Sarah Elliott

Sarah Elliott

Credentials

  • B.A. International Affairs with a Concentration in Spanish, University of Mary Washington. [1]

Background

Sarah Elliott is the chairwoman of Republicans Overseas UK, a political organisation which aims to support and represent the interests of American citizens living in the UK and encourage wider participation in the US federal elections, according to its website. [2], [3]

An American citizen, Elliott has lived in the UK since 2014 and previously had a career in Washington DCadvocating for Republican values,” as well as a brief spell with the Republican National Committee as a public affairs field manager. [2], [1]

Elliott has repeatedly spoken favourably of US President Donald Trump, praising his “policy of getting government out of the way of business” and his tax cuts. She 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.” [4], [5], [6]

Elliott has been an outspoken Brexit supporter, calling it “an opportunity for the UK to do business with the rest of the world.” [7], [8]

She has called for the UK to use its “special relationship” with the US to sign a free trade deal with Donald Trump’s America. [9]

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. [10]

On the Republicans Overseas UK’s website, Elliott is described as “living out the special relationship everyday as she is married to an Englishman.” [11]

Elliott previously worked for the Republican National Committee's major donor program. [1]

Between July 2014 and July 2018, she was the managing director of the London-based American European Business Association (AEBA), which aims to “improve and increase understanding and cooperation between the business community and governments in Europe and North America,” according to its website. [1], [12], [13]

Describing her job at the AEBA 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.” [12]

She led fundraising efforts at Americans for Prosperity, a US right-wing libertarian campaign group co-founded by David Koch. Koch is a fossil fuel magnate who co-owns the Koch Industries and is well-known for funding a host of organisations which spread disinformation about climate change. Americans for Prosperity has consistently opposed government regulation on power generation. [11], [14], [15]

In a book by Jane Mayer entitled “Dark Money: The hidden history of the billionaires behind the rise of the radical right,” 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.” [21]

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.” [1], [16]

Stance on Climate Change

Although Elliott has not publicly expressed a position on climate change, some of the organisations for which she has worked have a history of spreading doubt on climate science and opposing efforts to tackle greenhouse gas emissions.

Americans for Prosperity

In an introduction to a video called “Climate Change Gets the Cold Shoulder,” uploaded in December 2015 during the UN COP21 negotiations which led to the signing of the Paris Agreement, Americans For Prosperity wrote: [17]

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. [17]

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.” [17]

The video has now been removed from the group’s website and YouTube.

Americans for Tax Reform

The group has repeatedly opposed a carbon tax and previously denied the global climate consensus, arguing that the increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was now causing a ”new ice age.” [18], [19]

During a July 2018 press conference in response to a proposed carbon tax bill put forward by Republican Congressman Carlos Curbelo, the group’s founder and president, Grover Norquist, said: [20]

I'm old enough to remember global cooling… All of the stuff about why isn't important. It's just that they want more money again.” [20]

Key Quotes

June 28, 2018

Elliott tweeted her support for Donald Trump's visit to the UK and a post-Brexit free trade deal between the two countries: [9]

Trump’s visit is critical to securing a successful trading relationship for the UK after Brexit. He wants to do business with the UK - Does the UK want to do business with the US? #FreeTrade #TrumpUKVisit #specialrelationship.” [9]

Key Deeds

September 2018

Elliott wrote an opinion column for The Times’ Red Box, titled “What Republicans in Britain think of Trump, and his chances of survival.” [22]

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. [22]

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.” [22]

July 2018

Elliott fiercely defended Donald Trump’s state visit to London, criticising the anti-Trump protests as “embarrassing for the British.” [23]

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. [24], [25], [26]

She also wrote columns for The Telegraph, entitled “If I could learn to love Trump, so can you,” and the Evening Standard, criticising the “hysteria” which surrounded Trump’s visit in London. [4], [5]

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. [5]

International Trade Secretary Liam Fox was a special guest and speaker at the Republicans Overseas’ 4th July party in London. She praised Fox’s efforts to push for a US-UK free trade deal. [27], [28]

Fox posted pictures of the event on Twitter which included a selfie with Elliott. [29]

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.” [30]

February 2017

According to a Republicans Overseas UK 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.” [31]

Affiliations

Social Media

Publications

Resources

  1. Sarah Elliott,” LinkedIn. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

  2. Malise Sandstrom. “Republicans Overseas UK Appoints New Chair!Republicans Overseas UK, June 30, 2017. Archived February 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/US9Ld

  3. About,” Republicans Overseas. Archived February 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/QQZv4

  4. Sarah Elliott. “If I could learn to love Trump, so can you,” The Telegraph, July 13, 2018. Archived February 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/ujSFH

