Oprah’s best friend Gayle King has doubled down on claims that Meghan Markle kept evidence to back up explosive allegations she made during her interview with the TV mogul – revealing that the Duchess ‘has plenty of receipts’.
The 66-year-old CBS This Morning anchor’s comment came just hours after Meghan’s close friend, actress Janina Gavankar, claimed that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have ‘plenty of emails and texts’ to support the extraordinary and damaging accusations they made against the royal family.
Speaking specifically about the allegations of ‘racism’ that Meghan made during her discussion with Oprah, 67, Gayle said: ‘I think Meghan has plenty of receipts, meaning she’s been keeping track of things.’
Claim: Oprah Winfrey’s best friend Gayle King said on Thursday that Meghan Markle ‘has plenty of receipts’ to back up the explosive allegations made during the Sussexes’ interview
Fallout: The 66-year-old CBS This Morning anchor discussed some of the allegations that were made during the sit-down, including claims that Meghan was a victim of racism
The statement very closely echoed that made by Vampire Diaries star Janina, 40, who has known Meghan for 17 years, during an appearance on British TV show This Morning on Wednesday.
Janina told how she watched the interview with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex which aired on CBS on Sunday, adding: ‘I don’t speak for them, I speak for myself.’
In her interview with Oprah, Meghan said she had been suicidal while in the royal family but claimed she received no help after speaking about her suffering.
The Sussexes also alleged that a fellow unnamed royal had been worried about how dark their son Archie’s skin tone might be before he was born.
An impassioned Prince William publicly hit back against those racism claims on Thursday, insisting, ‘We’re very much not a racist family.’
The Duke of Cambridge is the first royal to personally respond to the allegation during his first royal engagement since the Oprah interview, as he also revealed that he has not spoken to his brother since it came out but ‘will do’.
Meghan’s claim that an unnamed royal raised concerns about Archie being ‘too brown’ was the most damaging allegation to come out of the broadcast, and caused untold damage to the Windsors’ reputation around the world.
Buckingham Palace said in a statement issued on Tuesday that the issues raised, especially over race, were ‘concerning’ and would be addressed by the Queen and her family privately.
Speaking out: Hours before CBS This Morning aired, Prince William furiously clapped back at Meghan and Harry’s claims, saying, ‘We’re very much not a racist family’
The brief statement also suggested that ‘recollections may vary’ on certain events – a point that Janina firmly rejected, saying: ‘Though their recollections may vary, ours don’t.’
She added: ‘After reading this short statement that came out from Buckingham Palace today, I felt two things.
‘One side, I thought: I am so thankful that they are finally acknowledging the experience.
‘But on the other side, I am well aware that the family and the staff were well aware of the extent of it, and though their recollections may vary, ours don’t, because we lived through it with them. There are many emails and texts to support that.’
Janina, who attended the 2018 Royal Wedding and took the couple’s 2019 Christmas card photo – also dismissed allegations of bullying after a number of claims were made against Meghan.
‘I have known her for 17 years and I have seen the way she regards the people around her and the people she works with, and I can say she is not a bully,’ the actress said.
‘But I can also say that I am personally glad people are doing their due diligence because I also know why someone had to leave, and it was for gross misconduct.
‘The truth will come out, there are plenty of emails and texts about that.’
Doubling down: Gayle’s comments came just days after Meghan’s close friend Janina Gavankar claimed that the Duke and Duchess have ’emails and texts’ to back up their allegations
Statement: Janina, 40, appeared on British TV show This Morning on Wednesday, when she insisted that ‘the truth will come out’ and that ‘there are plenty of emails and texts’
While Janina stressed she was not speaking on Meghan’s behalf, she revealed she had talked to the Duchess before being interviewed.
Asked by presenter Phillip Schofield if she had spoken to Meghan about coming onto the show, she replied: ‘Oh yes, absolutely, I talk to them of all the time.
