November 8, 2016

Whoever wins, forget the ‘special relationship’

The policy outlooks of both Presidential candidates mean that regardless of the outcome of today’s vote, the special relationship between the US and UK is set for testing times ahead, says Rory Broomfield.

Does the UK still have a special relationship with the US? Maybe. But whoever is elected US President will pose real challenges for the UK and its relationship with the US over the next four years.

“Billary” or “the Donald” – America chooses its next President today.  Whatever you think of them as personalities, their policy outlooks are worrying for anything that might resemble a special relationship between the US and the UK.

Let’s take Clinton. I think it’s obvious: she opposed Brexit and a trade deal between the UK and the US, her establishment / statist focus means she favours dealing with the EU and she had her officials all but say the UK should remain in the EU when she was Secretary of State. With the UK leaving the EU (hopefully soon), the US should be right up there on Liam Fox’s “deal list”. But it’s almost certain that Clinton will wish to prioritise the EU, over the UK, much to Germany’s joy and the UK’s annoyance.

For Trump, there are also challenges. Rod Liddle thinks that he will be better for Britain. I’m unsure. He’s supposedly a big fan of Brexit (or so I’m told) and wants to make America Great Again. Though, by tearing up NAFTA and putting the mutual defence clause in NATO at risk, he puts the UK on the backfoot.


The UK wants to leave the EU and chart a free trade future. This is the start of a great opportunity that the UK has to make deals which reach double the value of the EU’s agreements. However, Trump’s desire to “tear up NAFTA” might very well herald a new protectionist trend between the US and other nations – even its friendliest allies like Canada and, in time, the UK.

If this is transferred onto the world stage – affecting in a protectionist way trade between other states – capitalism is in trouble.

If a Trump presidency heralds this then in the first instance the post-NAFTA arrangements will be, to coin a phrase, “front of the queue” while the UK will have to wait its turn.

Further, let’s face it: China, Mexico and Russia will also be higher on the list of priorities than the UK. Trump has made no secret of his “love” – or supposed deal making prowess – with China, he wants to “build a wall” on the border with Mexico and, given his policies concerning NATO, Russia will be a ongoing, growing and possibly even immediate priority.

But the second, and arguably the most worrying aspect of his policy agenda from the UK’s perspective, is Trump’s desire to undermine NATO.

NATO is the cornerstone of Western defence relations. It has helped to ensure peace in Europe since its creation. If the US doesn’t respect it then it will go the way of the League of Nations – and the consequences for Europe – especially Eastern Europe – could be dire. It would make the UK’s role in Europe more difficult; it would make the UK’s negotiations with the EU even more problematic.

With all of that though, we need to remember that the UK’s relationship with the US is strong – and that Brexit can make the relationship stronger (if done correctly).

I’m no supporter of either Trump or Clinton but we should remember that our two nations have common ground in so many areas that can be built on. Whether it be finance, defence, diplomatic links or the law, whoever becomes US President I hope our Prime Minister, Theresa May, keeps the door widely open for her administration, and subsequent ones, to build on what we have with the US.

4.71 avg. rating (93% score) - 7 votes
Rory Broomfield
Rory Broomfield is Director of The Freedom Association and the Better Off Out campaign. He is an authority on the EU and has written a number of books including his latest, co-authored with Iain Murray, Cutting the Gordian Knot: A Roadmap for British Exit from the European Union. He has previously worked in the City of London and in Westminster for a number of Members of Parliament, including the current Prime Minister, Theresa May; the current Chairman of the 1922 Committee, Graham Brady; and Sir Richard Shepherd.
  • Shadow Warrior

    Hammond is continuity Brown. He is a hand-wringing lefty looking for clever wheezes to raise more tax in ways that people don’t immediately notice.

  • captainslugwash

    I predict the Budget will attempt to show the Left how caring the Tories are, and it will be funded by screwing over the working man.
    If Corp Tax comes down, I bet Divi tax will be going up.
    I would love to be wrong.

