The lying PM lies again: Johnson says BBC must ‘cough up’ for over-75s’ TV licences

Boris Johnson just doesn’t know when to stop telling untruths, does he?

It’s possible that he wasn’t aware he was being economical with the truth when he said Melton Mowbray pork pies are exported to other countries (they aren’t) when he tried to get Donald Trump to relax tariffs on goods being exported to the United States.

But it would be a very poor prime minister indeed who did not understand the terms of deals negotiated by his own government.

As This Site has previously stated, the subsidy that paid TV licence fees for people aged 75 and more was brought in by the New Labour government in 1999, when Gordon Brown promised to pay the BBC to provide the service.

Tory Chancellor George Osborne reversed that agreement in 2015 when he told the BBC the government would stop paying the subsidy by June 2020.

He did not say the BBC would be ordered to pay the subsidy instead of the Treasury; it was nothing to do with the BBC.

In fact, it is an act of kindness by the BBC to offer to continue paying for the licences of extremely poor pensioners – but this is based on a fatally-flawed premise, for reasons you’ll see below.

So in the following extract from the BBC’s own article, Mr Johnson is clearly lying:

The BBC should “cough up” and pay for TV licences for all over-75s, the prime minister has said.

It comes after the BBC announced in June that it would restrict the benefit to those in low-income households.

Speaking to reporters at the G7 summit, Boris Johnson said the BBC’s funding settlement had been conditional on it continuing to fund the free licences – something the corporation disputes.

Mr Johnson told reporters at the summit in Biarritz, southern France: “The BBC received a settlement that was conditional upon their paying for TV licences for the over-75s.

“They should cough up.”

Labour accused the PM of blaming the broadcaster for government policy.

The BBC previously said it would limit free licences to low-income households to prevent it having to close services such as BBC Two and Radio 5 Live.

As This Site stated previously (again): It’s a typical Tory tactic.

They starved councils of funding, forcing them to cut services to the public. Who got the blame? The local authority.

They privatised huge swathes of the National Health Service, meaning that public funds were diverted into the profits of private firms and services suffered while the Tories were claiming to be increasing funding massively. Who got the blame? The NHS.

Now this.

Worse still, the Tories are using this as an opportunity to introduce means-testing for over-75s. They will demand to know how much money each household receives, in order to determine whether it should have a subsidised licence.

But the idea of means-testing by asking whether households are in receipt of pension credit is fatally flawed.

Many households don’t even know they qualify for the benefit because the Conservative government hasn’t bothered to tell them.

So let’s be honest.

Boris Johnson is lying about the fact that his Conservative government is forcing pensioners aged over 75 to pay the TV licence free – including those who should be exempt but don’t know it because his government hasn’t told them.

Source: TV licence: Boris Johnson says BBC must ‘cough up’ for over-75s – BBC News

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