London – Downing Street has been forced to defend its choice of ambassador to the United States after President-elect Donald Trump suggested Nigel Farage should be given the job.
No 10 issued a statement saying there is “no vacancy” for the post, after Trump broke all diplomatic convention to claim that many people want to see Ukip MEP Farage given the influential role.
The new US leader’s intervention is deeply uncomfortable for Downing Street, given it has already tried to dismiss the idea of the interim Ukip leader having any diplomatic position. Farage, who told The Independent he is “very flattered” by Trump’s suggestion, has already embarrassed Theresa May by becoming the first British politician to have an audience with the President-elect following his shock election win.After Trump’s comment, a Downing Street spokesman said: “There is no vacancy. We have an excellent ambassador to the US.”
On Monday night Trump took to Twitter to say: “Many people would like to see @Nigel_Farage represent Great Britain as their ambassador to the United States. He would do a great job!”
It follows embarrassment after a leaked memo written by the current US ambassador, Sir Kim Darroch, said the UK was well placed to help Trump “evolve” his more outlandish campaign pronouncements.
Farage, meanwhile, was not put off by the No 10 response and suggested he was still ready to take up any job offered that allowed him to use his connections with Trump to build ties between the US and UK, adding: “I said after my meeting with him in New York that I would like to help where I can.”
Asked if he thought Downing Street could accept him, he said: “We’ll have to see. Hope springs eternal.”
Earlier this month, an ecstatic Farage appeared in pictures with Mr Trump following their meeting in New York, before doing television interviews telling May it was time to “mend some fences” with the US leader. After spending more than an hour with the President-elect, the interim Ukip leader urged May to stop running him down and instead use his closeness to Trump to “put the national interest first”. He also said the new US leader’s team was concerned by disparaging comments made about him in London during his election campaign.
Writing for the right-wing Breitbart website, Farage said: “I have said since the now famous photograph with Donald Trump ten days ago that I would do anything to help our national interest and to help cement ties with the incoming Anglophile administration. At every stage I am greeted by negative comments coming out of Downing Street.
The dislike of me, UKIP, and the referendum result is more important to them than what could be good for our country.
“I have known several of the Trump team for years and I am in a good position with the President-elect’s support to help. The world has changed and its [sic] time that Downing Street did too.”
Farage said Trump’s tweet, suggesting him for the post of the UK’s US ambassador, came like a “bolt from the blue”, but that it was less of a surprise because the President-elect supports those who “stand by him”.
Turning his weapons on May, he said: "It is called trust and it is the means by which the entire universe of business works. Unfortunately, the cesspit that is vocation legislative issues sees nothing of this. In their reality the idea of trust is passing. The political unrest of 2016 now observes another request responsible for Washington. In the United Kingdom the general population have talked however the players at the top have, I am perplexed, remained the same. The individuals who bolstered Remain [in the Brexit vote] now hold senior positions. Most noticeably awful still, the individuals who were transparently damaging about Trump now put on a show to be his companion."
Both May, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and other senior Tories had made decrying remarks about Trump amid the decision battle.
The Trump Tower meeting came in the midst of cases, not denied by Farage, that he had talked with Tory serves about serving as a middle person to attempt and enhance relations with the new US pioneer. In any case, at the time, May's legitimate representative said the Government as of now had "entrenched" channels of correspondence with Trump's group and rejected there would be a "third individual" in the Reagan/Thatcher-style relationship May would have with Trump.
May was likewise reprimanded in the UK for her inviting words to Trump on his decision win, while Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has enraged EU pioneers by instructing them to stop their "whinge-o-rama" about Mr Trump's win.