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Boris Johnson sides with Trump's damning tweets branding May's premiership 'a disaster'

The favourite to be the next Prime Minister refused to 'stick up' for Mrs May when confronted with the US President's claims she had been a 'disaster' in negotiations with the EU.

Boris Johnson today backed Donald Trump on Brexit and laughed at his tweets slamming Theresa May saying: 'I find it hard to disagree'.

The favourite to be the next Prime Minister refused to 'stick up' for Mrs May when confronted with the US President's claims she had been a 'disaster' in negotiations with the EU.

Mr Trump this week attacked the PM, accusing her of ignoring his advice and 'going her own foolish way' on Brexit.

When read the incendiary tweets yesterday Mr Johnson reportedly 'chuckled' and said: 'I can't dissent from that'.

He added in an interview with Politico: 'When it comes to the context of what the president has said about the Brexit deal, I find it hard to disagree'. 

Boris Johnson today sided with Donald Trump on Brexit and laughed at his tweets slamming Theresa May's Brexit a 'disaster'
Boris Johnson today sided with Donald Trump on Brexit and laughed at his tweets slamming Theresa May's Brexit a 'disaster'

Boris Johnson (pictured today) has sided with Donald Trump on Brexit and laughed at his tweets calling Theresa May's Brexit a 'disaster'

Trump's tweets on May appeared to make Boris laugh - but he has said he believes the abuse of Sir Kim Darroch was wrong

Trump's tweets on May appeared to make Boris laugh - but he has said he believes the abuse of Sir Kim Darroch was wrong

Sir Kim's decision to quit represents a major win for Donald Trump (pictured shaking hands with Sir Kim together at an event at Capitol Hill). The US President said this week he would no longer do business with him

Sir Kim's decision to quit represents a major win for Donald Trump (pictured shaking hands with Sir Kim together at an event at Capitol Hill). The US President said this week he would no longer do business with him

But he did appear to disagree on Mr Trump's treatment of Sir Kim Darroch, who he branded 'wacky', 'very stupid' and 'a pompous fool'.

Boris on Brexit, Trump, May, booze and losing more weight  

Boris Johnson's wide-ranging interview with Politico revealed his views on a range of subjects.

- On Trump's claim that May's Brexit has been a 'disaster': 'I can’t dissent from that. He has strong views about Brexit and he has strong views about the deal. If you ask me whether I think the Brexit negotiations have been brilliantly handled, I don’t think so'.

 - On not backing Sir Kim Darroch on ITV: 'I think it’s totally, totally wrong to drag the career prospects of a civil servant into a political debate. If Donald Trump can make friends with Kim Jong Un, then he can make friends with Kim Dar-roch'

On the Brexit Party: 'They [the EU] have now got 29 Brexit MEPs in the European Parliament. I’m not certain they want to have Ann Widdecombe lecturing them about their deficiencies'.

On the the EU: 'I had great friends in Brussels, I had great relations with people around the table at the European Council. They know we are serious' 

On his favorite red wine: 'Someone bought me a crate of it, and I had no idea how expensive it was. I was just, you know, glugging it back. And it turned out that it's literally £180 a bottle. It's extraordinary stuff. But I mean it was delicious. I discovered later that it was the favorite wine of Meghan Markle'

On getting in shape: 'I’ve got to lose weight. I need to get back on the treadmill. My bike is now a pathetic object propped up against the railings of Portcullis House'. 

He was accused of 'throwing him under the bus' on Tuesday night during the ITV leadership debate where he refused to say if he backed him to stay in Washington. Sir Kim reportedly was watching and it contributed to his decision to quit.

Mr Johnson said: 'I think most people feel. I don’t want anybody else telling us what to do. Or anybody else criticising our government, I suppose is my feeling. But if you ask me whether I think the Brexit negotiations have been brilliantly handled, I don’t think so'.

He added: 'If Donald Trump can make friends with Kim Jong Un, then he can make friends with Kim Dar-roch'. 

The US President is a fan of Boris Johnson, and appears to favour him being the next PM. 

He said recently: 'I like Boris Johnson a lot. He's a friend of mine.' 

Mr Johnson met with in a pub with Politico's Jack Blanchard yesterday for a rare interview as the Tory leadership campaign reaches a crescendo with Jeremy Hunt trailing in the polls.

When asked if he already had a foot through the Downing Street he said: 'Well, we're not measuring the curtains' - before moving the conversation on. 

During the interview Boris was offered a pint of lager but said he was a 'wine man' - and revealed that his favourite tipple is a Italian red wine called called Tignanello, a favorite of the Duchess of Sussex.

He said: 'Someone bought me a crate of it, and I had no idea how expensive it was, and I was just, you know, glugging it back. And it turned out that it's literally £180 a bottle. It's extraordinary stuff. But I mean it was delicious'.

He added: 'I discovered later that it was the favorite wine of Meghan Markle. I discovered it by Googling. I was so amazed by this wine, I thought — what is this stuff? And it said it was Meghan Markle's favorite.'

