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BBC baulks at Griffin gag -

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BBC baulks at Griffin gag

Shane McLeod reported this story on Friday, October 23, 2009 12:18:00

SHANE MCLEOD: The BBC has been defending its decision to have Mr Griffin on the panel, saying it
was based purely on support for the BNP at the ballot box in recent elections and that it was up to
politicians to bar parties.

The British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said the choice of panellists is a matter for the BBC,
but he's added he thought Mr Griffin's appearance would backfire on the right wing party.

Mark Byford is the BBC's deputy director-general.

MARK BYFORD: It would have been quite wrong for the BBC to have said; yes you are allowed to stand
in elections, yes you've got a level of support that now meets the threshold but the BBC doesn't
think that you should be on.

We have no views on the politics or the political leaders. What we do hold dear is that due
impartiality is a value we uphold and that's why Mr Griffin was on tonight.

SHANE MCLEOD: The BBC's deputy director-general, Mark Byford.