Christy Clark, former Premier of British Columbia from 2011 to 2017, had some big words for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during her last appearance on CBC News.
“Canada’s international reputation is really important. I think that if Justin Trudeau continues to be our prime minister after the election, we should take away his passport,” said Clark, half-jokingly.
Clark clarifies her statement by rattling off several of Trudeau’s international blunders.
“The mess in India, the mess with TPP, the Japanese, the Koreans, the Saudis, our relationship with the United States, and of course all the issues around blackface. I don’t think Canada’s reputation internationally is strong, and I don’t think the fact that we have a minority government that might be headed by Mr. Trudeau that keeps him at home is really going to be a terrible thing for Canada.”
To clarify what Clark is referencing, here is a quick rundown of each of the above incidents.
Trudeau’s mess in India
In February of last year, Trudeau took a week-long trip to Canada’s ninth-largest trading partner and international ally, India.
While there, Trudeau dressed in various Indian garbs, prompting many to wonder if the get-ups veered into “costume” territory. While there, Trudeau announced a $1 billion Canadian-Indian investment deal, while he and his entire family donned Indian attire that drew “less than flattering” attention.
Besides this, Trudeau caught massive flack for his inviting of a Sikh extremist who was convicted of attempting to murder an Indian state minister to dinner with high-ranking Indian politicians.
Trudeau’s TPP fumble
In 2017, Trudeau skipped out on major talks regarding the Trans-Pacific. Rather than meeting with the heads of 11 countries in Viet Nam to negotiate and revise the TPP deal, Trudeau played hookey, avoiding the conference room altogether. Moments later, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe cancelled the meeting.
According to Global News, sources at the event reported that Trudeau had met Abe prior to the leaders’, and decided to meet with Facebook representatives rather than go to the leaders’ meetings.
Trudeau’s missteps with Japan
Trudeau’s poor impressions with the Japanese don’t just end there. When Trudeau met with his Japanese counterpart on Parliament Hill,” Trudeau referred to Japan and Canada’s “90 years of diplomatic relations between Canada and China,” before quickly correcting his error.
Trudeau’s geographic blunders aren’t few and far between, either. Whether it was his forgetting the existence of Baltic nations, or Canada’s Twitter feud over the release of detained women’s rights activists with Saudi Arabia, Trudeau’s international image has taken more hits than it can handle.
That’s not even considering the international headline-making blackface incident, which saw Trudeau’s Google search results reach their highest in over three years.
While Chirsty Clark may have been joking, it would serve Canada’s international reputation a lot of good.