Ed Balls has said it does not make much difference for the United Kingdom if Donald Trump beats Hillary Clinton to become President of the United States.
The former shadow chancellor also said it was “wishful thinking” to believe Clinton would put any pressure on the European Union to give the UK a good Brexit deal.
“I don’t think it makes a huge amount of difference whether its Donald Trump or Hillary,” Balls said on Thursday evening. “I’m not sure that Trump versus Hillary makes a huge difference to the special relationship and Britain’s relationship with Europe.”
Trump has repeatedly clashed with British politicians, including David Cameron and Sadiq Khan over his proposal to ban Muslims from the US.
Theresa May has also said the Republican was “absolutely wrong” to claim British police were afraid to walk the streets of London - however her criticism of Trump has not been as harsh as Cameron.
Balls said of a Trump presidency: “If David Cameron was still the prime minister, the building of bridges would be bit harder than otherwise.”
Balls was speaking at a US election discussion in Westminster hosted by Ladbrokes. “I think I would be very surprised if either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton put huge amount of political capital behind the relationship with Britain at a time we are about to exit the EU,” he said.
He added: “To believe that Hillary is somehow going to swing the Brexit negotiations in Britain’s favor in the next two years, I can’t see that, I don’t think it’s in America’s interests, I don’t think she will do it. I don’t think Donald Trump will either.”
Yesterday the former head of the British Armed Forces said Donald Trump could “reinvigorate” the West’s relationship with Russia. “I think he is wise enough to get good people round him and probably knows that he’s got to listen to them, and therefore I think we should not automatically think it will be less safe,” he told The House magazine.
With just four days until the November 8 election, Democrats are getting nervous that Trump is closing the gap.