Chief Secretary to the Treasury Stephen Barclay was on a live video link to ITV’s Good Morning Britain today, and host Piers Morgan wasted no time in grilling him about Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s father, Stanley Johnson’s, comment regarding the public continuing to socialise in pubs despite the government’s new coronavirus advice.
Yesterday, during an instalment of This Morning, Johnson senior appeared to discuss the latest covid-19 news with hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby.
Less than 24 hours after his son urged the British public to “avoid pubs, clubs, theatres and other social venues,” Johnson senior said he’ll “go to a pub if he needs to go to a pub”.
Johnson senior, who is 79-years-old, falls into the ‘high-risk’ category, and under the new advice, he should have been practising social distancing and self-isolation, but he was adamant he wanted to make an appearance on the magazine show.
After his confusing comment, GMB host Piers Morgan wanted to ask Barclay his opinion on the matter.
“So all young people, 20-year-olds, 21-year-olds, 22-year-olds, watching this who want to go out to the pub tonight what is your advice? It’s a very simple thing that needs clarity?” Morgan remarked.
Ranvir Singh added: “How many can go eat one time?”
“We’re urging people not to socialise where they don’t need to to do so, that’s why we’ve brought in particular measures. Yesterday in the Chancellor’s statement -“ Barclay replied but was cut off.
Morgan interjected: “So you’re telling people to stop going to the pub then?”
“Can you let me answer the question?” Barclay hit back.
“What we’re saying is if you’re in a vulnerable group, if you’re over 70, the medical advice is that people should be exercising social distancing. So obviously for others then if they don’t have symptoms, reduce non-essential travel.
“Those who can work from home are urging to do so, but we recognise not everyone can do so. This is about having the right measures at the right time urging people to look after themselves and others and to reduce pressure on the NHS,” he explained.