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Newsnight's Labour Leadership Debate

Sarah McDermott | 16:56 UK time, Friday, 11 June 2010


The race is on to succeed Gordon Brown after he stood down as Labour Party leader, and on Tuesday 15 June 2010 at 10.30pm on BBC Two Jeremy Paxman will be cross examining the five candidates who have put themselves forward - and crucially have won enough backing from fellow MPs - to stand in the leadership contest.

Diane Abbott, Ed Balls, Andy Burnham, David Miliband and Ed Miliband will all take part in the first televised hustings of the contest.

What questions would you like Jeremy to put to them? Post your thoughts below or email them to with the subject heading LABOUR and we'll arm Paxman with the best for the programme.


  • Comment number 1.

    Please ask them the English question.

    Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all have their own parliaments or assemblies, working in the interests of their people. The people of England have never been asked if they want their English parliament back.

    The have however soundly rejected regional governance (when asked in the "North East". The most recent poll asking the question about an English parliament had support at 69% (IPPR) and all other recent surveys have support at over 50%.

    At the same time the people of England get the least per person funding in the "UK". Which results in English pensioners having to sell their homes for care, English students paying tuition fees, English kids losing free school meals, English people paying the most for prescription charges, English people even having the worst access to life saving drugs. There are many more examples of the raw deal the people of England get from the British government.

    Who if any of the potential leaders will promise to ask the 52 million people of England if they want their own parliament back?

  • Comment number 2.

    Would you introduce a Robin Hood Tax, thus raising billions that could go towards combating poverty here and abroad and climate change?

  • Comment number 3.

    The English Question or WLQ, are you going to be willing to answer or push to answer the question once and for all?

  • Comment number 4.

    Diane Abbott should absolutely be pressed on her justification for denying to others the educational choice she made for her son. She has previously described her decision as 'indefensible', but this is arrogance on stilts: did she withdraw her son when she reached this conclusion? Every decision of this kind has a defence, and Jeremy Paxman should ensure that he ascertains Ms Abbott's reason. And it would be helpful if he were to consider the 'single mother' card a very low trump - if a trump at all. Thank you.

  • Comment number 5.

    1. Do the candidates think that the West Lothian Question, or English question needs to be addressed? If they do then what solution would satisfy the English.

    2. Do the candidates accept that England has no Secretary of State or it's own parliament, as do Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

  • Comment number 6.

    Ask Diane Abbot is it racist to refer to Cameron and Clegg as "two posh white boys from the home counties" as she did on This Week a few weeks ago.
    Bernie Steed

  • Comment number 7.

    Please ask Mr Balls whether he is courting the racist element within the Labour Party or racists in the British Media. No doubt these categories are not mutually exclusive.

  • Comment number 8.

    Do you accept that Labour spent too much, for too little in return? Do you accept that there is no money left? Do you want to apologise for that?

  • Comment number 9.

    The last Labour government consistently pursued a muscular foreign policy that involved the use of the armed forces, from Sierra Leone to Iraq and Afghanistan, but equally consistently refused to pay for it. That left the armed forces too small and ill equipped for the jobs they were asked to do, with avoidably high casualties as a result. Do the candidates for the Labour leadership want the UK to continue the level of military activity engaged in by Labour when in government, in which case will they commit to paying for it? If they will not commit to paying for it, will they agree to scale back what they expect the armed forces to do so it is in line with the resources they will provide?

  • Comment number 10.

    6-7% of school children in the UK are privately educated. 40% of students attending the UKs top 10 Universities have been privately educated. The current government wants all the decent state schools to become Academies and therefore potentially less accessible to the children who need them most, creating difficulties for schools which reject or don't qualify for this status.
    Do any of the contenders for the leadership have any proposals for an equitable education system to benefit our society?

  • Comment number 11.

    As each of them what they would a. have done if the were Prime Minister with regard to Obama & BP and b. what they would have advised Gordon Brown to do if he had won the election and then 3. ask how when they were in power how did they find the Obama administration to deal with and did they think anything of Obama kicking Churchil out of site once hed moved into the white house? alarm bells anyone?

