Speed Reads

Well Isn't that special?

After meeting with Biden, Boris Johnson tries to make 'indestructible relationship' happen

On the one hand, Thursday's inaugural meeting between British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and President Biden went better than many in Britain expected, Politico London reports. Biden and Johnson "appeared to genuinely get on well, perhaps better than some on the British side had imagined," and Johnson's office was also "breathing a big sigh of relief" that Biden and his team "chose to — so far — steer clear of a bust-up over Brexit and Northern Ireland."

On the other hand, Biden reaffirmed the "special relationship" between Britain and the U.S. after their bilateral meeting, using a phase Johnson finds "needy and weak," Tom McTague reports in The Atlantic. Biden told reporters, "We affirmed the special relationship — that is not said lightly — the special relationship between our people and renewed our commitment to defending the enduring democratic values that both our nations share," and then tweeted out a condensed version.

BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg asked Johnson which adjective he would like better than "special," and Johnson had some ideas. "It's a relationship, you can call it the deep and meaningful relationship, the indestructible relationship," he said, in an interview published Friday morning. "It's a relationship that has endured for a very long time, and has been an important part of peace and prosperity both in Europe and around the world." 

"If Johnson somehow gets Biden to say the words 'indestructible relationship' this weekend then things really will have gone better than expected," Politico suggests. And if Biden uses "deep and meaningful relationship," it's probably best if he's talking about his marriage.