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The Labour machine’s reaction to the QT row has been chilling, even sinister. They’ve lodged a formal complaint with the BBC. They’re demanding that Bruce apologise for her alleged Abbottphobia and even that she kick off next week’s show with a statement clarifying the truth – as they see it anyway – about Labour’s position in opinion polls. In short, they want a public retraction, a televised repenting, an on-air apology for Bruce’s speechcrime of being overly harsh on a Labour MP. We can only hope that the BBC tells Labour to piss off and refuses to bow to its shrill, censorious demands, because if the Beeb were to buckle, if it were to read out a contrite statement approved by Labour HQ, then a terrible precedent would be set: politicians from across the spectrum would feel emboldened to chastise media outlets that questioned or criticised them too rigorously.
A really obnoxious aspect of the Abbott / QT row has been the playing of the race card. Corbyn supporters have casually branded Bruce a racist. They’ve deduced from the couple of tough questions thrown at Abbott during one episode of QT that the BBC is institutionally racist. They see the grilling of Abbott as a microcosm of the racism that they think benights the whole of Britain – nothing better captures the modern left’s distance from, and disdain for, ordinary people than their conviction that...
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