It is not easy being Prime Minister at the best of times. It has never been easy. But it is even harder when you wake in the morning to find your closets and most powerful ally attacking you despite your best efforts to support them.
Mrs May was in a truly no win situation with President Trump upon his election. Embrace him publicly – as she did – well, hold his hand in any case – and she is criticised by the many – probably the majority (me included) who think he is a disgrace to his office. Oppose him publicly and risk the national interest of defence, security and economic trade (even more important in a post-Brexit world).
Let’s deal with the hand holding. That was just bad luck. What could Mrs May do? Refuse to take the hand that was offered? Of course not. This is part of Theresa’s terrible luck. But, it was her awful judgment – really poor call – to offer a state visit so soon. We all knew that Mr Trump was volatile so why not wait and see how he settles down – or not – in office? Of course the state visit will never happen but the offer hangs around her neck like an albatross.
Mrs May needs to reset the relationship with Mr Trump, which she appears to have started today. She – and we – all need to remember that President Trump is not America. He will not be there forever – he will be gone in three or seven years. We need to maintain our relationship with that great country, regardless of the embarrassment currently tweeting from the Oval Office.
Poor Mrs May. She tries to put the national interest first. She tried to build a relationship with our most important ally. She tried to secure first mover advantage over her fellow world leaders. She has been restrained and reserved with President Trump’s behaviour to date. And this is her reward. It proves once again – if proof was needed – that Donald Trump is only interested in himself; not relationships, special or otherwise. He is a selfish, self centred, insecure narcissist.
Mrs May is a pretty hopeless Prime Minister but even she didn’t deserve to be treated like this.
Photo taken from BBC News website