The Speaker
Wednesday, 24 July 2024 – 22:25

Trump planning on visiting the UK in June

US president Donald Trump has been invited to the UK for an official visit by the Queen from June 3 to June 5, where he will attend a ceremony in Portsmouth and a bilateral meeting with prime minister Theresa May. 

While in the UK, Trump is also expected to speak in front of Parliament, as heads of state often do, though in this case there may be some push back by Commons Speaker John Bercow, after he said in 2017 “I would not wish to issue an invitation to President Trump to speak in the Royal Gallery. I feel very strongly that our opposition to racism and to sexism and our support for equality before the law and an independent judiciary are hugely important considerations in the House of Commons.”

Trump previously visited the UK last July, which was met with widespread protest across the city of London, with an estimated 50,000 to 100,000 protesters demonstrating against Trump. During an interview with the Sun last year, Trump said “I guess when they put out blimps to make me feel unwelcome, no reason for me to go to London. I used to love London as a city. I haven’t been there in a long time. But when they make you feel unwelcome, why would I stay there?”

It is unclear exactly how Trump will respond to what will most likely be similar protests this time around for his state visit, but it is likely he will be ignoring any protests on the streets and just get to the few meetings he has. There may be some resistance to Trump giving a speech in Parliament, but Bercow has faced pressure to rescind his call to not have Trump speak in Parliament. So unless there is some tension there, Trumps visit to the UK will face little resistance from members of the current government. 

As far as Labour is concerned, however, there has been many calls on their end questioning why Trump was invited in the first place and hoping he does not attend. Emily Thornberry, shadow foreign secretary for the Labour Party, said about Trumps visit “This is a president who has systematically assaulted all the shared values that unite our two countries, and unless Theresa May is finally going to stand up to him and object to that behaviour, she has no business wasting taxpayers’ money on all the pomp, ceremony and policing costs that will come with this visit.”

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