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Page last updated at 06:04 GMT, Saturday, 8 November 2008
Today: Saturday 8 November 2008

PLEASE NOTE: We are unable to offer transcripts for our programme interviews. Today is broadcast live and the running order is subject to change.

Could Barack Obama have come to power in this country? The head of the Equality Commission Trevor Phillips says "even someone of Mr Obama's talent would struggle to overcome Labour's institutional stranglehold on power". Political correspondent Arif Ansari reports on the British political system's "institutional racism".

Political leaders have been meeting in Kenya to talk about what's happening in Congo. Correspondent Orla Guerin reports from Goma about what's happening in Congo.

Today's papers

Europe's second-largest steel company Corus has announced plans for a 30% cut in production over the next six months due to weakening demand in Europe. Industry correspondent Nick Servini reports on how the shut down "underlines how the economic crisis is hurting manufacturing in Britain".

Religious leaders in Jerusalem are warning of dangerous consequences after a decision by Israel's Supreme Court to allow the destruction of part of an ancient Muslim cemetery, to allow the construction of a Jewish "Museum of Tolerance". Correspondent Wyre Davies reports on the graveyard which has not been used for more than 50 years, but contains the bodies of some important Islamic figures.

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.

US President-elect Barack Obama has made his first official appearance since his election win. He said a stimulus package to boost the economy was long overdue and would be his top priority. Bruce Belzowski, of the University of Michigan's Transport Research Institute, and North America editor Justin Webb discuss what can be learned from Mr Obama's first dealings with the press since the election.

What would British and US defence officials want with a retired insurance manager from West Sussex? Frank Leeson is the last surviving British officer to have served in North Waziristan, the border region of Pakistan which has become a frontline in Washington's "war on terror". Zubeida Malik reports on his remarkable story.

Today's papers.

Thought for the day with the Reverend Rob Marshall.

African leaders have called for an immediate ceasefire in the Congo and for UN peacekeepers to be given more power. Jendayi Frazer, US assistant secretary of state for African affairs, and Anneke van Woudenberg, of Human Rights Watch, discuss recent "military offensives" by rebels.

There is "institutional racism" in the British political system, according to the head of the UK equality watchdog. Trevor Phillips says that the UK political system is closed to outsiders. Labour MP Sadiq Khan discusses research by the Fabian Society which suggests that Britain could see the number of black, minority and ethnic (BME) MPs increase from 15 to about 25 at the next election.

Has the manufacturing industry got the capacity to survive now the UK is heading into a recession? Brendan Barber, general secretary of the TUC, and Stephen Radley, chief economist at the Engineering Employers Federation, discuss whether unemployment will increase over the coming months.

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.

The main mortgage lenders have started to respond to the government's demand that they should cut their mortgage lending rates. Vince Cable, treasury spokesman for the Liberal Democrats, and Gillian Tett, capital markets editor for the Financial Times, discuss whether the Bank of England is back in charge of the UK economy.

Today's papers.

It is 30 years since television show Dallas aired for the first time in the US. At its peak, the soap opera was watched by 90 million people in America alone. Reporter Nicola Stanbridge talks to Larry Hagman, who played JR in the show, about the Dallas phenomenon.

A desperate rescue effort is continuing at the site of a school building in Haiti that collapsed with several hundred children inside. At least 50 people are now known to have died and more than 120 were injured when the three-storey building in Port-au-Prince caved in. Local man Louis Robert Malbranche describes the scene.

Why has the world invested so much faith in the character of Barack Obama? Sir David Manning, former British ambassador to Washington and historian Alastair Horne, discuss if the world yearns for a different style of US leadership.



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