In quotes: Jeremy Corbyn's quite sarcastic Today programme appearance

Jake Cordell
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Jeremy Corbyn being interviewed on radio
How did Jeremy Corbyn get on when speaking to the BBC from a campaign rally? The jury's out ... (Source: Getty)

Two days before the ballot closes in the Labour leadership contest, Jeremy Corbyn has given his first interview to the BBC's flagship Today programme since the contest started in July.

The programme, widely seen as agenda-setting in Westminster, the City and beyond attracts an average weekly audience of 7.4 million listeners.

That's only 1.9 million short of how many people voted for Labour in the 2015 General Election.

It's 28-times the number of people (251,000) who voted for Corbyn in last year's Labour leadership contest.

Read more: Corbyn's first year anniversary present - a 13-point deficit in the polls

So, in an interview pre-recorded over the weekend at a rally supporting Corbyn's campaign to fend off the challenge of rival Owen Smith, how did Corbyn fare up against the BBC's veteran broadcaster Nick Robinson?

On why he hasn't appeared on the Today programme since the Labour leadership contest started:

"With the deepest and greatest respect to the Today programme, I know it is the most important radio programme on the whole planet... it is not the only radio programme on the whole planet.

"We will be reaching out to all forms of communication. It's not the only radio programme. We've done lots of radio programmes, lots of TV programmes, lots of social media."

On electoral arithmetic:

"We've had 54 leadership events, about 38 of them rallies. I don't know what the aggregate attendance is but it's tens of thousands.

"That means there's an interest in politics."

On those tens of thousands cheering his name at rallies and events across the country:

Nick: "Do you ever feel like a pop star?"

Jeremy: "No."

On people who say he will never win an election:

"They could be wrong."

On the appeal of political rallies:

"I've been going to rallies all my life. What I find exciting and nice, but it's slightly depressing, is when I know half the people at the meetings I go to.

"But I go to these [Labour leadership contest] events and at some of them I don't know anybody at all."

On dealing with his parliamentary colleagues:

"I have made it my business to talk to quite a lot of Labour MPs."

On Labour MP Alan Johnson calling him "incompetent":

"That's very kind of Alan. How generous of him.

"I think Alan hasn't fully understood what my concerns are."

On having the last word:

"Can I wish the Today programme all the best?"

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​Corybn's appearance on the Today programme comes ahead of a Channel 4 documentary, airing tonight, which will take an undercover look at the Labour leader's grassroots supporters group, Momentum.

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