Members of parliament are dismissing a new poll that shows most Canadians believe Prime Minister Justin Trudeau should stand up to President Donald Trump, even if it leads to a trade war with the United States.
It found that 58 per cent of Canadians surveyed would support a trade war with the U.S. they put new tariffs on Canadian exports.
The New Democrats have been calling on the prime minister to talk tough with Trump for weeks on matters like the travel ban and trade negotiations.
But Conservative foreign affairs critic Peter Kent believes this likely isn’t the best path forward with our largest trading partner.
“This is a time for relationship building, not necessarily headline making and staking out positions that may be more or less controversial,” Kent explained. “I don’t think the government policy should be set by pandering to public opinion.”
The foreign affairs, finance and defence minister’s have been in Washington this week holding high level meetings.
Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr said they can still achieve a lot through friendly diplomacy.
“Canadians want the prime minister to stand up for Canadian interests and that’s exactly what he’s doing,” Carr said. “To make the argument that there’s integration in these economies, that there is mutual interest.”
With so much at stake, there is a lot riding on the first meeting between Trudeau and Trump.
While White House officials have said that meeting could happen this week, the Prime Minister’s office said no date has yet been confirmed.