Gary Lineker astonished by Richard Madeley’s remark over Keir Starmer death threats
Richard Madeley says Starmer 'did fail' to prosecute Savile
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Gary Lineker, 60, was taken aback after Good Morning Britain presenter Richard Madeley’s comments on Keir Starmer’s death threats. The TV star appeared to downplay the threats received by the Labour leader by asking guests on the show whether they were “that big a deal”.
Are we legitimising death threats?
On Tuesday morning’s segment of the ITV flagship programme, the on-air hosts were discussing the fallout from Boris Johnson’s claims that Starmer “failed to prosecute” prolific paedophile Jimmy Savile.
The Labour leader was the Director of Public Prosecutions and Head of the Crown Prosecution Service from 2008 to 2013.
Scotland Yard are reportedly investigating the threats after documents, which included messages from identifiable users of the Telegram app, were sent to them by the Centre for Countering Digital Hate on Friday.
With this at the forefront of everyone’s minds, Madelely asked journalist Andrew Pierce on GMB whether it was a “big deal”.
He said: “Now, we learnt yesterday that Keir Starmer is getting death threats online; people calling for his execution…”
Pierce chimed: “Well, politicians get that all the time,” before Madelely interjected: “I was going to say… is it that big of a deal?”
To which Pierce replied: “No.”
Upon watching the clip, Gary sounded astonished as he responded: “Good heavens.
“Politicians have been killed, one just a few months ago.
“Are we legitimising death threats?” he questioned.
Starmer has since blamed Johnson for the backlash, telling BBC Radio Newcastle the PM “knew exactly what he was doing”.
“It’s very important for me to say that what the Prime Minister said was wrong, it was very wrong,” he said.
“He knew exactly what he was doing.
“There has been a right-wing conspiracy theory for some time that’s a complete fabrication.
“He fed into that, and that has caused difficulty, but my preference, if I may, is not to talk about that because, as I say, I have got young children and I don’t particularly want them to hear too much of what may or may not be said about me.”
He added later: “The Prime Minister knew what he was doing when he introduced that slur the other day, but this is not about me.
“There are threats to too many politicians, particularly women, actually, we’ve all got a duty to bring that level down and return to the politics where we have strong debate, strong arguments, but it’s rational.
“It’s honest and it’s done with integrity.”
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