BORIS Johnson today refused to comment on the US election as the votes continue to be counted – despite Donald Trump’s claims voting had been a “fraud” and claiming victory.
The PM was quizzed on his thoughts on the American race today – hours after Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was left squirming live on telly.
Speaking in the House of Commons today, the PM, who has a good relationship with the incumbent US President, stressed: “Of course we don’t comment as a UK Government on the democratic processes of our friends and allies.”
No10 later confirmed that the PM has not ever met Joe Biden, despite being Foreign Secretary when he was Vice President under Obama.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer had asked the Prime Minister to criticise Mr Trump’s actions.
He swiped: “The next president must be the free and fair choice of the American people.”
Earlier, the Foreign Secretary refused to condemn the President’s claim of victory over Joe Biden and demands to stop the votes being counted.
Speaking on Sky News, the Foreign Secretary said: “I don’t think there’s a clear result yet. We’ll see how this plays out, we may not get a definitive result for hours if not days.
“This is for the American people to decide and we’re confident in the American institutions to produce a result”.
President Donald Trump this morning claimed victory despite only having a wafer thin lead and critical states still hanging in the balance.
Mr Trump called the election a “fraud” and vowed to ask the Supreme Court to order votes to stop being counted.
He said: “This is a very big moment. This is a major fraud on our nation.”
Millions of postal votes, which are expected to heavily favour Mr Biden, are still uncounted.
Biden’s team furiously hit back saying Trump’s speech was “outrageous, unprecedented and incorrect”.
But Mr Raab squirmed while being questioned over Mr Trump’s attempts to stop votes being counted – saying there were robust “checks and balances” in the US to give a “decisive result”.
And the Foreign Secretary also wouldn’t be baited into saying a Biden win would threaten the relationship – or a post-Brexit trade deal – between the UK and the US.
He said: “I’m confident the relationship will be in good shape. I’m confident there’s an excellent free trade deal there to be done.
“The US and UK, come what may, regardless of the individuals in No10 or in the White House has got such a bedrock of history and shared values, economic ties, security cooperation.
“I’m very confident we will have an even stronger relationship going forward.”
While Mr Raab kept quiet, former Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt stepped up to the plate saying a “protracted legal arguments” could spell a “catastrophe for the worldwide reputation of democracy”.
Mr Hunt told BBC Radio 4: “It’s obviously a total nail biter, but my biggest worry is we forget that the US is the leading democracy in the world.”
Mr Hunt said a massive row about process and people “talking about stolen elections” would play right into the hands of authoritarian regimes such as Russia and China.
“(It would) only put a smile onto the face of President Putin, (Chinese) President Xi, who will look at their own people and say aren’t you please we don’t have any of this mess.
“That would be an absolute disaster, we must remember that the reputation of democracy across the world is at stake here.”
Ex-PM Theresa May also weighed in to the hotly contested election, saying: “We will soon know who will be the next US President.
“But, sadly, today also marks the US leaving the Paris accord — the world’s foremost attempt to build consensus on climate change.
“Whoever is elected has an immense responsibility to help tackle our planet’s greatest challenge.”
Labour’s Shadow Foreign Secretary Lisa Nandy called Mr Trump’s premature claims of victory “deeply shocking”.
She told Sky News: “Elections are not over until votes have been counted and the American people have every bit as much as right to free and fair elections as any other country in the world.
And Ms Nandy slammed Mr Raab for failing to condemn Donald Trump’s attempts to “undermine” democracy.
She said: “Britain has believed in democracy has sought to advance in democracy around the world, now is not the time to row back on that principle.”
Nigel Farage, who has campaigned with the President, has defended his comments of election fraud saying they are out of “frustration”.
He told BBC News: “His comments tonight are out of frustration and I’m not surprised, to think that America in the 21st century is incapable of counting votes state by state is a pretty bad thing for America.
“What he was especially talking about is the idea of late votes coming in, and that clearly shouldn’t be allowed.”