The United States will enthusiastically support a no-deal BREXIT if that is what the British government decides to do, President Trump’s NSA John Bolton said Monday during a visit to London aimed at reassuring Britain over UK-US ties.
Mr. Bolton told British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that President Trump wants to see a successful British exit from the EU on 31 October, and that Washington will be ready to work fast on a US-UK free trade agreement.
PM Johnson wants the EU to renegotiate the terms of Britain’s exit ahead of the 31 October departure date, but the EU says it will not alter the part of the deal Mr. Johnson says must be changed.
The impasse leaves Britain facing an exit without any formal transition period or legal agreement covering issues such as trade, data transfers and border policy.
“If that’s the decision of the British government we will support it enthusiastically, and that’s what I’m trying to convey. We’re with you, we’re with you,” Mr. Bolton told reporters after his 1st day of meetings.
As Britain prepares to leave the EU, its biggest geopolitical shift since WWII, many diplomats expect London to become increasingly reliant on the United States.
Mr. Bolton, in London for 2 days of talks, is seeking an improved US-British relationship with Mr. Johnson.
He said British officials had given him an unmistakable sense that they were determined to honor the Y 2016 referendum vote to leave the EU.
Mr. Bolton offered his support for this stance, “The fashion in the European Union: When the people vote the wrong way from the way the elites want to go, it’s to make the peasants vote again and again until they get it right.”
The central message Mr. Bolton delivered is that the United States will help cushion Britain’s exit from the EU with a free trade deal that is being negotiated by US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and his British counterpart, Liz Truss.
Mr. Bolton said Britain and the United States could agree trade deals on a sector-by-sector basis, leaving more difficult areas in the trading relationship until later.
He said the ultimate aim was a comprehensive trade deal, but highlighted that financial services could be one of the more difficult industries to reach an agreement on.
Earlier a senior Trump administration official told reporters the President had wanted to work with the May government on a trade deal but her government “didn’t want do it. This government does. We’re very happy about it.”
President Trump believes that “when it comes to trade negotiations the EU is worse than China, only smaller,” the official said.
PM Johnson spoke to President Trump Monday, discussing BREXIT, trade and economic issues, his office said. “They discussed global economic issues and trade, and the Prime Minister updated the President on BREXIT,” #10 Downing Street said.
“The President expressed his appreciation for the United Kingdom’s steadfast partnership in addressing global challenges and looks forward to meeting with him (Johnson) personally in the near future,” the White House said.