January 27, 2017

Is Trump Even Ready to Host America’s Most Important Ally?

By Julianne Smith

Hats off to the British embassy for beating out the foreign competition and landing the first post-inaugural meeting between the president of the United States and a foreign leader — British Prime Minister Theresa May. Unfortunately, sometimes you get what you ask for: Both leaders will meet under immense pressure to bring home the goods and show the critics their foreign policy chops. All eyes will search the faces of the two leaders for signs of success or failure as they emerge from their meeting to face the press.

So what does May want in the bag from her meeting with Donald Trump? Publicly, she wants to show EU leaders that the “special relationship” is alive and well, so who needs the EU? She would love to leave with the beginnings of a favorable trade deal too, but she’s negotiating with a president who does not give anything away, so she’ll be lucky to leave with vague promises of a level playing field (but don’t expect any favors at U.S. expense). And while she’s eager to start the engines on the trade front, she is constrained by the fact that Britain hasn’t even invoked Article 50 yet to trigger the country’s process for leaving the EU.

Read the full article at Foreign Policy.