Piers Morgan lit into London Mayor Sadiq Khan when he admitted that budget restraints were keeping him from monitoring 400 people with suspected terror ties who returned from the Middle East to London. The debate took place on "Good Morning Britain" Tuesday.
"You are the mayor of the capital city where the most recent terrorist attack has taken place. How many of those 400 have come back to London?" co-host Susanna Reid asked.
"The estimate is just over half," Khan admitted.
"Where are they?!" Morgan yelled. "No, seriously, where are they?"
"How are we letting people back into the U.K., who haven't just been trained," Reid asked, "they've actually fought, potentially against our troops, how are we letting them back in without knowing exactly where they are and what they're up to. Because out of all the thousands of people that we're concerned about, surely those who've actually gone to fight are the biggest risk."
"That's one of the reasons why it doesn't make sense for the government to be cutting resources," Khan responded.
"But where are they, you're the mayor of this capital city, where are they?" Morgan interjected.
"Well, hold on, I can't follow 400 people, what I can do..." Khan protested.
"Why can't you instruct the police?" Piers interrupted, "why can't you call [Met Police Chief] Cressida Dick right now and say 'everyone of those people who's come back from a war zone who's in London, I want them followed.'"
"Let me say why," Khan responded. "Because the Met Police budget, roughly speaking, 15% to 20% is funded by me the mayor. The rest comes from central government. If the Met Police budget is being shrunk and reduced, then you got to prioritize and use their resources in a sensible, savvy way."
"What could be a bigger priority than people coming back from a Syrian battlefield with intent to harm British citizens?" Morgan demanded. "Why is it not the number one priority?"
"Why are these people just allowed to come back in, in the first place, and then the London mayor doesn't appear to have a clue where any of them are!" he added, "I mean, no disrespect to you, but where are they?"
"Well," Khan said, "that's one of the questions that obviously the police..."
"But you're the mayor!" Morgan implored. "Sadiq, you're the mayor of London!"
"But this chap here," Khan explained, "the three men responsible for the attacks on Saturday night hadn't come from overseas, they were, for all intents and purposes, integrated into our way of life."
Britain has been hit with a string of terror attacks that is putting elected officials on the defense about whether they're doing enough to protect their citizens. President Trump also assailed the Muslim mayor from his Twitter account, though many say he misrepresented Khan's statement.