Trump’s Ask for of an Ambassador: Get the British Open for Me
As ambassador, Mr. Johnson has experienced to navigate Mr. Trump’s up-and-down relations with British leaders. The president soured on the key minister at the time, Theresa May well, and berated her on trans-Atlantic cellphone phone calls. His relations with Key Minister Boris Johnson, a like-minded populist, have been hotter, even though Mr. Johnson has from time to time steered obvious of Mr. Trump, who is deeply unpopular in Britain.
A outstanding Republican donor, Mr. Johnson at first supported Jeb Bush for the Republican nomination in 2016, but he afterwards backed Mr. Trump, introducing him to other figures in the party’s income circles. Enlisting Mr. Johnson as an emissary on behalf of his golf system was a further way the president was on the lookout for support furthering his monetary interests.
Over and above the lawful and ethical purple flags, asking for this kind of a favor from his host place would place Mr. Johnson in an untenable place as the emissary of the United States.
“It is diplomatic malpractice because as soon as you do that, you set you in a compromised situation,” said Norman L. Eisen, who served as President Barack Obama’s exclusive counsel for ethics and afterwards as his ambassador to the Czech Republic. “They can constantly say, ‘Remember that time when you built that recommendation.’ No knowledgeable diplomat would do that.”
For Mr. Johnson, 73, London was a reward in good shape for the billionaire heir to the Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical fortune. Formally identified as the Courtroom of St. James’s, the assignment is the plum of the diplomatic corps — a person that will come with a palatial home, Winfield House, and entree to the maximum amounts of British society.
Like quite a few political appointees, Mr. Johnson experienced no diplomatic expertise in advance of arriving in London. Affable and effectively related, he is known largely for the nickname Woody and his possession of the New York Jets, a perennially battling N.F.L. franchise. His changeover to top a big embassy was bumpy.
Mr. Johnson’s throwback style has been criticized as offensive. There have been problems that he complimented the appearances of feminine workers through team conferences, and just after interviewing a applicant to switch Mr. Lukens as deputy main of mission, he asked a colleague no matter whether she was Jewish.