Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

President Trump is deeply unpopular in London, where thousands of people took to the streets last February to protest his hardline immigration proposal to ban travelers from several majority-Muslim nations. (Photo: Loco Steve/Flickr/cc)

Amid Protest Threats, Critics Mock Trump's Factually Inaccurate Reason for Canceling UK Trip

"Real reason for cancellation: Trump would have been first U.S. President to get more protesters in London than attendees at his inauguration."

Julia Conley

London Mayor Sadiq Khan was among those who swiftly set the record straight Friday after President Donald Trump tweeted that he had decided to cancel his planned February trip to the United Kingdom because he disapproved of his predecessor's decision to move the U.S. embassy.

"It appears that President Trump got the message from the many Londoners who love and admire America and Americans but find his policies and actions the polar opposite of our city's values of inclusion, diversity and tolerance," said Khan in response to the president's late-night tweet:

Trump had originally planned to make a formal state visit to the U.K., but Prime Minister Theresa May was forced to scale back the event to a "working visit" after more than 1.8 million Brits signed a petition opposing the trip "because it would cause embarrassment to Her Majesty the Queen."

Still, anti-Trump groups planned mass protests should Trump set foot in the country.

"The British government know that the protests against a Trump visit could be the biggest we've ever seen in the country," said a spokesperson for the British resistance group Stop Trump, shortly after the president infuriated the country by retweeting several anti-Muslim videos shared by a British far-right extremist. "Upwards of a million people could take to the streets. We could mobilize hundreds of thousands at a day's notice."

In addition, Trump's remarks on the U.S. embassy were demonstrably false. The decision to move the embassy to the so-called "off location" of the Nine Elms district—in fact home to some of London's most expensive properties—was made by the George W. Bush administration, not Barack Obama.

On social media, journalists and Trump critics pointed out the obvious flaws in Trump's explanation and surmised the true reason for the president's canceled visit.

Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Bodycam Footage Shows Ohio Police Shooting Jayland Walker 60+ Times

"The Department of Justice needs to step in to investigate immediately," said former Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner.

Common Dreams staff ·

'Impeach Justice Clarence Thomas' Petition Nears 1 Million Signatures

"He has shown he cannot be an impartial justice and is more concerned with covering up his wife's coup attempts than the health of the Supreme Court," reads the petition.

Jake Johnson ·

'Tipping Point of No Return' Feared as Amazon Rainforest Fires Surge

"Up to now, the Biden administration has only legitimized the Brazilian government's anti-Indigenous and anti-environmental agenda," said Greenpeace USA.

Jake Johnson ·

Biden Urged to Embrace Windfall Tax as Exxon Says Profits Doubled in Second Quarter

"It's time for the president to demand that Congress pass a windfall profits tax on Big Oil and use the revenue to provide rebates to consumers NOW!" wrote Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Jake Johnson ·

Texas Supreme Court Allows Century-Old Abortion Ban to Take Effect

"Extremist politicians are on a crusade to force Texans into pregnancy and childbirth against their will, no matter how devastating the consequences."

Jake Johnson ·

Common Dreams Logo