Ofcom finds Kay Burley's 'empty chair' of James Cleverly fair

PUBLISHED: 14:08 22 November 2019 | UPDATED: 14:08 22 November 2019

Kay Burley and her empty chair on her breakfast television show. Photograph: Sky News.

Kay Burley and her empty chair on her breakfast television show. Photograph: Sky News.

Archant

After receiving hundreds of complaints after Kay Burley did an 'empty chair' interview with Tory chair James Cleverly, Ofcom has announced they will not run a formal investigation.

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Kay Burley empty-chaired the Conservative Party chairman after he failed to appear on her programme to answer questions about the election.

The Sky News breakfast presenter said she was "fuming" because Cleverly appeared on the morning programmes of all of the other major broadcasters, and she expected to hear from the Tory chairman on her programme too.

In a three minute rant, Burley said: "It was supposed to be filled by the chairman of the Conservative Party.

"Where is he? He's probably 15 feet from where I am standing at the moment.

"I've been in to see him during the break, he said he wasn't due to come and talk to us today, although they had said they would talk to us."

READ MORE: Kay Burley empty chairs James Cleverly as he fails to turn up for interview

READ MORE: Boris Johnson may be empty-chaired at his own constituency hustings



Burley went on to list the things she wanted to ask him about, pointing to an empty chair.

The broadcaster watchdog Ofcom received 271 complaints over the Sky News presenter's actions.

However, there will be no formal investigation after Ofcom assessed the programme, as The London Economic reports.

A spokesperson for Ofcom said: "We assessed complaints about the presenter's treatment of the Conservative Party chairman.

"Having assessed the programme as a whole, we were satisfied that the viewpoint of the Conservatives was given sufficient weight to maintain due impartiality.

"This included a repeated clip of James Cleverly discussing his party's ambitions for the election campaign."

Speaking after the interview first aired, Cleverly claimed he had not been due to attend, saying: "I like to think I'm a pretty decent multitasker, but I cannot physically be in two places at the same time."

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