Obama might head to the UK

Barack Obama is more popular in Europe than America
Barack Obama is more popular in Europe than America

Plans have been pencilled in for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama to visit the UK.

The news, revealed in the Guardian, will cause excitement in political circles where Mr Obama has whipped up as much, if not more, excitement than he has in his home country.

The visit would come as part of a European tour, possibly next month, and would give Gordon Brown a chance to balance his attentions after hosting presumptive Republican nominee John McCain last March - much to the ire of Labour party rank-and-file.

For Mr Obama, the trip offers a vital opportunity to shed his image as being lightweight on foreign experience. Standing outside Downing Street with Mr Brown and the Elysée Palace with French president Nicholas Sarkozy gives Mr Obama valuable diplomatic credentials.

Last week's international survey by Pew showed 74 per cent of Brits had confidence in Mr Obama, compared with 44 per cent for his Republican rival.

On the continent - traditionally further to the left than Britain - the finding were even more definitive with 84 per cent of French people having confidence in Mr Obama.

Downing Street could not confirm the news. "Any travel plans for Barack Obama are for his team to confirm or otherwise," a spokesperson told politics.co.uk.


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