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Trump wants 'Reagan-Thatcher style relationship' with May

A Republican President with a previous career outside of politics and a UK Prime Minister known for her serious manner and hard work.

Sound familiar?

Ronald Reagan enjoyed a good relationship with Margaret Thatcher Credit: PA

Well, in his phone call with Theresa May today, President-elect Donald Trump alluded to the special relationship that was enjoyed by Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher.

Mrs Thatcher held office from 1979 to 1990.

Mr Reagan from 1981 to 1989.

They shared similar priorities on economic policy throughout the 1980s and the former British Prime Minister was instrumental in thawing relations between the then-American President and the then-President of the USSR Mikhail Gobachev.

Are we looking at something similar now?

Denis Thatcher, Nancy Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. Credit: PA
Ronald Reagan enjoyed a good relationship with Margaret Thatcher Credit: PA

The two leaders do share a view that many working class voters have been left behind by globalisation.

She spotted that after the Brexit referendum here.

He focused his entire campaign on those Americans who felt they'd been 'left behind'.

But they disagree on how to better those lives and neither do they see eye to eye on foreign policy.

  • Mrs May is a firm believer in NATO, Mr Trump is wary of it.
  • Mrs May is a critic of President Putin, Mr Trump is an admirer.
  • Mrs May wants the UK to be more outward looking as we leave the EU, Mr Trump has vowed to focus on American interests.
  • Mrs May is a believer in free trade, Mr Trump wants to protect the US economy and slap tariffs on Chinese imports.
  • Mrs May supports cutting carbon emissions to combat climate change, Mr Trump thinks climate change is made up.
Donald Trump wants a similar relationship with Theresa May Credit: PA

So while both leaders spoke about the 'special relationship' between the UK and the US in their phone call today, that relationship will start in a good place.

Nevertheless, Brexit may force the two leaders to become close.

Mr Trump famously said Britain would be at the 'front of the queue' for trade deals after President Obama warned we'd be 'at the back'.

If the EU loosens its economic ties with the US (the TTIP trade agreement looks to be on very thin ice now) EU leaders may need to develop stronger ties with the UK after Brexit.

The two leaders get to test the potential for a Thatcher/Reagan relationship when they meet in the new year in Washington.

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