Scottish Nationalist leader Nicola Sturgeon is leading the charge to have GOP presidential contender Donald Trump banned from Britain. A three hour debate in the British parliament occurred yesterday, the BBC reports, after 500,000 UK voters signed a petition asking for Trump to be banned.
Despite the fact that Trump’s mother was Scottish and a gaelic speaker and he was appointed a goodwill ambassador for Scotland, Sturgeon and her party have now turned on him.
"I think the First Minister made her view on Donald Trump quite clear yesterday when she stripped him of his GlobalScot (goodwill ambassador) position” said her spokesman.
"She would agree and that there are laws around people who make certain comments being allowed in and he should be considered in the same way that they are... the Home Secretary should consider the issue."
Anne McLaughlin, the SNP MP, said in the parliamentary debate that she regretted “ Trump is the son of a Scottish immigrant and “apologized for that on behalf of the Scots.”
She pointed out that Trump’s mother was “doing exactly what migrants coming to the US are doing today: heading in search of a better life,” adding that Trump’s views “run counter to the enlightenment values that unite Britain and America.”
She stated Trump’s hate speech was no different than what others had been banned for.
Scottish cabinet member Humza Yousaf, the SNP's international development minister, said Trump's policies would turn America into an "apartheid state" if implemented and that a ban should be considered. Another Scottish MP Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh fully backed a ban, saying Trump was guilty of "hate preaching."
However several Scottish business people opposed the ban, pointing to Trump’s planned investment in a $1 billion golf and hotel complex in Scotland.
Trump himself is also far from pleased. Sarah Malone, Executive Vice President of Trump International Golf Links in Scotland, said:
“Mr Trump is investing hundreds of millions of pounds into the Scottish economy and its greatest assets.
“Until now, Turnberry has been unable to attract the huge investment required to secure its future and industry chiefs have applauded Trump International Golf Links, Scotland, which has attracted tens of thousands of much-needed overseas visitors to the region.
“Both properties are critical to the golf, leisure and tourism sector in Scotland which we cannot afford to jeopardize.
“Any attempt at a ban of this kind would force Mr Trump to abandon his plans for a further [$1 billion (£700 million)] investment.”
Meanwhile Northern Ireland MP Gavin Robinson has backed a ban. Robinson, seen as a future leader of the DUP, called Trump a “ridiculous xenophobe.”
British Prime Minister David Cameron opposed banning Trump, though he did also call the Republican presidential hopeful’s comments on Muslims “stupid.”
“I think his remarks are divisive, stupid and wrong, and if he came to visit our country I think he would unite us all against him. Cameron, however, also called on Muslims to integrate better and to observe how other immigrant communities had achieved that.
British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn also opposed a ban on Trump but stated, “I was asked about this some while ago and I decided to invite Donald Trump on his visit to Britain to come with me to my constituency because he has problems with Mexicans and he has problems with Muslims.
“As you know, my wife is Mexican and my constituency is very, very multicultural so what I was going to do was go down to the mosque with him and let him talk to people there.
“I don’t think you should ban people coming to Britain on that basis. I think he should come here, have a lesson in going to all our cities.”
Two petitions requesting that Trump be banned from entering the country were also widely circulated in Ireland last month, and are up for discussion by the Irish parliament (Dail) in the coming weeks.
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