US President Donald Trump on Wednesday criticized Prince Harry and his American spouse, Meghan Markle, for their involvement and interest in the 3 November presidential election.
In a press conference at the White House, Trump was asked by reporters about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and their plea to Americans on Tuesday, US National Voter Registration Day, to vote in what they noted is the “most important election of our lifetime”.
“I’m not a big fan of hers. I would say this, I wish a lot of luck to Harry. He’s going to need it,” Trump responded.
President Trump is asked about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle telling people to vote for Joe Biden:— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) September 23, 2020
"I wish a lot of luck to Harry cause he's gonna need it." pic.twitter.com/9OCBeSMguZ
On Tuesday, in a video message released as part of the 2020 Time magazine annual list of ‘100 Most Influential People’, Markle, a US citizen by birth, along with her husband, the UK's Prince Harry, addressed American voters, urging them to use their voices in the country’s upcoming presidential election.
“Every four years we are told the same thing, that this is the most important election of our lifetime,” Markle said. “But this one is. When we vote, our values are put into action and our voices are heard. Your voice is a reminder that you matter, because you do and you deserve to be heard.”
Prince Harry called on American voters to “reject hate speech, misinformation and online negativity” ahead of the election, noting that he has never cast a vote in his life.
“When the bad outweighs the good, for many, whether we realize it or not, it erodes our ability to have compassion and our ability to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. Because when one person buys into negativity online, the effects are felt exponentially. It’s time to not only reflect, but act,” Prince Harry said. “As we approach this November, it’s vital that we reject hate speech, misinformation and online negativity.”
Although the Duke and Duchess did not mention either the Republican President Trump or his Democratic rival Joe Biden, many viewed the high-profile couple's speech as directed against Trump and in support of Biden.
In response to the remarks made by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who stepped down from their duties in the UK royal family and moved to California, Buckingham Palace noted that they were “personal” remarks and thus did not breach royal protocol which prohibits family members from becoming involved in politics.
“The Duke is not a working member of the Royal Family and any comments he makes are made in a personal capacity,” the palace said in a statement, quoted by The Telegraph.
The US election is set to take place on 3 November. Trump and Biden will engage in the first of three presidential debates next week.