  • Comment number 12.

    Ask them if like Blair and Brown they're going to be more interested in pleasing the Daily Mail and people who hate them than those who vote for them and like them

  • Comment number 13.

    England is the only nation at the 2010 World Cup without its own government, its own national holiday and its own national anthem. What will the candidates do to address the English Question?

  • Comment number 14.

    Do you consider senior labour figures are guilty of criminal negligence in the handling of the economy, and borrowing?

  • Comment number 15.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 16.

    I would like Mr Paxman to ask the five candidates what they consider to be the three most important areas of policy that they would be called on to address if elected as leader of the Labour Party.

  • Comment number 17.

    Scotland gave devolution to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Now we are talking about round 2, giving them even more powers. My question to the Labour leader contenders would be...

    Do they recognize England exists ?
    Do they accept the democratic imbalance for the English population ?
    What are they going to do about it ?

  • Comment number 18.

    Will the candidates be persisting in allowing Peter Mandelson and Alistair Campbell to determine Labour Party policy?

  • Comment number 19.

    My all time favourite Labour politician is Clement Attlee, its a man like him who we need to lead our economy into recovery. The history media fail to portray just what a bad state our economy was in at the end of WW2, Attlee worked miracles, but then he had just got the experience of running the UK during the worst of the war on the home front. The only true reason he got defeated by Churchill was the promise of lifting rationing, which Attlee probably could have done by the same time.

    The main reason I support Andy Burnham is that like Attlee, he did have experienced of running the NHS more competently than any of his modern predecessors. He even managed to find cost savings, but my father recently had experience of the NHS whilst suspected bladder cancer. He got seen promptly and if anything they were attempting to rush him in radio-therapy. We chose a management option, allegedly to prolong his active life ( despite being 87 ), the thing is that the found " no reoccurrence " of his cancer from April, the last time the " reamed him out ". They claimed that in the original operation they " couldn't remove it all, left it while January ( the surgeon having given us all the options to consider ), saw a new surgeon who acting on the word of the nurse technician alleged that my dad's cancer was out of control. Perhaps it was just the scar tissue, there would appear to have been a policy of keeping up the number of in patients just to battery farm the wade space. I noted that one ward had been recently closed and without major modification hasty turned into a patient waiting for operation at first visit. This would allow the battery farming of beds on surgical wards, one going in in a morning another coming from theatre that afternoon, bed theoretically occupied 24 hours of the day. Perhaps it just to meet targets but patients are being given their pre-opp up to two weeks before actual admission. Tough luck if you get ill in-between, have to inconveniently miss your opp or risk consequences from the anesthetic.

    The fiasco above has nothing to do with Andy Burnham, but at least he was trying to get rid of hospital car park charges. Probably can't do anything because charges for hospital car parks are a " private tax " paid to the PFI contractor at " new " hospitals. Someone has to get the guts to cancel ( nationalise ) all PFI deals and simply agree a sum to pay them out, at the moment its just another welfare state for the stock market parasites.

    Particularly both the Milibands and to some extent Balls are contaminated by the eco-fascist sect of the Blair inspired " Corporate Nazi " ideology. Within the next 5 years the CO2 driven man made global warming theory could probably be totally discredited. perhaps we have already seen the " end of the beginning " for the Climate Change Scam. Only a couple of weeks ago the EU climate commissioner woman was bleating about increasing EU CO2 cuts by 30% as opposed to the original 20% by 2020 target. She rather blew the real intention of said directive suggesting that due to the recession a 20% cut would be too easy and not drive investment in things like pointless wind farms. Anyway her eco-lunatic proposal has got knocked in the head this week, and perhaps circumstances will eventually mean that the 20% pledge is also abandoned. Cameron has already pinned all the energy policy side of the Climate Change Scam on the Lib-demmics, looking to the future the Labour Party will need " clean underpants " on the Climate Change Scam. Taking everything into consideration Andy Burnham is the only serious leadership contender with relatively clean underpants on climate change, ED Miliband sporting the most soiled of all and closely followed by his brother.

