President Donald Trump has warned Theresa May that her soft Brexit plan would ‘kill the deal’ between the US and Britain.
He also said the prime minister has ignored his advice on Brexit negotiations, explaining: ‘I would have done it differently’.
Talking to Tom Newton Dunn before his trip to Britain, he said: ‘If they do a deal like that, we would be dealing with the European Union instead of dealing with the UK, so it will probably kill the deal. I actually told Theresa May how to do it, but she didn’t listen to me’.
Sources close to the president earlier warned that a lucrative transatlantic trade deal would be impossible if the UK keeps close ties with Brussels – effectively meaning Britain must choose between the US and EU.
In an interview with The Sun, Mr Trump said he thought Boris Johnson would make a ‘great prime minister’ and that he was ‘saddened’ the former foreign secretary was out of the government.
The president also renewed his war of words with Sadiq Khan, saying the London mayor has ‘done a very bad job on terrorism’.
He said he thought that allowing ‘millions and millions’ of people into Europe was ‘very sad’ and pointed to crime being ‘brought in’ to London, criticising the Labour mayor for failing to deal with it.
Europe, he added, is ‘losing its culture’ because of mass migration and warned it will never be the same again unless leaders act quickly.
‘Look around,’ he said. ‘You go through certain areas that didn’t exist ten or 15 years ago.’ He added: ‘Allowing the immigration to take place in Europe is a shame.’
US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are welcomed at Blenheim Palace by Britain Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Philip May
Awkwardly grabbing Theresa May hand – in a replay of their White House meeting last year – Trump was treated to a fanfare welcome by the Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards bands
US First Lady Melania Trump, US President Donald Trump, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Philip May stand on steps in the Great Court watching and listening to the bands of the Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards perform a ceremonial welcome
Discussing protests – including the decision by anti-Trump activists to fly a giant blimp of the president wearing a nappy over the capital – he said they made him feel unwelcome in London.
He said he used to love the city, but now feels little reason to go there because of the animosity directed towards him.
But he did say he respected the Queen, telling The Sun she is a ‘tremendous woman’ who has never made any embarrassing mistakes.
And the president also said he loves the UK and believes ‘they want the same thing I want’.
Trump arrived in Marine One in a tuxedo alongside First Lady Melania, wearing a floor-length, pleated buttercup yellow gown.
Awkwardly grabbing Theresa May’s hand – in a replay of their White House meeting last year – Trump was treated to a fanfare welcome by the Welsh, Irish and Scots Guards’ bands.
The president was given a performance of Amazing Grace featuring a bagpipe solo during his red-carpet reception as well as Liberty Fanfare and the National Emblem.
Critics of the Prime Minister’s proposals for future relations with the EU claim that her willingness to align with Brussels rules on agricultural produce will block a US deal.
That is because Washington is certain to insist on the inclusion of GM crops and hormone-enhanced beef, which are banned in Europe.
But addressing the US president in front of an audience of business leaders at Winston Churchill’s birthplace, Mrs May insisted that Brexit provides an opportunity for an ‘unprecedented’ agreement to boost jobs and growth.
Noting that more than one million Americans already work for British-owned firms, she told Mr Trump: ‘As we prepare to leave the European Union, we have an unprecedented opportunity to do more.
Britain and the US are the largest investors in each other’s economies, with over a trillion dollars of investments between them, said Mrs May (left with her husband, right with Trump)
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and his wife Lucia arrive at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, for a dinner hosted by Prime Minister Theresa May for President Donald Trump
Guests are expected to enjoy a meal of Scottish salmon, English beef and a desert of strawberries and cream. Pictured: William Hague arrives
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson arrives in a tuxedo at Blenheim Palace as President Donald Trump is given a formal welcome
‘It’s an opportunity to reach a free trade agreement that creates jobs and growth here in the UK and right across the United States.
‘It’s also an opportunity to tear down the bureaucratic barriers that frustrate business leaders on both sides of the Atlantic.
‘And it’s an opportunity to shape the future of the world through co-operation in advanced technology, such as artificial intelligence.’
She also highlighted the importance of trans-Atlantic business links to a president who has sometimes seemed more interested in forging new links with former adversaries around the world than nurturing long-standing partnerships.
Britain and the US are the largest investors in each other’s economies, with over a trillion dollars of investments between them, said Mrs May.
And she told the president: ‘The strength and breadth of Britain’s contribution to the US economy cannot be understated.
‘The UK is the largest investor in the US, providing nearly a fifth of all foreign investment in your country.
‘We invest 30 per cent more than our nearest rival. More than 20 times what China invests. And more than France and Germany combined.
‘That all means a great deal more than simply numbers in bank accounts.
Theresa May has used a lavish welcome dinner for Donald Trump at Blenheim Palace to press her case for an ambitious new trade deal with the US after Brexit
From left, first lady Melania Trump, President Donald Trump, British Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Philip May watch during the arrival ceremony at Blenheim Palace
Protesters gathered at the security fence watch as US President Donald Trump and US First Lady Melania Trump leave in Marine One from the US ambassador’s residence, Winfield House
‘It means jobs, opportunities and wealth for hardworking people right across America.’
British firms represented at the Blenheim banquet alone employ more than 250,000 people in the US, she said.
Mr Trump earlier made clear that he did not approve of the softer stance the PM has been advocating despite fury from many Tory MPs.
‘Brexit is Brexit, the people voted to break it up so I would imagine that is what they’ll do, but they might take a different route. I’m not sure that’s what people voted for,’ Mr Trump said.
Mrs May dismissed the criticism as she departed the summit this afternoon, telling journalists: ‘We have come to an agreement at the proposal we’re putting to the European Union which absolutely delivers on the Brexit people voted for.
‘They voted for us to take back control of our money, our law and our borders and that’s exactly what we will do’.
Several protesters hold up their placards outside Blenheim Palace, where President Donald Trump will have dinner tonight
Anti-Trump activists gather outside the ‘Ring of Steel’ fence put up to secure the president when he stays in Regent’s Park, London
The protesters promised to create a ‘wall of sound’ outside the off