Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the Government’s failure to deliver Brexit is the public’s “main driver of a lack of trust” in politicians as he came under intense scrutiny from voters in the BBC Question Time Leaders’ Special held in Sheffield on Friday evening.
His response was met by howls of laughter as he said the issue of trust is “central to this election”
The Prime Minister was also quizzed on a number of issues including the publication of the so-called Russian interference report; rising food bank use and school funding shortages; and promises not fully realised by the Conservatives to recruit more GPs.
Mr Johnson also refused to apologise for comments he made in articles as a journalist including comments made last year about Muslim’s “going around looking like letterboxes” and “tribal warriors with watermelon smiles”.
The Prime Minister said: “I have written many millions of words in my life as a journalist and I have genuinely never intended to cause hurt or pain to anybody and that is my intention.
Referring to claims he was deliberately holding back the report into possible Russian interference, Mr Johnson said: “This is complete Bermuda Triangle stuff.
“As is the suggestion that the referendum... was somehow false, not fair, wrong and should now be cancelled.”
Mr Johnson, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson and SNP Leader Nicola Sturgeon had 30 minutes to answer questions from an audience selected to represent the political make-up if the UK.
Mr Corbyn made headlines by claiming he would “remain neutral” in the Brexit referendum under Labour.
Ms Swinson was accused of treating voters as “stupid” over her plans to revoke Article 50 and cancel Brexit.
Ms Sturgeon was asked about the possibility of another hung Parliament, saying she would not work with the Tories.