Joe Biden’s FURY at Boris Johnson as ‘toxic’ PM risks collapsing US-UK trade deal | UK | News (Reports)


Joe Biden’s hopes of becoming US President are looking increasingly promising as counts suggest he could win Wisconsin and Michigan – two key battleground states. The Democrats are also competitive in Pennsylvania and Georgia, meaning the odds are leaning slightly in Mr Biden’s favour. The former Vice President could, however, pose difficulties for Prime Minister Boris Johnson post-Brexit, as a US-UK trade deal hangs in the balance. The Democrat criticised Mr Johnson’s Internal Market Bill, which risked undermining the Northern Ireland protocol, during Brexit talks with the EU, and insiders warn there could be ill-feeling towards the Prime Minister from Washington.

Max Bergmann, a senior fellow with the Centre for American Progress and prominent Democratic adviser on Europe, told the Times that Mr Johnson’s credibility has taken a blow in the US.

He said last month: “A Johnson government needs to rebuild its credibility with the US, which has been shaken by Brexit and the machinations over the past four years.”

He added: “If the UK is able to reach an agreement with the EU that would put them on the front foot of establishing a very good relationship with a Biden administration.

“The US will want the UK to be an important player in Europe. That means not having the UK and EU at each other’s throats.

“As long as the UK stops its self-destructive actions, it can establish a productive relationship.”

One source with close knowledge of Mr Biden’s foreign policy added: “There’s definitely a real Boris problem, he’s toxic to some of these people.

“They frame him through his relationship with Trump. They just think he’s Britain’s Trump.”

Democratic congressman Brendan Boyle also said: “If Biden wins, Boris would be losing another major world leader who sings from the same hymnal when it comes to tearing down institutions and pushing back on multilateralism.

“He’d be losing a pretty big ally in that regard.”

Mr Biden has Irish heritage, and criticised Mr Johnson’s Brexit plan which undermined the Northern Ireland protocol, warning peace in Ireland must not become a “casualty of Brexit”.

READ MORE: Brexit blow as US poised to shun UK: ‘Boris Johnson is a mess’

Professor Scott Lucas, an expert on US politics, told there is no chance of a UK-US trade deal if the Prime Minister messes with the Irish border.

He said earlier this year: “Whatever administration that’s there, if you negotiate an agreement, the US Congress will not allow that free trade agreement if there is a hard Irish border, they will not approve it.

“Right now, the Johnson Government is in a mess, where they have a provision which prevents a hard border, if they get rid of that customs line down the Irish Sea we are back to a hard border.

“The UK cannot advance on an agreement with the US until it is clear what is going to be agreed with the EU because of the Irish question.”

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Meanwhile, Professor Stephen Burman of Sussex University told Mr Biden could take “retribution” against the UK over the issue.

He added last month: “There are a lot of Irish sympathising politicians in the House of Representatives, and they would scupper a trade deal if Boris Johnson undermined the Good Friday Agreement.

“These things are absolute, the UK has no leverage on this.

“The UK would be finished in their eyes, and they would take retribution potentially across a whole range of policies.”


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