Keir Starmer needs to prepare for a world without America
Today's empires, tomorrow's ashes.
Things could be pretty damn weird in just over a year’s time.
Imagine if, as is widely predicted, Rishi goes for an autumn election. That’s the longest possible time to run out the clock without forcing his doomed MPs and activists to spend a miserable Christmas break knocking on doors in the cold.
And imagine if because of how the timing for these things work, the election were to fall on Thursday 7th November 2024.
It could mean that the first full week in November plays out as follows:
On Tuesday 5th November, the United States goes to the polls.
On Thursday 7th November, Britain holds its own election.
On Friday 8th November, Keir Starmer enters Downing Street, as the first Labour Prime Minister in 14 years.
…And then on Saturday 9th November, Georgia and Arizona finally finish counting, and Donald Trump is declared the next President of the United States.
Yeah, you might want to stock up on the Diazepam just in case1.
Because unfortunately, though such a week would be contingent on several things happening, I don’t think it is completely implausible.
Trump would have to win the Republican nomination – which seems overwhelmingly likely. Then he’d have to win the General Election, which will effectively be a coin flip in terms of his chances.
And here in Britain, Rishi would have to call the election by the 3rd of October, to leave at least 25 working days for the campaign, as legally mandated. That would be in the middle of conference season, so it might be an irresistible opportunity to hold a big pep-rally, attempt to set the news agenda, and then announce he’s going to the country in his big speech2.
In any case, whether my wild speculation on the timing is proven right or wrong, it is conceivable that on January 20th, 2025, Keir Starmer will be Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Donald Trump will once again be President of the United States.
But leaving aside the emotional convulsions these events in quick succession will cause, I think it is a weirdly under-discussed topic in Britain. Because if this not-particularly-unlikely thing plays out… what the fuck happens next?
Read on and I’ll tell you.
Amazingly this is, in theory, my actual specialist subject. I’ve got both a BA and a Masters in International Relations, so if this were an Aaron Sorkin drama, I’d definitely attempt to do a credentials smackdown of anyone challenging my views. So read on to read my ‘expert’ insight. Or to see me embarrass myself and prove my two degrees are not worth the paper they are written on.
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