  • skynine

    We really need to look at tax credits, in particular in work tax credits that encourage people to work part time to preserve the benefits. 45% of women work part time and I would hazard a guess that tax credits are the main cause. This leads to low pay, low skill work in supermarkets and the retail sector including coffee shops. The government needs to get back to the employer paying people to do a job for economic reasons rather than to get onto the tax credit ladder. Like all government benefits it distorts the market and diverts government expenditure into non productive areas.
    The refrain that the government has cut expenditure is not true, it increases every year as more and more goes into welfare.

  • MrVeryAngry

    fat chance

  • MrSauce

    So, when wouldn’t we want a ‘budget for growth’?

  • Rob

    I note that the UK Government has just slapped on a 25% tax charge for anyone moving abroad and wishing to move out their private pension from the UK.

  • SonofBoudica

    The Remoaners will do their utmost to sabotage the Government’s negotiating position. They do not want a successful outcome; they want a failure. They want to be able to scream “Told you so!” from the rooftops.

  • EnglandLaments

    Thank goodness for Andrew Neil, the one media hack who scares the pants off the established politicians. He was spot on with Heidi Allen!

  • joshuafalken

    I had a very long, hard, studied and considered look at the hope, care and aspirations of all Europeans, before I voted to get the UK out of the toxic grasp of Brussels.

    The European Union and it’s charge of “ever closer union” has borrowed and spent its way to oblivion, whilst enslaving the working and middle classes in debt.

    The central control mantra of the unaccountable Brussels ruling elite, delivered through a mixture of socialism, globalism and corporatism is entirely responsible for the populist revolt by the millions of “Just About Managings” across Europe.

    We must remember the ultimate goal of socialists, globalists and corporatists is control, not prosperity. see—-not-prosperity.

    Social equality and economic growth always fail under central control and fighting against the Brussels doctrine on behalf of all Europeans is why I voted for Brexit.

    Britain has a long history of helping Europeans depose tyrants and Brussels is just the latest incarnation.

    Britain is the most racially advanced and accepting society on the planet. We welcome those in need and those that can help us with open arms and a smile; that will not change.

    We are also one of the most innovative, talented and open societies in the world, which why everyone wants to live here. However, we cannot fit everyone in, so we have to have clear, balanced and fair immigration policy which is where the arguments start between the monetarists and humanists will never be reconciled.

    I thought long and hard before coming to the conclusion that leaving the EU was in the best interest of all Europeans, as Brussels is toxic and cannot be reformed from within.

    Also, I find it insulting that people who voted Remain have insufficient faith in British ingenuity, compassion and skill to get a good deal for us and see the Europe that we love get a better deal from Brussels and the reform that European people deserve. and

    The politics of left verses right are dead because neither have delivered the promised economic growth and social mobility for anyone, but themselves. The populists are not selfish per-se, they just want to take back control of their own destiny that left/right politicians have freely given away and/or exploited for their own ends. In my constituency, the local residents group are taking over the councils as politicians ignore voters, so Westminster should beware of the well-organised, local resident independents at the next election. This is a peoples revolution which should be shouted from the rooftops, but liberals remained deafened by the socialist, globalist and corporatist “vested interests” that have spectacularly failed us and are obediently crying foul and fake.

    There will be an initial unpalatable inflationary cost to fighting globalism and rolling back central control that few appear to have factored in, but dismantling failed left/right vested interests should eventually free libertarian socially-conservative capitalism from the shackles of TBTF corporatism to feed economic growth and social mobility.

  • agdpa

    The EU usually makes the wrong decision – on immigration, on freedom of movement, on the euro, on the Ukraine, etc. etc. Little hope it will get Brexit right.

  • brownowl

    Eh? Reference please!

  • Neil2

    Sod caring. Screw the spongers and breeders. Kill HS2. Stop all “green” subsidies. Slash “foreign aid” and walk away from the EUSSR with immediate effect.

  • Rob
  • John C

    What a confused article. It conflates surveillance by the security services with poor defences against fraud.

  • John C

    Err, it’s the UK that’s leaving the EU, not vice versa.

  • John C

    Me, now. ‘Growth’ is a manic obsession.

  • La Face Nord

    Mr Redwood – are you aware of the Biased BBC website? It’s been exposing their agenda for a long time, but I imagine you’ve been well aware of the BBC’s agenda for quite some time…

  • Contact Rvtech

    The post is great

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