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Page last updated at 07:46 GMT, Wednesday, 6 January 2010
Today: Wednesday 6th January

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

Heavy snow has swept across central and southern England, bringing disruption to road, rail and air travel. And President Obama has described the failure to stop the attempted Christmas Day bombing of a US airliner as a "screw up" by the intelligence community.


Heavy snowfall across the UK has caused severe disruptions to roads. The AA has warned that grip supplies are running low. Edmund King, president of the AA, and Dr John Heyworth, president of the College of Emergency Medicine, discuss the the weather conditions.


Fundamental doubts over a key piece of evidence which convicted the Lockerbie bomber, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, has been revealed by a BBC investigation. Scientific tests appear to undermine the crucial forensics link between the attack and Mr al-Megrahi. Newsnight reporter Peter Marshall explains the findings.

Business news with Adam Shaw.


Aspiration is emerging as one of the buzz words of the putative election campaign. Gordon Brown has talked of an "age of aspiration" while the Conservatives accuse Labour of being opposed to aspiration. Lisa Harker, co-director of the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), examines what aspiration means.


If you are miserable about going back to work this week, spare a thought for the British soldiers on the front-lines in Afghanistan, who did not get any time off over Christmas and New Year. Major Richard Streatfield has been keeping a diary of his tour of duty in Helmand province. In his latest dispatch, he says a flurry of parcels from home helped keep the troops' spirits up.

The sports news with Garry Richardson.


Improved cancer survival rates have left thousands of people with other illnesses, long after their treatment has stopped. Professor Jane Maher, chief medical officer at Macmillan Cancer Support, and Professor Mike Richards, national cancer director at the Department of Health discuss the side effects of cancer treatment.

The paper review.


The north-west of England ambulance service is urging people not to venture out today because of the bad weather. They are prioritising 999 calls to ensure that the most serious can be dealt with. Kath Galaska, the service's chief operating officer, discusses the warnings.


The lifetime ban handed down to former Renault team boss, Flavio Briatore, has been over-turned. The Italian was banned by the sport's governing body, for his part in Nelson Piquet Junior's deliberate crash at the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix. Mr Briatore discusses his reaction to the French High Court's new ruling.

Thought for the day with Reverend Roy Jenkins, a Baptist minister.


Aspiration is emerging as the one of the buzz words of election campaign. Gordon Brown has talked of an "age of aspiration, " but the word has been historically linked to Conservative polices. John Hutton, former Labour cabinet minister, and Justine Greening, shadow Communities and Local Government spokesperson, debate what is aspiration.


Heavy snow and icy roads are causing travel chaos across much of the UK. Correspondent Mandy Savage assesses the disruption around the country. Hundreds of schools have been closed due to the weather conditions. Stephen Alambritis, chief spokesman of the Federation of Small Businesses, and Mick Brookes, general secretary of the National Association of Headteachers, discuss the school closures.


Business Secretary Lord Mandelson is set to deliver a speech trying to reassure the markets that the government is not divided over how to cut Britain's budget. The speech comes after Tory warnings that Britain's economic credibility is being questioned around the world. Political editor Nick Robinson assesses the upcoming speech.


The 50th anniversary of the death of Albert Camus took place this week, and the debate is still raging about his place in French history. A new film to be shown on French TV tonight has irritated some Camus lovers by looking at him through the prism of his tortured and often heartless relationships with women. President Sarkozy wants to claim Albert Camus for the nation, by moving his body to the Panthéon in Paris, the last resting place of great Frenchmen. David Walker, professor of French at the University of Sheffield, and Dr Gerald Moore, lecturer in French at Wadham College Oxford, debate Camus' place in history.

The sports news with Garry Richardson.


Should banks be allowed to be too big to fail? Since the financial crisis, the City has argued that it should be re-built to its former glory, but economists are far less sure. Simon Johnson, professor of economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, discusses banking system reforms.


This winter is set to be the coldest for more than 30 years. Meteorologist Philip Eden looks back on previous big freezes.

Business news with Adam Shaw.


An alliance of senior public figures has issued a statement calling for manifesto commitments from political parties to limit net immigration to 40,000 a year - a quarter of its current rate. One of the signatories, former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey, explains why he believes the UK population must not reach 70 million.


How much do political parties spend on general election campaigns? David Blunkett has warned that the Conservatives will spend far more than Labour. Sir Chris Powell, Labour's former advertising expert, and Michael Pinto-Duschinsky, an authority on political finance at Brunel University, discuss how far political spending can win an election.



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