Accuracy in Media

CNN’s latest analysis on the perils facing the United Kingdom, written by Luke McGee, openly wonders whether the new British prime minister, Boris Johnson, could destabilize the U.K. as we know it.

The analysis, headlined, “Boris Johnson could be the last prime minister of the United Kingdom,” is more conjecture and guessing than hard facts and knowledge.

Boris Johnson became prime minister of the U.K. after Theresa May resigned in May. Johnson beat out fellow Conservative Party (known as Tories) politician Jeremy Hunt to gain the prime minister position. Johnson had previously served in May’s cabinet at Foreign Secretary over foreign affairs and was the mayor of London from 2008-2016.

Yet CNN questioned Johnson’s leadership and to stir anxiety among Americans and U.K. citizens when Johnson has not been on the job for more than a couple of weeks.

In the analysis, CNN pointed out the internal issues facing the new prime minister, with Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales feeling differently about Brexit and leaving the European Union (E.U.) than the pro-Brexit Conservative Party. The network noted how “this love” of country “is not always reciprocated” for Johnson when he visits the four nations that make up the U.K.

Johnson has publicly stated that he wants the U.K. to leave the E.U. on October 31, and CNN highlighted that Johnson was met with boos by “booed by pro-European and pro-Scottish independence supporters” during his visit to Scotland.

The analysis focused on his visit to Wales, “he was criticized for not having a plan to prevent the most severe repercussions of a no-deal Brexit, especially for Welsh farmers.” Both Scottish and Welsh leaders criticized Johnson’s Brexit plans, which CNN quoted.

Then, CNN claimed that Northern Ireland “faces the gravest consequences of no deal — the erection of a hard border with the Republic of Ireland and the terrifying reality of a return to the dark days of sectarian violence.” CNN pointed out Johnson’s past gaffe when he apparently compared crossing the Northern Ireland-Ireland border as traveling between London boroughs and claimed Johnson “seemed ill-informed about the intricacies of reviving suspended power-sharing agreements.”

The analysis then dove into the nationalist issues facing Northern Ireland and Scotland, while admitting that Wales would likely remain in the U.K. and that most U.K. citizens have accepted that Brexit will happen no matter what they do or how they vote. Yet, there was no mention of how Brexit could benefit the U.K. as a whole; it only included the negative feelings, sentiments and voting behaviors of U.K. voters.

“The Boris Johnson premiership could ultimately be defined then by a fight between nationalist movements,” the CNN piece concluded. 

Photo by UK Prime Minister

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