Published: Sat, December 07, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

BBC's Andrew Neil publicly challenges Boris Johnson to sit down for interview

BBC's Andrew Neil publicly challenges Boris Johnson to sit down for interview

Neil made clear tonight that he has an interview "prepared", or "oven-ready", for Johnson, and that the PM should take part in the series.

It shows Neil continue: "The theme running through our questions is trust and why so many times in his career in politics and journalism, critics - and sometimes even those close to him - have deemed him to be untrustworthy".

Neil added: "There's no law, no Supreme Court ruling that can force Mr. Johnson to participate in a BBC leaders' interview", Neil said.

'We have always proceeded in good faith that the leaders would participate. "So we're surely not expecting too much that he spend half an hour standing up to me".

"In every election, they have - all of them, until this one".

"It is not too late".

The Tories say Johnson has done 117 interviews during the campaign, including one with Andrew Marr and two head-to-heads with Corbyn.

The prime minister was berated by Mr Neil for refusing to do a leader's interview with him, despite all other main party leaders taking part.

A senior Conservative source today said: "The public are fed up with interviews that are all about the interviewer and endless interruptions".

'The format is broken and needs to change if it is to start engaging and informing the public again.

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Netizens were split as they weighed in on the dramatic TV incident, with some applauding the ferocious interviewer.

In another development, the prime minister's team have confirmed that Mr Johnson will not find time for an interview with ITV before the general election.

A similar 'empty chair' incident during the election campaign in the United Kingdom occurred on 6 November when one of the hosts of Sky News Breakfast, Kay Burley, fumed at Conservative Party Chairman James Cleverly for failing to come on the show, which, as Burley insists, she had been promised.

The letter claimed the Conservatives were being allowed to "play" the corporation, making the BBC effectively "complicit in giving the Conservative Party an unfair electoral advantage".

Neil outlined policy issues on which he would question Mr Johnson, saying: "He vows that the NHS will not be on the table with any trade talks with America".

Labour's Jeremy Corbyn, the SNP's Nicola Sturgeon, Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson and Mr Farage have all taken part.

Labour has accused the BBC of bias in its coverage of the general election.

Johnson has also cancelled his sitdown ITV interview with Julie Etchingham, despite Corbyn being willing to do the same sitdown. But he vowed to the DUP, his unionist allies in Northern Ireland, that there would never be a border down the Irish Sea. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the United Kingdom national press. He says that if the Conservatives win a majority, he will get Parliament to ratify his Brexit divorce deal and take the United Kingdom out of the European Union by the current January 31 deadline.

Liberal Democrat Leader Jo Swinson said: "Boris Johnson must stop ducking scrutiny".

Mr Johnson will face Mr Corbyn in a prime ministerial debate at 2030 GMT, on BBC One, on Friday.

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