British MP Louise Mensch had these words for Piers Morgan on Friday: "I must apologize."
The Parliament member apologized for suggesting that Morgan, a former editor of the News of the World, had openly admitted to hacking phones in his 2005 autobiography. Morgan had actually written that he had changed his phone code after someone warned him that his own phone may have been hacked -- not that he himself had hacked phones, as Mensch suggested. She acknowledged her mistake via letter to committee chairman John Whittingdale on Friday, attributing it to a "misreading" of a newspaper article.
The grounds for her allegations were false, but her apology comes days after the release of a 2009 recording in which Morgan appeared to admit to knowing about phone tapping and using “third parties” to get stories. Morgan has continued to maintain his innocence, explaining that he was referring broadly to tabloid practices, not acknowledging that he hacked phones.
Morgan has faced and denied repeated allegations that he knew about phone hacking at the Daily Mirror during his time as the tabloid's editor. He went on the defensive following Mensch's remarks, memorably dressing her down on "Situation Room." He demanded an apology, calling her remarks "an absolute blatant lie" and telling her to "show some balls" after she refused to repeat what she had said.