BBC political journalist Jeremy Paxman allegedly clashed with BBC officials over offensive material he intended to use during the BBC's coverage of Election 2010, a BBC source claimed today. Paxman, who is paid over £1m per year for his work with the national broadcaster, had prepared a series of jokes all said to riff on the fact that 'hung' is a colloquial term meaning 'well endowed'. His intention was to set up an office sweepstake to bet on the number of times he could make David Dimbleby giggle nervously. According to our source, however, Dimbleby notoriously finds jokes about robust genitalia disproportionately funny, and Paxman's scheme threatened to turn the BBC's flagship election coverage into a laughing stock comparable with the output by Channel 4.
Yesterday, British comic Graham Norton hinted that Paxman had turned to him in a bid to bolster his material. “I got a call from a certain unnamed BBC presenter, who does some of the major political stuff. He said that he was looking for some big cock jokes and that I was basically synonymous with all that stuff, the big cock stuff. That's all I'm saying. I'm not going to say who it was, although it wasn't David Dimbleby, or Nick Robinson. And it wasn't Viney - it was Paxman. That's all I'm saying.”
Paxman yesterday refused to quip on the subject.