Canadians aren’t taking the latest from President Trump lying down as he prepares to levy tariffs on our closest trade partner.
In an interview with Meet the Press host on Sunday, Chuck Todd, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded to Trump’s reasoning for the tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum by categorizing our neighbors to the North as a national security threat.
Trudeau said of why his phone call with Trump in may was “testy,”
“The idea that our soldiers who fought and died together on the beaches in World War II and the mountains of Afghanistan and stood shoulder to shoulder in some of the most difficult places in the world and are always there for each other somehow, this is insulting to them.
The idea that the Canadian steel that’s in military vehicles in the United States or the Canadian aluminum that makes your fighter jets is somehow now a threat. The fact that next week we’re hosting the G7 summit of world leaders and the airfield and military base Air Force One is going to land in was put there in WWII to protect an aluminum smelter that was providing to the military effort.
The idea that we are somehow a national security threat to the United States is quite frankly insulting and unacceptable.”
When asked by Todd what he thinks Trump wants from Canada, Trudeau gave an honest and immediate, “I don’t know.”
The tone of bewilderment and disappointment in the breakdown of relations between the Trump administration and Canada was prevalent throughout the interview, which you can watch below.
Trudeau isn’t the first Canadian official to express incredulity and utter confusion over the classification. The Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland was clearly offended at the notion earlier in the week in an interview with CNN’s Dana Bash.
“You think we’re a threat,” Freeland asked rhetorically before going into detail of just how ludicrous the accusation is in an attempt to justify breaking up or renegotiating NAFTA.
Canada is our closest trade partner and their economy is inextricably tied to and reliant upon ours. Why Trump is even contemplating hurting Canadians and Americans over an industry in which Americans have over a $1 billion surplus is shortsighted and idiotic.
Hopefully, Secretary Mnuchin’s reported plan to exempt Canada in this latest round of tariff saber-rattling comes to fruition.
Expanded interview below: