There’s generally bipartisan agreement that Melania Trump performed well during her husband’s first official overseas trip in May.
During the nine-day, five-country tour, the once reclusive First Lady wore her clothes beautifully — even that controversial $51,000 Dolce and Gabbana jacket — and appeared to make easy small talk with a range of world leaders and Saudi royal family members. She smiled graciously as Pope Francis gave President Donald Trump a stony reception over his lack of concern for climate change and generally offered a serene and diplomatic counterpoint to her husband’s bluster and apparent need for ego stroking.
So, it’s too bad that Melania might not enjoy one of the major perks of being the First Lady of the United States.
She may lose her chance for an audience with Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace or for an honor twice bestowed on her predecessor Michelle Obama: a photo op with the queen’s glamorous young royal family members, including, of course, the Duchess of Cambridge (aka Kate Middleton).
(Those opportunities could also be closed off to the president’s daughter Ivanka Trump, who accompanied the first couple on their foreign trip. As her father’s White House assistant and as wife of Jared Kusher, the president’s unacknowledged shadow secretary of state, Ivanka has shown herself to be especially eager to use photo ops with world leaders and other important public figures — Justin Trudeau, Angela Merkel, Xi Jinping — to establish even a modicum of public service credibility.)
British political writers contend that President Trump’s planned state visit to the United Kingdom has either been postponed or canceled altogether, based on what Elizabeth II didn’t say in her speech to Parliament Wednesday.
The monarch included no mention of a Trump visit. Usually, the queen’s speech mentions any state visit planned for the duration of the parliamentary session, which is for the next two years, the Guardian said.
The Queen only said that she and Prince Philip “look forward to welcoming their majesties King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain on a state visit in July.”
Prime Minister Theresa May extended an invitation to Trump to come to the UK shortly after he took office in January, and a trip had apparently been in the works for October. There were even reports that Trump was hoping he’d be able to ride in the Queen’s gold-plated state carriage during his visit.
However, a Trump visit would be controversial, given that many Britons disdain his policies and his provocative use of Twitter, including when he recently misquoted and berated London mayor Sadiq Khan after a terrorist attack on London Bridge, the Guardian said.
A number of groups have promised to protest his visit, and the Guardian reported earlier this month that Trump told May he didn’t want to travel to England if the British public wouldn’t welcome him.
Both Downing Street and the White House downplayed any significance of the queen’s omission, saying that the invitation is still open but that the trip just hasn’t been scheduled yet. However, the situation remains that a visit by the former reality TV mogul would be socially challenging, to say the least.
Previous visits by U.S. Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama have included meetings with the queen and overnight stays at either Buckingham Palace or Windsor Castle, as well as a state banquet, Reuters reported.
Moreover, Obama received a 41-gun salute at Buckingham Palace during one state visit, and he and the first lady twice enjoyed private audiences with Kate Middleton and Prince William. The Obamas’ visit to the second-in-line to the British throne and his photogenic wife in 2016 included dinner at Kensington Palace and a meeting with young Prince George that generated some especially adorable photos.
It’s easy to imagine that Queen Elizabeth and her family members would find it hard to maintain that famous British stiff upper lip when confronted with Trump’s propensity for gauche machismo.
Trump becomes especially awkward in the presence of formidable women who are leaders of liberal democracies (see again Merkel); he’s proven himself to be more comfortable in the company of male autocrats who fawn over him.
Actually, if Mr. and Mrs. Trump paid a visit to the House of Windsor, Melania would have to work triple-overtime employing her evident soft-power diplomatic skills, making sure her husband didn’t say or do something offensive — including with his hands — in the presence of Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest reigning monarch.
Remember the times Melania has either had to swat away Trump’s hand, as when he tried to grab hers at inopportune moments on their foreign trip, or nudge him to do something basic and respectful like put his hand over his heart while standing for the national anthem.
And if there was a banquet that included other royal family members as guests, what kind of small talk could Trump make with, say, Prince Charles, first in line to the throne who also happens to be an outspoken environmentalist and proponent of tasteful architecture?
Would Trump go off on Obama in front of Prince Harry? Prince William’s younger brother has talked publicly about his friendship with Obama and referred to being on a first-name basis with Michelle. Meanwhile, if Ivanka were included in the party, would she try and force some Instagram moments on Kate and William, and even on their kids, that she would later use to promote herself on her social media accounts?
Yes, a visit by Trump and others in his entourage would be problematic, a challenge that even Melania probably couldn’t overcome. So maybe it’s all for the best that the Trump state visit is cancelled or postponed indefinitely. That would save the world the agony of bearing witness to it.
Source : http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/06/21/melania-trump-wont-get-to-meet-queen-elizabeth-ii-kate-middleton-if-trump-cancels-uk-visit/