Newsnight reporter underplayed links to far right

His impartiality has already been questioned because of his Left-wing politics and links to the trade union movement.

Now the BBC’s new economics correspondent – also under fire for a relative lack of journalistic experience – has admitted he has flirted with the far Right.

Duncan Weldon, who starts work with flagship current affairs show Newsnight next month, has been accused of taking part in a racist leafleting campaign organised by the British National Party.

After being confronted over the allegations, he wrote a blog post admitting he had a ‘misguided  flirtation with the ideas of the far Right’ as a teenager.

However an article Mr Weldon wrote for his student newspaper in Oxford has also emerged in which he admitted having been a fascist and argued it was ‘possible to hold extreme Right-wing views… without being a racist or homophobe’.

In his blog on Saturday, he denied having joined any Right-wing political party or attending any meetings but admitted: ‘This chapter of my teenage life was witless and intensely embarrassing and I compounded the idiocy with a boastful and ill-judged piece of student journalism a few years later.’

He said his teenage rebellion  was ‘pretty tame’ and consisted  mainly of reading about British fascist Oswald Mosley.

Mr Weldon now faces calls to quit his new post after he was accused of taking part in a banned BNP campaign in 2000, suggesting he may have downplayed his links to the Right.

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