BROADCAST regulator Ofcom has confirmed it is looking into complaints of potential rule-breaking by GB News after two of its Tory MP hosts interviewed the Tory Chancellor.

Conservative MPs Esther McVey and Philip Davies, who are also married, quizzed Jeremy Hunt in a softball broadcast on March 11, ahead of his Spring Budget.

The interview saw Hunt make unchallenged claims such as that nuclear is necessary because it is not possible to provide for 100% of the UK’s energy requirements through renewables.

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It also saw McVey say she wanted to talk about “how I could help you reduce taxes”.

It is far from the only example of the two Tory MPs interviewing other Tory politicians on their GB News show.

One incident saw the married couple interview Tory chairman Greg Hands, which SNP MP John Nicolson said was a “flagrant breach of Ofcom rules”.

Another saw them speak to former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith. Nicolson commented: “Here we are again. It’s the weekend. It’s morning telly. And here are two Tory MPs interviewing a Tory MP about Tory legislation on a news show on a news channel. Wakey wakey @Ofcom”.

The SNP MP has been publicly pressuring Ofcom to probe the GB News show, recently quizzing chief executive Melanie Dawes at a Westminster Committee over the issue.

He pointed to Ofcom rules which state: “No politician may be used as a newsreader, interviewer or reporter in any news programmes unless, exceptionally, it is editorially justified.”

Nicolson then asked Dawes: “Why are Tory MPs interviewing the Tory Chancellor on a UK channel?”

She responded: “You are quite right to say that there are strict rules about serving politicians not being able to present news programmes, and they are also not able to present any programme if they are seeking office. Aside from that, they are able to present shows and to invite on whoever they like, but of course, due impartiality is going to be needed.”

Ofcom have now published a statement which suggests they think the GB News show is current affairs, not news.

Kevin Bakhurst, Ofcom’s group director for broadcasting and online content, said on Tuesday: “There has been a lot of recent discussion about politicians presenting, and appearing on, television and radio programmes. So this is a good opportunity to clarify our rules in this area.

“In general, serving politicians cannot be a newsreader, interviewer or reporter in any news programme. They are allowed to present other kinds of shows, however, including current affairs. Sometimes those programmes may be on channels that also broadcast news; what matters here is the format of the particular show.”

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Bakhurst said that factors such as a newsreader presenting directly to the audience, a running order or list of stories, and the use of reporters or correspondents to deliver packages or live reports were common to news programmes.

He said that live guests in a more long-form discussion, analysis, or interview were generally common to current affairs shows.

An Ofcom spokesperson said it had written to MPs on the Culture Committee to “clarify these rules – including confirmation that we’re assessing complaints we’ve received regarding the March 11 edition of Saturday Morning with Esther and Philip, on GB News”.