Former US governor compares Donald Trump to Sir Winston Churchill and sparks anger from British MPs
Politicians lashed out, calling the comments “absurd” and “nonsense”.
British MPs expressed their anger after a former US governor compared Donald Trump to Sir Winston Churchill, calling the comments “absurd” and “nonsense”.
Mike Huckabee, who was governor of Arkansas for 11 years, tweeted to say that the great wartime leader was “hated by his own party, opposition party and press”, just like the US president.
He also appeared to compare Barack Obama to Neville Chamberlain, the British PM who was best known for pursuing a foreign policy of appeasement with the Nazis.
Churchill was hated by his own party, opposition party, and press. Feared by King as reckless, and despised for his bluntness. But unlike Neville Chamberlain, he didn't retreat. We had a Chamberlain for 8 yrs; in @realDonaldTrump we have a Churchill.— Gov. Mike Huckabee (@GovMikeHuckabee) December 26, 2017
Politician turned Fox News commentator Mr Huckabee wrote: “Churchill was hated by his own party, opposition party, and press. Feared by King as reckless, and despised for his bluntness.
“But unlike Neville Chamberlain, he didn’t retreat. We had a Chamberlain for 8 yrs; in @realDonaldTrump we have a Churchill.”
His comments sparked anger from British MPs.
Defence minister Tobias Ellwood invited Huckabee to meet with Sir Nicholas Soames – who is Churchill’s grandson and a Tory MP.
Ummm...Governor Huckabee ...could I invite you to Westminster and meet my very good friend @NSoames who knows a thing or two about this. I know he will take you under his wing - and you will emerge much the wiser. @GovMikeHuckabee https://t.co/UBrOB1P3xo— Tobias Ellwood (@Tobias_Ellwood) December 27, 2017
Ian Austin, Labour MP for Dudley North, joined in the condemnation.
Trump like Churchill?— Ian Austin (@IanAustinMP) December 26, 2017
Churchill served in army & led world to beat fascism.
Chicken Trump backs racists & dodged draft with bad foot! https://t.co/RYaAd8J6rV
MP and former Labour leadership contender Chuka Umunna said: “Your President in no way shape or form comes close to being the leader that Churchill was”.
Governor, our grandparents fought the Nazis with Winston Churchill. They knew Churchill and relayed his greatness to future generations. He was one of our greatest Prime Ministers. Your President in no way shape or form comes close to being the leader that Churchill was. https://t.co/pYNL5obBw3— Chuka Umunna (@ChukaUmunna) December 27, 2017
While Lib Dem leader Tim Farron said he couldn’t “be bothered to correct the rest of this nonsense” after pointing out that Churchill described himself as “a liberal”.
Churchill to Dennis Healey "Me? I'm a liberal, always have been" so, that's one difference... but I can't be bothered to correct the rest of this nonsense. https://t.co/F2kGhTg9ex— Tim Farron (@timfarron) December 27, 2017
Labour MP for Leeds North West, Alex Sobel, went as far as to say Churchill “fought Nazis rather than repeated (or retweeted) them”.
Churchill fought Nazis rather than repeated (or retweeted) them https://t.co/QDGPO4qRhZ— Alex Sobel MP (@alexsobel) December 26, 2017
Others in the US and across the world were also quick to condemn Huckabee’s tweet, with Republican strategist Steve Schmidt describing Huckabee as “a history ignoramus for the ages”.
Comparing Donald Trump to Winston Churchill establishes Mike Huckabee as a history ignoramus for the ages. What a clown.— Steve Schmidt (@SteveSchmidtSES) December 26, 2017
Conservative MP from Norway Kristian Tonning Riise also voiced his opinion on the matter, praising Churchill as “one of history’s most gifted orators”.
Sure. Churchill served his country 55 years in parliament, 31 years as a minister and 9 as pm. He was present in 15 battles and received 14 medals of bravery. He was one of historys most gifted orators and won the Nobel Literature Prize for his writing. Totally same thing...— Kristian Tonning Riise (@KristianRiise) December 26, 2017
Trump is expected to visit the UK in February for the opening of the new American embassy in London.