Thursday, 27 March 2014

How about some fair television coverage for MK!

Political parties need media coverage to promote their policies and to make electoral headway. Mebyon Kernow members certainly work extremely hard trying to gain publicity and we have numerous successes in the local print media, while I am very fortunate to have a weekly column in the Cornish Guardian.

We also have reasonable coverage on local radio, but struggle to get coverage on either local or UK-wide television.

Over the last ten days, following my appearance on the Politics Show, I have had numerous comments from local people about the coverage. I have noticed this before and it shows how so many members of the public give greater credence to individuals and organisations that receive significant coverage on television.

Then, of course, there was the W1A programme.

And today, by coincidence, MK received a letter from the BBC concerning election broadcasts for the forthcoming European elections.

MK is not standing in these elections because the electoral process is unfairly rigged against Mebyon Kernow (see previous blog post from 11th October 2013) and this was, once again, borne out by the BBC’s guidelines for election broadcasts.

It states that, in Scotland, “political parties which are standing a full list of candidates in Scotland will qualify for a minimum of ONE broadcast in Scotland.”

It also states that, in Wales, “political parties which are standing a full list of candidates in Wales will qualify for a minimum of ONE broadcast in Wales.”

But in England (sic), “political parties which are standing a full list of candidates in each and every region in England will qualify for a minimum of ONE broadcast in England.” 

How unfair is that. To be allowed a party election broadcast, MK would have to stand in all (nine) euro-constituencies in England – an absolute nonsense – whereas “national” parties standing in the (single) Wales and Scotland – such as Plaid Cymru, SNP, Scottish Socialist Party, etc – would be allowed their own broadcasts. 

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