Piers Morgan: ‘The General Election is going to be a bloodbath’

The controversial journalist speaks to The Tab

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Piers Morgan is a giant of the journalism world – the editor of the Daily Mirror when it was at its most notorious, largely for invading the privacy of celebrities and public figures alike.

Having moved on from his days as ‘King of the Long Lens’, Piers has gone on to cultivate controversy, both through his Mail column and through his publicised spats with celebrities, including Ian Hislop and Jeremy Clarkson, the latter giving him a broken nose.

Even Piers Morgan’s appearance in the Union lineup quickly attracted criticism, most notably from Varsity who described his appearance as “Not only offensive but utterly predictable”. This didn’t escape the speaker’s notice, who laughed over how “The moment I was announced [on the union lineup] immediately their blog said it was the most disgusting thing they’ve ever heard. Congratulations!”

While we’re sure Varsity will stick by their opinions, it’s unlikely they’ll enjoy being called a blog.

Credit: Sophia Ho

In typical fashion, the conversation rapidly turns onto Trump, who has been a personal friend of Morgan for years. Piers has also been a vocal supporter of gun restriction laws in the US, in direct opposition to Trump’s pro-gun stance. When asked whether this caused any strain in their friendship, Piers was quick to deny it.

“I find it very easy because I always divorce friendship from politics. I’ve got people in my family who are far more right wing than Donald Trump and I get on absolutely great with them.”

“I’ve seen people completely lose their minds over Brexit in Britain and Trump in America, go hysterical on Twitter over people who don’t agree with them. You can’t do that.”

“The point of a democracy is to be democratic and accept the result of democratic elections, not lie on your back screaming and shouting, doing a dead ant impression.”

Continuing on Trump, when asked about the allegations of sexual mis-conduct put to the President of the United States, Piers was quick to point out Democratic precedents.

“Bill Clinton is one of the most revered presidents in the United States, closely followed by John F Kennedy. So I’m not sure that when it comes to sexual morality the Democrats in particular have been too consistent, because they revere two of the biggest serial womanisers in the history of American politics”

“I’m not going to get on my high moral horse about Trump, I’ve not seen him behave like that, I’ve never heard him behave like that. I’ve spent hundreds of hours in his company and I’ve always found him respectful around women. I’ve always found the women around him to be strong independent women, from Ivanka to Melania. I’ve not seen that side of him at all. I was as shocked as anybody when that tape came out, I found it as distasteful as everybody else did.”

The interviewer being interviewed. Credit: Sophia Ho

The conversation moved back across the pond, as we asked Piers about his General Election predictions.

“Ukip is over, the Tories are going to win by a massive landslide short of something extraordinary coming out.”

“Labour have got train wreck problems right now.. and the Lib Dems look fairly weak and ineffectual. One of the problems is that they took a firm position on Brexit that can’t happen, there isn’t going to be a second referendum.”

“The practical reality is it is not going to happen, we will be Brexiting and Theresa May has a firm position. ‘We are where we are, let’s make the best of it’ and I voted Remain… it’s going to be a bloodbath”

Piers declined to tell us who he’d be voting for. As a presenter of Good Morning Britain, he is actually banned from doing so under contract. Although he was keen to talk about the future of journalism.

“Print newspapers are dying out, they’re the dinosaurs of the industry, but of course I write for the US Daily Mail online. Their website now employs hundred of journalists around the world and is incredibly successful. I do columns that are read by 2 million people. It’s a bit like penny farthing versus a Harley Davidson: doing the same thing just a lot quicker and a lot more efficiently.”

Morgan currently present ITV’s Good Morning Britain with Susanna Reid

Asked about the social medias effect on journalism, he seemed fairly positive, explaining how he uses his twitter feed to promote his columns to his 7 million followers. He didn’t miss the chance to take a pop at so called ‘social media journos’ though.

“The problem is everyone thinks they’re a journalist now on Twitter, and they all think they know better than we do.”

“I studied for two and a half years to be a journalist. I’m very wary of people who pop out of nowhere and are journalists.” A slightly disconcerting question for the student journalists in the room. Asked whether he was talking about us, Piers politely dodged the question.

Piers is well known for his ‘Life Stories’ that run on ITV, interviewing celebs from Elton John to Gordon Brown to Mary Berry. We asked him who he would want to interview him about his life story.

“Funnily enough, it happened yesterday. I was interviewed by Michael Parkinson. It was a great moment. To have thirty five to forty minutes of the great man interviewing me was great. And in return he’s pretty much agreed to do Life Stories, which would be fantastic.”

A journalist he may be, Piers is also quite the businessman, highly capable at selling his product and closing in the deal. An art he no doubt learnt from his very powerful chum across the pond.

Title image credit: Qiuying Lai