Brilliant second Richard Tice slapped down Tony Blair reside on-air 23 years in the past | Politics | News | EUROtoday

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A clip has emerged from an early noughties episode of BBC Question Time the place Reform UK Chairman Richard Tice engaged in a deep debate with the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair.

The 59-year-old British businessman, whose occasion’s chief Nigel Farage trumpeted their election pledges as we speak, was a fresh-faced member of the viewers in 2001 when Mr Blair was Prime Minister.

In archive footage shared by journalist Dan Wootton on X, Mr Tice, sporting a white shirt, opened his query saying “average unemployment in the Eurozone countries is double that of the unemployment rate in Britain”.

Addressing Mr Blair, he continued: “If we join the Euro, we will have higher taxes, higher regulation and it will destroy British jobs, it will not protect them and it will not create them.”

After a ripple of applause from the viewers to Mr Tice’s remark, Mr Blair stated he must say that he “disagreed with that”, including: “Provided that our economy is convergent with those of mainstream Europe, then I believe it would be good for British jobs and British industry.

“Now you say, for instance, that being a part of the one forex would hurt British jobs or imply increased taxes, it would not imply both of these issues if the financial circumstances have been proper, as a result of it will enable us to have the change fee stability that the truth is, we speak to many individuals in our manufacturing business, they’re determined for.”

The former Labour Prime Minister added that he agreed if it were the case the UK joined when the “economics have been improper” as it had been two years earlier, then it would have been “the improper factor to do”.

Interjecting, Mr Tice reiterated his point about the unemployment rate in Europe and claimed that “9 out of 10 jobs in Britain will not be depending on European commerce”.

Challenging Mr Blair, he added: “What about these 9 folks, why are you doing every little thing for the one out of 10?”

Mr Blair, who won his second General Election with the Labour Party in 2001, fought back, exclaiming: “I’m not doing every little thing for the one out of 10.

“When you say that because unemployment is higher in some parts of Europe than it is in Britain, if we join the Single Currency it means unemployment goes up, that’s simply not the case.

“And the actual fact is, whenever you discuss jobs being depending on Europe, we in all probability have one thing like three million jobs depending on Europe on this nation, one thing like 60 p.c of our export commerce relies on Europe”.

A voice off camera appeared to try and interrupt, but Mr Blair would not be budged and concluded: “If we have been to take, I do not know if that is your place or not sir, if we have been to take the course that the Conservatives are arguing, and withdraw to the margins of Europe then I let you know it will be a catastrophe for British jobs and British business and folks ought to perceive that.”