Watch: Prime Minister Theresa May asked about Norfolk MP policy chief’s Trump speech critique
PUBLISHED: 10:28 22 January 2017 | UPDATED: 10:53 22 January 2017
Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
Prime Minister Theresa May was put on the spot over her policy chief George Freeman’s Twitter outburst about Donald Trump’s speech just days before she will meet the US president.
During an interview on the BBC, presenter Andrew Marr asked Mrs May about a social media post in which the Norfolk MP described Mr Trump’s address as “unusually & deliberately divisive & confrontational #InaugurationSpeech”.
On Friday he also questioned the administration’s commitment to free trade.
Following Mr Trump’s declaration in his inauguration address that “We will follow two simple rules: buy American and hire American”, Mr Freeman said: “Doesn’t sound like the Trump administration is going to be committed to #FreeTrade? A return to American #Isolationism & Protectionism?”
The UK government is hoping to strike a trade agreement with Mr Trump despite his “America first” strategy.
But Mrs May has suggested the UK and US could reduce barriers to trade before being able to sign a formal agreement after Brexit, with a new passporting system to govern transatlantic bank trade reportedly being considered.
The Prime Minister insisted that being a female Prime Minister and the first foreign leader to meet Donald Trump since his inauguration will be the “biggest statement” she can make about the role of women in the world.
Mrs May confirmed in her BBC interview that she will meet the US president in Washington DC on Friday after a weekend in which hundreds of thousands of people around the world joined women’s marches to protest against Mr Trump.
The PM said she will tell Mr Trump when she finds his behaviour or statements “unacceptable” - a criticism she has already levelled at him over his past comments about women.