Meghan Markle and Prince Harry ‘not as adored’ in US as first thought

Harry and Meghan criticised amid royal visit to New York

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were in New York last week on a visit which coincided with the UN General Assembly and President Joe Biden’s coronavirus summit. In an appearance at the Global Citizen Live concert, Harry and Meghan called for vaccine equity and urged pharmaceutical companies to waive their intellectual property rights on coronavirus vaccines. During the concert aimed to raise awareness for the climate crisis, vaccine inequality and poverty, Harry told the crowd: “We’re battling more than the virus alone.

“This is a battle of misinformation, bureaucracy, lack of transparency and lack of access, and above all, this is a human rights crisis.”

On September 23, the pair also went to Ground Zero in lower Manhattan, to visit the 9/11 memorial and pay their respects to those that died in the terrorist attack.

Meghan also visited a primary school in Harlem a day later in a bid to promote children’s literacy, and read her new children’s book The Bench to the class.

Harry and Meghan made shockwaves around the world when they stepped down as senior members of the Royal Family in March last year and moved to California.

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The Sussexes were thought to be extremely popular in the US, however a royal expert has claimed this may not be the case based on some coverage they received while in New York.

Pod Save the Queen is hosted by Ann Gripper and features Daily Mirror royal editor Russell Myers.

Mr Myers, referenced New York Post coverage of the couple and said: “I was really interested in what traction this got in the States.

“The only thing I’ve seen banding around Twitter was the New York Post taking a swipe at them for rolling up into town with a load of gas-guzzling vehicles, big security detail.

“I don’t think it’s got a lot of traction in the United States. 

“Obviously there is an audience for them and we are covering it, but I don’t know necessarily whether they are as adored in the United States as we were first thinking.”

Last week, the New York Post ran a front page headline about the couple which read: “Clueless California tourists visit NYC”.

On September 27, the publication also noted the couple’s decision to return from the Global Citizen Live event in a private jet, despite previously speaking out on climate change.

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American tabloid Page Six ran a story making the same point.

YouGov polling of 1200 US adults on November 23, 2020 suggested that Harry and Meghan were not as popular in the US as Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge.

The poll found that 63 percent of US respondents viewed Kate very or somewhat favourably, while Meghan only claimed 57 percent of favourable support. 

Meanwhile, William garnered an impressive 66 percent of support, surpassing his younger brother Harry on 62 percent.

The Queen is also favoured over the Sussexes with 68 percent of Americans viewing her as very or somewhat favourable.

Another YouGov poll found that Meghan and Harry’s popularity in the US decreased after the Oprah Winfrey interview in March.

The survey, which was conducted March 13-17 of 1,500 US adults found that only around 40 percent of respondents felt personal sympathy for the Sussexes.

What’s more, Harry’s favourability rating dropped by 4 percent over the previous year and his unfavourability rating rose by 9 percent.

Meghan’s favourability rating dropped 3 percent and her unfavourability rating rose by 10 percent.

Despite having quit the Firm and the royal duties that come with it, Mr Myers also compared Harry and Meghan’s New York visit to a “royal tour”.

He said: “It was like a royal tour.

“There was a full itinerary, the security aspect of it, there was meeting the great and good from the political and activism world.”

Mr Myers added that they were: “Talking on the world stage, meeting with the governor and the mayor of New York and then meeting the deputy secretary general of the UN.

“So it was very full on.”

Ms Gripper replied: “They definitely made a statement that ‘we’re here and we mean business.’”

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