Justin Trudeau faces challenging meeting with Donald Trump tomorrow
by Elliott Troop (feat. Colin Robertson)
Feb 12, 2017
On Monday, Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, will visit President of the United States, #Donald Trump, for the first time in a meeting of polar opposites. Trudeau has opened Canadian doors to thousands of Syrian refugees whereas Donald Trump is attempting to close United States borders to those in need; Trudeau is a self-described feminist whereas Donald Trump has an extensive history of making misogynistic comments: Trudeau has committed to tackling climate change whereas Donald Trump has denied the impact of global warming.
A meeting of opposites
Monday's encounter between the President of the United States and the Prime Minister of Canada will set the tone for Canada and the United States' relationship over the next four years. Approximately seventy-five per cent of Canada’s exports go through the US and around three million Canadian jobs are dependent on the US.
As news of the meeting broke, Trudeau addressed reporters 'I will be highlighting Canadian values and principles primarily. The other responsibility that I have is protecting jobs and opportunities for Canadian citizens'. Trudeau faces a balancing act like many Canadian PMs throughout history, but none have been confronted with a President like Donald Trump.
'Trudeau has the advantage'
Like Theresa May's meeting with Trump a couple of weeks ago, Monday's meeting is about establishing a personal relationship between the two. According to Colin Robertson of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute, Trudeau has a significant advantage over other world leaders when it comes to meeting Trump. Robertson said: 'Trump surrounds himself with celebrities and attractive people. Trudeau has that aura that few world leaders have'.
In Canada, Trump is deeply unpopular. In November, a poll revealed that over eighty-five per cent of Canadians preferred Hillary Clinton. Thousands of Canadians have taken to the streets to protest Trump. Although Monday's meeting is primarily to establish relations between the two, Trudeau faces pressure to take a firm line on Trump's divisive policies in the same manner European leaders have. Several countries have publicly condemned Trump, but the #canadian pm has yet to take a public stance on Trump.