and urged them not to part-privatise what had been an excellent NHS service? Ministers said at the time that the new contract would save £250 million. Will the Secretary of State now tell the House how much this scandal has cost, rather than saved, the taxpayer? Will he apologise both to the staff and the patients affected?

Mr Hunt

The costs are in excess of £6 million, and we are seeking to recover as much of that as we can from the company involved. I know that the regime in the Labour party has changed, but to try to turn this into an issue of privatisation when under the right hon. Gentleman’s own party’s Government—and indeed, during his own time as Health Secretary—we had problems at Mid Staffs that were squarely in the public sector is wholly inappropriate. This is about proper assurance of what is going on in the NHS, and both sides of the House need to learn the lessons.

 

On Leveson

Mr Ben Bradshaw (Exeter) (Lab)

The Secretary of State asks us to judge her on her record, which I will happily do. So when will she keep the promises that were made to the victims after the Leveson inquiry, announce Leveson 2 and implement section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013, which was passed almost unanimously by both Houses and, disgracefully, has still not been implemented by the Government?

Karen Bradley

We have had a consultation on the next steps regarding the second part of the Leveson inquiry and section 40, and I will publish the responses to that consultation. As Secretary of State, there is a process I need to go through in order to take anything further. We need to remember that the Leveson inquiry was in 2011. Many things have changed in that time. We have to think about how best to support local press and have a free, fair and vibrant local press. I will look at all those points when I consider the consultation responses.

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