General election debates on TV when is the next one and whos taking part?


THE General Election campaign will see debates on ITV, Channel 4, and the BBC between Jeremy Corbyn, Boris Johnson, and other party leaders.

So when are they, how can you watch, and who will be taking part?

Johnson and Corbyn will go head-to-head on November 19
ITV has said they will also hold a multi-party discussion

When are the leaders’ debates?

TV General Election coverage will include:

  • November 19: ITV: The first debate was between Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn,
  • November 22: A BBC Question Time Leaders’ Special, hosted by Fiona Bruce. Conservative, Labour, SNP and the Lib Dem party leaders took questions from the audience
  • November 28: Sky News proposed a debate between Johnson, Corbyn and Liberal Democrats leader Jo Swinson, but later cancelled it
  • November 29: BBC will host a live debate with figures from the seven major political parties in the UK – Conservatives, Labour, Lib Dems, Scottish National Party (SNP), Greens, Plaid Cymru and the Brexit Party
  • December 6: BBC live head-to-head debate between Johnson and Corbyn, hosted by Today presenter and former BBC political editor Nick Robinson
  • December 9: BBC Question Time. Emma Barnett will host an Under 30 special

What will be debated?

The current Prime Minister responded to the announcement by tweeting: “Looking forward to making the positive case to the country that we should #GetBrexitDone & deliver on the people’s priorities – #OurNHS, schools, tackling crime & the cost of living.”

Following the announcement, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn tweeted: “This is a once in a generation election.

“So it’s welcome that Boris Johnson has accepted our challenge of a head to head TV debate.

“The choice could not be clearer: Boris Johnson’s Conservatives protecting the privileged few or a Labour government on the side of the many.”

Jo Swinson will not be included in the debate

Why was Jo Swinson not included in the ITV head-to-head debate?

The Liberal Democrats launched a legal challenge over ITV’s decision to exclude leader Jo Swinson from the debate between Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson, and are reportedly considering doing the same against the BBC.

Following ITV’s original announcement, Swinson tweeted: “Scared, boys?”

Speaking outside the High Court after filing for a judicial review, party president Sal Brinton said: “People know more about where they stand on Brexit than for which party they will vote for.

“So it is vital for our democracy to have both sides of the Brexit debate represented at the top table of the leaders’ debates.”

In a letter earlier sent to ITV’s chief exec, she wrote: “Voters of this country deserve to hear from a Remainer on the debate stage, not just from the two men who want to deliver Brexit.

General election timetable

“There is no reasonable justification for excluding Liberal Democrats from the debate. Liberal Democrats are the strongest national party of Remain.

“We secured more votes than both Labour and the Conservatives in the European elections earlier this year and have enjoyed fantastic local and by-election successes across the country.”

The Lib Dems have vowed to cancel Brexit if they win the election.

An ITV spokesperson said: “ITV intends to offer viewers comprehensive and fairly balanced General Election coverage.”