Michael Jackson Wowed by British Parliament
Fri Jun 14, 7:55 AM ET
By Dominic Evans
LONDON (Reuters) – American superstar Michael Jackson took a guided tour of Britain’s Houses of Parliament on Friday, declaring the gothic palace “a miracle” and gazing in awe at Queen Elizabeth’s golden throne.
“I want that,” the pop legend told his entourage as he admired the throne where Britain’s monarch sits once a year to formally open parliament in the ornate House of Lords.
“Can you get it up to the ranch?” one of his assistants asked three burly bodyguards.
Jackson, accompanied by Uri Geller who had organised the visit and escapologist David Blaine was making a whirlwind visit to Westminster on a brief trip to Britain after asking to see the “mother of parliaments.”
Jackson and Blaine showed particular interest in the extensive House of Lords library. “Do they have cartoons?” Jackson asked. Blaine asked librarians to track down a copy of a 400-year-old book of magic — “The Discovery of Witchcraft.”
“They burned most of the copies,” he explained.
Jackson was shown a statue of World War Two Prime Minister Winston Churchill, a vast canvas depicting the death of naval hero Admiral Nelson, and the original warrant for the execution of King Charles I.
“It’s incredible. It’s a miracle,” said Jackson, wearing a black tuxedo with satin lapels. “I was impressed with the architecture most.”
The pop star was puzzled when told not to sit on the green leather benches in the House of Commons where British MPs often gather for marathon debates.
“Why can’t one sit there? What’s the purpose?” he asked, before briefly settling onto one of the benches to test it. “Are they comfortable after hours and hours?” he asked.
Jackson’s unannounced visit took many tourists by surprise.
“It’s totally amazing,” said star-struck Emilie Williams, 20, from Cedar Falls, Iowa, who said that seeing Jackson had eclipsed any of the marvels in the historic parliament.
The singer also stopped to marvel at the towering Westminster clock known as Big Ben.
Blaine, who recently leapt off an 80-foot (24-meter) pillar he had been standing atop for nearly 35 hours in New York’s Fifth Avenue, said he would like to climb up it.
The three friends were traveling later to the southwestern city of Exeter for a children’s charity event organized by the local soccer club, where Geller is a director
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