Fact checkers find several holes in Boris Johnson's interview with Susanna Reid

Fact checkers find several holes in Boris Johnson's interview with Susanna Reid
Boris Johnson insists he is 'honest' during intense GMB interview

Boris Johnson's Good Morning Britain interview with Susanna Reid has been meticulously fact checked - and it looks like some of the things he said weren't exactly accurate.

Independent group Full Fact analysed the interview with the PM yesterday, in which he revealed he doesn't know who Lorraine Kelly is, defended his "honesty" and made an absolute clanger when asked about the cost of living crisis.

Let's start with that, in fact. When Reid told Johnson a story about a pensioner struggling to heat her home and therefore riding buses all day to keep warm instead, Johnson said he did not want her to cut back on “anything”, before tastelessly adding: “Just to remind you, the 24-hour freedom bus pass was something I actually introduced.”

Except that isn't really the case. Full Fact said councils have used the scheme since the 1980s but Johnson made them apply for 24 hours a day when mayor of London, in 2009. He also restored free bus travel for Londoners when they reached 60 back in 2012, as part of the 60+ London Oyster photocard scheme.

Elsewhere in the interview, the PM also claimed Tories in general cut council tax. “When it comes to delivering better value for services, lower council should vote for Conservative councillors on Thursday,” he said.

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But Full Fact said: "Single-tier Conservative councils in England actually charge more per household (£1,580) than the average council (£1,388) and more than Labour councils (£1,261).

"Rather than using the average council tax, in previous local elections the Conservatives have compared band D rates to claim Conservative councils charge less than Labour councils."


They added: "This reflects the fact that Conservative areas have more expensive housing than Labour, meaning that their band D rates are lower while their average rates are higher.

"Regardless, there are many reasons why council tax might vary between Conservative and Labour areas, reflecting the different services those areas need to provide."

Finally, Johnson repeated one of his favourite claims about the UK having "the fastest growth in the G7".

Full Fact say that was true in 2021, but that this "partly reflects a quirk in how the UK measures GDP compared to other countries."

"Over the course of the pandemic, the UK’s economy shrank by 0.4 per cent, making it the fifth best performing among the G7 nations."

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