Boris Johnson announced that he was one of the first leaders in the world to speak to Joe Biden this afternoon – hours after an embarrassing Downing Street gaffe was exposed in a tweet congratulating the US president-elect on his victory.
The Prime Minister announced that he had spoken to the Democrat to discuss the coronavirus pandemic and climate change after calling at 4 p.m. to congratulate him on his election over Donald Trump.
Downing Street said the call lasted 20-25 minutes while the prime minister was in his office at number 10.
However, while a number of key issues were discussed, a US reading of the call crucially failed to mention any discussion between the two of a post-Brexit trade deal.
Nevertheless, the two are said to have discussed the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland.
Mr Biden, who has a rich Irish heritage, is said to have reaffirmed his support for the 1998 agreement as he fears that the UK government’s single market proposal could threaten his future.
It is understood that Mr. Biden spoke to Mr. Johnson prior to discussing it Ireland's Taoiseach Micheal Martin.
But the diplomatic coup of being among the first to chat with the U.S. leader came after it was revealed that No. 10 had left parts of a message in a tweet congratulating Mr Trump on his re-election hailed his rival's victory.
In the wake of television stations calling for the razor-sharp result for Mr Biden over the weekend, the message posted on Downing Street's official account quoted Boris Johnson as congratulating him and Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris on their "historic achievement".
"The US is our most important ally and I look forward to working closely together on our shared priorities, from climate change to trade and security," the message reads.
Eagle-eyed observers, however, discovered traces of another – and much longer – text in the background of the smooth image. By adjusting the color and contrast, the words "Trump" and "second term" can be recognized.
Later that afternoon, Mr. Johnson sent another tweet that said, “I just spoke to Joe Biden to congratulate him on his election. I look forward to strengthening the partnership between our countries and working with him on our common priorities – from combating climate change to promoting democracy to better recovery from the pandemic. "
Mr Johnson wasn't the first world leader to speak to Mr Biden – he spoke to Canadian leader Justin Trudeau yesterday. However, there was confusion as to whether Mr Biden – whose ancestry is partly Irish – had berated the Prime Minister by first speaking to the Taoiseach.
Irish Prime Minister Micheal Martin tweeted this afternoon that he had spoken to the new U.S. president, but the tweet was quickly deleted and government sources in Dublin admitted that a call had not been made while it was being arranged.
Mr. Martin later announced the call took place tonight and said the new US leader had "underscored his commitment to the Good Friday Agreement."
And French President Emmanuel Macron spoke to Mr Biden, but according to the Elysee Palace only at 5:30 p.m. in Paris, 4:30 p.m. UK time.
The Prime Minister announced that he had spoken to the Democrat to discuss the coronavirus pandemic and climate change after calling at 4 p.m. to congratulate him on his election over Donald Trump (pictured).
Boris Johnson was quoted as congratulating Boris Johnson in a # 10 post published after television networks calling Joe Biden for the knife edge result
Eagle-eyed observers, however, discovered traces of another – and much longer – text in the background of the smooth image. By adjusting the color and contrast, the words "Trump", "second term" and "the future" can be recognized.
Mr Johnson has developed close ties with Mr Trump (right) since his appointment as Prime Minister, while tension has risen with Mr Biden (left) and the Democrats over Brexit and the impact on the Good Friday Agreement
Mr Johnson wasn't the first world leader to speak to Mr Biden – he spoke to Canadian leader Justin Trudeau yesterday. However, there was confusion as to whether Mr Biden – whose ancestry is partly Irish – had berated the Prime Minister by first speaking to the Taoiseach
French President Emmanuel Macron spoke to Mr Biden, but only at 5:30 p.m. in Paris, 4:30 p.m. UK time, according to Elysee Palace
Hancock hits Trump in disguise over vaccine timing claims
Matt Hancock insisted today that the rules for publishing clinical trials are "very strict" and that the timing is set by "science" – even though Donald Trump cries badly over Pfizer's vaccination bomb.
The dramatic news that the company's thrust was 90 percent effective in initial tests broke yesterday, less than a week after the razor-sharp US election and less than 48 hours after Joe Biden was declared the winner.
Mr Trump and his allies have expressed their anger at this point. The president said US regulators and Democrats "didn't want me to have a GAIN vaccine before the election, so it came out five days later". The company flatly denied any political motive for the timing.
In a round of interviews this morning, Mr. Hancock provided a solid defense of the system for publishing clinical results.
Without referring to the US backlash, Hancock stressed that such information "must be released immediately when the science gets good," and the timing was not dictated by politicians or companies themselves.
But the weekend news bug, first noticed by Guido Fawkes' political blog, left Tory MPs in despair.
"This should be sure-footed, collaborative government," said one. "None of this happens."
It has fueled fears that the relationship with the new White House administration is starting to rock.
