PUBLISHED: 12:24, Mon, Nov 2, 2020 | UPDATED: 12:24, Mon, Nov 2, 2020
Philip, like the rest of the Royal Family, abstains from voting or interfering in politics to help preserve the nature of the constitutional monarchy. The royals often use their soft diplomatic powers to help the UK’s standing with other nations, and the Queen regularly hosts heads of states at Buckingham Palace. However, when the then President and First Lady, Barack and Michelle Obama, visited the Royal Family, the Queen and her husband clearly had a natural bond with the couple.
Mrs Obama first breached royal protocol by putting her arm around the Queen in 2009 — only for the famously stiff monarch to return the gesture.
Her Majesty also has a close bond with the former President, according to reports.
A former Palace employee told royal author Tom Quinn: “The Queen has a soft spot for Americans after meeting Barack Obama who she completely fell in love with — so much so that she has frequently asked her courtiers if they could arrange for him to come to Britain now he is no longer President.”
Her husband is clearly fond of the Obamas, too, although their bond has got slightly more under the radar.
Prince Philip, Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, the Queen and Donald Trump (Image: Getty)
Philip and the Queen greet the Obamas when they arrive at Windsor Castle ine 2016 (Image: Getty)
During the couple’s first state visit to the UK in 2011, Philip was seen laughing enthusiastically with Mrs Obama just before their state banquet.
Philip even insisted on acting as chauffeur for the couple after he and the Queen entertained the pair with a private lunch in 2016.
The Duke of Edinburgh was quick to greet both of the Obamas with a handshake, before gesturing them towards the Range Rover and climbing into the driving seat.
While the drive was only 400 yards from the White House helicopter Marine One to Windsor Castle, the surprising move was seen as a sign of informality between the two couples.
Mr Obama later told reporters: “I have to say I have never been driven by a Duke of Edinburgh before and I can report that it was very smooth riding.”
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Philip insisted on driving the Obamas in 2016 (Image: Getty)