One of the few traditional Conservatives to have served on the Tory front bench under Cameron, Paterson was Secretary of State for Northern Ireland before being promoted to the more high profile role of Secretary of State for Defra.

Candidate of the day

Owen Paterson

One day to go and Sir John Major has weighed in. “Labour divides to rule. To win votes they will turn rich against poor; north against south; worker against boss." We hope we don't wake up with them on Friday.

Hero of the day

Sir John Major

Another awful Labour woman. The fact Ed Miliband’s carved his pledges in stone doesn't mean he might not break them, campaign chief Lucy Powell has said.

Villain of the day

Lucy Powell



Back marriage. Restore grammar schools. Leave the EU.

David Keighley

David Keighley

Former BBC news producer, BBC PR executive and head of corporate relations for TV-am. Director of News-watch.
All posts by David Keighley

David Keighley’s BBC Election Watch: Love of foreign aid trumps loathing for Tories

The Institute of Fiscal Studies published a report on Monday showing that the foreign aid budget has almost doubled over a decade to £13.6 billion and was likely to continue on its spectacular upward rise over the next Parliament. The Daily Mail thought this lavish spending by the Department of International Development (DfID) was an important […]


David Keighley’s BBC Election Watch: Macron’s victory is a rare break for the Beeb’s battered suits

Election watch today is focusing on bias by omission – in this case, what the BBC hasn’t reported about Macron’s victory. Throughout, there was no doubt whose side in this election the Corporation was on, if only in the routine labelling of Marine Le Pen as ‘far right’ and Macron as a ‘centrist’ – even […]


David Keighley’s BBC Election Watch: Marr lets slippery McDonnell off the Marxist hook

Is he or isn’t he? Andrew Marr asked shadow Chancellor John McDonnell yesterday morning if he is an ‘unapologetic’ Marxist? His answer was an object lesson is smokescreen building – and the BBC accepted it with scarcely a murmur. This was potentially fertile territory, in that the New Statesman (for example) has argued – on […]


David Keighley’s BBC Watch: This election is a battle between the Tories and the broadcasters

This is an election like no other for the BBC. They have a mission. Two weeks ago, as is laid out here, Today presenter Nick Robinson effectively declared war on Brexit with his statement that the Corporation would henceforward work flat out to find the problems with Brexit, and not bring balanced coverage of the […]


David Keighley’s BBC Watch: Robinson trots out tired excuses to defend Brexit bias

BBC presenter and ex-political editor Nick Robinson has been sounding off aggressively against those who, he complains, are ‘moaning’ that the Corporation’s reporting of Brexit is biased. ‘Calm down dears’, is his core, patronising message. The Radio 4 Today presenter has declared in the Radio Times that, as departure negotiations proceed, there is no need […]


David Keighley’s BBC Watch: Right-on thought police ban meat in the Salford canteen

Aw, diddums! BBC staff in the plush Salford Quays Northern HQ are throwing out from their high chairs their steak knives. Their beef? Someone, somewhere in the vast BBC hierarchy has decided to introduce ‘Meat Free Mondays’ in the staff canteen. The carnivores at the Corporation – no doubt now a rare breed among the […]