The audience in yesterday evening’s TV debate did not exactly warm to the Tories. And, as it was being staged by the BBC, this could only have one consequence. Never mind allowing the thought to enter that Tory popularity may be declining, that they are mounting a lousy campaign, or that voters were unimpressed with Theresa May hiding behind a grieving colleague - it had to be a case of Beeb bias.
That meant the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre and his obedient hackery at the Daily Mail would have something to say come the morning. And so it came to pass, with the screaming headline “TV chiefs under fire over ‘the most Left-wing audience ever’ … FURY AT BIAS ON BBC TV DEBATE … The BBC was last night accused by a prominent Labour supporter of picking ‘the most Left-wing election debate audience ever’”.
Confirming that the Northcliffe House panic button had been well and truly pressed, the YouGov poll suggesting the Tories could lose their Parliamentary majority was dismissed as a “rogue” effort, while the other side of the field was played with a Daily Mail Comment consisting almost exclusively of abuse hurled at Jeremy Corbyn.
And who was the “prominent Labour supporter” of the headline? “George Eaton, political editor of the Labour-supporting New Statesman magazine, said: 'This feels like the most Left-wing audience in any TV debate’”. Ri-i-i-i-i-ght. The Mail’s writers haven’t been paying attention of late, have they? The Staggers has been more than prepared to criticise Jezza and his supporters. It certainly isn’t handing Labour a blank cheque.
Who f***ing says I'm losing it, c***?!?
Moreover, Eaton has felt compelled to take to Twitter to put the Mail and its readers straight: “Since my tweet has become Mail splash, should say it was casual observation (‘feels like’), not allegation of bias”. Also, it did not help the Tories that a majority of the other parties represented - the LibDems, Greens, Plaid, Labour and SNP - took a stance well to the left of them, and most likely the public’s perception of them.
As for the Staggers, claiming it is some kind of Corbyn cheerleader is immediately debunked by the cover of the latest edition: the headline article, written by editor Jason Cowley (also not a Corbyn loyalist) is titled “The Labour reckoning … Is Jeremy Corbyn really heading for a crushing defeat on 8 June?”
The best the Mail can manage in response to that is to cite the likes of London’s formerly very occasional Mayor Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, oblivious to the knowledge that Bozza is a career liar of the most shameless kind, and rely on backup knocking copy from the odious Quentin Letts (let’s not), whining “Worse than the mob at a Momentum rally! Where DID they get them? The Beeb insisted the audience members were representative. Bogeys to that. They were no more balanced than a gorilla on a unicycle”.
The Mail has been reduced to protesting that the polls are wrong, anyone not liking the Tory campaign is a rabid leftie, and worst of all, inflating a casual comment into a front page splash out of sheer desperation. Paul Dacre - not waving but drowning.