The latest no-deal Brexit propaganda is a spin too far

Boris Johnson
Fréa Lockley

On 13 August, the Telegraph front page claimed that the public backs Boris Johnson “to shut down Parliament” and force Brexit through. Only it turns out this is pure propaganda.

Deal or no-deal

According to the Telegraph, an exclusive poll from ComRes showed that Johnson:

has the support of more than half of the public to deliver Brexit by any means, including suspending Parliament…

The ComRes survey for The Telegraph found that 54 per cent of British adults think Parliament should be prorogued to prevent MPs stopping a no-deal Brexit.

It presented this result as very straightforward:

But, according to the poll itself, 54% of people surveyed didn’t actually say this. When asked to “agree” or “disagree” with the statement:

Boris needs to deliver Brexit by any means, including suspending parliament if necessary, in order to prevent MPs from stopping it.

Only 44% of those surveyed actually agreed. 37% disagreed, while 19% answered “Don’t know”.

So, many people criticised not only the Telegraph‘s twisted interpretation of this result but also the wording of the question:

Numberwang

Saying “less than half” really wouldn’t make for a strong front page. So, it seems, the Telegraph removed the 19% who answered “don’t know”, did some maths, and hey presto. Pure propaganda.

In other words, 878 people agreed with the statement, which is 43.7% of the total sample. But, by excluding the 19% who “didn’t know”, this equals 53.9% of the total “agree” or “disagree” responses.

So when the Telegraph claimed:

The poll suggested the Prime Minister is more in tune with the public’s views on Brexit than MPs, following his promise to deliver Brexit by October 31 “do or die”.

It was talking utter, manipulative tosh.

And several people suggested that the way the whole poll was constructed needs further investigation:

When asked about the method behind the results, Camilla Tominey, one of the piece’s writers, claimed this was “standard practice”:

But an experienced Guardian journalist disagreed:

And as others noted, this poll is completely at odds with the result of a recent YouGov survey:

Propaganda

The Telegraph owners Frederick and David Barclay have backed the Leave mission since the 2016 referendum. As The Canary reported, new evidence links them straight to the murky connections of Leave.EU and key far-right figures.

Now, as Johnson’s right-wing government hurtles the UK towards a no-deal Brexit, the usual suspects are lining up to churn out pure propaganda. Perhaps we shouldn’t be shocked any longer, but it shows just what we’re up against.

Featured image via YouTube – Guardian News

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  • Show Comments
    1. Parliament has already been shut down with inane dialogue so is this to be a respectable issue now the
      ” Abandoning of Parliament”
      Must be simply a welfare idea this idea of democracy as it stands?
      I doubt the Telegraph is even thinking of the consequences.
      Too bad no can vote on the dissolution of the Telegraph with a Yes or No with the finality Brexit has.

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