The political leaders in the United States are very different than the political leaders in other countries. The United States doesn’t have a royal family, such as many of the other countries around the world, but we do have a President and a First Family. Because our politicians come and go, public opinion on the individual leaders tend to come and go, depending on the popularity of their choices.
England, on the other hand, has a longstanding monarchy, that is largely displaced from their political dealings. The Royal Family of England stays politically neutral, making sure that their subjects don’t know their opinions.
At least that was the case until one redheaded prince decided to marry an American. Whether or not you support the fact that soon to be Princess Meghan Markle has vocal political beliefs, it’s hard to ignore that it’s completely out of character for the Royal family.
Markle, being an avid liberal, has spoken against President Trump on numerous occasions, and that combined with how close Prince Harry was with the former First Family, left commentators and reporters the world over to speculate that President Trump wouldn’t be invited to the royal nuptials and that the former President and his wife, Barrack and Michelle Obama, would be.
However, the surprise that the Royal family dropped on the world is that they don’t plan to invite political figures at all. According to The Independent, commentators were correct when they speculated that the Trumps wouldn’t be invited. What they didn’t count on was the fact that the Obamas wouldn’t be invited either, and neither would British Prime Minister, Theresa May:
Theresa May has not been invited to the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, a government source has said.
Guests to the wedding on 19 May will be people who have an existing direct relationship with one or both of the couple, a royal source told Reuters.
An official spokesman for Prince Harry said: “It has been decided that an official list of political leaders – both UK and international – is not required for Prince Harry and Ms. Markle’s wedding. Her Majesty’s government was consulted on this decision, which was taken by the royal household.”
The government source said the wedding venue, St George’s Chapel in Windsor, was notably smaller than Westminster Abbey where Harry’s older brother Prince William married Kate Middleton in 2011 surrounded by a number of heads of government.
The source said there had been no expectation from Downing Street that the prime minister would be invited.
US president Donald Trump and his predecessor Barack Obama are also believed to have missed out on an invite to the event.
There was speculation the Obamas might be invited because of their burgeoning friendship with Prince Harry. The royal interviewed the former president in a casual setting when he guest-hosted the Today programme in December. It would nonetheless have been diplomatically awkward to invite the Obamas but not the current first couple.
The Obamas congratulated the happy couple on their engagement back in Autumn: “Michelle and I are delighted to congratulate Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on their engagement. We wish you a lifetime of joy and happiness together.”
A decision not to invite political leaders to the wedding would break with precedent.
Then-prime minister Margaret Thatcher and opposition leaders Neil Kinnock, David Steel, and David Owen attended Prince Andrew – who like Prince Harry was a second son – and Sarah Ferguson’s wedding back in 1986.
Invitations to Prince Harry and the Suits actor’s wedding were distributed to 600 guests last month, with 200 close friends also invited to a private celebration at Frogmore House after the ceremony at St George’s Chapel.
Kensington Palace recently revealed the big day would include 250 members of the Armed Forces. The Ministry of Defence also confirmed the Armed Forces would provide ceremonial support.
“Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle are pleased that members of the Armed Forces will play such a special role in their Wedding,” the Palace said in a statement.
Units invited to take part will be ones that “hold a special relationship with Prince Harry” including servicemen and women from the Royal Navy, Royal Marines and Royal Air Force.
“The Military, and these units in particular, hold a great significance for Prince Harry and the couple are incredibly grateful for their support,” the statement added.
Prince Harry served in the Army for 10 years, joining The Blues and Royals in April 2006, serving under the Household Cavalry Regiment and carrying out two tours of Afghanistan during this time.
More than 100,000 visitors from around the world are expected to flood into Windsor for the highly-anticipated wedding next month.”
While we might not ever know for sure why these political figures weren’t invited to what will likely be the social event of the decade, it’s easily speculated that the vocal almost-princess put the Royal family in a bind that they wouldn’t be able to get out of, if they invited some political leaders and not others.