Pro-Trump thinktank tells Sunak to take US diplomacy lessons from David Lammy

Labour’s shadow foreign secretary David Lammy has received praise from a surprising source

David Maddox
Political editor
Thursday 09 May 2024 16:00 BST
David Cameron warns Donald Trump's 'peace plan' would appease Putin

A righ twing British think tank which supports Donald Trump has praised David Lammy for his US diplomacy.

The Legatum Institute has told Rishi Sunak and the Tories to learn lessons from Labour’s shadow foreign secretary after he made another successful trip to Washington DC ahead of what many think will be a Labour general election victory.

The think tank, funded by hedge fund billionaire Christopher Chandler, has recently opened a UK-US Special Relationship Unit at its offices in Mayfair which is pushing to promote UK/ US diplomatic relationship.

The thinktank has been impressed by the way that Mr Lammy has reached out to both sides of the aisle in the US and even made attempts to connect with the Trump camp.

Shadow foreign secretary David Lammy (Jonathan Brady/PA) (PA Archive)

Mr Lammy went as far as to shock many by defending Mr Trump over his comments on Nato, claiming the former President is “misunderstood” and that under his presidency the alliance had become “much better funded”.

Sarah Elliot , senior adviser for the UK-US Special Relationship Unit, told The Independent: “David Lammy has been doing a high profile tour of the US, almost as a practice run if Labour do win the upcoming general election and he becomes the Foreign Secretary.

“David Lammy has also softened his usually negative commentary on former President Donald Trump, a diplomatic move in case Donald Trump wins the upcoming US election.

“Lammy said Labour was committed to the special relationship regardless of whoever wins the US election, and even spoke positively of Trump’s calls for increased defence spending, and name-dropping Sen JD Vance more than once.

Lammy defended Trump over Nato (via REUTERS)

“Such diplomatic leadership will surely put pressure on the UK conservatives, seeing the Labour Party priming US politicos for their future prominence.”

Labour’s diplomatic moves have been closely watched by political interests on both sides of the Atlantic because of the possibility that Trump could win back the White House almost at the same time Sir Keir Starmer could enter Downing Street.

Mr Lammy met with both Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill yesterday during his visit to Washington.

He also gave a keynote speech to the Hudson Institute where he said that he and Mr Trump could find “common cause,” suggesting that as a “good Christian boy” and “small-c conservative,” he shares some views with Republicans.

He added: “You’re going to struggle to find any politician in the Western world who hasn’t had things to say in response to Donald Trump.”

Mr Lammy’s softening over Trump is a huge turn around since 2018 when he wrote for Time magazine: “Trump is not only a woman-hating, neo-Nazi-sympathising sociopath.

“He is also a profound threat to the international order that has been the foundation of Western progress for so long.”

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