A sad day for those in the UK who were keen as chips to see Donald Trump set foot on their rainy fascism island: the president has backed off the idea of visiting Britain next month amid fears of mass protests.
UK prime minister Theresa May offered Trump a visit to London all the way back at the beginning of his presidency, which he hasn’t taken her up on as yet. Activists have been signalling since then that they’d face Trump down with protests, and many MPs announced they were determined to prevent him from addressing Parliament. Not a good look, basically.
Though Trump was expected to come through next month to open the new US embassy, but government sources have reportedly revealed that it’ll actually be Secretary of State Rex Tillerson doing the honours.
It’s likely that at least some of the tension here was caused when Trump retweeted some anti-Muslim tweets from a far-right British nationalist party with documented ties to neo-Nazis. That doesn’t particularly make Theresa May’s job of laundering the unsavoury parts of the US/UK relationship any easier. Back then, the UK ambassador to the US raised the problem with his American counterpart, who insisted it was all fine:
The president and the prime minister have a very, very good relationship. I know the president admires and respects the prime minister greatly […] My job and the president’s job is to protect Americans. He’s doing the best that he can. You’re going to have little stumbles along the road. Absolutely. You’re going to have things that happen. But the intent is there and it’s genuine, and it’s going to happen.
Welp, looks like things aren’t happening right now! Sorry London – you’ll have to get your fill of Trump sometime when you’re feeling less inclined to protest him.
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