‘We watched the special together, actually. We’re all happy that we are in a new era, we get to tell the truth.’
She also said the Duchess gave her backing before she appeared on TV – despite Meghan reportedly agreeing a period of silence to cool tensions with the palace.
Amid the furious controversy that has erupted in the wake of the interview’s broadcast on Sunday, Gayle claimed on Tuesday that Oprah was completely unaware of its bombshell impact – insisting the TV mogul was ‘sitting on her porch reading a book’ while the royal family was rocked by the couple’s allegations.
Gayle revealed that she had called her close friend to chat about the frenzied response to the broadcast – but said that Oprah was completely unaware of the overwhelming reaction.
‘I called Oprah yesterday to say, “You know, this thing is blowing up,”‘ Gayle revealed. ‘She’s sitting on her back porch reading a book, not paying attention to all of this. I said, “I’m telling you, this is big.” [She said]: “Is it?” Yeah, no it’s big!’
But while the TV mogul was apparently totally unaware of the sensational response to the interview, the palace has come under furious scrutiny and criticism as a result of the very damaging allegations made by Meghan and Harry.
Where has she been? On Tuesday, Gayle claimed that Oprah had no idea her bombshell interview with Meghan and Harry was ‘blowing up’
Otherwise occupied: According to Gayle, Oprah was ‘sitting on her back porch reading a book’ while the royal family was rocked by the damaging allegations made during the sit-down
The Queen broke her silence on the bombshell interview on Tuesday afternoon, just under 48 hours after it aired in the US, to say that ‘while some recollections may vary’ the ‘whole family is saddened’ to hear of the couple’s ‘challenging few years’.
Her Majesty said in a statement an alleged racist comment made about what color the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s baby Archie would be was ‘concerning’ and will be ‘addressed by the family privately’.
She added that Harry and Meghan – using their names rather than titles – and their son ‘will always be much loved family members’.
The statement said: ‘The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.
‘The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately.
‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members.’
It is understood the Queen waited until Tuesday to comment on the devastating interview with Oprah so that viewers in Britain had the chance to watch it first – but ‘the Firm’ is not expected to make any further comments.
The interview was watched by millions of viewers the world over – a fact that Gayle happily shared during CBS This Morning, while also voicing how ‘proud’ she is of her friend Oprah for landing the controversial sit-down.
‘Oprah’s interview with Meghan and Harry delivered a huge ginormous audience. The primetime special right here on CBS Sunday night drew more than 17 million viewers in this country,’ Gayle said.
Speaking out: The Queen broke her silence on the interview on Tuesday, saying that an alleged racist comment made about Harry and Meghan’s baby Archie would be was ‘concerning’
‘Proud’: Despite the furious controversy surrounding the interview and the allegations made within it, Gayle said she was ‘proud’ of Oprah (seen on Monday) for securing it
‘That audience of that size is in the range of March Madness final game. In Britain, Oprah’s interview was watched by more than 11 million viewers, more than 54 per cent of homes.
‘CBS said the special was the network’s largest live streaming event outside of the NFL and Super Bowl Sunday.
‘Needless to say I’m talking about it because it was on CBS and I’m very proud we got it, I’m very proud of the job Oprah did, but I thought it was interesting that [it got] over 12 billion impressions on social media.’
Oprah appeared on CBS This Morning on Monday, hours after her interview aired on the network, to share more footage from the sit-down – including a clip of Meghan accusing her father, Thomas, of ‘betraying her’.
In the newly released footage from the interview, Meghan said she has ‘found it hard to reconcile’ with her dad Thomas for insisting he had not been speaking to the media.
She said: ‘I look at Archie, I think about this child, and I genuinely can’t imagine doing anything to intentionally cause pain to my child.’
Meghan drew a contrast with her mother Doria Ragland, who she praised for remaining ‘in silent dignity for four years’.
The clip also saw Meghan distance herself from her half-sister Samantha, who has released a ‘tell-all’ book about their relationship.
