The BBC Election Debate: Factchecked

1st Jun 2017 | Katie Craig

On Wednesday we were live factchecking one of the major election debates. BBC1 was hosting ‘The BBC Election Debate’, a seven-way podium battle between 7 senior party spokespeople, with Mishal Husain moderating the debate.

The show consisted of a live election debate between Home Secretary Amber Rudd, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron, UKIP's Paul Nuttall, SNP deputy leader Angus Robertson, Green co-leader Caroline Lucas and Plaid Cymru's Leanne Wood.

So we started off by factchecking the claims made in each of the politicians opening addresses:

“Success in cutting the deficit, stabilising the economy, getting more people into employment” – Amber Rudd

“There will be no tax rises for 95%of taxpayers” – Jeremy Corbyn

“My party has presided over making sure that people on lower wages are able to keep more of the wages they earn” – Amber Rudd

“Living standards have fallen in the past 7 years...6 million people are earning less than the living wage, 1 million are on zero hour contracts, public sector workers have had a pay cut of at least 14% over the past 7 years” – Jeremy Corbyn

“Some of those people on the lowest incomes, have been massively hit by welfare cuts, and I think the time has come to end punishing disabled people, to end the ‘bedroom tax’” - Angus Robertson

“We are the fifth biggest economy in the world” – Caroline Lucas

“The number of people on zero hours contracts has gone through the roof” – Leanne wood

 “Wages have stagnated over the past 10 years” – Paul Nutall

“what we’re proposing is to put it up during the lifetime of a parliament.to 26%, that is less than it was in 2010” – Jeremy Corbyn

“What we have had is a government for the past 7 years which has borrowed more” – Jeremy Corbyn

“The fact is we need to remain in the single market, or else we will not be able to afford the NHS, social care or any of the support we are talking about” – Tim Farron

“Last week it was announced that a city the size of Hull came to this country, net...that’s going to be a Birmingham over a 5 year period” – Paul Nuttall

“For the past 7 years...set targets which she (Prime Minister) fails to meet every single year” – Tim Farron

“That we recognise the massive contribution made by people to this country, have come from all over the world as well as from Europe, to our health service, our education, our industries, our universities and our sciences” – Jeremy Corbyn

“Scotland’s problem has never been immigration, it’s been emigration” – Angus Robertson

“If you are trying to see someone in the NHS, you are more likely to find a migrant actually treating you as a doctor than ahead of you in the queue” – Caroline Lucas

“We out far less into the NHS than other countries of a similar GDP, a similar wealth” – Caroline Lucas

“Our schools are underfunded, our hospitals are overcrowded, our students are saddled with debt, there’s a growing housing crisis” – Jeremy Corbyn

“Under the Labour government the pensioners saw a rise in their pensions of 85p in one year. Under this government we’ve seen pensioners pay increase by more than £1000” – Amber Rudd

“the foreign aid budget which is costing the British people £30 million every single day” – Paul Nuttall

“In Scotland we’ve managed to maintain police numbers” – Angus Robertson

“What was wrong was spending 13 times more bombing that country (Libya), than helping to rebuild it” – Angus Robertson

“Under amber Rudd as Home secretary and Theresa May before that, 20,000 police officers have lost their jobs” – Jeremy Corbyn

“since 2014 we have been at the threat level of ‘severe’, which means an attack is highly likely” – Amber Rudd

“We have increased their (counter-terrorism police) budget significantly since 2015” – Amber Rudd

“Crime has fallen by a third between 2010 and 2015” – Amber Rudd

Only 1 out of 8 referrals to prevent (prevent programme), come from within the Muslim community” – Paul Nuttall

“The former head of MI5 herself has said that the invasion of Iraq exacerbated the terror threat to the UK” – Caroline Lucas

“Levels of air quality and pollution within our cities which are not being addressed by this government” - Jeremy Corbyn

“More than 50% of all electricity generated in Scotland, is now through renewables” - Angus Robertson

“We have millions of our children living in poverty” - Jeremy Corbyn

“Since we’ve been members since 1973, we’ve paid £183 billion net in membership fee alone” – Paul Nuttall

“We have a huge trading deficit with the EU and they need us more than we need them” - Paul Nuttall

So that’s all from us for now! We’ve already factchecked ‘The Battle for Number 10’ with Jeremy Paxman (https://fullfact.org/blog/2017/may/battle-number-10-factchecked/), ‘The Big Debate’ with Victoria Derbyshire (https://fullfact.org/blog/2017/may/big-debate-factchecked/) and the ‘BBC Wales Leaders’ Debate’ with Huw Edwards (https://fullfact.org/blog/2017/may/bbc-wales-debate-factchecked/).

So make sure to watch out for our upcoming final live factcheck, tomorrow at 8:30pm on BBC1: ‘Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn BBC Question Time special’. Where both leaders will face audience questions separately for 45 minutes, in a session moderated by David Dimbleby.

We hope you enjoyed our first Facebook Live Q&A sessions yesterday on Brexit and immigration. So look out for our second one next Tuesday 6th June on health and the economy and tune in to the Press Association’s UK Politics page and comment with your questions when we go live!

As always we need your help to continue holding politicians and the media to account, especially during such an important time as this election. Please help us continue to give you the facts, by donating to our crowdfunder.



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We aim for our factchecks to be as accurate and up-to-date as possible. If you think we've made an error or missed some relevant information, please email team@fullfact.org.