Trump gives unwelcome ‘Brexit’ backing

Trump gives unwelcome ‘Brexit’ backing

Flying high: Donald Trump. Source: Wikimedia

Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, is backing Brexit, saying Britain would be “better off” outside the EU and lamenting the impact of migration on Europe.

In what will be seen as a major boost to the “Bremain” campaign, the billionaire, who secured the backing of Republican voters on an anti-immigration platform but is loathed in Europe, said that his “Brexit” support was a personal belief and not a “recommendation”.

“I think the migration has been a horrible thing for Europe,” Trump told Fox News. “A lot of that was pushed by the EU. I would say that they’re better off without it, personally, but I’m not making that as a recommendation. Just my feeling.

“I know Great Britain very well,” Trump opined. “I have a lot of investments there. I would say that they’re better off without it. But I want them to make their own decision.”

Last month the highly respected President Barack Obama came out in favour of the UK remaining in the 28-member bloc last month, giving the Bremain camp a huge boost.

Obama warned during a visit to Britain that London would suffer from leaving the EU and drop to “the back of the queue” for any trade deal with the US.

In contrast, backing from Trump is probably seen as unwelcome as an endorsement from Robert Mugabe or Bashar al-Assad in the Brexit camp. The anti-EU lobby is acquiring some increasingly dubious support, not least from the leader of France’s far-right Front National, Marine Le Pen, and sinister media mogul Rupert Murdoch.

British Prime Minister David Cameron had previously denounced Trump for his “stupid, divisive and wrong” suggestion last December that the US should ban Muslims from entering the country. But Cameron toned down the criticism after it appeared Trump might reach the White House. Asked whether he would apologise, Cameron said he stood by his criticism, adding: “Knowing the gruelling nature of the primaries, what you have to go through to go on and represent your party in a general election, anyone who makes it through that deserves our respect.”

The Republican frontrunner, who benefited this week from his last two rivals withdrawing from the race, has previously declined to comment on the June 23 referendum. Only this week, “the Donald” criticised Obama for coming out against Brexit, telling the Daily Mail the current president should be “more neutral” on the debate.

“I didn’t think it was a good thing for him to do it,” he said earlier in the week. “I would say that I’m not going to give Britain any advice, but I know there are a lot of people that are very, very much against being in the EU.”

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