Loading...

Susanna Reid: what did GMB presenter say about Boris Johnson interview - and who is pensioner Elsie?

Pensioner Elsie from London has seen her energy bills rise from £17 to £85 a month

Good Morning Britain (GMB) presenter Susanna Reid grilled Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a heated interview on Tuesday (3 May).

With the election on Thursday (5 May), the Prime Minister answered questions on the cost of living, the partygate scandal and Ukraine.

Sign up to our NationalWorld Today newsletter

Reid challenged him on the growing energy crisis and shared the plight of 77-year-old pensioner Elsie, who eats just one meal a day and rides London’s buses to avoid having to heat her home.

Here’s everything you need to know about what happened in the GMB interview and who pensioner Elsie is.

What happened in the GMB interview with Boris Johnson?

The interview saw Reid grill Boris Johnson about a number of things including the cost of living crisis and partygate.

Tense at times, Johnson tiptoed around his answers and took credit for things he did not implement, including the 24-hour freedom bus pass in London.

In another shocking moment, he asked Reid, “Who’s Lorraine?” in reference to Lorraine Kelly, the award-winning ITV host who has her own morning show.

In the wake of the interview, Labour has accused the Prime Minister of being “out of touch.”

Who is Elsie?

Elsie is a 77-year-old pensioner from London, who has been hard hit by the recent rise in energy costs.

The widow, who lives in a council house has seen her gas and electricity bills go from £17 a month to a staggering £85.

In a bid to save money Elsie has cut down to only one meal a day, shopping in the evening so she can buy “yellow sticker” reduced items.

The pensioner is losing weight and uses her freedom bus pass to stay on buses all day to avoid using energy at home.

There have been questions about Boris Johnson’s response to Elsie’s predicament.

Reid outlined her story by telling the Prime Minister: “You have said that individuals have to make choices about what they spend their money on.”

She explained the lengths that Elsie was going to, to try and make ends meet and asked the Prime Minister: “What else should Elsie cut back on?”

Boris Johnson responded to Reid that the 24-hour freedom bus pass was something that he had introduced, however it was actually a scheme introduced by the London boroughs themselves.

What did Reid say about the Boris Johnson interview?

Reid met with Andrew Marr on LBC’s Tonight Show after the interview to discuss what happened.

Reid said: "When I was doing my research for the interview with the Prime Minister over the last couple of days it struck me that it’s very easy for the Prime Minister to bandy about very big figures.

"We’re spending a billion on this, double spending on this, we’ve got £9m billion going into this.

"For our cost of living special, it just struck me that actually what does that mean to Elsie... What does £9 billion, £1 billion?”

Reid also discussed the Prime Minister’s response to Elsie’s story, commenting:

"But I would say for any Prime Minister, any party leader who deals with a difficult case like that, the answer is not to just revert to, ‘We’re going to invest for the long term. We’re making sure people have got jobs. We’ve got this fund over there that can help’.

"The answer is to say, ‘That sounds dreadful for Elsie. I’d like to find out more about it. And you know, if she would let me, I would get in touch with Elsie as Prime Minister and find out exactly what that means. And let’s see how we can help her’. That’s the answer."

What has Elsie said about the Boris Johnston interview?

Reid gave an update on Elsie’s reaction when speaking with Marr.

She said: “I’ve spoken to Elsie since the interview this morning with the prime minister, and she says how disappointed she is with what he said.

“Because she says there are people who are even worse off than she is, and there was no answer for them, apart from ‘oh I was the person who was responsible for the bus pass,’ I mean, as if she’s supposed to be grateful.”