Former Good Morning Britainhost Piers Morgan has doubled down on his criticism of Meghan Markle, claiming that the actress and husband Prince Harry aired the “most extraordinarily disingenuous smear, hit job” on the royal family.
Speaking to Fox News host Tucker Carlson almost a month after he left the ITV breakfast programme, Morgan accused the couple of “complete hypocrisy” over their interview with US broadcaster Oprah Winfrey in March.
“I still don’t believe what they were saying, and in particular, I don’t believe what Meghan Markle said. 17 different claims by the pair of them have now been proven to be either completely untrue, or massively exaggerated, or unprovable.
“I don’t believe Meghan Markle. A huge furore erupted through the day.
“I was an outrage. I wasn’t allowed to have an opinion that I didn’t believe what she was saying, even though it was clear to me in real time, as I was watching the interview, that there were a number of things which just couldn’t be true,” he said.
Morgan sparked backlash on GMB after he said he “[doesn’t] believe a word she says”, moments after a clip was shared of Markle revealing that she had experienced suicidal thoughts.
The comments were criticised by members of the public, with the mental health charity Mind saying in a statement that they were “disappointed and concerned” by the journalist’s remarks.
A day later, Morgan clarified his stance on the issue: “On mental illness and suicide, these are extremely serious things and should be taken extremely seriously. If someone is feeling that way, they should get the treatment and the help that they need – every time.
“It’s not for me to question whether she felt suicidal … My real concern is a disbelief, frankly – and I am prepared to be proven wrong on this, and if I’m wrong, it is a scandal – that she went to a senior member of the royal household, told them she was suicidal, and was told she could not have any help.”
In conversation with Carlson on his Tucker Carlson Today programme on the streaming service Fox Nation, Morgan added that he had the “universal support” of the British public.
“Old, young, Black, white, it didn’t matter. They’ve been coming up to me in their droves all day every day.
“The British people have seen through this,” he said.
On the same day that Morgan was forced to clarify his comments on mental health on Good Morning Britain, co-presenter Alex Beresford criticised the broadcaster for his remarks on Markle.
“I understand that you don’t like Meghan Markle - you’ve made it so clear a number of times on this programme.
“I understand that you’ve got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle – or had one – and she cut you off. She’s entitled to cut you off if she wants to.
“Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don’t think she has, but yet you continue to trash her,” Beresford said.
In his interview with Carlson, Morgan described his former colleague as the “stand-in weather guy” and claimed “he’s not a journalist”.
He went on to accuse Beresford of making “a premeditated attack… on a personal level” and admitted that he should not have walked off set following the interaction.
A day after his departure, co-host Susanna Reid said in an on-air statement: “Piers and I have disagreed on many things, and that dynamic was one of the things that viewers loved about the programme.
“He is without a doubt an outspoken, challenging, opinionated, disruptive broadcaster.”
“He has many critics and he has many fans. You will know that I disagreed with him about Meghan’s interview,” she said.
Commenting on Reid’s statement, Morgan said he believed his former co-presenter was “in the grip of fear”.
“I think she was fearful that if she went too far in saying nice things about me, the same thing might happen to her, that there would be a huge Twitter pile on,” he said.
The interview with Carlson lasted more than an hour, and saw Morgan label Markle as a “delusional duchess who is on the make”, and Harry as a “whiny brat in his mid-30s complaining his dad isn’t still financing everything he does”.
Morgan’s discussion with Carlson has since received a mixed reaction from Twitter users online:
It is not known what role Morgan will take up next post-GMB, but he revealed to the Fox News presenter that he has had a “lot” of job offers since he left the breakfast programme.