In an explosive interview with The Sun newspaper, Trump said that May's proposed Brexit model would likely kill any trade deal between the two countries.
“I actually told Theresa May how to do it, but she didn’t listen to me. She wanted to go a different route,” Trump told the tabloid newspaper.
“What’s going on is very unfortunate. It’s too long. Deals that take too long are never good ones.”
Trump confirmed he would “absolutely” be ready to walk away from the US-UK trade deal if the terms weren’t to his liking. He said the US was “cracking down” on the EU because it was unhappy with how it was treated in trade deals.
Further, he said the Brexit deal agreed to at Chequers was not what the UK public voted for at the last election.
May only appealed for a trade deal at a dinner to mark the US President’s visit. If May could secure such a deal it would go a long way towards shoring up support within the conservative party after many Brexit supporting colleagues felt she made too many concessions to the EU in the Chequers agreement.
May referred to the longstanding relationship between the two nations in an appeal for a trade agreement.
“The spirit of friendship and co-operation between our countries, our leaders and our people, that most special of relationships, has a long and proud history. Now, for the benefit of all our people, let us work together to build a more prosperous future,” she said.
Newspaper headlines: Trump accuses May of 'wrecking Brexit' https://t.co/zUwWpVBnHm
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) July 12, 2018
Trump on Boris Johnson: “would make a great Prime Minister”
Trump’s comments will only add to the pressure on May after the Chequers deal was seen as a betrayal by those in her government who sought a hard Brexit.
Dissatisfaction with the Brexit plan May and colleagues agreed to has already seen key Brexiteers Boris Johnson and David Davis quit their roles. The ‘Chequers agreement’ involves the UK maintaining its current trading relationship with the EU as much as possible. Hard brexiteers favoured a clean break with the EU.
The Trump Interview – US President says Boris Johnson would "make a great Prime Minister";https://t.co/YwADxYoZVP
— Tom Newton Dunn (@tnewtondunn) July 12, 2018
Johnson is thought to be considering a tilt at the leadership and Trump also weighed in on that, opining that the hard Brexit advocate and former Secretary of State for Commonwealth and Foreign Affairs “would make a great Prime Minister”.
Trump added that Johnson has “got what it takes” and “has got the right attitude to be a great prime minister”.
“I was very surprised and saddened that he was getting out of government,” Trump said.
Trump’s visit to the UK has been met with mass protests.