The Duchess retorted: ‘I think it would be very hard to tell all when you don’t know me.’
She said she grew up ‘an only child’ and even claimed Samantha only changed her surname back to Markle after Meghan struck up a romance with Harry.
Hitting back: Meghan’s father Thomas Markle denied his daughter’s claims that he had ‘betrayed her’ during an appearance on Good Morning Britain on Tuesday morning
Backlash: Thomas (seen with his daughter) also branded his son-in-law Harry ‘snotty’ and accused him of failing to properly support her when she was suicidal
The tension between the Markles was addressed in unaired sections of the Sussexes CBS sit-down with Oprah, who probed about her relationship with Thomas.
Thomas was supposed to walk Meghan down the aisle in May 2018 but pulled out of the ceremony following health problems.
The two were also engaged in a row about him speaking to the press.
Oprah asked: ‘Did it feel like betrayal when you found that your father was working with the tabloids?’
After weighing up if she was ‘comfortable’ delving into the issue, Meghan said her father had assured he had ‘absolutely not’ spoken to the press.
She said: ‘If we’re going to use the word betrayal it’s because when I asked him, when we were told by the comms team this was a story that was going to be coming out which, by the way, the tabloids had apparently known for a month or so and decided to hold until the Sunday before our wedding because they wanted to create drama, which is also a key point in all this, they don’t report the news, they create the news.
‘We called my dad, and I asked him, and he said no, absolutely not.
I said, you know, the institution has never intervened for anything for us, but they can try to go in and kill this story. But if they do this once, we’re not going to be able to use that same leverage to protect our kids one day.
She added: ‘I said we won’t be able to protect our own kids one day, and I said, I just need you to tell me. If you tell me the truth, we can
‘And he wasn’t able to do that. And that for me has really resonated, especially now as a mother.’
Meghan went on: ‘And also me saying just full stop, if we use this to protect you, we won’t be able to protect our own children one day, I’m talking about your grandchildren.
‘I look at Archie, I think about this child, and I go I genuinely can’t imagine doing anything to intentionally cause pain to my child. I can’t imagine it. So it’s hard for me to reconcile that.’
Fury: Meghan’s half-sister Samantha slammed the Duchess’ interview with Oprah on Monday night – and accused her of using her ‘depression’ as an ‘excuse to treat people like dishrags’
Evidence: She blasted her half-sister’s claim that the two women haven’t seen each other in 20 years, sharing an image of them at her college graduation in 2008 – 13 years ago
Both Thomas and Samantha Markle fired back at Meghan’s claims in their own interviews – with both furiously blasting comments made by the Duchess during the follow-up clips.
Samantha, 56, slammed Meghan’s bombshell interview, saying ‘the truth was totally ignored and omitted’ while providing photos and documents to disprove each of the Duchess of Sussex’s claims about her.
She also told Inside Edition that she has no sympathy for Meghan, who revealed during the shocking interview that she battled suicidal thoughts during her time as a royal – instead accusing the Duchess of using her ‘depression as an excuse for treating people like dishrags’.
Thomas meanwhile denied his daughter’s claims to Oprah that he had ‘betrayed’ her before branding his son-in-law Harry ‘snotty’ and accusing him of failing to properly support her when she was suicidal.
Markle says that he’s apologized ‘100 times’ for doing a deal with a paparazzi photographer before the Royal Wedding in 2018 and urged the couple to see him with Archie now they only live ’70 miles away’ from his Mexico home.
He said: ‘We all make mistakes – but I’ve never played naked pool or dressed like Hitler like Harry did.’
And in a further attack on Harry, Thomas said that his daughter’s admission she was suicidal while living in the UK reflected badly on his son-on-law.
He said: ‘It really did upset me, like I said, it would have been easy for her to reach out to me, any of the rest of her family, who she claims she doesn’t know. But the other thing is that I would think that she could turn to her husband.’ When noted she did speak to Harry, Thomas said Meghan’s husband Harry had ‘obviously not supported her that well’.