  • Comment number 20.

    ask why they find the Iraq war so distasteful now and so amenable in can't all be about because we didn't know all the facts....I didn't KNOW all the facts yet I marched along with 1 .7 million others because I felt we were being duped by George Bush...only Abbott felt like me and she gets my vote...

  • Comment number 21.

    Labour has been telling us that public services must represent the people they serve, so why are 40% of the Labour leadership jews and 20% black - how does this represent the racial mix of the UK.

  • Comment number 22.

    Capitalism uses immigration to force down the wages and conditions of the labour market by creating an excess of labour. In the last election the only choice was neo-liberal capitalism.
    The Labour party was created to represent the working man, to stand up for their rights against capitalism. In my opinion the labour party has become a pinker shade of blue and forgotten what it's function is.

  • Comment number 23.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 24.

    Would any of the candidates care to explain why Overseas Aid is always protected by "ring fencing" when it comes to looking at cost savings?
    The Labour party were as guilty of this as anyone, the current Government have made the same commitment?

    Why when we have a deficit that waters the eyes are we sending ANY money abroad ?

  • Comment number 25.

    Please ask why the previous Labour administration did not equalise CGT, and would they consider this measure in the future, from Simon in Portsmouth.

  • Comment number 26.

    "You were defeated and in debt after 13 years in power. Your own party is in debt of nearly £18million. Do you think you will succeed at the next election with a new leader, or will you be like the Conservative Party (in opposition for the next 13 years) and have at least 3 changes of leader before the public warms to you again?"

  • Comment number 27.

    As a US reader, I'd like to know whether British political leaders see the 'special relationship" with the US as worth it? Given that it was arguably Tony Blair's participation with George W Bush in the invasion of Iraq that first undermined his popularity with the British electorate...

  • Comment number 28.

    I should like you to ask Diane Abbot if she intends to lead the party left-wards. I know "middle of the road" is in favour now, but I belong to the unreconstructed Clause IV wing of the party,

  • Comment number 29.

    Are you going to be similar to the last labour government where labour socialist roots were ditched and now with very little difference between the mainstream parties? Do you not feel ashamed at what Tony Blair did to the party, giving it a shallow, power hungry, war obsessed reputation, all of which it would have once opposed?

  • Comment number 30.

    The Labour government invaded Iraq against the will of its own voters. The labour government supported trident against the will of its own voters. Now in opposition not one of the prospective leadership candidates supports a more proportional voting system, against the will of its own voters.

    When is the parliamentary Labour party going to start reflecting the people who support it, rather than trying to dictate to its supporters what they should believe in?

  • Comment number 31.

    1) In line with what PabloPaddyD wrote, you could ask them, in the event that The Sun, e.t.c. affirmed their support for them, whether they would explicitly condemn the said paper and reject the offer of support (and not, for example, allow themselves to be photographed with a smug look and a copy of the paper in hand, like Cameron was).

    2) They should also be questioned on: a) their stance if the Browne report brings about a rise in tuition fees -- how they would vote on it; b) their plans on reforming the Tuition fees system -- could a student under their next Labour government expect lower fees in any cases?

    3) Thirdly, what do they think about the Lib Dem £10,000 tax threshold plans for the lowest earners? What about the civil liberties agenda that's been stolen by the Tories and Lib Dems?

    4) What do the other candidates think about Ed Balls' plans to limit EU migration; Harman's proposals to populate 50% of the Cabinet with women; Ed Miliband's commitment to a permanent 50% tax and review of private sector pay?

    5) If Labour comes back into power in the near future, how would you deal with Gove's newly-established "free schools"? Would they, like Grammar Schools, be allowed to operate outside the system, but not expand, or would you reign in on (any of?)them and re-centralise control? Anything in the Tory schools policy you like the sound of?

