Saturday, 17 September 2016

BBC's UKIP bias continues

Today is the first day of the Liberal Democrat conference in Brighton. But you would not know it from looking at the BBC News or Parliament schedules. (There is an honourable exception in BBC Radio Wales, where former leader Ming Campbell was interviewed about our prospects this morning, and was able to publicise our recent record of by-election wins, and the consistent fall in the Labour vote across the country.) Instead, all the proceedings of UKIP's two-day conference in Bournemouth have been or will be shown, with repeats. Here is a reminder for BBC: UKIP has just one MP (who is out of the mainstream of UKIP anyway)  while even in the aftermath of the 2015 general election Liberal Democrats have eight.

Thus there will be no coverage of our discussions on nuclear weapons today or tomorrow's on European collaborative research and the Erasmus programme, education and restoring access to justice, important topics all, not to mention Kirsty Williams' speech. There is a sop in that the last day and a half on Monday and Tuesday will be shown, but nothing will be allowed to get in the way of the BBC's regular Sunday love-in with US politics.


Stan said...

The BBC is more concerned with making news rather than reporting it. Don't expect fairness from them or you'll be disappointed. Thursday's Question Time which contained the organised public lynching of John McDonnell hit a low, even for them.
But your argument about UKIP only having one MP against Lib Dem's eight as some justification for more coverage doesn't convince me, Frank. UKIP had over 1.4 million votes more than the Lib Dems in 2015. It's the unfairness of first past the post should be addressed, something I know you and your Party have consistently advocated over many years.

Frank Little said...

Yes, I agree that FPTP is unfair and I have acknowledged that UKIP also want a fair voting system (not the fudge of AV which some quarters of the Labour party espouse). However, the BBC in the past has thrown parliamentary representation at us as a basis for media representation so it is unfair to change the basis at this point in time, if that is their reasoning.

I might also point out the direction of travel since 2015, the gains in our membership and the fact that UKIP have made net losses in council by-elections in the two years so far.

As I type this, I am watching the repeat of the set speeches to UKIP's conference on BBC Parliament. With the exception of a couple of minutes on selective education (the only Theresa May policy conference reps approve of) and less than that on planning, it was wall-to-wall Eurocentric. Nothing about the nuclear "deterrent", nothing about social security, the health service, the environment - or even the electoral system! It is still clearly a one-issue party, not yet a serious alternative national government.