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The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
John Crace

Spirits of Downing St present and past submit to TalkTV’s finest inquisitors

The UK prime minister, Rishi Sunak, is interviewed by Piers Morgan in the flat above 10 Downing Street.
The UK prime minister, Rishi Sunak, is interviewed by Piers Morgan in the flat above 10 Downing Street. Photograph: Simon Walker/No 10 Downing Street

Rishi Sunak and Boris Johnson have both given interviews to TalkTV. The Guardian got to see the out-takes.

Piers Morgan: Good to see you prime minister. It must be an honour for you to come on my show.

Rishi Sunak: It’s a pleasure to be on a programme whose ratings are lower than my own.

Morgan: Let’s start with the biggest issue. Meghan Markle. She’s a right piece of work.

Sunak: I’m not sure I’ve got anything to say …

Morgan: How about Prince Harry then? What a woke wuss the man is. He shouldn’t be invited to the coronation, should he? He’s a disgrace …

Sunak: Er …

Morgan: I’ll take that as a yes. On to you, prime minister. Today marks your 100th day in office. How do you think it’s going?

Sunak: Thank you. Far better than expected. At one point I wasn’t sure I was going to last 100 days. My priorities are the country’s priorities.

Morgan: Then your priorities are to get a Labour government elected.

Sunak: Precisely. And we are totally on track.

Morgan: Let’s go first to some breaking news. Shell has just announced record profits. Are you having second thoughts about putting a more effective windfall tax in place?

Sunak: We are the party of low taxation …

Morgan: You could have fooled me. Taxes are at record levels …

Sunak: As a Conservative, my instincts are not to raise taxes. It is wrong to punish companies for being in the right place at the right time. That’s why Infosys is still operating in Russia. If a business can’t get rich on the back of an illegal war, then when can it?

Morgan: Do you think everyone should pay their taxes?

Sunak: Of course not. I’m a Conservative. The rich should pay as little as they can get away with. And there should be breaks for oligarchs donating to the party.

Morgan: I blame Meghan …

Sunak: What for?

Morgan: Everything. The Bank of England has just raised interest rates to 4%. Do you worry that many people will default on their mortgages?

Sunak: What’s a mortgage?

Morgan: It’s when people borrow from the bank to buy a house.

Sunak: Why would they want to do that? Why don’t they just buy a house with their own money? It doesn’t make sense. People should live within their means.

Morgan: Do you worry that all the opinion polls suggest you are out of touch?

Sunak: No. Why?

Morgan: You’ve promised to halve inflation …

Sunak: Yes. That’s my number one goal.

Morgan: But it’s forecast to fall anyway. Regardless of what you do.

Sunak: I know. That’s exactly why I’ve promised to do it. It’s important that people can be confident the government will do what it says.

Morgan: Let’s move on to the strikes. We all know you are going to have to do a deal with the unions. When are you going to start negotiating?

Sunak: Sorry?

Morgan: Negotiate. As in talk …

Sunak: Oh. I hadn’t thought of that. Aren’t the nurses all militant lefties in the pocket of union barons? That’s what Grant Shapps says. Sometimes the right thing is to do nothing and to let things get worse. And as a strong leader I will not hesitate to do nothing.

Morgan: Let’s take you back to your first day in Downing Street, prime minister. You said you would govern with professionalism, accountability and integrity. How do you think that’s going?

Sunak: Pretty well. I mean, I’ve got to be an improvement on Boris Johnson and Liz Truss, haven’t I? At least under me there’s a sense of managed failure.

Morgan: Gavin Williamson …

Sunak: Who?

Morgan: Nadhim Zahawi …

Sunak: Look, I’ve gone on the record on this before. I made a huge effort not to know anything about anything before I appointed my cabinet. It only seemed fair to give a lot of deadbeats an even break. Myself included. No one could have been more surprised than me that Honest Nadhim turned out to be a liar and a tax avoider. But it was only £5m including the penalty. That’s just a rounding up error on my tax return.

Morgan: Dominic Raab …

Sunak: A lovely guy. Total sweetheart. A real joker. Only yesterday he popped into Downing Street to say that if I dared say a word against him he’d slit my dog’s throat and stuff the body under my daughter’s pillow! How we laughed.

Morgan: Suella Braverman …

Sunak: When I said there would be zero tolerance for breaking the ministerial code, what I meant was there wouldn’t be.

Morgan: I’ve got to press you. Meghan. She totally fancies me, doesn’t she?

Sunak: Gosh. Er …

Morgan: Thank you, prime minister.

Sunak: I hope no one was watching …

Morgan: You’ve no worries on that score.

(A muffled banging comes from the fridge)

Boris Johnson: Is it safe to come out now? Has Piers gone?

Nadine Dorries: It’s OK, my darling Bozzy Bear. The nasty man has gone. Let me just ask you some really tricky questions. Is it true that the Conservative party treated you appallingly and that you would make a far better prime minister than that halfwit Sunak?

The former culture secretary Nadine Dorries interviews the former prime minister Boris Johnson on the first episode of her new talk show, ‘Friday Night with Nadine’, on TalkTV.
The former culture secretary Nadine Dorries interviews the former prime minister Boris Johnson on the first episode of her new talk show, Friday Night with Nadine, on TalkTV. Photograph: James Veysey/TalkTV/Rex/Shutterstock

Johnson: Um … er … Yes and cripes. I suppose you are right.

Dorries: You’re so handsome. I bet all the ladies say that to you … Now what about those suggestions that you tried to cover up your involvement in the Downing Street lockdown parties?

Johnson: Of course I didn’t. That’s for the birds.

Dorries: You’re so right. It would be so out of character for you to lie. Now whisper me some Brexit bonus sweet nothings …

Johnson: Thanks to Brexit the pandemic was not nearly so bad in the UK because we had closed our borders and the virus couldn’t get in …

Dorries: YES!

Johnson: Thanks to Brexit we were able to supply arms to Ukraine like other EU countries …

Dorrries: YES! YES!

Johnson: Must go. I’ve got a couple of mill to make giving rubbish speeches in the US. Can you just check that the idiot Bamford is covering my expenses as per usual?

Dorries: Bon voyage, my darling Bozza. I love you so much.

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