Mr Johnson has developed close ties with Mr Trump since his appointment as Prime Minister, while tensions have risen with Mr Biden and the Democrats over Brexit and its impact on the Good Friday Agreement.
Ministers have insisted that the special relationship remain strong. No. 10 admitted that if Mr. Trump triumphed, an "alternative" message had been prepared because the election was so close.
A government spokesman said: "As expected, two statements were prepared in advance of the outcome of this highly competitive election.
"A technical error resulted in parts of the alternate message being embedded in the background of the graphic."
In a statement this afternoon, Downing Street said the Prime Minister had "warmly" congratulated Mr Biden on his election victory and Mrs Harris on her "historic achievement".
"They discussed the close and long-standing relationships between our countries and pledged to build on that partnership in the coming years in areas such as trade and security – including through NATO," added the spokeswoman.
The Prime Minister and President-elect also looked forward to working closely together on their shared priorities, from tackling climate change to promoting democracy to better building the coronavirus pandemic.
The Prime Minister invited the President-elect to attend the COP26 climate summit that the UK is hosting in Glasgow next year. They also looked forward to seeing each other in person, even as the UK hosts the G7 summit in 2021. & # 39;
At a press conference last night, Mr Johnson again congratulated Mr Biden, but refused to tell Donald Trump to throw in the towel instead of facing legal challenges.
The Prime Minister said he would "make no further comment" after insisting that the UK will be on good terms with the US regardless of who is president.
Mr Johnson said Britain has "had a good relationship with the White House for many, many years, and I have no doubt that we will continue to have a very, very strong, very close relationship with our American friends".
Democratic sources have questioned whether Mr Johnson is an "ally", with Mr Biden previously describing him as a "physical and emotional clone" of Mr Trump.
Mr Biden is also said to be still furious about Mr Johnson's earlier criticism of Barack Obama.
Downing Street confirmed today the two men have still not spoken after diplomatic sources said the prime minister would likely not be high on the list.
Ministers have insisted that the special relationship will continue to be strong, but it appears Mr Johnson (pictured today on Downing Street) is way down on the list of world leaders Mr Biden wants to call
British diplomats believe Mr Biden is likely to speak to Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron in front of Mr Johnson.
Mr Johnson said last night, “I congratulate President-elect Biden and Kamala Harris, who will be the first female Vice President of the United States.
"Yes, this country has had good relations with the White House for the past few years, but it has had good relations with the White House for many, many years, and I have no doubt that we will continue to have very, very strong relations, very close relationship with our American friends.
“One of the most exciting things you are already seeing from the new administration is their willingness to join the UK in the campaign to combat climate change. As you know, next year we are hosting the COP26 Summit in Glasgow.
& # 39; The UK led the way in being the first major economy to demand that countries achieve zero net carbon emissions by 2050. With the advent of President-elect Biden, we suddenly see that the US is really ready to take a leadership role too. Climate change, which I think is good news, says nothing about NATO and all sorts of other things. & # 39;
The Trump campaign reveals a new lawsuit to disqualify hundreds of thousands of votes in Pennsylvania, but with no new evidence of fraud
President Donald Trump's campaign and White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany held a chaotic press conference overnight claiming the election was "not over" and attacking "partisan" election officials, but offered no new evidence for the election alleged fraud by them.
The overcrowded, heated affair was only the last of Trump's armed forces to claim fraud, which resulted in arguments with the media – including one in Philadelphia where the first witness to be tricked by Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani was found to be a convict Were sex offenders.
The campaign held the event to advance their claims while attorneys filed a 105-page two-way lawsuit in Pennsylvania court in which they campaigned to cast more than 600,000 votes.
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany spoke at a chaotic press conference accusing the Democrats of trying to upset the election. She misrepresented the name of the county where Philadelphia is located and has provided no evidence of fraud
Plaintiffs included the election campaign, former Pennsylvania State Representative Lawrence Roberts, a 78-year-old former beautician, and Lancaster County voter David John Henry.
At the press conference, it was McEnany, who attended in personal time from her work as a tax-financed employee, and the Republican National Committee leader, Ronna McDaniel, who presented the allegations and only asked a few questions.
"What we have seen across the country are Democratic officials systematically trying to end the constitution in order to set the voting scale in their favor," said McEnany, who also briefed reporters and told them to ask questions of election officials if you asked you.
"Isn't the president just a sore loser?" asked a reporter after McEnany abruptly ended the event at RNC headquarters in Washington.
“Our election observers were placed in a huge room behind barricades. They were many yards from the counting process. And indeed, if you look at all of the tables, actually, many hundreds of feet from the tables in the background. You were completely in the dark, ”she said.
"What are the Pennsylvania Democrats hiding?" She asked.
(tagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) News (t) Twitter (t) Donald Trump (t) Joe Biden (t) Politics in Great Britain (t) Downing Street (t) British Government News and Updates on the UK Cabinet (t) US Elections 2020 (t) Boris Johnson (t) Kamala Harris