He than slammed his daughter’s decision to refuse to see or speak to him, saying: ‘The biggest problem here is she’s pretty much ghosted all of her family.’
Queen will reach out to Prince Harry for peace talks: Her Majesty will take personal charge of interview fallout and has issued a ‘three-line whip’ on Palace staff to stay silent
By Rebecca English, Royal Editor for the Daily Mail
The Queen is to extend a personal olive branch to Harry and Meghan as she takes charge of the fallout from their bombshell television interview.
With senior royals still ‘reeling’ following a series of explosive allegations by the couple, she has issued a ‘three-line whip’ to prevent staff discussing the situation publicly.
It is understood that she intends to try to pour oil on troubled waters by reaching out to her grandson and his wife in California instead.
It is expected that they will speak on the phone in the next few days.
Although Harry and Meghan were informed of Buckingham Palace’s statement on the issue prior to its release on Tuesday evening, this was done through officials.
But the Queen believes now is the time for a more personal approach.
The 94-year-old monarch’s determination to seize the initiative is deemed to be a sensible one. Other family members, notably the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Cambridge, have been left deeply upset by the way in which they were attacked by the couple.
Harry said he felt let down by his father, who, he claimed, refused to take his calls over the whole Megxit saga, and admitted there was still a huge gulf between him and his brother.
He also accused an unnamed member of his family of racism and said the lack of support he and his wife received from the other royals was behind their decision to quit the UK.
William is also likely to be understandably protective of his wife, Kate, who was accused by Meghan of making her cry during a bridesmaid dress fitting ahead of the royal wedding.
And as someone who has campaigned on the issue of mental health, he will be finding allegations that Meghan was driven to consider suicide by her treatment by the family tough to swallow.
However both Harry and Meghan made a point of trying to ‘ring fence’ his grandparents from criticism, with the duchess saying how ‘wonderful’ and generous the Queen had been and boasting of being able to call her without needing to speak to officials.
Harry also insisted he hadn’t ‘blindsided’ her with their decision to step down from royal duties as he had too much respect for his ‘colonel in chief’.
And he told Oprah to make clear in publicity for the show that the unidentified family member who Meghan claims expressed ‘concern’ about how ‘dark’ their child would be was neither of his grandparents.
Courtiers now hope and believe the Queen’s approach will help to ‘de-toxify’ such a volatile situation.
‘It is difficult to underestimate how shell-shocked everyone is by what has happened,’ a source told the Daily Mail.
‘People are literally reeling from what has happened and some staff would dearly love to publicly rebut some of what has been said about them.
‘But the Queen has taken a very measured, sensible approach. She is leading by example. This is a matter for her and the family to deal with.’
Buckingham Palace had no advance warning that Harry and Meghan had decided to sit down for an explosive ‘tell all’ with US chat show host Oprah Winfrey and were not shown the two-hour programme in advance.
And although they had not been expecting to receive an easy ride, they were stunned at the ferocity of the allegations hurled in their direction.
There was significant internal debate as to whether to rebut many of them, but instead the Queen personally opted for a ‘compassionate but firm’ approach, saying: ‘The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.
‘The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately.’
She added: ‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members.’ The 61-word, three paragraph statement was in marked contrast to the three hours of interview Miss Winfrey boasted that Harry and Meghan had given her.
A source added: ‘There is a long way to go but hopefully things will start to move in the right direction in order for bridges to be built.’
It is hoped Harry and Meghan will now take the same approach. Before the interview their PR team insisted it would be the ‘last word’ on the family rift.
The couple said that they felt they ‘needed to have their say’ but now ‘considered the matter closed’ and wanted to ‘move on’.
But since the screening, a raft of close friends and supporters have been given permission to push their case on social media and over the airwaves.
Insiders fear even if Harry does manage to patch up relations with his family, irrevocable damage has been done.