Theresa May will become the first foreign leader to meet with Donald Trump since he became President of the United States. However, while on his visit to the United Kingdom, Trump wants to spend some time getting to know Her Majesty.
During his first official state visit this summer, Trump’s team are in talks in Downing Street so that Trump may play a round of golf with The Queen at Balmoral Castle.
The Balmoral Estate is home to a private nine-hole course, The Queen does not play but will watch instead. Talks about involving the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are also underway.
Trump and his team wish to recreate the Thatcher-Reagan relationship with Theresa May, a source close to Trump has even told The Telegraph that he refers to Ms May as “my Maggie” in private.
Part of that famous relationship involved the images of The Queen and President Reagan horseback riding at Windsor Castle in 1982. The hopes are that the round of golf would match those.
One obstacle that would have to be overcome is that Queen Elizabeth would have to change her schedule to meet that of Trump, as her trip to Balmoral happens in August of each year.
It is rare that a head of state would be invited to Balmoral as it is the private home of Her Majesty. With both, Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace are owned by the state and therefore the traditional choices for a State Visit.
Trump has made it clear to his team that this visit must “eclipse the trips of his predecessors in pomp and ceremony“. The Queen is to remain politically neutral, so her real feeling toward Trump will go unseen, but she has been used in the past to change the political tide. Trump has said he does not feel that certain NATO countries deserve the help of the United States should Russia attack. With the United Kingdom part of the NATO alliance, they would be responsible for the defence of these countries, and Queen Elizabeth could very well help Trump see reason.
A Buckingham Palace spokesman said: “Currently, no inward State Visit for 2017 has been announced, and we would not comment on speculation about future plans. As is well known, invitations for all State Visits are extended on the advice of government.”
Other events on the agenda for the visit include a dinner at Sir Winston’s birthplace, Blenheim Palace and a tour by Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson of the Churchhill War Rooms.