- Visit is for opening of Turnberry golf resort in Scotland
- Trip comes after clashes with U.K. politicians on Muslim ban
Donald Trump will visit the U.K. the day before the country votes on whether to leave the European Union, after being criticized by politicians from Prime Minister David Cameron down for his attacks on Muslims.
The presumptive Republican nominee for president previously announced a plan to be in the U.K. on June 24, the day the result of the vote is announced, for the official opening ceremony for the Turnberry golf resort he owns on the west coast of Scotland.
“On June 22 I will be going to Scotland to celebrate the opening of the newly renovated TrumpTurnberry Resort, the world’s best,” Trump said on Twitter. He’ll also visit Aberdeen in northeast Scotland, where he has another course, and a resort he owns in Ireland, he said, before returning to the U.S. on June 25.
Turnberry confirmed Friday that the opening ceremony is still scheduled for June 24.
Trump is perhaps the most prominent overseas advocate for a so-called Brexit, telling Fox News last month that Britain would be “better off” out of the EU. Whether his presence in the country the day before the vote will help or hinder the Leave campaign is unclear.
Trump’s love of his mother’s home of Scotland has been overshadowed of late by the rhetoric crossing back and forth over the Atlantic during his presidential campaign. Cameron called his proposal to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. “divisive, stupid and wrong,” while Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon stripped Trump of his role as a business ambassador for Scotland.
Trump first said last month he’s unlikely to have a good relationship with Cameron before going back on those comments and calling the premier “a nice guy.” The prime minister said last week he would be happy to meet up if the candidate visits before the U.S election. Cameron said the “special relationship” between Britain and the U.S. will survive whoever is president or prime minister.
Trump, whose mother came from the Isle of Lewis, has been involved in developing Scottish golf resorts for almost a decade. He fought with local residents and rural planners over his complex in Aberdeenshire before taking legal action over offshore wind turbines championed by the Scottish government. Turnberry has been less controversial. Trump bought the club in 2014 before renovating it. The refurbishment includes upgrades to 103 guest rooms, suites and a lighthouse turned into a presidential suite.