Obama, Not Donald Trump, May Be Invited to Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

The guest list hasn’t been set for the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, but a number of things could stand in the way of President Donald Trump getting an invite.

But a former U.S. president might make the list, due to his friendship with the young British royal: Barack Obama and his wife, former first lady Michelle, who appear to have amiable relations with Harry and his elder brother and future king, Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge.

Asked about the potential guest list, Kensington Palace spokeswoman Julie Barley told Newsweek, “We’re focusing on the happy announcement of their engagement,” adding that invitations “will be announced in due course.”

11_27_ObamaHarry Britain's Prince Harry, right, and former U.S. President Barack Obama at the Invictus Games in Toronto on September 29. Mark Blinch/Reuters

When the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were married, in 2011, the Obamas were left off the guest list because of the added security costs of protecting the president. The day of the wedding, thousands of Britons took the day off, and about 1,900 guests attended the ceremony in Westminster Abbey in central London. The Obamas traveled to the U.K. less than a month later for an official state visit. Since Obama is no longer president, he doesn’t require as extensive a security detail as he once did.

If Trump were to appear at Prince Harry’s wedding in spring 2018, it would likely spark protests. When Prime Minister Theresa May offered Trump a state visit early this year, polls showed that 2 million people intended to take part in a protest against him. The risk of embarrassment, were such a protest to occur at a royal wedding, might put the couple off inviting such a controversial figure.

Instead of a state visit, Trump’s trip to the U.K., scheduled for early 2018, has been cast as a “working trip” where he will not meet the queen. In January, sources said Trump wanted to go “one better” than Obama’s state visit and play golf with Queen Elizabeth II at Balmoral Castle.

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The Obamas have forged a close relationship with Prince Harry. Former first lady Michelle Obama appeared with the 33-year-old royal for charity events in Chicago at the end of October. The former president was overheard quizzing Harry on his relationship with Markle, an American actor, when he sat with the prince at the Invictus Games, a sports event for injured servicemen and women founded by the prince, at the end of September in Toronto. Prince Harry also hosted Obama at Kensington Palace in May.

As for President Trump, Harry's wife-to-be revealed that she was not a fan. In an interview on The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore during the 2016 election, Markle said she might decide to stay in Toronto—where her show, Suits, is filmed—if Trump were to win.

“We film Suits in Toronto, and I might just stay in Canada. I mean, come on, if that's reality we are talking about, come on, that is a game changer in terms of how we move in the world here,” she said.

Markle supported Democrat Hillary Clinton during the election, calling Trump “misogynistic.”

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other Commonwealth leaders are expected to receive invitations to the wedding because of their nations' ties to the British Empire.

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