Friday, 27 January 2017

Here's Laura!

For anyone not watching the Theresa May-Donald Trump press conference, here's a flavour of what you've been missing...

Theresa May: Laura? 

Laura Kuenssberg: Thank you very much, Prime Minister. Laura Kuenssberg, BBC News. Prime Minister, you have talked about where you agree, but you have also said you would be frank where you disagree with the President. Can you tell us where in our talks you did disagree, and do you think the President listened to what you have to say? And Mr President, you have said before that torture works. You have praised Russia. You have said you want to ban some Muslims from coming to America. You have suggested there should be punishment for abortion. For many people in Britain, those sound like alarming beliefs. What do you say to our viewers at home who are worried about some of your views and worried about you becoming the leader of the free world? 

Donald Trump (turning to Theresa May): This was your choice of a question? (Audience laughs). There goes that relationship!


This provoked a short Twitter exchange between a Breitbart journalist and a BBC journalist:
Raheem Kassam, Breitbart London: Horrible question by BBC claiming to speak for the British public. You speak for no one but the liberal elite!
Daniel Sandford, BBC Home Affairs correspondent: Breitbart, the future of journalism? 
Raheem Kassam, Breitbart London: Hey "Home Affairs" editor... how about reporting some actual news, like how Rotherham style gangs still persist?

Update: It's turning into a tag-wrestling match over on Twitter:
Raheem Kassam, Breitbart London: Horrible question by BBC claiming to speak for the British public. You speak for no one but the liberal elite! 
Mark Lowen, BBC Turkey correspondent: The response by @BreitbartNews to @bbclaurak's utterly legitimate and probing question to @POTUS 
Raheem Kassam, Breitbart London: Your "news" outlet flubbed the biggest chance of the year to get more trade deal details. R u gonna ask Erdogan his fave dessert? 
Mark Lowen, BBC Turkey correspondent: Solidarity among journalists is a great thing. (Independent journalists). 
Raheem Kassam, Breitbart London: I agree. Which is why we as a private company have more legitimacy than you as an arm of the British establishment funded by threats. 
Mark Lowen, BBC Turkey correspondent: The standard-bearers of legitimate journalism. 


  1. Just another snowflake BBC journalist, trying to forget an awful week. He has had a few drinks and trying to pick a fight. It would be amusing, but for the fact that ordinary British people, who totally disagree with his SWj twaddle, pay his wages

    1. 'Another beauty!' Laura has probably ensured that BBC journalists are not invited to ask questions at future Trump news conferences. Why did May choose the Kuenssberg? Perhaps she was hoping that the Donald would put her through the shredder.

  2. Laura traveled with the Prime Minister. She raised those questions on the plane, but May did not object. It was obvious she was going to ask them, because UK policy is largely determined by the BBC. In short, Laura was May's minder, sent to ensure that she kept to the BBC script. Make what you like of the Prime Minister's gush about the special relationship. The BBC and their tame Prime Minister, are destroying it.

  3. Nothing wrong with asking the very loaded question, but claiming to represent the British people after her Brexit performance was a mistake, and it's right to call her out.

  4. A wasted opportunity by an organization that places more importance in the questions it asks than the answers it seeks to illicit. This was not journalistic inquiry. This was merely point scoring. The question(s) was litany of complaints that the liberal London elites think will dent Trump's popularity. Sorry. That stuff doesn't work anymore. It'll impress Laura's bosses - which I suspect was one of the object of the exercise.
    If I had been there, I can think of four questions about trade and defence and NATO that I would have asked. Questions that might have thrown some light on the "special relationship'. But I don't work for the Beeb any longer - thank God!

  5. I wasn't a great fan of Trump before or when he first entered the race. I am not a fan of billionaires full stop and American Republican billionaires are not my sort of people. But I must say my respect for him has grown and grown. I hope it grows further.

    And I must also say well done to Raheem Kassam for calling out the BBC on their double standards. :)

    Under the stress of Brexit and Trump and (in LK's case) a toto-Marxist taking over the Labour Party the BBC are really revealing themselves.

  6. Thu - BBC's Germany correspondent ‏@damienmcguin pops up FooC seemingly building a FalseNarrative that Breitbart's Cologne Church fire story is FakeNews and sneering "alternative facts!"
    I point out that Breitbart have a rebut defending their story.
    He tweets back "afraid the rebut does not stand up. Unless you don't believe German police?"
    - I point out that the orig Breitbart report & rebut both include the Police bit + RN video contradicting them.

    Yesterday he retweets a Muslim commenter about the Holocaust
    "The #Holocaust didn't start in the gas chambers, it began with the rhetoric of hate"
    I mention that was aided by press constructing FalseNarratives
    and point out today's Jerusalem Post story

  7. Laura and Nick Robinson are treating Twitter like Tinder and should really get a room.