PIERS Morgan has vowed to boycott Government-issued statements and stuck his fingers in his ears as co-host Susanna Reid tried to read one out this morning.
The Good Morning Britain presenters clashed over comments made by care minister Helen Whately – after Government ministers have refused to come on the show because of Piers’ treatment of them.
Piers has repeatedly tore into Ms Whately and other ministers since the start of the coronavirus crisis.
An explosive interview with her, accusing her of laughing about the number of people being tested and dying in care homes, lead to almost 2,000 Ofcom complaints being made against him.
After weeks of Piers talking over ministers and ripping into them over the UK’s record on the coronavirus crisis, the Government began to boycott the show.
A minister has not appeared on the show for the last 60-odd days.
The latest spat came as Ms Whately has been accused of dismissing the efforts of student nurses after she said “they’re not deemed to be providing a service”.
Mr Morgan said today’s program: “We interviewed Care Minister Helen Whately several times before the Government boycott came in.
“It’s now day 55 or 56 of their boycott and one of the main problems was people like Helen Whately who come on here and didn’t know the answer to basic questions about how many people were ven dying.
“I found that utterly breathtaking. The level of incompetence of people like Helen Whately is startling.”
Piers tried to stop his co-host reading out the statement issued by the Government, saying: “If the Government want to come on our program they can, why should we read their wishy-washy little statement?
“If they want to have their statement read, come on the program.”
Piers added: “If their boycotting us, I’m going to boycott their stupid little statements.
Susanna began to read the statement anyway as Piers continued to demand why it was necessary to read a “PR release” from them.
Piers then apologised to “all views who had to listen to that clap-trap (statement).”
The row started after a student nurse demanded an apology from Ms Whately – because her cohort of student nurses were left between a gap in the old bursary system and a new one.
Student healthcare professionals, current and new will be given grants of up to £8,000.
But the young nurse speaking on Good Morning Britain started her course between the old bursary ending and the new scheme beginning.
She had been working in a hospital to help cope with coronavirus cases – but had her contract cancelled as numbers fell.
Piers said: “It almost defied belief when I read Helen Whately’s letter (saying student nurses would not be paid grants) the idea that student nurses can do 2,300 hours of work and it be deemed utterly valueless.
“And then add the mix so many student nurses volunteered to go fight on the coronavirus front line.”
He called the comments – and the gap in the scheme – a “slap in the face” to hard working student nurses.
A few weeks ago Piers brought up a video of Ms Whately speaking to Sky News on his phone, and showed it to viewers, saying she “doesn’t know anything about anything” and he didn’t know why she had a job.