Last night Emily Maitlis didn't host Newsnight, just hours after the BBC publicly distanced itself from her over her opening remarks in the previous night’s show.

On Tuesday 26 May, Maitlis criticised government’s handling of Dominic Cummings’ lockdown trip to Durham during Newsnight.

The monologue received praise on social media, with many saying Maitlis had captured the mood of the nation when she said that the public believed Cummings “broke the rules”. Though some people also criticised this direct approach.

In the monologue Maitlis said:

Dominic Cummings broke the rules – the country can see that and it’s shocked the government cannot.

The longer ministers and the prime minister insist he worked within them, the more likely the angry response to the scandal is likely to be … He made those who struggled to keep to the rules feel like fools, and has allowed many more to assume they can flout them.

The prime minister knows all this and has chosen to ignore it.

Maitlis finished by telling viewers that she’d be back tomorrow, but it was announced that she would be absent from Wednesday’s show. Instead it would be hosted by Newsnight reporter Katie Razzall.

The announcement that Maitlis wouldn't be appearing as originally stated followed a statement from the BBC that criticised its own show. The statement even went as far as to say that it breached the BBC’s impartiality rules.

The corporation said in a statement:

The BBC must uphold the highest standards of due impartiality in its news output.”

We’ve reviewed the entirety of last night’s Newsnight, including the opening section, and while we believe the programme contained fair, reasonable and rigorous journalism, we feel that we should have done more to make clear the introduction was a summary of the questions we would examine, with all the accompanying evidence, in the rest of the programme.

As it was, we believe the introduction we broadcast did not meet our standards of due impartiality. Our staff have been reminded of the guidelines.

The BBC’s apparent rebuttal statement and the announcement that Maitlis would not be appearing caused a huge reaction online.

Lots of people thought it was unfair that Maitlis appeared to be getting punished in this way.

Some even began complaining to the BBC.

But did think the monologue probably took it a bit far.

Though it must be said that, on Twitter anyway, this seemed to be the minority view.

But it turned out that Maitlis wasn’t removed from the show.

The fact she wasn't presenting appeared to be at her own request, which she eventually clarified on Twitter.

So with regards to Maitlis being "replaced", this seems to be a misunderstanding.

But lots of people are still criticising the BBC's decision to publicly distance itself from Maitlis' remarks in the first place, asking "how is it 'unimpartial' to tell the truth?"

Maitlis has been praised in the past for her opening monologues, including a particularly memorable one which rebuked the idea that the virus was “a great leveller”. She was also credited for her forensic interview with Prince Andrew.

She has not commented publicly on the BBC’s statement regarding the impartiality of her remarks.

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