|Theresa May, picking a tank to take to Salford|
The Mail on Sunday says that "Theresa May has gone to war with the BBC":
Downing Street has made a furious complaint to the broadcaster after it led its Radio 4 bulletins with claims from a Left-leaning think-tank that the measures unveiled by Chancellor Philip Hammond would mainly benefit the rich. One aide described the report on Tuesday’s Today programme as ‘the most biased bulletin in history’.
The row erupted after the flagship news show highlighted research by the Resolution Foundation without revealing that its director, Torsten Bell, was head of policy for former Labour leader Ed Miliband.
The 7am bulletin declared that ‘an independent analysis of the Budget has said that despite moves to end austerity, low and middle income families face a continued squeeze’.
It repeated the claim in its 8am bulletin – but minus the word ‘independent’.
Of course "the BBC refused to apologise for its coverage", saying that the research was "the first detailed analysis of the Budget" and that it was "clearly attributed to the Resolution Foundation".
The headlines in question ran as follows:
It's 7 o'clock on Tuesday 30th October. The headlines. An independent analysis of the Budget has said that, despite moves to end austerity, low and middle income families face a continued squeeze.
It's 8 o'clock on Tuesday 30th October. The headlines. An analysis of the Budget, which was billed as the beginning of the end of austerity, has suggested low and middle income families won't feel much of a benefit.
Both bulletins did, however, go on to describe the Resolution Foundation as "left-leaning",which is an improvement on how they used to describe it (or, more accurately, not describe it). I used to write a lot about their failure to give such context to Resolution Foundation reports (which they are unusually keen on), so that's good.
Anyhow, with Mrs May "going to war" with them, the BBC must be trembling in its leather formal chukka boots.