Monday 2 December 2019 11:40 am

Five memorable times Donald Trump interfered with British politics

With Donald Trump set to arrive in London tonight for a planned Nato summit on Wednesday, Boris Johnson has asked the US President not to interfere with the UK’s general election.

Johnson told reporters last week that it would be “best” if Trump steered clear of speaking about UK politics, with senior Tory figures concerned he could negatively impact their campaign a week out from the election.

Read more: London – and Boris Johnson – are bracing for Trump’s arrival

If he were to comment on the state of British politics, it would not be for the first time.


Here are five times Trump has voiced his opinions on Britain.

1. NHS hokey cokey

Donald Trump has often spoke of his desire to complete a “very big trade deal” with the UK following the conclusion of the Brexit saga.

But whether or not the NHS will be on the table in that deal has been up for debate, with Labour insisting it would be.

Read more: Trade expert questions Corbyn’s NHS ‘plot’ bombshell

For Trump, the NHS has been in and out of a possible deal.

Speaking in June, he said: “When you’re dealing in trade, everything is on the table. So NHS or anything else or a lot more than that, but everything will be on the table.”

However, he quickly backtracked on those remarks following criticism from British politicians.


“I don’t see it being on the table,” he later said. “[The health service is] something that I would not consider part of trade”.

A sentiment he reiterated in October, when he told Nigel Farage on LBC Radio: “It’s not for us to have anything to do with your health service. We’re just talking about trade”.

Read more: Boris Johnson says it is “best” if Trump does not interfere with the general election

2. How to get Brexit done

Trump has also been very critical of the UK’s handling of Brexit negotiations, particularly under Theresa May’s reign as Prime Minister.

Speaking to reporters in 2018, he said: “I would have done it much differently. I actually told Theresa May how to do it but she didn’t agree, she didn’t listen to me. She wanted to go a different route.

“She probably went the opposite way.”

He also said her deal would probably “kill” the possibility of a trade deal with the US.

May later revealed that Trump’s advice had been to “sue the European Union”.

3. Sadiq Khan is ‘destroying London’

The US President has been engaged in an long-running feud with mayor of London Sadiq Khan dating back to Trump’s remarks about banning Muslims from entering the US in 2015.

It escalated in 2017 following the London Bridge terrorist attack when Trump took to Twitter to criticise Khan.

“At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is ‘no reason to be alarmed!”, Trump said.

In response Khan’s office said the mayor had “more important things to do than respond to Donald Trump’s ill-informed tweet that deliberately takes out of context his remarks”.

Read more: Sadiq Khan hails breathtacking heroism after membrs of public tackle terrorist

Trump retaliated by calling it a “pathetic excuse”.

In 2018, Khan allowed activists to fly a blimp of Trump as a crying baby in a nappy, before Trump said Khan “had done a very bad job on terrorism and crime”.

This year they have continued to exchange words, with Trump labeling the mayor as a “disaster”, “stone cold loser”, “very dumb” and “destroying the City of London.”

Following Friday’s tragic attack on London Bridge which claimed the lives of two and injured five, there will be concerns about what the President might say next.

4. ‘Corbyn would be so bad’

Johnson may be wary of the impact Trump’s comments could have, but they were certainly reading off the same hymn sheet when Trump berated Corbyn’s ability to lead.

“Corbyn would be so bad for your country, he’d be so bad, he’d take you in such a bad way,” the President said.

“He’d take you into such bad places. But your country has tremendous potential, it’s a great country.”

Trump went onto state his belief that Johnson is “fantastic and “the exact right guy for the times”, but whether that is the kind of support Johnson wants is another matter.

5. Friendly with Farage

At the same time, Trump went on to praise Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage with whom he was talking.

He said that together, Farage and Johnson would be “an unstoppable force” and suggested they create a pact ahead of the general election.

It was a notion quickly dismissed by the Prime Minister, who said the “difficulty” of pacts with other parties was that it increased the risk of “putting Corbyn into Number 10”.

“I want to be very, very clear that voting for any other party than this government, this Conservative government… is basically tantamount to putting Jeremy Corbyn in,” Johnson said.

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