  5. Sarah Elliott. “Sarah Elliott: You would think Genghis Khan was visiting from Londoners' reactions to Trump,” Evening Standard, July 13, 2018. Archived February 11, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/8IfId

  6. [email protected] @UKGOP is ready for your visit! You have great support here in the UK! @UKGOP is having a rally in honor of your visit with the only pollster who predicted your victory @henryolsenEPPC! @USAmbUK @USAinUKpress @Scavino45 @CLewandowski_ @KellyannePolls #MAGA” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, June 28, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  7. As well as, a British public who had 4 decades of BS from the bloated bureaucracy known as the EU, which didn’t have their best interest. So they wanted to take back control of their country.” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, January 7, 2019. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  8. [email protected]USAmbUK thank you for sharing your American optimism about #Brexit! The Brits sometimes need that positive encouragement I couldn’t agree more. It’s an opportunity for the UK to do business with the rest of the world. #Brexit #SpecialRelationship,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, June 28, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  9. Trump’s visit is critical to securing a successful trading relationship for the UK after Brexit. He wants to do business with the UK - Does the UK want to do business with the US? #FreeTrade #TrumpUKVisit #specialrelationship,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, June 28, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  10. Very proud that my wife @SarahBSmithVA did such a good job on @BBCNewsnight this evening, representing @UKGOP. Alongside Michael Heseltine & @CraigOliver100 , she discussed @realDonaldTrump and the #SpecialRelationship,” Tweet by @matthew_elliott, June 28, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  11. Board Members,” Republicans Overseas UK. Archived February 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/Bxdlg

  12. CBC’s 1st Expatriate Member of the Week: Sarah Smith Elliott (UK),” Conservative Book Club. Archived February 6, 2019. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

  13. About us,” AEBA. Archived February 6, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/iYJNQ

  14. The Issues,” Americans for Prosperity. Archived March 11, 2016. WebCite URL: http://www.webcitation.org/6fw826yAG

  15. Energy & Environment,” Americans for Prosperity, January 21, 2012. Archived July 10, 2015. Archive.fo URLhttp://archive.fo/HqsBB

  16. About,” Americans for Tax Reform. February 11, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/BB2Xh. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

  17. Climate Change Gets the Cold Shoulder,” Americans for Prosperity, February 19, 2016. Archived February 21, 2018.

  18. Chris Prandoni. “Americans for Tax Reform Opposes a Carbon Tax,” Americans for Tax Reform, November 13, 2012. Archived February 11, 2019. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

  19. Todd Hollenbeck. “Global Warming Has Brought on A New Ice Age!Americans for Tax Reform, November 10, 2009. Archived October 16, 2015. WebCite URL: http://www.webcitation.org/6cKajZmkA

  20. Nick Sobczyk. “Curbelo rolls out carbon tax plan to deep skepticism,” E&E News, July 23, 2018. Archived February 13, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/88Myk

  21. Jane Mayer. “Dark Money: The hidden history of the billionaires behind the rise of the radical right,” Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2016.

  22. Sarah Elliott. “What Republicans in Britain think of Trump, and his chances of survival,” The Times, September 3, 2018. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/toURk. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

  23. Had a cracking morning talking @LoveIsland and how embarrassing the anti-Trump protestors were for the British with my Blow hairdresser while getting ready for @ChristianJMay and @ElizaFilby wedding! #BritishAmericanProject #TrumpUKVisit,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, July 14, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  24. Will be on @BBCNewsnight 1030 pm tonight to talk about what else - TRUMP! #TrumpUKVisit #SpecialRelationship,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, July 12, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  25. Getting ready to join the amazing @KayBurley on @SkyNews to discuss the President’s visit with Stop Trump Coalition. Should be interesting! #TrumpUKVisit #specialrelationship,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, July 12, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  26. Trump’s visit is critical to securing a successful trading relationship for the UK after Brexit. He wants to do business with the UK - Does the UK want to do business with the US? #FreeTrade #TrumpUKVisit #specialrelationship,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, July 12, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  27. Drew Liquerman. “4th of July Party Party Pictures!Republicans Overseas, September 1, 2018. Archived February 11, 2019. Archive.fo URL: http://archive.fo/o31xP

  28. Chloe Farand, Mat Hope. “Matthew and Sarah Elliott: How a UK Power Couple Links US Libertarians and Fossil Fuel Lobbyists to Brexit,” DeSmog, November 18, 2018.

  29. Speaking at last night’s @UKGOP event to celebrate 4th July,” Tweet by @LiamFox, July 5, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  30. @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,” Tweet by @SarahBSmithVA, July 5, 2018. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

  31. Republicans Overseas UK Chairwoman Malise Sundstrom met with Number 10 Government Relations Team,” Republicans Overseas, February 13, 2017. Archived February 11, 2019. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.