BBC row: Charles Moore’s furious critique of ‘groupthink’ Donald Trump coverage

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Charles Moore would represent a significant change to the BBC is he were to be appointed Chairman. The former Telegraph editor is understood to be Downing Street’s preferred choice to take on the role. Lord Moore, 63, is a vehement critic of the Corporation, accusing it of having left-wing “woke” values. He also objects to its guaranteed £4 billion-a-year income from the licence fee.

One aspect of the BBC’s coverage that could be impacted if Charles Moore were to become Chairman would be its coverage of US President Donald Trump.

He accused the broadcaster of bias and “groupthink” when covering Mr Trump.

Lord Moore also said the way the BBC greeted the election of Barack Obama contrasted with how it greeted the election of Trump.

He made the claims on The Media Show in 2017.

James Harding, Director of BBC News at the time, hit back at the comments saying the corporation “is getting it about right”.

Mr Harding said: “Let me say two things. One is: I think Charles Moore makes a really good point and made a really good point in that article which is, if you’re going to have an argument about the honesty of the President of the United States in picking a fight with the media about the size of his audience at the inauguration, then you’d better be as vigorous and as keen to monitor the numbers of people who go on marches.

“And I think that point is not just related to Trump, it’s related to that bigger issue about public protests and how do you make sure that you, you do that accurately?

“There’s a really important thing here, which is that, people inside the BBC, they are all journalists, actually, one of the great misunderstandings about journalists is that there is such a thing as groupthink.

“Journalists, by nature, have really contrary opinions, they have different opinions.

“One thing that is true of the BBC is of course, you leave all your personal opinions at the door.”

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Lord Moore would be a surprising choice for the role given his criticisms of the BBC in the past.

On the licence fee, he said: “The greatest single wrong on which the BBC rests is the licence fee.

“It is an offence to freedom and a poll tax for anyone with a television (and, nowadays, a computer or mobile phone).

“Non-payers, almost always poor, clog the magistrates’ courts.”

Lord Moore has also spoken openly about his refusal to pay the fee.

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