Tories trash Trudeau trade tactics on NAFTA in preview of fall priorities
Conservative House Leader Candice Bergen took Justin Trudeau to task on Monday for what she described as his failures to get a NAFTA deal done.
In a press conference outlining the Conservative priorities for the fall parliamentary sitting, Bergen said the party planned to focus its criticism on trade and the Liberal fiscal record. She said that will include things like nationalizing the Trans Mountain pipeline and insisting on including progressive chapters on gender rights, labour rights and the environment in the trade negotiations it has pursued so far.
“What the prime minister had done in these trade negotiations is tick people off,” Bergen said of NAFTA.
“We all understand Trump can be who he is but the prime minister hasn’t helped things.”
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Bergen was asked what, specifically, the Conservatives would have done differently if they were in charge of the negotiations.
“We certainly wouldn’t have gone in and lectured on things like gender rights and the environment,” she said.
The progressive chapters the prime minister has been pursuing include setting up stronger labour protections and measures to strengthen gender equality, as well as Indigenous rights.
Those have been irritants for the United States during the current NAFTA negotiations.
Trudeau insists including such chapters are critical to addressing some of the root economic fears and instability driving global populist movements.
— More to come