Cursing David Cameron interview was not a broadcasting breach

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The Independent Online

A radio interview in which Tory leader David Cameron twice turned the air blue did not breach broadcasting regulations, Ofcom ruled today.

Mr Cameron was forced to apologise after saying "t***" as he explained to Absolute Radio presenter Christian O'Connell why he did not use the Twitter social networking service.

Later in the live interview, aired on July 29, the Conservative leader said the public was "p***** off" with politicians - although he quickly added: "Sorry, I can't say that in the morning."

The incident prompted 20 complaints about offensive language to Ofcom, but the broadcasting watchdog said the show was "not in breach" of its rules.

An Ofcom spokesman said: "In the context of the interview and the programme overall, the remarks did not breach the broadcasting code."

During the interview, Mr Cameron was asked whether he used Twitter, and he replied: "The trouble with Twitter, the instantness of it - too many twits might make a t**t."

The remark was greeted with laughter in the studio, with O'Connell saying: "That's fantastic."

Shortly afterwards, the Tory leader was talking about the impact of the expenses scandal on Westminster's reputation and said: "The public are rightly, I think, p****d off - sorry I can't say that in the morning - angry with politicians."

In a podcast released shortly after the show, O'Connell said Mr Cameron's press secretary Gabby Bertin had "leapt out of her skin" at his language.

"He said (to her) 'That seemed to go OK'. She said 'Yeah, apart from the language'," O'Connell said.

"He said 'Oh, yeah, p****d, sorry about that, I'm really sorry'... She said 'No, it was the t**t.'

"He said 'That's not a swear word.' I think he must be posh, where a lot of them don't think t**t is a swear word. His press secretary went 'It is'."