Donald Trump’s trip to his mother’s homeland brings the presumptive Republican presidential nominee to Scotland. He insists the trip’s timing – arriving on the day of the UK Brexit vote – is just a coincidence.
The celebrity billionaire from New York will attend a ceremonial re-opening of his Trump Turnberry golf course – which he bought in 2014 and renovated at an estimated cost of $290 million (256 million euros) – on Saturday.
In one of several moves that have irritated some Scots since his investment in the country began, Trump – whose mother is from the Isle of Lewis – insisted that the Scottish government’s wind energy project , 11 offshore wind turbines, be arranged so that golfers wouldn’t see it.
A neighbor of the property in the coastal village of Balmedie, David Milne (pictured below), is flying a Mexican flag in protest at the real estate magnate’s visit. Milne says Trump fought him over the boundaries of their properties before erecting a fence and sending Milne the bill.
Protests are planned and Scotland’s current First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is expected to snub Trump.
A left-wing group called Scotland Against Trump, meanwhile, is organizing a rally. Scottish Muslims have publicly invited him to visit a mosque. They don’t expect him to say yes.
Trump on Brexit
Trump has also repeated his position this week that the UK should leave the EU. In December Trump blasted Europe’s “weak leaders” and three months later – after the terror attacks in Brussels – he warned that Europe had “very, very severe” problems with containing extremism.
The UK Prime Minister David Cameron – who is on the Remain side in the Brexit debate – attacked Trump’s position on Muslims as “stupid, divisive and wrong,” to which Trump replied: “It looks like we’re not going to have a very good relationship.”
Trump said on Wednesday that Europe’s migration crisis is a “mess,” admitting that he hadn’t studied the Brexit issue closely, but felt that Britain “should walk away.”
“When you look at the things that are going on over there, my inclination would be go it alone and go back to where you came from,” he told Fox News. “That’s just my feeling.”