Q: HOW MUCH WILL IT COST? A: ERMM...

Daily Mail - - Election 2017 -

Emma Bar­nett: How much will it cost to pro­vide un­means-tested child­care for 1.3mil­lion chil­dren?

Jeremy Cor­byn: Erm… it will cost… erm… it will ob­vi­ously cost a lot to do so, we ac­cept that... EB: I pre­sume you have the fig­ures? JC: Yes I do. Erm… we’ll… it does cost a lot to do, and the point I’ m try­ing to make is that we’re mak­ing it univer­sal, so that we are in a po­si­tion to make sure that ev­ery child gets it and those than can erm… err… at the mo­ment [coughs] get free places will con­tinue to get them, those that have to pay won’t, and we’ll col­lect the money through tax­a­tion, mainly through cor­po­rate tax­a­tion. EB: So how much will it cost? JC: I’ll give you the fig­ure in a mo­ment. [loud exhale] EB: You don’t know it? JC: Erm… [ner­vous laugh] EB: You’re log­ging in to your iPad here. You’ve an­nounced a ma­jor pol­icy, and you don’t know how much it will cost?

JC: Can I give you the ex­act fig­ure in a mo­ment?

EB: Is this not ex­actly the is­sue with peo­ple and the Labour Party which came up un­der Gor­don Brown, that we can­not trust you with our money? JC: Not at all – all our... EB: But you don’t know the fig­ure.

JC: All of our man­i­festo is, erm, fully costed and ex­am­ined. And… err… [In­ter­rupted]

EB: But you’re hold­ing your man­i­festo, you’re flick­ing through it, you’ve got an iPad there, you’ve had a phone call while we’re in here, and you don’t know how much it’s go­ing to cost? JC: [Long pause] Can we come back to that in a mo­ment? EB: What when you’ve looked it up? JC: Look ... [In­ter­rupted] EB: My point is – it’s quite trou­bling. This is a pol­icy you’re launch­ing to­day Mr Cor­byn and you don’t know how much it’s go­ing to cost. JC: [Loud exhale] EB: It hardly in­spires the vot­ers. JC: [Loud exhale] I want to give you an ac­cu­rate fig­ure. EB: Why on earth are you giv­ing free child­care to peo­ple who could af­ford it, if it’s un­means-tested. You don’t have the fig­ure. Hope­fully some­one’s email­ing it to you.

JC: [Sigh] The im­por­tant thing is that all chil­dren get a chance to grow up to­gether. At the mo­ment we have a sys­tem which sep­a­rates out, in the sense that a child of, erm, wealthy par­ents may well be able to go to a paid-for preschool or nurs­ery fa­cil­ity. Oth­ers will not get that chance be­cause their par­ents can’t af­ford it or if they’re poor they’ll get a free place. What we’re… EB: This is a very ex­pen­sive pol­icy, Mr Cor­byn. I’m go­ing to help you out with the fig­ures. I’ve got them. Would you like to hear how much it’s go­ing to cost? JC: What is your es­ti­mate of it? [Re­peat­edly clear­ing throat] EB: Well it’s ac­tu­ally Angela Rayner, your shadow education sec­re­tary. £2.7bil­lion. Then £4.8bil­lion plus that with half a bil­lion to re­verse the cuts to the Sure Start scheme. Does that sound about right? JC: It does sound cor­rect.

Caught out: Jeremy Cor­byn reaches for his iPad in the stu­dio

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