Boris Johnson says BBC debate audience was 'most leftwing ever seen'


The Mirror claims the real loser of Wednesday night's debate was the Prime Minister, calling her party "leaderless and heartless" after she opted not to take part and send Ms Rudd as a stand-in.

"The first rule of leadership is to show up", said Green party co-leader Caroline Lucas, who was joined by Lib Dem leader Tim Farron, Ukip's Paul Nuttall, SNP deputy leader Angus Robertson and Plaid Cymru's Leanne Wood.

Despite not being at the BBC Election Debate, Theresa May still found herself taking multiple hits from the other party leaders as they debated the topics of Brexit, public services, security and leadership.

In the debate, opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn asked "where is Theresa May, what happened to her?" while clashing with Home Secretary Amber Rudd, who represented the ruling Conservative Party.

She said: "It's as though he thinks it's some sort of game - a game of Monopoly perhaps where you ask the banker for the red money to pay electrics, the green money to buy the railways and the yellow money to buy the gasworks".

Johnson told ITV's Good Morning Britain that Rudd's debate performance had been "heroic". She repeatedly accused Mr Corbyn of believing in a "magic money tree" but the Labour leader won applause when he suggested she was unfamiliar with the reality of poverty.

Jeremy Corbyn looked to exploit the Prime Minister's absence from the live BBC programme, reversing a decision not to attend unless she did at noon yesterday.

An angry Mr Corbyn was then applauded when he immediately shot back: "Have you been to a food bank?" She is not the Prime Minister.

Ms Lucas, who performed strongly throughout, said Ms Rudd's response on disability benefits was "downright insulting".

"You've seen the coalition of chaos in action but in the quiet of the polling booth you have a clear choice - a vote for anyone other than Theresa May is a vote for Corbyn", she said.

Mr Corbyn defended his speech last week linking the Manchester bombing to Britain's military interventions overseas, winning support from Mr Robertson and applause from the audience.

But The Spectator's political editor, James Forsyth, says "May pretty much got away with her decision not to turn up" for a "shouty, bity affair in which no one really stood out".

Ms Rudd said next week's election was about choosing the strongest leadership to take Britain through Brexit. "We will make sure that our defence budget is well-funded and we will do that by having a strong economy and make sure we can do that by having a strong industry".