The BBC has ruled that it failed to meet impartiality rules when a presenter celebrated Boris Johnson withdrawing from the Tory leadership race.
Martine Croxall was fronting an edition of The Papers when she expressed glee that the former Prime Minister would no longer contend in the race, which was won by Rishi Sunak, despite claiming to have 102 nominations.
At the time, she said it was possible she was breaking impartiality rules.
Responding to viewer complaints, the BBC said in a statement: ‘In this programme several remarks and reactions from the presenter caused a significant risk that the audience could believe opinions were being expressed on the Conservative leadership contest.
‘In addition, there was insufficient counter and challenge to some of the opinions expressed by guests on the programme.
‘Taken together, this meant that this edition of The Papers did not meet our editorial standards, as it gave the audience the opportunity to infer an editorial position on the part of the BBC.’
It added: ‘This does not accord with the BBC’s commitment to editorial impartiality.’
During her introduction to the programme, Ms Croxall said: ‘Well this is all very exciting isn’t it? Am I allowed to be this gleeful? Well, I am.’
In her first question to her guest, she also remarked: ‘Can we even show you the front pages just yet, have they arrived? No, they haven’t arrived. It’s all a little bit, you know, lastminute.com isn’t it?
‘Because all the front pages were probably out of date by the time we received them.’
She later added: ‘I’m probably breaking some sort of terrible due impartiality rule by giggling.’
At the time, the BBC said: ‘It is imperative that we maintain the highest editorial standards. We have processes in place to uphold our standards, and these processes have been activated.’