Emma Barnett praised as she grills Barry Gardiner on Andrew Marr show

‘Wonderfully brutal’: Emma Barnett humbles Labour frontbencher with audio clip of him slamming party’s policies as she steps in for cancer-hit Andrew Marr to front show just THREE months after giving birth

  • Emma Barnett hailed a tour de force as she stood in for flagship politics show 
  • Barry Gardiner confronted with audio of him rubbishing his party’s Brexit policy
  • Viewers said the radio presenter should be given her own TV politics show   

Emma Barnett made a triumphant return to TV today just three months after having a baby to stand in for Andrew Marr while he is being treated for cancer.

The radio show host used her trademark tough interviewing tactics to give Labour shadow minister Barry Gardiner a tough grilling.

She shadow international trade secretary was left squirming in his seat when she played him back leaked audio in which he rubbished Labour’s Brexit policy.

And she also challenged him over other leaked comments where he claimed risks to the Good Friday Agreement from Brexit were being ‘played up’ for political reasons. 

Her fans urged the BBC to give Ms Barnett her own show after she left MPs floundering under her fierce questioning. 

Mr Gardiner, a Corbyn ally was left struggling to answer as Ms Barnett asked him directly ‘do you only tell the truth in private?’

She added: ‘Which Barry Gardiner is the truth? The one that speaks in private or the one that is on television now?’ 

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Emma Barnett (pictured today) made a triumphant return to TV today after having a baby to stand in for Andrew Marr while he is being treated for cancer.

Instead he desperately tried to claim he had not rubbished Labour’s ‘six Brexit tests’ and scrambled to try to defend his Irish borer comments.

In an interview branded a ‘car crash’ by viewers, Mr Gardiner said: ‘Sometimes you have conversations in private, and the reason they are held in private is because you can advance thinking and you can actually then try and, if all you ever do is stick by the given line, you’d never actually advance it because you’d never discuss anything with people – that’s the reason for holding things in private.   ‘ 

Viewers of the BBC’s flagship politics show hailed her performance a tour de force as she shunned cosy chats to give the politicians a real grilling.

Rick Lopez wrote on Twitter: ‘ Emma Barnett is a great political presenter, give her more shows BBC.’ 

Stewart wrote:  ‘Have to say, Emma Barnett was wonderfully brutal during the interviews as the guest presenter on Marr. Very Refreshing. 

‘Definitely would watch a Emma Barnett Sunday politics show if Andrew Marr ever hangs up his boots.’

Alan Costa wrote: ‘So the bar has been set a bit higher for Andrew Marr when he returns after Emma Barnett and her tough questioning this morning filling in.

Andrew Marr, who had a stroke a few years ago, announced on air a fortnight ago that he was heading into hospital this week to have a malignant tumour removed from his kidney.

‘Not the normal easy Sunday the politicians have been getting.’ 

John Topping wrote: ‘Emma Barnett., absolutely brilliant in questioning the slippery, self centered MPs who avoid questions. Marr show.  

Another viewer called Brett wrote: ‘Lots of respect for Andrew Marr and we certainly wish him well.

However, his interviews had become cosychats.

‘There’s no way he would have skewered a politican as the brillian Emma Barnett did today.

‘It is time for a new look to Sunday morning politics.’

Ms Barnett was standing in for Mr Marr on the show while he is away getting treatment for kidney cancer.

Mr Marr, who had a stroke a few years ago, announced on air a fortnight ago that he was heading into hospital this week to have a malignant tumour removed from his kidney. 

Ms Barnett is seen as one of Britain’s best political interviewers having done many memorable interviews during the election cmapaign.

She managed to get Theresa May – who is famously reserved – confide that she ‘shed a tear’ after losing her overall majority in the General Election.

Ms Barnett has spoken movingly about how her life ‘fell apart’ when she was 23 and was told her father was gong to prison for running a string of massage parlours in Manchester

Viewers flocked to Twitter to praise Emma Barnett’s stint on The Andrew Marr Show 

Another viewer also hailed her performance and said that she was not afraid to ask the tough questions 

Another viewer said the presenter is ‘formidable’ and gave the politicians a tough grilling

Another viewer said she was ‘absolutely brilliant’ in taking down the politicians who had hoped for a cosy chat

Another viewer said Emma Barnett should e given the job of presenting the flagship politics show full time if Andrew Marr ever hangs his boots up 

Another viewer also heaped praise on her interview technique and called for a new look to the Sunday morning political show 

Writing in the Daily Mail in 2016 she said: ‘I was angry. My God I was. Angry at him. Angry at the world. 

‘For a long time, during these visits to Strangeways and the ones that followed in other prisons, normal conversations with my father simply didn’t happen. 

‘Instead, we just barked at each other about everything.’

She said the experience left her feeling ashamed, but more determinedto make a success of her life.

She added:  ‘But I’d changed. Irrevocably. And surprisingly for the better. By seeing a side of life very few people get to experience, I developed an empathy and humility beyond my years. 

‘And I wanted to hear and tell other people’s stories more than ever – now I had a greater understanding of the human condition far from the chocolate-box existence I’d grown up in.’   


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