Meghan Markle ‘outraged’ palace by ‘playing in US politics’ with royal title, say sources

Meghan Markle has ruffled feathers at Buckingham Palace after using her royal title for political lobbying.

The palace insists the royals should have “no say in American politics” and a courtier described her brazen actions as “outrageous.”

According to senior royal sources, the Duchess phoned two Republican senators to petition them about paid parental leave and both were shocked by the cold calls.

Senator Susan Collins of Maine told the Politico website: “Much to my surprise, she called me on my private line and introduced herself as the Duchess of Sussex, which is kind of ironic.

She added to The New York Times: “She just weighed in that she thought paid leave [a controversial policy in the US] was really important, and I told her people were working on it.”

Meghan stepped back from royal duties last year and moved to California with Prince Harry, where they’ve invested in lucrative businesses and enjoyed a very royal tour of New York.

It’s not the first time the Duchess has been slammed for using her royal title inappropriately.

She recently sent a plea for parental leave to senior US politicians, writing on personalised notepaper and signing off as the Duchess of Sussex.

Shelley Moore Capito, a senator for West Virginia, also received a surprise call from Meghan.

She told Politico: “Honestly, I thought it was Senator [Joe] Manchin. His calls come in blocked.

“And she goes, ‘Senator Capito?’ I said, ‘Yes.’ She said, ‘This is Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex.

"I couldn’t figure out how she got my number.”

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A source close to the Duchess said she contacted congress members “in her personal capacity as an engaged citizen”, but palace aides are uneasy about her brash actions.

A spokesperson told The Times: “The royal family has no say in American politics. Campaigning is important, but there’s a difference between campaigning on ‘issues’ like the environment and mental health, and aligning yourself with policies.”

They added: “The Duchess of Sussex doesn’t have the right to have a more powerful voice [on the issue] than any other mother in America. She should not be playing in politics.”

Under federal US law, workers can take up to 12 weeks off after having a baby, but they’re not legally required to receive pay.

President Biden’s $3.5 trillion plan to cover up to two-thirds of wages for 12 weeks was scrapped, but it’s now back on the agenda.

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