President Trump on Tuesday kept up his war of insults with London Mayor Sadiq Khan on the second day of his three-day state visit to the United Kingdom, although he refrained from repeating his description of him as a “loser” and making fun of his height.
In an editorial published ahead of Trump’s arrival, Khan said it is “un-British to be rolling out the red carpet” for him. Khan also compared Trump to murderous dictators and part of a growing global threat of far-right politics.
“I don’t think he should be criticizing a representative of the United States that can do so much good for the United Kingdom,” Trump told reporters at a press conference with outgoing U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May. “He should be positive, not negative. He’s a negative force, not a positive force. And if you look at what he said, he hurts the people of this great country.
“I think he should actually focus on his job,” Trump added. “It’d be a lot better if he did that.”
Trump’s comments came a day after he called Khan a “stone cold loser” in a tweet shortly before landing in London.
Khan “reminds me very much of our very dumb and incompetent Mayor of NYC, de Blasio, who has also done a terrible job — only half his height,” Trump continued. “In any event, I look forward to being a great friend to the United Kingdom, and am looking very much forward to my visit. Landing now!”
“It’s the sort of behavior I’d expect from an 11-year-old,” Khan told CNN. “It’s not for me to respond in a like manner.” (Khan has said he is 5 feet 6, although he is sometimes described as one inch shorter than that. De Blasio is 6 feet 5.)
On Monday, the president and first lady Melania Trump were welcomed to Buckingham Palace by Queen Elizabeth II, who hosted a lunch and dinner with the Trumps, their adult children and other guests as thousands of demonstrators gathered in Central London to protest Trump’s U.K. visit.
At Tuesday’s press conference, Trump downplayed the size of the protests and suggested demonstrators were “put in for political reasons.”
“It was a very, very small group of people,” he said.
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