    6) How will they further Labour's manifesto commitment to ban MPs from working for lobbying firms (will they keep it at all??) - would they move on to ban all second jobs for MPs? Second, do they reaffirm Brown's post-election commitment to a referendum on introducing PR -- if not, perhaps Brown was wrong to make it, then??? Was it even right for Brown to commit, post-election, to an introduction of AV without a referendum?

  • Comment number 32.

    When is Labour going to stop taxing working people to death (and beyond) to bribe it's own public sector/DSS support to keep it power?

  • Comment number 33.

    Will they be prepared to commit to government spending taking a higher proportion of GDP (say 50%) in order to provide acceptable levels of services and benefits? Will they be honest about the level of taxation for ordinary people that will be required to pay for this? Anyone who is numerate knows this cannot be done just by taxing "the rich".

  • Comment number 34.

    Will they ever think of England as a Nation in the same way as they think of N'Ireland, Wales and Scotland.

  • Comment number 35.

    Are any of them prepared to disclose the details of the 'experiment' that Mandy talked about to you with a smirk on his face a few months ago, Jeremy?


    P.S. I appreciate that Diane Abbott may not have been privy to it but the chaps must have been.

  • Comment number 36.

    Because we went to war in Iraq illegally, do you think Tony Blair and Alistair Campbell should be tried as a war criminal

  • Comment number 37.

    What policy commitment will you personally make that if the next Labour Government of which you are a MP does not fulfil within its term, you will:
    1) Stand against an official Labour party candidate at the next election
    2) Forgo your pension rights as your promises have proved worthless, so the people's promise to pay your pension should not be presumed upon

    Will you make a legally binding agreement to these terms?

    If the answer is nothing, then you obviously have no real beliefs, and are merely a opportunist.

  • Comment number 38.

    i have been reading a lot of info on the net lately, concerning 'common law' and 'freemen'. question: will the candidates be pushing for the banks to stop controlling the economy, more use of the law of the land, 'common law' and less use of 'contract law'-the banks law, and returning to the old rules of ;the government and local government being there for the people and not the other way round??? and also, how do i 'owe' all this money???(the so called national debt - debt to who???)

  • Comment number 39.

    Which former Labour leader from the past or recent past would you identify with or indeed compare yourself to?

  • Comment number 40.

    Should the Labour Party choose the best candidate for the job based on their ability, rather than discriminating against white men?

  • Comment number 41.

    why do you want to become labour leader?

  • Comment number 42.

    Do you think that the multi millionaire Tony Blair is a blot on the Labour party and an insult to hard working, over taxed, law abiding ordinary party members?

  • Comment number 43.

    Your education backgrounds are public knowledge, but what actual LIFE and employment experience do you have, to qualify you to make decisions for the general population, and to inspire confidence in you? If little or none, why should any member of the public be comforted to know you are there, and by what right would you command any sort of allegience?

  • Comment number 44.

    How do you intend re-engaging with the millions of traditional Labour supporters who have been betrayed by New Labour and the transition into 'Tory Lite' ?

  • Comment number 45.

    what are your qualifications in society building science?
    which models do you prefer and why?
    what is your society building plan?

    which features of the german economic model make it an industrial powerhouse and why are those features missing in the uk? how would you correct that?

    do you still believe in new labours model of market fundamentalism? that 'a light touch' market is the best arranger of a society's resources? If so will you continue pfi? allowing strategic uk resources to be owned by foreign state backed multinationals etc? what do you think of the 'john lewis model' for publiuc services?

    what do you think are the roles and responsibilities of the guardian class. what skills should they be versed in? Can the interests of different states be identical in all respects? can someone serve two houses?

  • Comment number 46.

    The 'West Lothian/English' Question:

    I hope Mr Paxman and the Newsnight team recognise that the single most common question raised so far concerns the 'English' situation - a problem the previous Labour government created but refused to recognise. The strength of indignation amongst the English nation is now too widespread and informed to allow government to hide behind ancient polling data - or to regionalise England by stealth.
    We need a solid commitment to either abandon the devolution experiment or to quickly move on to it's natural conclusion in the shape of an English Parliament and the ending of the iniquitous Barnett Formula.


