President Trump and U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May. Photo: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images

The U.K.'s ambassador to the U.S. has the "full support" of the prime minister, a spokesman said in a statement to news outlets. He made the comment after President Trump said he'd "no longer deal" with ambassador Kim Darroch over leaked cables showing he criticized Trump.

We have made clear to the U.S. how unfortunate this leak is. The selective extracts leaked do not reflect the closeness of, and the esteem in which we hold, the relationship."
— U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May

The big picture: The prime minister's spokesman maintained the British Government's stance that it's important for ambassadors to provide honest assessments of the politics in their country, per the BBC. The government has launched an inquiry into the leaking of the information to the Mail on Sunday tabloid.

  • Darroch is due to leave Washington, D.C., at the end of this year.

Why it matters: As a top U.S. ally's ambassador, Darroch meets regularly with senior officials in the Trump administration, Axios' Dave Lawler notes.

  • May will be replaced this month, probably by the Trump-friendly Boris Johnson. If this is more than a passing dispute, the new PM will have to decide between standing by Darroch and the British diplomatic service, or making an early goodwill gesture to Trump by choosing a favorable replacement, per Lawler.

Go deeper

SurveyMonkey poll: Trump improves, but not enough

Trump and Biden during the final debate. Photo: Xinhua/Liu Jie via Getty Images

President Trump's final debate performance exceeded Americans' expectations, but it wasn't enough to shift the dynamics that left him trailing Joe Biden across most measures, according to a new Axios-SurveyMonkey poll.

What they're saying: "Liar" was the word used most by debate watchers to describe Trump's performance, followed by "lies," "strong," "presidential" and "childish." "Presidential" was the word used most to describe Biden's performance, followed by "liar," "weak," "expected" and "honest."

Hunter Biden saga dominates online debate

Data: NewsWhip; Table: Axios Visuals

The mainstream media turned away. But online, President Trump's charges about Hunter Biden were by far the dominant storyline about the final presidential debate, according to exclusive NewsWhip data provided to Axios.

  • Coverage of business dealings by Joe Biden's son — and pre-debate allegations by one of his former business associates, Tony Bobulinski — garnered more than twice as much online activity (likes, comments, shares) as the runner-up.

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