BBC denies 'refusing to expose Boris Johnson's lies because it is undemocratic’

Andy Wells
Freelance Writer
The BBC have been accused of refusing to expose Boris Johnson's "lies" (AP)

The BBC has hit back at claims they do not wish to expose Boris Johnson’s “lies” because they think it will undermine democracy.

Guardian columnist Peter Oborne wrote on Monday that he was told by “senior BBC executives” that “it’s wrong to expose lies told by a British prime minister because it undermines trust in British politics”.

The comments were later picked up by Jeremy Corbyn-supporting website Evolve Politics.

Anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller later picked up over 7,000 retweets for highlighting the claims, writing: “This the most ridiculous position for any media outlet to take - much less the BBC.

“Trust in democracy is on the floor BECAUSE of lies.”

However, Rob Burley, who heads up the BBC’s political output, responded to Ms Miler denying the claims.

He wrote: “Gina - I run BBC political programmes and I have never, ever heard anyone here or anywhere else say such a thing.

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“Just because it’s in a newspaper and then shared on social media does not make it true.”

Mr Burley’s comments come the day after the Tory press office changed their name to ‘factcheckUK’ during the televised leader’s debate on Tuesday.

The Tory rebrand was intended as a rebuke to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s claims about Boris Johnson during the broadcast.

The Tories were criticised for changing its Twitter account to 'factcheckUK' during the leaders' debate (Twitter)

However, Twitter this morning issued a sharp rebuke that "any further attempts to mislead people" would result in "decisive corrective action”.

The Electoral Commission - the official elections watchdog - also issued a warning saying voters were entitled to expect "transparency and integrity" from campaigners.

Senior party figures brushed off the controversy, saying it was part of their "instant rebuttal" mechanism to challenge "nonsense" claims made by Mr Corbyn during the debate that they were preparing to sell off the NHS.

However opposition parties accused the Tories of adopting the tactics of Donald Trump or Vladimir Putin to deliberately mislead the public.

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