The guest list for Margaret Thatcher’s funeral Wednesday is out — with, no surprise, plenty of American conservatives.
The official U.S. delegation, with no top officials from the Obama administration, is headed by George Shultz and James Baker, who served as Secretaries of State during the Thatcher years. Former vice president Dick Cheney, Henry Kissinger, Newt Gingrich and Ross Perot will also attend, reports AP — but as personal guests, not part of the delegation. U.S. House Speaker John Boehner is sending three Republicans: Reps. Michele Bachmann, Marsha Blackburn and George Holding.
The polarizing Iron Lady will be honored with a “ceremonial funeral” — one step down from a state funeral, but with plenty of pomp and tradition. Anti-Thatcher protestors are expected to line the streets near St. Paul’s Cathedral and have been given permission London police to turn their backs on the former prime minister’s coffin, reports the Guardian.
More than 2,000 are expected at the private service including Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, current Prime Minister David Cameron and his predecessors, and several international dignitaries and British celebrities such as Joan Collins, Michael Caine, David Frost, Shirley Bassey, and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Not attending? President Obama or any of the former U.S. presidents, although all were invited. Despite Thatcher’s close relationship with her husband, Nancy Reagan declined citing her age; Fred Ryan, chair of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation, is attending in her place. Also declined: The Argentine ambassador to the the United Kingdom, still smarting over the 1982 Falklands War.