    Oddly, the European question does not seem to come up but the candidates should be asked what they would do - should they become leader/PM - to correct the disgraceful refusal to hold the promised referendum on the European constitution and should not be allowed to hide behind the semantic arguments employed by their previous leader.

  • Comment number 47.

    YES bLAIR IS A WAR CRIMINAL AND cAMPELL is as well as he duped most everybody and is still doing it...why isn't he booed at everytime he leaves the come Blair has all that not tell me that crime doesn't pay,,,it does..and Blair is the example of how it does...and he's a do the christians feel about him being a member.....

  • Comment number 48.

    How does each of the candidates intend to undo the damage done to the party recently by the last incumbant of the position of leader? If they cannot repair the party, how do they expect to be able to repair the country when given a possible chance in five years' time?

    Also, why will it take so long to elect a new leader? All other parties seem to manage it in a matter of a very few weeks. Five months is an inordinate amount of time for any ship to be on the seas rudderless.

  • Comment number 49.

    Please ask the candidates:-

    Assuming that the Government outlaws political donations from Trade Unions and from any individual or corporation in excess of £250, how would you seek to fund the Labour Party?

    Bob Gilkes

  • Comment number 50.

    What will the candidates do over and above current Labour Party rules to ensure women attain high office in government?

  • Comment number 51.

    Why under New Labour did less affluent people have to pay more for car tax, TV license, electricity, gas, water, etc. because they could not afford to pay for future months, unlike the more affluent? (Eg. 6 mths compared to 12 mths car tax or TV license paid monthly compared to a one off payment). This defines the fork tongue of fakes like Blair, Mandelson and Campbell, then again Brown and his cabinet were equally responsible. This is a real life example of how the last government failed the masses.

  • Comment number 52.

    "Although they were eligable for registration, three million people were missing from electoral registers at the General Election. This averaged over 4,500 per Constituency, with the figures being especially high amongst the young, the poor, ethic minorities, the rootless and those otherwise mobile. What would the candidates do to ensure the registration of these missing millions?".

    (The claims in the question can be checked via the Electoral Commission. Although some half a million people were registered after the election was announced, the figure of 3 million will still be shown to be correct.)

  • Comment number 53.

    Given Liebour's appallingly irresponsible record in government (both Old and New Liebour), and given that their gerrymandered electoral boundaries will have been made fair by May 2015, and given that the voting system will have changed to transferable votes for the next general election, it seems reasonable to suppose that the UK will never again (ever) see a Liebour government (thank God). In which case ... why are these Liebour leadership candidates bothering?

  • Comment number 54.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 55.

    please ask the candidates the following; As a way to reduce the deficit, would any of them be prepared to withold any state benefits to all applicants unless they had been born in the UK?

  • Comment number 56.

    Labour's position on matters of civil liberties has sometimes been controversial. Would you continue with the course set by your predecessors? From anti-social behavior policies to the side effects of the war on terror how will you safeguard civil liberties?

  • Comment number 57.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 58.

    would Jeremy Paxman ask the question who ever becomes leader of the Labour Party, drop the word new and once again become the Labour Party and fight as a united front against the government, the Labour Party was always looked on as the champion of the working class, who ever becomes leader must remember this.

  • Comment number 59.

    Are you just a political theorist living in an ideal world ,now seeking to be leader of a political party that has led the country to ruin?

    What is the point of becoming a leader of a rejected part .A party that you were a major player in.

    For labour ever to be forgiven for the the mess they left behind,the voters will be looking for change ,wouldn't that change most probably includes you?

  • Comment number 60.

    In the Britain of 2010, is Labour still the party that Keir Hardie founded?

  • Comment number 61.

    Why don't you give England a national assembly as well? That way there would be several hundred more jobs for all of your friends, family members, 'researchers' & other assorted hangers-on. While your at it..a Cornish assembly too. More layers of highly paid career politicians, that's what this country needs.

  • Comment number 62.

