Can Britain trust Trump?

The Prime Minister, who is expected to meet Donald Trump later this week, will find her task of dealing with him as tricky as trying to pin jelly to a wall.
1995 library filer of Chris Moncrieff. Photo by Peter Smith/PA1995 library filer of Chris Moncrieff. Photo by Peter Smith/PA
1995 library filer of Chris Moncrieff. Photo by Peter Smith/PA

For I doubt whether a more fickle and scary President has ever entered the White House.

For instance, he was saying during the campaign that Hillary Clinton should be in jail. Yet at the inauguration lunch, he had nothing but warm words for her.

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And again, during the campaign, he bitterly attacked America’s secret services. Yet last weekend he was praising them to the skies.

What is more, he has accused the media of lying for claiming that the crowds at his inauguration were far smaller than those at Obama’s in 2009.

Yet it was plain to see the huge empty spaces at the Trump event, compared to the self-same jam-packed areas during his predecessor’s inauguration.

At the moment, Trump is making all sorts of pro-British remarks, applauding Brexit and looking forward to trade deals advantageous to both the US and the UK.

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But given his erratic record, who can be sure that he won’t suddenly change his mind and decide that Britain is not so wonderful after all? He has shown that what he says one minute can be turned on its head the next.

Theresa May has also vowed to express her dislike to him of his anti-women comments, which will no doubt enrage this volatile man.

So, to purloin the expression so often used by the early 20th century British Prime Minister, Herbert (“Squiffy”) Asquith, we shall just have to “wait and see”.

But the outlook is not promising.

- Jeremy Corbyn may well be justified in quivering in his boots at the prospect of two critical by-elections next month, Copeland and Stoke-on-Trent Central, both of them Labour-held seats.

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But for how much longer? Speculation, which appears to be firmly biased, is suggesting Labour could lose both seats on February 23, an event that would deal not only a devastating blow to Corbyn’s leadership, but worse still, would question the ability of Labour ever to aspire to being a governing party again.