MPs will debate an invitation for US President Donald Trump to pay a state visit to the UK after almost 1,000 people in Hartlepool signed a petition opposing the plan.
As of yesterday afternoon, the online petition calling for the visit to be downgraded so that the controversial former reality TV star would be denied a meeting with the Queen, had attracted almost 1,700,000 signatures nationwide, including 961 in the town and 730 in Easington.
A rival petition, supporting the state visit plan, had attracted 120,678 signatures, including 236 and 197 from the two constituencies respectively.
Confirmation of the Westminster Hall debate on February 20 comes amid widespread outrage at Mr Trump’s temporary immigration ban on nationals from seven mainly Muslim countries.
Support for calls for the visit to be downgraded rocketed after the president announced his travel ban.
It had only 60 signatories on Saturday, but had soared to 500,000 by 6.20pm on Sunday.
The calls divided readers on the Mail’s Facebook page.
David Wheelhouse wrote: “I like Trump, he told the Americans what he was going to do, they voted for him and now he’s carrying it out , what’s the problem? Our Politicians spout a load of lies we vote for them and then they do nothing. Top respect to Donald Trump.”
But Natasha Maddison replied: “He didn’t win the election by popular vote though did he? Hence why so many Americans are unhappy & protesting about what he is doing. He is nothing more than a facist. The way he speaks about women, disabled people, Mexicans, muslims etc is appalling.”