Sunday 11 October’s Andrew Marr Show was missing something. There was an unusual Mail on Sunday-shaped hole in its paper review. But it’s not really a surprise, because for once the right-wing tabloid’s front page poured shame on the Tories. Cue Marr burying bad news on behalf of the government.
Hancock in trouble
Sky News reported that health secretary Matt Hancock is in hot water, again. It said that:
Hancock has denied claims he broke the government’s coronavirus drinking curfew by continuing to consume alcohol in the Commons bar after 10pm.
A senior Tory MP told the Mail on Sunday that Mr Hancock remained in the Smoking Room bar until at least 10.25pm on Monday, despite House Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle insisting Commons venues must abide by the same curfew as all English pubs.
The newspaper also reported Mr Hancock arrived at the bar just before a 9.40pm vote, ordered a glass of white wine and joked: ‘The drinks are on me – but Public Health England are in charge of the payment methodology so I will not be paying anything’.
Oh, dear. Hancock denies all of it, obviously.
One rule for them?
The story blew up on Twitter where people were not happy with the health secretary. They used the #OneRuleForThem hashtag to voice their anger:
Boris Johnson’s government is laughing at you.
These hypocrites should be driven out of office at the earliest opportunity. They are destroying lives, jobs and our children’s future.
— Cornwall for Europe #FBPE (@Cornwall4EU) October 11, 2020
🤭🤦🏻🤭 “The drinks are on me but Public Health England are in charge of payment methodology so I will not be paying anything.” Matt Hancock breaks 10pm curfew & makes tasteless Covid test joke in Commons bar. #oneruleforthem https://t.co/TZHZ58O2nJ via @MailOnline
— Jenny Ellwood 🇪🇺 (@coolkiddo) October 11, 2020
So thank goodness for Marr – sweeping in to report on Hancock’s alleged misdemeanour. My mistake, Marr actually ignored the story entirely.
Marr: burying bad news for the Tories
It’s usual for the Andrew Marr Show to feature the Mail on Sunday in its paper review. On 4 October, it showed the headline:
Boris’s Dad Broke His Mum’s Nose
On 27 September, Marr showed the Mail on Sunday front page:
Jamie’s War On Toxic U.S. Food
But today, the show didn’t include the Mail on Sunday.
Peak BBC trolling
Why? Not even Marr himself knew, allegedly. Because he said during the show:
There’s really, really good stories in the Mail on Sunday. But for some reason, I couldn’t have it in front of me.
That’s peak BBC trolling, right there. Because we all know why Marr wasn’t allowed the Mail on Sunday in front of him. Even if it is “Britain’s best-read Sunday newspaper”.
Over the course of the pandemic, the BBC has wilfully protected the Tories’ reputation. It has literally thrown public interest journalism out of the window.
Hancock’s alleged actions are another example of the Tories’ ‘do as I say, not as I do’ attitude. Who can forget Dominic Cummings going on a jolly to Durham to test his eyesight? And Marr and the BBC are complicit once again in these intentional double standards.