Brexit leader Nigel Farage has been seen entering the U.S. Ambassador’s residence in London just 30 minutes after President Donald Trump arrived at the stately home aboard Marine One.
The days leading up to this week’s State Visit to the United Kingdom by President Donald Trump have been populated with intense speculation over whether any off-schedule meetings with non-government British political figures might take place, but the arrival of Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage at the U.S. Ambassador’s residence does suggest at least one will go ahead.
UPDATE 18125 — Nigel’s comments in full
Turns out Mr Farage had a private meeting with both President Trump and U.S. Ambassador Johnson. Here’s his account from his LBC radio slot:
I went to see him tonight, up at Winfield House… clearly it was a private meeting, but what I can say is that yes — he was on top, ebullient form, thoroughly enjoying the trip, having a great time, looking forward to getting across to Portsmouth and to Normandy for that 75th commemoration of D-Day.
He absolutely, obviously believes in Brexit. Believes it is the right thing for the country to do, and is concerned that it seems to be taking a very long time, and therefore he is very interested in who the next Conservative leader and Prime Minister is. He said some complimentary things about Jeremy Hunt, some complimentary things about Boris Johnson. And he’s going to be meeting Michael Gove at some point later on today.
He spoke to Boris Johnson and offered him a meeting, but he declined… and strangely, Jeremy Corbyn — this is interesting, isn’t it? He boycotts the state banquet, attends an anti-Trump rally in Trafalgar in Square, accuses Trump of spreading hatred and racism, and then asks Donald Trump for a meeting! Which Donald Trump refuses.
But what was most interesting about the meeting was the discussion of trade — and the extent to which I was left by both Donald Trump and Ambassador Woody Johnson with the impression — that the Americans are very, very prepared for their side of the negotiation… when I asked the extent to which the British were ready for this, the answers I got back were pretty coy but I was left with the impression we were behind the curve in every way.
Perhaps after all these years as members of the European Union, we simply don’t have people who are competent trade negotiators because it is all being done for us by somebody else. And I certainly am now very keen given the lack of the preparedness… to get a delegation of industrialists and business figures together, to fly out to Washington D.C. … to start these discussions. If the government can’t do it, maybe others will have to take that initiative?
UPDATE 1810 — Nigel Farage confirms meeting went ahead
Fresh from Winfield House where President Trump is staying for the duration of his London Trip, Brexit leader Nigel Farage has made it to the studios of LBC radio and has confirmed the rumoured meeting between him and the POTUS went ahead. Feathers in Downing Street will no doubt have been ruffled…
Read the original story below:
Here's the picture: pic.twitter.com/bNnVFSslAk
— Reuters UK Politics (@ReutersLobby) June 4, 2019
In a photograph taken outside Winfield House, the significant central-London stately home where President Trump is staying during his State Visit, Brexit leader Nigel Farage can be seen sitting in the back of a black Range Rover. While the driver is a regular to Mr Farage, the man in the passenger seat wears a pin on his lapel which may mark him out as a member of the U.S. Secret Service escorting the British politician into the residence.
Reuters reported the sighting at 16:21, just 30 minutes after the official time of arrival for President Trump at Winfield House, returning after a day of business and political meetings in Westminster.
While the President is hosting a reciprocal dinner for senior members of the British Royal Family and 70 senior guests at the residence this evening, his schedule leaves four clear hours for Presidential business and unscheduled meetings before that is due to begin.
WATCH: President Trump May Meet with Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson on State Visit to United Kingdom https://t.co/oJ78a0NR7s
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) May 30, 2019
As Breitbart London reported last week, the British government is understood to have moved to block President Trump from meeting Nigel Farage at all, even going so far to draw a ‘red line’ over him being involved in any official business.
The presumed meeting comes just hours after President Trump revealed the leader of Britain’s official opposition party, Labour boss Jeremy Corbyn, had requested talks with him during this week’s trip but the President had turned him down.
Nigel Farage is considered, at best an undesirable and at worst a dangerous individual among the British permanent political class. His seven-week-old Brexit Party is the first serious challenge to the government’s failure to deliver the Brexit vote which the British people gave in 2016, and has already topped one national election and is set to send its first representative to Parliament this week.
Farage Declares ‘This Is Just the Beginning’ After Brexit Party Victory in EU Elections https://t.co/63ftJKVD7y
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) May 27, 2019
President Trump has paid Mr Farage a series of compliments recently, including stating that the two were friends, congratulating Mr Farage on winning May’s European Union elections, and even saying the Brexit leader should have a full role in Brexit negotiations.
Despite not having a government role and never having been a member of Parliament, Mr Farage has emerged as one of the most powerful men in Britsh politics. His 2014 European Union election win forced then Prime Minister David Cameron into calling a referendum on Britain’s membership of the bloc, which he subsequently lost to a coalition of Eurosceptic groups which were de facto led by Mr Farage.
Mr Cameron quit the office of Prime Minister within hours of the defeat. Farage claimed his second Prime Ministerial scalp less than three years later when, after repeated failed attempts to deliver a form of Brexit, Prime Minister Theresa May declared she too would relinquish the post. The news of her impending resignation came just hours after polls closed on the 2019 European Union elections — exactly five years after the last — which Mr Farage was later revealed to have convincingly won.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan: Trump Is 'Global Threat', Farage a '20th-century Fascist' https://t.co/DtiDb3Obwz
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) June 2, 2019