Trump Warns Harry & Meghan US Taxpayers 'Will NOT Pay' for Their Security Costs
President says Duke & Duchess of Sussex will not get Secret Service protection in America
President Donald Trump has warned Prince Harry and Meghan Markle that American taxpayers "will not pay" for their security costs now they have moved to Los Angeles.
The president was responding to reports that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex would need to ask his administration for "special help" from Secret Service for protection.
The news comes as it was revealed the anti-Trump Sussexes had dumped Canada and crossed the border into the United States to start their new life in America.
After leaving Britain and moving to Canada, the couple was enjoying round-the-clock security, courtesy of the Canadian taxpaying public.
Their protection from the Canadian Royal Mounted Police outside their home in Vancouver was due to cease on the same day that their status as working members of the royal family ends on March 31.
However, President Trump has final say over whether Meghan and Harry can have diplomatic protection in the US.
After Trump tweeted to say US taxpayers would not contribute toward protecting them, the pair insisted they never intended to ask the president for help with security costs.
"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have no plans to ask the U.S. Government for security resources," a Sussex spokesman said in response.
"Privately funded security arrangements have been made."
The Sussexes' quick-fire reply came hours after Trump said the couple should foot the bill for their own bodyguards.
"I am a great friend and admirer of the Queen & the United Kingdom," Trump tweeted Sunday.
"It was reported that Harry and Meghan, who left the Kingdom, would reside permanently in Canada.
"Now they have left Canada for the U.S. however, the U.S. will not pay for their security protection. They must pay!"
I am a great friend and admirer of the Queen & the United Kingdom. It was reported that Harry and Meghan, who left the Kingdom, would reside permanently in Canada. Now they have left Canada for the U.S. however, the U.S. will not pay for their security protection. They must pay!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 29, 2020
The bill for their security, which includes a roster of nine highly skilled British officers shuttling between the UK and US, is estimated to be as much as £8 million ($9.92M) a year and is covered by British taxpayers through the Metropolitan Police budget.
They also received support from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Royal sources had said that if Harry and Meghan wanted help with security from the Secret Service in the US, which protects international diplomats, a request would have to be made to the State Department.
Ultimately the decision would have rested with Trump, and he made clear today that the US taxpayer would not help fund the couple's security.
It is not known what the "private" security arrangements Meghan and Harry claim to have made are.
It emerged last week that the duke, 35, and duchess, 38, had moved to California before the border with Canada closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Meghan's mother Doria lives in Los Angeles, and the former actress grew up there.
The couple took a private jet with their son Archie, ten months, just before non-essential travel between Canada and the US was suspended.
Trump has the final say over whether the couple can have US-funded diplomatic protection in the US, because Harry will no longer be classed as an "international protected person" when he completes the final phase of Megxit next week, according to a royal source.
Their decision to move to California came shortly after the Canadian authorities said they would refuse to contribute to the cost of protecting them with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police after March 31.
They have been clear from the beginning that they wish to "stand on their own feet" and there are already lucrative contracts in the pipeline, including one with the Oprah Winfrey Network.
Former Home Office Minister Norman Baker told the Mail on Sunday: "They're going to Los Angeles in order to make packets of money.
"There will be waterfalls of dollars cascading their way.
"And they're now private citizens. Why should we pay for them?
"We can't have a situation in which members of the Royal Family can choose to live anywhere in the world, however dangerous, and expect us to pay.
"The dangers in LA are much more significant than in the backwoods of Windsor."
The prince's chances of building a good relationship with the US president may have been undermined when a leaked phone call saw him say Trump has "blood on his hands."
Russian hackers managed to connect to the couple's Canadian bolthole where they persuaded the prince that he was speaking to Swedish eco-activist Greta Thunberg and her father.
In the calls Harry took aim at the President's environmental record, he said: "I think the mere fact that Donald Trump is pushing the coal industry is so big in America, he has blood on his hands."
He later added: "Unfortunately the world is being led by some very sick people so the people like yourselves and the younger generation are the ones that are going to make all the difference."
Meghan has also had issues with President Trump in the past, blasting him as "misogynistic" and "divisive" in a television interview before he was elected to office.
The Megxit process will finally be complete on Tuesday when the couple will stand down as senior Royals.