President Trump will mostly avoid London on UK visit after giant 'Baby Trump' balloon gets approval
Yesterday London Mayor Sadiq Khan granted permission to fly a giant 'Baby Trump' balloon during the president's visit. An activist group created the 20-foot-tall unflattering blimp, which depicts Donald Trump as an angry baby in a diaper. The balloon is scheduled to float above Parliament Square for two hours on Friday, July 13, beginning at 9:30am. Its flight coincides with a 'Stop Trump' protest in central London that is expected to draw at least 50,000 blokes and blokettes.
But it is unlikely President Trump will see the protests. Today the itinerary for his UK visit was announced, and, what a coincidence, the president will mostly avoid London. Instead, he will focus on the countryside, touring palaces and attending black-tie dinners before moving on to Scotland.
During a press conference, U.S. ambassador to the U.K. Woody Johnson explained that London is "the base" of the trip. "No, the president is not avoiding anything," said Woody. "The president is merely trying to get as impactful a trip as he can get in a 24-hour period." And it just happens that the most 'impactful' trip steers totally clear of all the protests and the giant baby balloon. What are the odds?
During a phone call with reporters, White House officials confirmed that President Trump is scheduled to arrive in London on Thursday night. That is the only night he will spend in the city. Afterward, Reuters reports that "He will hold talks with Prime Minister Theresa May at her 16th-century manor house, meet Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle and attend a black-tie dinner at the home of former World War Two leader Winston Churchill - all outside London."
It seems strange for President Trump to meet the Prime Minister and the Queen outside of London, since they both live in London. It looks like he's going out of his way to seek a 'safe space' away from protesters and mean balloons. However, speaking with The Guardian, a spokesperson for Prime Minister May said it's common to meet at her home in Chequers.
"Prime ministers frequently make use of Chequers for meetings with foreign leaders. It offers a more informal setting for important bilateral discussions. We’re looking forward to making sure the president has a chance to see and experience the UK beyond London and the south-east."
This is an interesting time for the U.S.-UK alliance, since Brexit is around the corner, and President Trump has been starting trade wars - oh, who am I kidding? The only interesting part about this trip was the giant 'Baby Trump' balloon. It is still scheduled to take flight, but without Trump there to see it, it's not as fun.
Well, Mayor Khan and our thin-skinned commander-in-chief have gotten in some nasty Twitter spats. Maybe Khan can grant permission to fly Baby Trump over the countryside? The activist group raised $20,000 in crowdfunding make this happen - give them their money's worth!