Marco Rubio has sent out a clear message that under a Republican presidency with him at the helm, the United States would stand behind the United Kingdom leaving the European Union.
Addressing a group of United States chief executives, Mr. Rubio burnished his support for traditional American values including national sovereignty and free trade. He said of the United Kingdom: “Part of us being a strong ally [of Britain] is for us to respect its sovereignty and its right to make its own decisions.
“I don’t think it’s proper for an American president . . . to tell the UK what is right for them, any more than it would be right for the UK to tell us that they wanted us to sign Nafta [the North American Free Trade Agreement] or some other agreement”.
Speaking to British newspaper The Times, Mr. Rubio doubled down on his support for Britain’s right to forge it’s own destiny, saying: “Irrespective of what decision the UK makes . . . they’ll continue to be certainly our best friend in the world and one of our strongest alliances”.
The statements by Rubio, among the favourites to lead the Republican party into the 2016 Presidential election, puts him in company with other Republican candidates who have expressed their support for a Britain outside of the European Union. The belief that Britain can thrive outside of the political and economic bloc has become a key point of differentiation between the Republican candidates and Democrat President Barack Obama.
The US President has been observed to go even so far as to interfere with Britain’s referendum process, a move that has angered United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) leader Nigel Farage. Speaking at a major policy launch event this week dealing with the fallout of the Friday Paris attacks and the future of Islam in Europe, Mr. Farage blasted Obama and said he was looking forward to the end of his presidency.
Mr. Farage said: “It’s actually Obama and his lackeys like Froman who are threatening one of the most important strategic and friendly alliances that has existed in the world. I hope America gets a better President who understands us more next time round.”
Michael Froman intervened in British politics on behalf of Mr. Obama earlier this month when he stated that should the UK leave the European Union, they could expect to find themselves cut adrift, with no special free trade deals from the United States. As Breitbart London reported at the time, Mr Froman is a known Europhile and a former employee of the European Commission.
That there would be a free trade deal with Britain if they left the EU, and that the special relationship would remain, appears now to be an article of faith among Republican contenders. Recalling a British prime minister with a famously strong working relationship with the United States, candidate and Texas senator Ted Cruz said striking a new deal between the UK and USA would “be an opportunity to mutually deregulate our economies”.
“Deregulation is a powerful, liberating economic force that can lead to significant economic growth — something Lady Thatcher understood all too well”.
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