BBC row: Harriet Harman interview at heart of controversy
Saturday 13 December 1997
The is part of the interview:
John Humphrys: "There are many women in this country who have children under the age of five and who do not want to work. Are you saying to them `we think you ought to work'?"
Harriet Harman: "There are many women with children under five who want to work and who lack affordable, high-quality child care."
Humphrys: "I am talking about those who don't want to work and I am asking you the question, are you saying to them, `Ultimately it is our aim to get people like you into work.' "Is that what you are saying? It is a very straightforward question."
Harman: "Well, I am giving you a very straightforward answer, John, which is that we are for the first time offering those lone mothers with children under five."
Humphrys: "No, you are not answering the question, with the greatest of respect. You are answering your question. I am asking you to answer my question.
"Do you want these women ... you talk about ending a dependency culture, are you saying to women with young children who are living by themselves, we would like you to work? Is that what you are saying?"
Harman: "I am saying I would like for those women what they want for themselves and that means choice."
Humphrys: "Hang on, what they want, for many of them is you not to impose the cuts you are imposing to them."
Harman: "They have had no choice in the past, because they have been given no help to work. The question is whether we invest pounds 5 a week extra to help them on benefits, or whether we invest in helping them into work. And if they don't get into work, they will have that choice and they will get the same level of benefit for their child as married women will get.
"I know we will look back on this and think how odd it was we were championing the rights of lone mothers to bring up their children on benefit. It's hard to bring up your children on benefit. It's easier if you can do part- time work, or even full-time work, and actually have a better standard of living, and that's the direction in which we are going."
Humphrys: "Harriet Harman, thank you very much."
Tourist films plane's descent just metres above packed Caribbean beach
Bali nine: Welcome to 'Execution Island' – the Indonesian holiday resort where foreigners are sent to die
How Homer Simpson discovered the Higgs boson over a decade before scientists
The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
Harrison Ford plane crash: Star Wars actor 'seriously injured' after light aircraft crash lands
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Nigel Farage promises Ukip will not 'stigmatise' would-be migrants – and says he wants 'everyone to speak the same language'
Ex-head of MI6: 'We shouldn't kid ourselves that Russia is on a path to democracy'
Most people think legal tax avoidance is just as wrong as illegal tax evasion, poll suggests
£30000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This organisation based in Pea...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This fast-paced award winning company based in...
£50000 - £70000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This provider of global logisti...
£35000 - £70000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Manager (Vice President...