A clip of an MSNBC guest referring to Meghan Markle as "five clicks up from trailer trash" on air Saturday has gone viral and is being cited as an example of why she and husband Prince Harry have chosen to step back as working members of the royal family for a one-year review period.
During the MSNBC Live segment, British reporter Victoria Mather, who was incorrectly identified on the show as a "Vanity Fair Royals Watcher," said that the Duchess of Sussex has been "disrespectful" to the royal family and its protocol.
"I think what has really, really upset the British public is that Meghan Markle, who many people consider as only, you know, five clicks up from trailer trash, has actually tried to disrespect the queen," she said. "And the queen is the most respected person, most respected woman, in the world."
Although Mather currently writes for the digital news platform Air Mail, she identifies herself by her former title as a travel editor for Vanity Fair on a number of her public social media profiles — and did not correct the MSNBC anchor when she was introduced as a "royals watcher" for the magazine.
A spokesperson for Condé Nast, the magazine's parent company, told BuzzFeed News that she has not been employed there since 2018.
BuzzFeed News has reached out to Mather for comment.
Her current employer, Air Mail, was founded last year by former Vanity Fair editor-in-chief Graydon Carter. A New York Times story described it as "an all-digital international news platform intended for worldly cosmopolitans."
Mather's title at Air Mail is "chief travel correspondent," but in September she wrote about the royal family for the publication — and used the words "trailer trash" in reference to Meghan, whom she dubbed the "Duchess of Excess."
"As for the reported feud between the duchesses, that was a story waiting to happen," she wrote, in reference to numerous stories that ran in the British tabloids around that time. "Catherine comes from a stable, close-knit family. Meghan comes from a sadly dysfunctional family, leading to her being unpleasantly trolled as trailer trash."
During her MSNBC interview, Mather said that "Hollywood celebrity" Meghan didn't want to stay in the royal family because she would be "second-best" to her sister-in-law, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge — and claimed that Meghan had given Kate a knife for Christmas.
"Don't forget Prince Harry is — you know, has always been the spare to the heir. So I don't think Meghan Markle wanted to spend the rest of her life looking at Kate Middleton's back as she sat in the second row to the future queen," she said. "I don't think she wanted — she didn't want to be second best. And I don't think she got that that was what — that is what the fusty-dusty protocol of the royal family consists of. It is a matter of precedence."
"I do hear that she gave Kate a knife for Christmas," Mather added, laughing. "Which is quite something, isn't it?"
Anchor Lindsey Reiser ended the interview immediately following the "trailer trash" remark, and made a point of saying that the network "had not confirmed what [Mather] had mentioned about knife gifting."