Boris said he had given up booze for six weeks and struggled at parties where friends were drinking.

He added: 'I've got to lose weight. I need to get back on the treadmill … My bike is now a pathetic object propped up against the railings of Portcullis House'.

The Duchess of Sussex was spotted giving Archie a kiss on his forehead as she cradled him at the polo yesterday as Boris Johnson says they share a love of the same red wine

The Duchess of Sussex was spotted giving Archie a kiss on his forehead as she cradled him at the polo yesterday as Boris Johnson says they share a love of the same red wine

Britain's ambassador to the US fired a parting blast at Boris Johnson last night after quitting his post.

'It is impossible to continue': Sir Kim's resignation letter

Sir Kim's (pictured) position came under further pressure after Mr Johnson, the Tory leadership front runner, repeatedly refused to back him in Tuesday's televised debate

Sir Kim's (pictured) position came under further pressure after Mr Johnson, the Tory leadership front runner, repeatedly refused to back him in Tuesday's televised debate

In a letter to the head of the Foreign Office, Sir Simon McDonald, Sir Kim said he believed it was 'impossible' for him to carry on in his current role -  but said he had been deeply touched by those who had 'offered him support'. In a somewhat emotional response, Sir Simon thanked the life-long civil servant for acting with 'dignity, professionalism and class.'

Sir Kim's letter: 'Since the leak of official documents from this embassy there has been a great deal of speculation surrounding my position and the duration of my remaining term as ambassador,' he said.

'I want to put an end to that speculation. The current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role as I would like.

'Although my posting is not due to end until the end of this year, I believe in the current circumstances the responsible course is to allow the appointment of a new ambassador. 

Sir Kim added he was 'grateful' to those in the UK and the US who have offered him support during what he has described as these 'difficult few days'.

'This has brought home to me the depth of friendship and close ties between our two countries. I have been deeply touched'.

In his reply to Sir Kim, Sir Simon said he was accepting his resignation with 'deep personal regret'.

'Over the last few difficult days you have behaved as you have always behaved over a long and distinguished career, with dignity, professionalism and class,' he said.

'The Prime Minister, Foreign Secretary and whole of the public service have stood with you: you were the target of a malicious leak; you were simply doing your job. I understand your wish to relieve the pressure on your family and your colleagues at the embassy; I admire the fact that you think more of others than yourself. You demonstrate the essence of the values of British public service.'

Diplomatic sources said Sir Kim Darroch used a phone call with the Tory leadership favourite to tell him that his refusal to support him in his row with Donald Trump was ‘a factor’ in his shock decision to quit.

And Foreign Office minister Sir Alan Duncan yesterday accused Mr Johnson of throwing the ambassador ‘under the bus’ to further his own political ambitions.

Sir Kim had come under intense pressure this week after President Trump reacted furiously to leaked diplomatic cables in which he described the US President as ‘inept’.

In an astonishing series of tweets, Mr Trump branded Sir Kim a ‘pompous fool’ and effectively severed relations with him.

In a vengeful decision, the President ordered the White House to cut off all contact, leaving the British ambassador barred from official events.

Sir Kim is said to have accepted that the row had dealt a fatal blow to his ability to do his job.

In a personal letter on Tuesday, Theresa May urged him to stay on, saying that it was up to London, not the White House, to decide who represented the UK’s interests in Washington.

Friends said Sir Kim initially accepted the plea but decided he had to go after Mr Johnson refused to back him during a live TV debate with leadership rival Jeremy Hunt on Tuesday night.

Mr Johnson said Mr Trump’s response was ‘not necessarily the right thing to do’, but said he had been ‘dragged into a British political debate’. He refused four times to say whether Sir Kim should keep his job, saying it would be ‘presumptuous’ to give an opinion while the race for Number 10 was still under way.

Mr Johnson telephoned Sir Kim yesterday to ‘express regret’ at the ambassador’s decision. One source close to Mr Johnson said the ambassador reassured him he was not to blame.

But a friend of Sir Kim said: ‘Boris Johnson’s comments were not the only factor that persuaded him to resign, but they were a factor. Kim was clear about that in his conversation with Boris.’

In his resignation letter, Sir Kim said: ‘The current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role as I would like.’

After learning of Sir Kim’s resignation, Mr Johnson expressed his regret, describing him as a ‘superb diplomat’ with whom he had worked with for many years.

But his comments were dismissed as ‘insincere guff’ by Sir Alan – a long-standing critic of the former foreign secretary – who said he had deliberately failed to give Sir Kim his support during Tuesday night’s TV debate.

‘For someone who wants to lead, let alone unite, the country, that was contemptible negligence on his part,’ he said. ‘He has basically thrown this fantastic diplomat under the bus to serve his own personal interests.’

