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Page last updated at 07:17 GMT, Tuesday, 25 November 2008
Today: Tuesday 25 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.

The Conservatives say Alistair Darling's pre-Budget statement was a Budget in all but name and needs every bit as much Parliamentary scrutiny. Business editor Robert Peston discusses if the measures to be introduced will save the UK from a deep recession.

The government is to publish its review into claims that sections of British society had "drifted into a benefits culture" which had created "a terrible legacy for their children". The National director of Health and Work Dame Carol Black, who published the claims, discusses what the response to her criticisms could be.

What should the role of the police be in the 21st Century? Home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw reports on his time with West Mercia police, trying to assess the effectiveness of neighbourhood policing in the home secretary's constituency of Redditch.

Business news with Adam Shaw.

The subject of injured soldiers is to be addressed in a new exhibition. The artist David Cotterrell photographed medical staff at work in the field hospital at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan. He discusses the photos on display at the Wellcome Gallery in London with Richard Hollingham, author of Blood and Guts - a History of Surgery.

Sports news with Garry Richardson.

Shadow Chancellor George Osborne has described the government's pre-Budget report as "reckless". He says "it is clear that interest rates can come down" and Conservative measures to deal with the downturn would do "far more than Labour's 2.5% cut in VAT".

Today's papers.

Scientists believe they may have solved one of the great mysteries of palaeontology. The Burgess Shale fossils - named after the formations in the Canadian Rockies where they are found - are among the oldest and best-preserved fossils anywhere on Earth. Science correspondent Tom Feilden reports on the artefacts which should have perished long ago.

Thought for the day with the ReverendDrDavidWilkinson, principal of St John's College Durham.

Public investment in UK stem cell research and the UK's position as one of the world leaders in the field is not being translated into NHS treatments, leading scientists believe. Professor Chris Mason, of steering committee the UK National Stem Cell Network, discusses if more clinical trials is the way to increase successful treatments.

The Chancellor Alistair Darling has outlined plans to double the national debt in his pre-Budget report. He discusses how he thinks increased borrowing, which is set to reach 118bn by the end of 2009, is a "gamble" that is justified in the current economic climate.

Sports news with Garry Richardson.

What will be the political fallout of the government's pre-Budget report? Political editor Nick Robinson discusses the statement, which the Independent describes as "a pivotal moment which will shape British politics for years ahead".

The Women's Institute has agreed that its members will keep an eye out for adverts selling sex in local newspapers. It is in response to a request by the Minister for Women Harriet Harman, who is worried that many such advertisements are for girls who have been trafficked here as sex slaves. Isla Arundell explains what the WI will be doing.

Business news with Adam Shaw.

Israel should be prepared to make difficult compromises in pursuit of peace, in particular with Syria, Israel's outgoing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says. Correspondent Wyre Davies reports on whether suspended talks between the two countries, mediated by Turkey, can be resumed.

What is Britain's role in the war in Afghanistan? US President-elect Barack Obama has already stated a desire to send more troops into the area. Foreign Secretary David Miliband, who is visiting Afghanistan, says there is no plan to increase the number of British forces next year - and he urges other European countries to respond to US requests for reinforcements.

Newspaper reaction to Alistair Darling's pre-Budget statement has been mixed. Martin Wolf, of the Financial Times, and Sir Martin Sorrell, founder of the world's biggest advertising group WPP, discusses whether middle-Britain has been "bashed" and if this is "the day New Labour died".



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