    According to the Adam Smith Institiute their have been only 4 years since 1974 when tax has been below 40% of GDP. The highest percentage ever paid in tax was under Margaret Thatcher in 1982 at 47%. Tax under Labour started at 40.1% in 1997 and Finished at 40.9% in 2010. It peaked under Labour at 42.396% in 2006 (and also 2001). Given then that there would appear to be very little Political room to increase taxes How would you ensure that the state is able to provide the support that the individual needs to be protected against ill health, old age, unemployment etc. ?

    Also how would you ensure that we protect our planet so that we can live knowing that their will be sufficient food and other resources for all our futures?

  • Comment number 63.

    TUESDAY NEWSNIGHT, Mr Paxman presiding ...

    Are you sure all contenders for leadership have considered what a media liability the impact of their surname might make?

    On the surface, that would sound inconsequential and harmless enough, but superficial “soundbite politicians” have become like brandnames. To start out a Tomorrow’s Labour, by buying into a brand dubbed “Balls” – Mr Ed Balls - beggars belief

    Whilst I respect the gentleman cannot help his surname, its liability value among the tabloids especially, will give the gutter press headline writers a field-day

    Nor does international press coverage of Westminster goings-on need more ammunition to render Britain the Western World’s political laughing-stock. We’ve achieved that already, thanks

    Trevor Malcolm in Portsmouth, Hampshire -----------------------

  • Comment number 64.

    Gentlemen, I guess I’d best explain my reasoning to you, as well

    See, last Thursday, I heard Mr Alastair Campbell on BBC Question Time pitch in favour of Mr David Miliband, as the best choice of new Labour Party leader, whilst also claiming other candidates, like the two Ed's - Ed Miliband and Ed Balls - equally worthy contestants

    So far, so good. Although at least one hopeful presents future media-communication dilemma, I fear. See, headline writers for tabloid newspapers, notoriously get over-excited prematurely. For instance, they relish prospects of penning future headlines that don’t pan out quite the way they’d planned

    Best case? The Sun’s front page headline on Thursday, 7th January 1993 read “Virgin Screws BA” – which annoyed editor Kelvin MacKenzie. A court case verdict against Richard Branson would’ve allowed wording, the other way around

    MacKenzie favoured “BA Screws Virgin” for a neater headline

    Now, consider Mr Ed Balls. He wants his name announced as the new leader of the Labour Party at their annual conference on 25th September, right?

    Tell me, can we expect a spate of “Balls” headlines, then? Abit more “back-to-frontness, ahead, to overshadow the Labour leadership contest. Say, “Balls kicks Tories in the … in the what?

    In the Cameron and Clegg, surely not?! Sounds like cockney rhyming slang, but what’s it stand for?

    Besides, who’s supposed to kick whom? And, what in, exactly? Please enlighten us - I'm certain BBC staffers would be more familiar with such vernacular

    Truth is, I simply cannot see party leadership supporters broadcasting “ … I’m with Balls on this one, it's Big Ed Balls for me” – not without laughing, sorry

    There, see? Proof of trying - I've just dribbled down my own Tannoy already

    So, I trust Mr David Miliband, wins the leadership contest. Because, if not, we’re in danger of the Labour Party being led by a surnamed laughing-stock, sadly. “Balls for PM, anyone? And why not Balls for AM, too?"

    "Balls in the morning, Balls at noon, then Balls at supper time, too ... " - sounding more and more like the song lyrics of a certifiable Christmas 2010 number one hit-single to me already

    Are you sure this candidate’s surname makes him even “fit for purpose” as opposition party leader, let alone future Downing Street incumbency?

    Trevor Malcolm in Portsmouth, here --------------

  • Comment number 65.

    Will you, as leader, turn your back on the army of special advisors, lobbyists, management consultants, non-elected ministers, media PRs, communication spivs and all the other mountebanks, snake oil salesmen and charlatans, who appear to be such a vital element in the fabric of the Labour party? Have you yet learned the lesson that you are only public servants and not our political masters?

  • Comment number 66.

    The Conservatives state "We will promote integration into British society. There will be an English language test for anyone coming here from outside the EU to get married."