Boris Johnson, Sen Bob Corker and Kim Darroch in 2017 when the PM favourite was Foreign Secretary

Boris Johnson, Sen Bob Corker and Kim Darroch in 2017 when the PM favourite was Foreign Secretary

Foreign Office minister Sir Alan Duncan branded Mr Johnson an 'utter wimp', while Foreign Affairs Committee chief Tom Tugendhat said true leaders 'defend' their people

Foreign Office minister Sir Alan Duncan branded Mr Johnson an 'utter wimp', while Foreign Affairs Committee chief Tom Tugendhat said true leaders 'defend' their people

Last night Mr Johnson dismissed Sir Alan’s claims, telling The Sun: ‘I can’t believe they’re trying to blame me for this. It seems bizarre to me. I’m a great supporter of Kim’s. I spoke to him just now to offer my good wishes.’

When asked why he did not support Sir Kim during Tuesday night’s debate, Mr Johnson said he ‘didn’t think it was right to drag public servants’ careers into the [political] arena this way’.

Boris revealed his favourite wine is an Italian red called called Tignanello, a favorite of the Duchess of Sussex costing around £180-a-bottle

Boris revealed his favourite wine is an Italian red called called Tignanello, a favorite of the Duchess of Sussex costing around £180-a-bottle

He added: ‘I thought it was most odd that the career of particular servant should suddenly become a test case within a TV debate.’ Last night officials revealed that the police could be called in to find the mole who leaked the diplomatic cables.

Whitehall sources said Mrs May was furious about Sir Kim’s ousting and was considering appointing a successor in her last two weeks in office in order to deny Mr Johnson the chance to pick his own candidate.

But last night, allies of Mr Johnson warned Mrs May that she must not ‘tie the hands’ of her successor. Julian Lewis, the Tory chairman of the defence select committee, told The Daily Telegraph she should resist the ‘temptation for an outgoing prime minister to appoint to a plum job one of her inner circle’. Arch-Brexiteer Steve Baker told The Times: ‘It is absolutely vital that our ambassador is able to make a strong, heartfelt case for our future status as a trading nation and work with Congress.

‘With all that in mind a new ambassador must be appointed by the new prime minister. It would be totally unacceptable in such circumstances to tie the future prime minister’s hands.’

There was also speculation that Sir Kim could be rewarded with a peerage in recognition of his 42-year diplomatic career. And Mr Johnson faced the prospect of a civil service revolt over his perceived willingness to sacrifice Sir Kim to appease President Trump.

Dave Penman, head of the FDA union, which represents senior civil servants, said: ‘Johnson and his allies have sent the clearest signal possible to Sir Kim, the diplomatic corps, the wider civil service and, unfortunately, to foreign governments: that civil servants’ professional, impartial advice is needed, but they are ultimately expendable if it proves politically expedient.’

Downing Street said yesterday that officials had held ‘initial discussions’ with the police about whether the leak inquiry could become a criminal investigation.

Who is Sir Kim Darroch, the veteran diplomat who has just quit as Britain's man in Washington?

Sir Kim was handed one of the most prestigious jobs in the diplomatic service several months before Donald Trump's shock ascendancy to the White House.

But his name soon rose to prominence in the public arena after the president's election victory - when Mr Trump promptly called for Nigel Farage to be the UK's man in Washington instead.

In a highly unusual intervention, the president declared in a late-night tweet that Mr Farage would do a 'great job' and that 'many people' wanted to see him as the UK's ambassador in the US.

Number 10 was forced to insist there was 'no vacancy' and praised Sir Kim for being an 'excellent ambassador'.

In his first interview after the controversy, Sir Kim hailed Mr Trump's 'historic and impressive' election victory and called the so-called special relationship between the US and the UK 'stronger than ever'.

The diplomat had earlier hit the headlines when, shortly after Mr Trump's election win, the Sunday Times reported on a secret memo in which Sir Kim apparently suggested the UK could exploit Mr Trump's character and inexperience in office.

The memo said: 'The president-elect is above all an outsider and unknown quantity, whose campaign pronouncements may reveal his instincts, but will surely evolve and, particularly, be open to outside influence if pitched right.

'Having, we believe, built better relationships with his team than have the rest of Washington diplomatic corps, we should be well placed to do this.'

In the latest leaked memos, dated from 2017 to the present, Sir Kim described Mr Trump's White House as 'uniquely dysfunctional' and 'inept'.

But in an interview with the Financial Times last year, the diplomat gave the president a more ringing endorsement, saying: 'I have met him seven or eight times and always found him to be absolutely charming.'

Sir Kim is considered something of a veteran in the diplomatic arena, with a career spanning three decades.

Prior to taking on the role of UK ambassador to the US in January 2016, the 65-year-old served as national security adviser to former prime minister David Cameron.

He was secretary of the National Security Council until September 2015 and led on issues such as the rise of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, Russian aggression in Ukraine, the nuclear threat from Iran and the collapse of government authority in Libya.

Between 2007 and 2011 he served in Brussels as the UK Permanent Representative to the European Union, representing UK interests in areas such as the aftermath of the financial crisis and the issues around European integration.

He joined the diplomatic service in 1977 after graduating from Durham University with a degree in zoology.

 

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