Saturday 18 January 2020

Dental checks claim Tory MP complains over Piers Morgan refugees interview

David Davies said 'a student on work experience' would have done a better job than Piers Morgan
David Davies said 'a student on work experience' would have done a better job than Piers Morgan

A Tory MP who called for refugees to face dental checks to verify their age has complained about ITV presenter Piers Morgan's handling of an interview with him.

David Davies said "a student on work experience" would have done a better job than Morgan, claiming the Good Morning Britain host had delivered an "emotive monologue" about refugees rather than acted as a serious journalist.

The Monmouth MP wrote to ITV's director of news and current affairs Michael Jermey to complain about Morgan's actions.

In the interview on Wednesday, Morgan told the MP these were "impoverished people who've been through an absolutely hellish time" and the UK had a "moral duty" to take the "comparatively small numbers in".

He told Mr Davies: "And all your response is, 'I don't think they look the right age, let's check their teeth'. That's why I feel emotional about it."

Mr Davies had raised concerns about whether the refugees arriving in the UK from the Jungle camp near Calais are actually children and suggested dental checks could be used to establish their real age.

In his letter to Mr Jermey, the MP said: "I was subjected to an emotive monologue from Mr Morgan who refused me any opportunity to respond except for a brief moment at the end.

"I appreciate that Mr Morgan has strong views on the issue of refugees, which are doubtless shared by his many celebrity friends in London, but in his role as the presenter of a morning news programme surely should stick to asking questions and to giving people a chance to respond."

He said he had "no issue with TV programmes broadcasting celebrities who pour out their emotions" but they should not be "treated as serious journalists".

In the letter, which he published on Twitter, Mr Davies added: "I would have thought that a student on work experience on a regional hospital radio station would have done a far better job."

Morgan laughed off Mr Davies's complaint, tweeting a picture of the letter with the caption "dear oh dear oh dear".

He then posted a picture of a dummy with a message aimed at the MP: "Hi mate @DavidTCDavies, think you spat this out earlier. Maybe stick it back in your mouth once you've had your teeth checked."

PA Media

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