President Trump finally has a date on the calendar for a state dinner at Buckingham Palace — a visit more than two years in the making.
The mere announcement of his June visit as the guest of Queen Elizabeth II stirred up fresh anti-Trump sentiment Tuesday among Brits who want to deny him a seat at the table.
Trump and his wife, Melania, have accepted the queen’s invitation to visit June 3-5, the White House and the palace announced.
Many American presidents have visited the monarch, but just two — George W. Bush and Barack Obama — were honored with a state visit and its accompanying pomp and pageantry, including a horse-drawn carriage ride and a royal banquet at Buckingham Palace.
Rarer still is the announcement of a state visit just weeks before it takes place.
But talk of the visit has been contentious ever since Prime Minister Theresa May invited Trump just days after he took office in January 2017.
The trip has been delayed amid concerns about Trump’s reception in the U.K. and Britain’s extended crisis over Brexit, which has consumed most of the government’s political energy.
With files from the Associated Press.
Rich Preston, London-based senior broadcast journalist for the BBC World Service; he tweets @RichPreston