By Alex Green, PA Senior Entertainment Reporter
This Morning went live to prime minister’s questions as Boris Johnson apologised for attending a “bring your own booze” gathering at Number 10.
The ITV daytime show cut to Westminster as the British prime minister was challenged over his appearance at the event, which was held in the garden of Downing Street during the first national lockdown.
Martin Reynolds, Mr Johnson’s principal private secretary, is said to have sent an email to more than 100 Downing Street employees inviting them to the evening event on May 20th 2020.
This Morning rarely cuts to breaking news stories and the same time slot on Monday this week featured an interview with Coronation Street actor Bill Roache, while Tuesday’s episode featured a fashion segment about how to add “some January joy” to your wardrobe.
— This Morning (@thismorning) January 12, 2022
As PMQs began, co-host Phillip Schofield told viewers: “It is exactly midday, and we are heading over to Westminster, where prime minister Boris Johnson is about to address the Commons.”
Viewers saw Mr Johnson acknowledge the public’s “rage” but insist he believes the event could have technically been within the rules at the time.
After the prime minister was challenged by Labour leader Keir Starmer, This Morning cut back to the studio where Schofield and his co-host Holly Willoughby were joined by Camilla Tominey, associate editor of The Daily Telegraph.
Schofield said: “He has admitted he was there for 25 minutes or so (and) should have said they should all have gone inside. Was it a work do? Was it a party?”
An apology with an excuse is not an apology.
— Susanna Reid (@susannareid100) January 12, 2022
Schofield also read out the email from Mr Reynolds inviting staff to the gathering.
Ms Tominey said the apology had “certainly been a mea culpa” but questioned whether it would be enough to save his premiership.
Susanna Reid, presenter of fellow ITV show Good Morning Britain, was also watching PMQs and tweeted: “An apology with an excuse is not an apology.”
Mr Johnson previously appeared on This Morning and faced questions from Schofield and Willoughby ahead of the 2019 general election.