Over the past week or so people have asked why we’ve carried so little coverage of Boris Johnson’s re-election campaign.
With those questions come inevitable accusations of bias and a deliberate policy of skewering coverage away from the current, and according to this week’s poll, likely next Mayor.
The far less exotic truth is that we’re being hampered in the coverage we can give Boris by a non-appearance of press releases from his campaign.
The first I heard of Boris’s nine-point plan was when Twitter discussed it and the first I heard of his recent jobs plan was when another journalist forwarded me his campaign’s press release.
Team Boris tell me “we don’t distinguish” between outlets and yet still their mailings don’t arrive. They answer questions I ask of them, but for some reason we don’t get details of where Boris is appearing or announcements he’s making.
We initially had the same issue with the 2008 BackBoris campaign. That blackout eventually got resolved and I’m hoping this one will too.
Londoners want and deserve to hear from all their candidates and I want to bring you their views, but being able to do so relies on the co-operation of the various candidates and their campaigns.
With the campaign period now officially underway it’s important that coverage is fair and balanced but non-cooperation by any single candidate or campaign cannot succeed in lessening the coverage of others.
So I’ll continue to report on those candidates who want to share their polices and vision with MayorWatch readers.
Those who don’t are entitled not to co-operate, but their supporters need to understand the reason for the resulting lack of coverage.
Update 26/3/2012: The good news is PRs from team Boris are now arriving snugly in out inbox.