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Canada PM: Changes likely in relations with US regardless of vote outcome

Canada's Justin Trudeau at a meeting with African leaders at a fundraisers for the Global Fund
Canada’s Justin Trudeau at a meeting with African leaders at a fundraisers for the Global Fund

Ottawa, Canada | AFP | 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday he is ready to work with whoever becomes the next US president, and predicted “adjustments” in Canada’s relationship with its southern neighbor after the election.

“Every time the Americans elect a new president there are a certain number of adjustments to be made,” said Trudeau, who declined to share with reporters his preference for who should lead the United States, Canada’s closest ally and biggest trading partner.

“There are going to be changes and there’s going to be a need for Canada to reaffirm the issues that are important to Canadians, to our businesses, to travelers and to our place in the world and that’s exactly what I’m going to do,” he said.

Trudeau declined to share his “personal opinions” on the contest.

“I’m going to have faith in the American political process,” he said.

But he added his Liberal government is examining several possible consequences for Canada of either a Clinton or Trump win.

Arguably a Trump win would be viewed less favorably by most Canadians.

Trump’s pledge to scrap the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which binds Canada, Mexico and the United States, has raised concerns.

The 1994 accord unites 530 million consumers and represents more than one-quarter of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP).

In recent months, Trudeau has railed against “isolationism” and “building walls.”

Although he has not explicitly referenced Donald Trump’s populist campaign for the US presidency, he criticized intolerance and politics of fear and division.

Days before Tuesday’s vote, a new CBS/New York Times poll showed Democrat Hillary Clinton’s lead ebbing and Donald Trump winning over some wary Republican voters.

Clinton with 45 percent support was only three percentage points ahead of Trump.

 

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