The BBC is not what it used to be.
Ever since the turn of the century, it has started to act more and more as a government mouthpiece, instead of as an impartial broadcaster. It doesn’t lean right so much as Pro-government, whatever the government of the day happens to be. So, it was blatantly Blairite until 2010, and has been mildly Tory ever since. The real turning point was the war in Iraq, where it was battered into line and was not allowed to question the murderous lies of the government at the time.
This is generally because the upper echelons have been stacked over the years by appointees that the government of the day likes, and because the government threatens to de-fund it every time a charter review comes along. Add in the fact that the rabidly right-wing press yell at it whenever it does anything even vaguely leftish, and you have a recipe for a steady rightward drift.
You can’t even trust that the audience isn’t full of pro-brexit right wing activists:
Here’s a UKIP activist that was put on Question Time, and allowed to ask questions on multiple shows:
And a few weeks later, they end up with five tory activists in the audience, all of whom bash the only left-winger on the panel:
More generally, the BBC has a much bigger problem than obvious political bias. It has an ingrained cultural bias which ends up producing the political bias. The BBC is largely staffed by rich young media graduates who live in London. They have to come from rich families in order to get the requisite media internships, and they have to live in London, because almost all of the media is based there (The BBC’s move of several chunks of staff to Salford has not really helped with this). Therefore, without thinking, the range of perspectives narrows- You get an excruciating metropolitan bias, because everyone involved naturally thinks that London is the centre of their universe. You get a narrowing of political opinions, as they think “balance” means one commentator from Labour, one Tory, one Lib Dem and one UKIP. They are completely blind to the other nations currently of the UK, northern England, or any ordinary working-class people at all. and worst of all- they think that they have been balanced and objective, because alongside one pro-brexit article by a rich young media graduate, they also have a painfully woke article on race or gender, written by another rich young media graduate.
This is doubly awful, because not only is all this a source of real bias for one of the largest media sources internationally, it also feeds into the populist resentment of a thoroughly establishment media, which is used by the far-right to whip up hatred against the “rootless metropolitan liberal elite” (gaah, it felt awful just typing that), and paint a deeply establishment institution as somehow leftist,even though actual leftists wouldn’t be allowed on screen.