With the US ambassador saying today the visit will go ahead, it looks like we might be about to see some of the biggest protests in recent UK history.
Nearly one in ten adults say they are likely to protest when Trump visits in the new year, new polling by BMG for Left Foot Forward reveals today.
Nine per cent of respondents said ‘I would be angry and likely protest the occasion’, when asked how they would respond to a state visit from the US President.
A further thirty per cent of respondents said the visit by the President would make them angry, but they wouldn’t necessarily protest.
Only two per cent of respondents to the poll said they’d be publicly celebrating the visit, while 12 per cent said they’d be ‘pleased’.
The findings come as the US ambassador to the UK announced that Trump is likely visit the UK in early 2018, despite a recent Twitter row with Theresa May over the US President promoting far right group Britain First – a row which left many questioning whether the trip would take place.
Demonstrations against the visit are already being planned online and organisers at the group Stop Trump say they could get up to a million people on the streets.
These figures don’t seem far-fetched given today’s polling.
Responding to the poll findings, campaign group Stop Trump told Left Foot Forward:
“It is now abundantly clear that Donald Trump’s visit to the UK is utterly without public support, and that his agenda of racism and hatred is not welcome here.
“Nine percent of the British population amounts to almost six million people – many times the size of the Iraq War demonstrations – and we will aim to mobilise big numbers when the visit occurs.
“The government is running scared of protest and is refusing to set a date for the visit, so we will have to be on our toes and ready to react.”
Journalist and Stop Trump campaigner Owen Jones told us:
“If Donald Trump comes to the United Kingdom, we intend to bring hundreds of thousands – if not more – on to the streets in rejection of his racism, Islamophobia, misogyny and transphobia.
“We will send a powerful message: we will not allow plutocrats deflect responsibility for the world’s problems by scapegoating immigrants and Muslims.
“And we will make it clear that we will defeat all bigotry, racism, and scapegoating – whether it is fanned by Donald Trump or by our own media and political elite.”
Josiah Mortimer, Editor of Left Foot Forward, said:
“With nearly one in ten people prepared to protest Trump’s visit, this is gearing up to be one of the biggest protests in British history.
“The public are not willing to host a racist, misogynist who spreads hate in his own country and in ours. But apparently May is too embarrassed to retract an ill-thought invitation.
“The message from many voters now seems to ‘bring it on’. The President will have a lot of people greeting him here in the new year – just not in the way he’d hope.”
Add to these calls the fact that nearly two million people have signed a petition against the visit, and it seems the protests could be huge.
Sentiment against Trump’s visit is broad – and will only grow as the date approaches. If one in ten are prepared to protest, we could be about to witness one of the biggest demonstrations in recent UK history.
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