Sarah Elliott

Sarah Elliott

Background

Sarah Elliott is the chairwoman of Republicans Overseas UK, a political organisation which aims to support and represent the interest of American citizens living in the UK and encourage wider participation in the US federal elections.

An American citizen, Elliott has lived in the UK since 2014 and according to the Republicans Overseas UK’s website, she previously had a career in Washington DC advocating for Republican values.

She has repeatedly spoken favourably of US President Donald Trump and said she was “honoured” to welcome him for his state visit to the UK in July 2018, adding he had “great support here in the UK”.

Elliott has been an outspoken Brexit supporter, calling it “an opportunity for the UK to do business with the rest of the world”.

She has repeatedly called for the UK to use its “special relationship” with the US to sign a free trade deal with Donald Trump’s America.

Elliott is married to Matthew Elliott, the former chief executive of Vote Leave, co-founder of the Taxpayers’ Alliance, former senior research fellow at the Legatum Institute and editor-at-large of Brexit Central.

On the Republicans Overseas UK’s website, Elliott is described as “living out the special relationship everyday as she is married to an Englishman, and they have one daughter together”.

Elliott previously worked for the Republican National Committee's major donor programme.

Between July 2014 and July 2018, she was the managing director of the American European Business Association, which aims to “enhance commerce and transatlantic cooperation”. At the time, Elliott was based in London.

Describing her job to the Conservative Book Club, Elliott said: “I bring together a select group of senior transatlantic executives over lunch to meet with global business leaders in an off-the-record setting 8-10 times a year. The speakers range from ambassadors to the chairman of BAE Systems to the Governor of the Bank of England.”

She served as a major gifts officer — managing fundraising affairs for Americans for Prosperity, a US right-wing libertarian campaign group co-founded by David Koch, a fossil fuel magnate who co-owns the Koch Industries.

Koch is well-known for funding a host of organisations which spread disinformation about climate change and Americans for Prosperity has consistently opposed government regulation on power generation.

In her book, “Dark Money: The hidden history of the billionaires behind the rise of the radical right”, Jane Mayer wrote that Americans for Prosperity has been accused by critics of “using the guise of nonprofit status to work, behind a screen of anonymity, on behalf of the Kochs' corporate and political interests”.

In an introduction to a video called “Climate Change Gets the Cold Shoulder”, uploaded in December 2015, Americans For Prosperity wrote: “Environmentalists are frustrated. They’ve worked so hard, for so long, to get the United States on board with a binding international climate treaty. So far every attempt has failed, in large part because the American public is just not convinced.

The main problem with alarmist propaganda of the last two decades is that they can only cry wolf so many times before the public begins to doubt the story.”

The video was later removed from the group’s website.

Elliott also worked as the manager of political research at the Americans for Tax Reform advocacy group, which according to the group’s website, “opposes all tax increases as a matter of principle”.

The group has repeatedly opposed a carbon tax and previously denied the global climate consensus arguing that the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was causing a “global cooling”.

Key Deeds

September 2018

Elliott wrote her first opinion column for The Times’ Red Box, titled “What Republicans in Britain think of Trump, and his chances of survival”.

She criticised Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation into whether Donald Trump and his campaign aides colluded with Russia to sway the 2016 presidential election as a “witch hunt” and a waste of taxpayers’ money.

She wrote: “To the Democrats’ chagrin, still no indictment of collusion. To Republicans, this is a waste of money and needs to wrap up. If Mr Mueller hasn’t found anything by now, most likely he won’t.”

July 2018

Elliott fiercely defended Donald Trump’s state visit to London, criticising the anti-Trump protests as “embarrassing for the British”.

She appeared on BBC Newsnight and Sky News and urged the UK to work with President Trump and his team to secure a US-UK free trade deal.

She also wrote a column for the Evening Standard, slamming the “hysteria” which surrounded Trump’s visit in London

We all need to take a breath and a step back to really look at his presidency thus far. I have, and now I am a former Never Trumper,” she wrote.

Elliott invited International Trade Secretary Liam Fox to the Republicans Overseas’ 4th July party in London. She praised Fox’s efforts to push for a US-UK free trade deal.

Fox posted pictures of the event on Twitter which included a selfie with Elliott.

Responding to Fox’s tweet, Elliott wrote: “@LiamFox thank you for your inspirational and encouraging words about the #specialrelationship last night at the @UKGOP 4th of July Party! With leaders like you, the future is bright for UK-US relations and a post-Brexit Britain! #J4ROUK18 #GlobalBritain

February 2017

According to a Republicans Overseas press release, Elliott, then vice chair, and Malise Sundstrom, then the organisation’s chairwoman, “met with a Number 10 government relations team to see how Republicans Overseas could work to strengthen political and cultural ties and reinforce the Special Relationship”.

Image Credit: Republicans Overseas/ Twitter