May seeks Trump help over Bombardier Boeing spat. Here's how that might go

Imagining the Conversation between the PM and the America First President with May desperate to protect jobs in Northern Ireland 

James Moore
Chief Business Commentator
Tuesday 12 September 2017 09:15
Comments
Bombardier and Boeing are at loggerheads over the planes Bombardier is supplying to Delta Airlines
Bombardier and Boeing are at loggerheads over the planes Bombardier is supplying to Delta Airlines

The scene. Stage left: Number Ten Downing Street. Theresa May is on the phone surrounded by a gaggle of advisers. Stage right: The Oval Office. President Donald Trump is taking the call with Ivanka Trump perched on his desk.

May: “Mr President! It’s wonderful to speak with you again.”

Trump: “Terri! How are you? Hey, if those Euro-crats give you any trouble tell them we’ll sort them out. I’ve got some beautiful planes stationed in Germany.”

May: “Mr President, thank you. It was actually planes I wanted to talk to you about.”

Trump: “Oh?”

May: “Yes you see, there's this Canadian company called Bombardier that makes wings in Northern Ireland. To keep the place strong and stable we really need them to keep doing that and that depends on them supplying your Delta Airlines and lots of other, erm, great American companies. But Boeing’s making all sorts of accusations about Bombardier receiving subsidies from the Canadian Government and has complained to your Commerce Department. It could get nasty.”

Trump: “Oh dear. Isn’t this something for… (puts hand over phone and whispers) Ivanka… Who’s our Commerce Secretary these days.”

Ivanka: “That would be Wilbur Ross, Dad.”

Trump: “What you mean we haven’t sacked him yet?”

Ivan: “Dad, they call him the King of Bankruptcy because of his experience with buying up bankrupt businesses. Trust me. He’s a good man to keep onside.”

May: “Mr President?”

Trump: “Ah, tell me more Terri.”

May: “Well it’s like this. If Wilbur hits Bombardier with heavy tariffs, Bombardier will be in real trouble. My jobs will be at risk and I really need those jobs because I really need the Democratic Unionist Party to prop up my Government.”

Trump (hand over the phone again): “What’s she going on about now Ivanka?”

Ivanka: “The DUP are Northern Ireland’s biggest party and she needs their support to stay in power. She kicked more than a billion dollars over to them to keep them sweet but they might still kick up a fuss if they lose those jobs.”

May (continuing): “Surely we can work something out? You and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are best buddies aren’t you? If we could just get Boeing and Bombardier around a table they could, you know, do a deal. You could give them all copies of that book you wrote, The Art of the Deal, to encourage them before they get started. Couldn’t you help Mr President? I really need you to hold my hand here because I’ve got Jeremy Corbyn breathing down my neck. And you don’t want him in Number 10.”

Trump: “Well I do love a deal. But, Terri, can I ask you a question?”

May: “Of course!”

Trump: “Is Northern Ireland in America?”

May: “Erm, no.”

Trump: “Well there’s my problem. See, I’m sure you have a beautiful factory there, but it’s not in America and I did promise that my policy would be America First when I got elected.”

May: “Yes, but Mr President, we’re politicians! Nobody believes what we promise. I promised not to hold an election, remember, and then I did! And you promised…” Puts hand over phone as advisor rushes over.

Advisor: “Prime Minister, Prime Minister, whatever you were about to say DON’T. Just don’t. If you mention US healthcare reform, or tax reform, or getting Mexico to pay for that damned wall, or any other promise he hasn't kept we might as well say goodbye to all those jobs. Just tell him he's great. Lay it on as thick as you can. I know you struggle with that, but try."

May: “To Make America Great Again. Which you’re doing, ah, brilliantly! But to Make America Great Again, it'd help to have some supporters around the world. Like your British friends with our special relationship.”

Advisor: “Oh well done Prime Minister. If only you’d been that fleet footed during the election!”

Trump: “Yeah, how’d that election work out for you?”

May: “Erm. Not too well. That's another reason for my call.”

Trump: “Well here’s the thing. The one promise everyone said I’d keep was on trade. As you clearly see, it's America First and all that. It’s a great, great, policy. A really beautiful policy. The problem I have is that if I don’t keep it I’ll have Steve Bannon all over me. Your DUP or whatever you call them, they're a walk in the park compared to Bannon, believe me. He’s already started throwing bricks at my people. I don’t want any of them to land on me.”

May: “You could always blame Mr Ross?”

Trump: “Sorry Terri. No can do. Look, we have a great, beautiful, special relationship. I love England! But I don’t think I can help you with this. Tell you what, if I need some of your troops to help out when I invade North Korea or somewhere, I’ll call. And you can come down to Mar-A-Lago whenever you want. Now, I must go. I’m playing golf with my friend Benjamin Netanyahu. You stay safe!”

Ivanka: “Well done Dad. Brilliantly handled.”

Trump: “I know. I was brilliant, wasn’t I. That woman. SAD.”

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