Joe Biden’s recent victory in the US Election should be welcomed by the people of Britain who value common decency.
Boris Johnson and the UK Government are now entering negotiations with the European Union in a very different frame of mind. Had Donald Trump won a second term in the White House, Johnson may well have jumped into bed with his American doppelganger, pointing a middle finger at Michel Barnier and company.
Trump often talked up the “special relationship” between the UK and the US. Nigel Farage, a blushing fan of the Republican President, claimed that Trump would be a saviour for Britain.
"He is the most pro-British President that we have seen for several decades,” Farage proudly announced.
Trump’s ability to be tough on trade deals with the wider world had won him a lot of internal support. He thinks with a single minded America-first mindset. Therefore, his love for Britain is probably motivated by his desire to strengthen his own power; he might like the Queen and his mother might have been from Scotland but Trump thinks in terms of economic gain.
The former Apprentice star is a businessman first and foremost. He had no problem with Johnson’s attempts to breach international law and break the Good Friday agreement with Ireland. In fact, he probably welcomed it.
On The Rise of the Murdoch Dynasty, it is revealed that media supremo Rupert Murdoch had a profound dislike of the EU. The Australian had a powerful influence on the politics in Australia, America and Britain but his ideas were not entertained in Europe. They didn’t listen to him. Trump is the same.
Until recently, Murdoch was highly supportive of Trump on Fox News and in The Wall Street Journal, seeing promise in an individual who didn't want to play by the rules. Like Murdoch, Trump's bluster and demeanour will not wash in Brussels. With Britain, however, Trump saw an opportunity to assert dominance.
America is an economic superpower and the United Kingdom is a little fish, by comparison. Trump would have had total dominance in any trade deal between the two nations.
"When you're dealing in trade, everything is on the table," declared Trump in 2019. Trump’s “phenomenal” trade deal would have opened the door for chlorinated chicken and private pharmaceutical firms, tearing away more of the struggling NHS. Britain would have been at the 74-year-old's mercy, in need of an economic superpower trading partner, as they would have burnt their bridges with Europe.
Most worryingly, however, is that a Trump deal would have embraced a right-wing populism that had little regard for unity or common decency. A world where we can lie, cheat and neglect responsibility. A Trump and Johnson double act would have caused dismay for the progressive minds of both Western nations. Interlocking with him would have sent Britain into a very dangerous rabbit hole.
Biden will work with Britain once they have cleaned up their act. Johnson suddenly has to put on his big-boy shoes and start taking things a little more seriously. His rule breaking won’t be accepted by America’s new leader.
Negotiating a deal with the EU is now a pressing concern for the UK Government because Biden will not deal with a country that is burying its head in the sand.
Johnson had negotiated an “oven ready” deal in good faith, winning him a Parliamentary majority last December. To push the blame over to those in Brussels is a tactic that could only wash in a populist world. But populism has taken a hit.
Ironically, such lines go directly against what Brexit stood for. Fear of immigration. Us versus them rhetoric. Lies written on posters, billboards and the side of a bus.
It will be interesting to see how the rest of this narrative unfolds without the aid of a pro-Brexit leader of the Western world.