On Tuesday, during a discussion on Meghan and Prince Harry’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey, Beresford repeatedly pushed back on Morgan’s dismissal of the Duchess of Sussex’s experience of dealing with racism as a working royal. Morgan stormed off the set and ultimately left the show.
“There is so much that could be said,” Beresford said in his statement published on Twitter Thursday. “Piers’ departure sincerely wasn’t the conclusion I was hoping for.”
“Over the last few years, Piers and I have had a lively, cheeky on-air relationship,” the weather presenter added, noting they were both aware prior to Tuesday’s show how “strongly” their opinions differed on the way Meghan has been treated in the public.
“I hoped we could reach a place of understanding,” he said. “It’s sad that we weren’t able to get there, but challenging his opinion was not an outrage. On this occasion, we have to agree to disagree.”
Beresford, who has talked about his experiences with racism as a biracial man born to a white mother and Black father, sought to explain to Morgan how seemingly covert racist comments impact Black people — and how dismissing Meghan’s experience is problematic in itself — to no avail.
Elsewhere in the segment, Beresford called out Morgan for his apparent fixation on the Duchess: “I understand you don’t like Meghan Markle, you’ve made it so clear a number of times on this program — a number of times.”
“And I understand that you’ve got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle or had one and she cut you off,” he continued. “She’s entitled to cut you off if she wants to. Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don’t think she has, but yet you continue to trash her.”
That comment was the last straw for Morgan, who abruptly stood up from his chair and stormed off the set.
“OK. I’m done with this. Sorry. No. Sorry. You can trash me mate, but not on my own show. See you later,” Morgan said as he walked away.
Beresford called Morgan’s tantrum “diabolical behavior” as Morgan left the set.
Morgan received wide backlash for his behavior, especially considering his history of bullying and spewing combative remarks on-air and on Twitter.
The staunch critic of the Duchess was also condemned for casting doubt on the details surrounding Meghan’s statements to Winfrey that she had contemplated suicide during her time as a working royal. He said on-air that he didn’t “believe a word” she said during her sit-down with the media mogul.
British television channel ITV announced later on Tuesday that Ofcom, U.K.’s telecommunications watchdog, had received more than 41,000 complaints about Morgan’s comments about Meghan.