    The reality is that this test will only be applied to those countries which the government deems second class. All of the usual suspects like the US will be exempt, while well educated English speaking individuals from for example India, South Africa and Hong Kong will be demeaned by having to pay the UK authorities a tax to prove their language abilities are up to scratch.

    Surely either everybody entering the county sits this test, or nobody does.

    This seems to be simply knee jerk racially biased policy without any concern for the realities of immigration.

    How would you improve the fairness of UK immigration policy without alienating the electorate, or the talented individuals the UK is trying to attract​?

  • Comment number 67.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 68.

    Can any of the candidates explain why it is possible to take a dog or cat to certain countries under the Pet Passport scheme, but not others, since rabies does not honour national boundries, and all animals entering the scheme must be vaccinated against rabies? Is it logical or prejudice?

  • Comment number 69.

    Since 1997, new Labour have pursued economically liberal free market policies. Do the candidates believe that this philosophy has played a part in a significant number of traditional Labour voters deserting the party, and if so, what is the new economic philosophy that the party should adopt to win back the support of these voters?

  • Comment number 70.

    Two issues .....

    It is the requirement for Government to be totally secular and not to show any bias, preference or favouritism toward any faith or religion.


    Did the extent of power and control of the PC Brigade go too far under the last government and what should be done to balance the current inequalities railed against the indigenous working class?


  • Comment number 71.

    Who would the leadership candidates vote for if it couldn't be themselves?

  • Comment number 72.

    I should like to add my voice to those who have already asked for a version of the West Lothian Question: how can it be right for Scottish / Welsh / N. Irish MPs to be able to vote on some matters which affect life in England, whereas English MPs cannot vote on some matters which affect life in Scotland / Wales / Northern Ireland?

    It would be good to take it further and ask what each candidate would do about this, but a first step would be to get them to agree it is inequitable.

    And I should like Mr Paxman to be very insistent on getting an answer.

  • Comment number 73.

    1. would you place a cap on the amount of mass media one company/individual can hold, and do you think that is necessary?

    2. how would you deal with tax-avoidance by the multi-nationals, and do you think that is necessary?

    3. would you bring in a form of PR, and do you think that is necessary?

    4. how would you intend to rebuild the UK's manufacturing industry, and do you think that is necessary?

    5. how will you start the process of moving to reduced-oil-use permaculture culture agriculture, and do you think that is necessary?

    6. will you put a cap on how much one individual/organisation can give to a political party, and do you think that is necessary?

    7. would you support British troops being sent to further American invasions, such as Pakistan, Yemen, Iran, and do you think that is necessary?

  • Comment number 74.

    on 1:

    on 2:

    also 8. Would you support an arms embargo against Israel, unless they started to treat their neighbours with more respect and do you think that is necessary?

    9. and would you support an independent UN Inquiry into the murders of those peace activists on the aid convoy and finally, do you think that is necessary?

  • Comment number 75.

    Would it be possible to tell the truth this time?

  • Comment number 76.

    HOW will you reconnect the Labour Party to those who have stopped voting for it since 2001? What changes would you make to the way the Labour Party operates so that it truly reflects the views of those who would be prepared to vote for it? HOW will you sustain a dialogue with potential Labour voters that is honest and realistic?

  • Comment number 77.

    If this is a serious question, as opposed to an opportunity for the usual rants, I hope you will ignore all the comments placed here by people who never have & never would have any intention of voting Labour. For the record, the last Government lied no more than its predecessor or than its successor has started to do. Spin & the army of spin doctors hasn't gone away. It's just that the biased UK media rarely mentioned it when it's Conservative spin - mainly because they're generally doing it for them.

  • Comment number 78.

    Ask each candidate which way they voted on the issue of the Iraq war.......

  • Comment number 79.

    Really very disappointing that Newsnight failed to ask the English question. Devolution remains unfinished business with England ignored under represeted and under funded.

    Another opportunity to take the architects of asymmetric devolution to task. Another failure by the BBC to speak on behalf of the 52 million English people disadvantaged by Labour's policies.


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