The BBC said that the Newsnight monologue by Maitlis “did not meet our standards of due impartiality” after it deleted the then-viral clip from the BBC Politics Twitter feed.
The outburst by Maitlis was hailed by leftists throughout the country. Labour MP David Lammy applauded her monologue as an example of “public service broadcasting”. But not everyone was impressed and the BBC received complaints which led the broadcaster to remove her comments.
In her monologue, Ms Maitlis said in a matter-of-fact fashion that: “Dominic Cummings broke the rules. The country can see that and it’s shocked the Government cannot.”
“He was the man, remember, who always ‘got’ the public mood, who tagged the lazy label of ‘elite’ on those who disagreed. He made those who struggled to keep to the rules feel like fools and has allowed many more to assume they can now flout them,” Maitlis went on.
The host of BBC 2’s Newsnight also accused Prime Minister Boris Johnson of having “blind loyalty” to Mr Cummings despite what she alleged to be “fury, contempt and anguish” from the public.
The public broadcaster has long been accused of inserting liberal and anti-Brexit bias into its reporting, with a 2018 report from the think tank Civtas and a report of News-Watch in 2017 finding that Eurosceptic opinions were systematically repressed on the Today programme, BBC Radio 4’s flagship news and currents affairs show.
In December, a poll conducted by Norstat found that nearly two-thirds of the British public believed that the BBC was biased.
“The BBC must uphold the highest standards of due impartiality in its news output,” the Broadcaster said in a statement.
Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen, who was the lone supporter of Dominic Cummings on the program, told The Telegraph that “she said it as a statement of fact. There was no pretence of impartiality in any of that report. It was judge, jury and executioner.”
Owen Jones, the self-proclaimed socialist writer for the British left-wing paper The Guardian, said: “Emily Maitlis’ opening isn’t biased against the government. The facts are biased against the government.