Boris Johnson laughed at by debate audience as he stumbles over question on lying

PUBLISHED: 22:09 06 December 2019 | UPDATED: 23:15 06 December 2019

The prime minister was laughed at during the BBC Leaders debate as he stumbled his way through an audience members question on lying. Photo: Jeff Overs / BBC

The prime minister was laughed at during the BBC Leaders debate as he stumbled his way through an audience members question on lying. Photo: Jeff Overs / BBC

The prime minister was laughed at during the BBC election debate as he stumbled his way through an audience member's question on lying.

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In a question clearly addressing Boris Johnson specifically, an audience member asked: "In the era of fake news, what punishment do you think is appropriate for elected politicians who lie during election campaigns?"

Initially stumbling before he could think of an answer, Johnson eventually replied: "Well they should be, they should be made to... go on their knees... to.... down the... through the chamber of the House of Commons..."

The audience then burst into laughter, finding the prime minister's attempt to talk about politicians lying during an election campaign hypocritical.

The Conservative Party has throughout the election campaign lied about the number of nurses they will give the NHS alongside the number of hospitals they will build. They have also come under condemnation for a number of disinformation tactics, such as rebranding their Twitter profile to look like a fact-checking service during the first leaders' debate on ITV.

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Johnson then attempted to spin the direction towards Jeremy Corbyn, suggesting that documents he has provided which show the Tories have been in talks with the United States over the privatisation of the NHS.

"[They should be] scourging themselves with copies of their offending documents which claim to prove one thing and actually prove something quite different," Johnson said.

The leader of the opposition then replied: "I think it's important when people go into an election campaign they put forward a policy of what they're going to do, they put forward a policy of how they're going to pay for it, and if they don't deliver, then there is a democratic process to deal with that in the future.

"That is what democracy is about, it's about holding people to account and holding government to account in Parliament. and I want to see, not a weaker, but a strong House of Commons in the future that holds our government to account to make sure we deliver on the promises of reducing poverty in Britain."

READ MORE: The best internet reactions to the BBC election debate

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