Saturday 11 May 2019

No, They Haven't Got 'Have I Got News For You' For You

"The BBC has specific editorial guidelines that apply during election periods. Because of this it would be inappropriate to feature political party leaders on entertainment programmes during this short election period, which does not allow for equal representation to be achieved."
                                          BBC statement

The BBC's last-minute decision to pull this week's Have I Got News For You because of fears that the appearance of Change UK/The Independent Group's interim leader Heidi Allen might break the corporation's election impartiality rules has provoked the usual storm of indignation from #FBPE types

The FBPEs' main line of (ahem) reasoning is that the previous night's Question Time had Nigel Farage on and that his week's The Andrew Marr Show will also feature Nigel Farage, so why shouldn't Heidi Allen be on Have I Got News For You? - the obvious answers to which are:

(a) because HIGNFY is light entertainment programme while QT and Andrew Marr are political programmes, and... 

(b) because the latter (QT and the AM show) will be balanced over the course of the election while HIGNFY won't be  - and can't be. 

[Naturally, many #FBPE types failed to remind each other that Anna Soubry of Change UK-TIG was also on that QT alongside Nigel Farage].

The BBC has said it will broadcast the edition later, after the election.

If they do, I'd  be quite intrigued to see how Ian Hislop & Co. treated Ms. Allen. Was she 'roasted' the way a pro-Brexiter or a right-winger is invariably 'roasted' by the programme, or let off lightly? 

Until then, fans of uncorroborated theories may entertain themselves with this thought: Maybe Heidi Allen got such an easy ride from Ian & Co. that the BBC thought it looked too biased and panicked? 


  1. Wouldn't be difficult to give her a roasting...just play back all the times she told her constituents and journalists "we have to respect the result of the Referendum and deliver on it".

    1. That better be in there when they show it.

    2. Roasted or not, her party, whatever it's called, is toast!


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