The office of British Prime Minister Theresa May was forced to deny reports in the media Wednesday that President Trump’s state visit had been ‘downgraded’.
Splashing with an exclusive report Wednesday afternoon, George Osborne’s London local newspaper the Evening Standard claimed that plans for a state visit to the United Kingdom for the U.S. President had been downgraded to a mere “working visit”, which would signify less ceremony and pomp than had previously been planned.
Because of the downgrade, the paper explained, President Trump would no longer have the pleasure of staying at Buckingham Palace or taking tea with the Queen, who Trump is understood to follow his own mother in admiring.
Yet the widely re-reported story was rejected shortly afterwards by the Prime Minister’s office who said they were not aware of any plans for a working visit, and the offer extended to President Trump for a full state visit remains in place, while no date has been set for the event.
The invitation was originally made by Mrs May in January, when she flew to Washington to be the first world leader to meet President Trump after his inauguration. The visit was hailed at the time as opening a new chapter in UK-USA relations, with particular attention paid to the possibilities it raised for Britain moving to the “front of the queue” for a trade dela with the United States after it left the European Union.
Speaking at a joint press conference in the White House after their meeting, President Trump praised Brexit, and congratulated Britain for having voted to leave the “consortium” of Brussels.
Despite the initial promise, the potential date for a state visit by President Trump to the United Kingdom has been pushed back, and the British Prime Minister has used several opportunities to attack the U.S. President.