Justin Trudeau plans campaign-style tour of Canada

Justin Trudeau attempts to re-establish grassroots connection with Liberal supporters

Prime Minister Trudeau meets students with the Forum For Young Canadians in Ottawa. March 23, 2016. (Adam Scotti/PMO)

Prime Minister Trudeau meets students with the Forum For Young Canadians in Ottawa. March 23, 2016. (Adam Scotti/PMO)

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is ringing in the new year with a determined effort to re-establish his connection with grassroots Canadians after closing out 2016 amid accusations of kowtowing to wealthy donors at elite Liberal fundraisers.

Trudeau is planning to embark on a campaign-style tour, talking to average folks at coffee shops and church basements across the country.

His communications director, Kate Purchase, says Trudeau will make three or four pit stops each day of the tour.

It was initially slated to take up six or seven days over the next three weeks, with breaks for a trip to the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and a two-day cabinet retreat before Parliament resumes at the end of the month.

But the Prime Minister’s Office announced Friday that Trudeau has cancelled plans to attend the elite Davos summit of business, academic and government leaders. Instead, he’ll expand the cross-country tour, spending more time meeting more ordinary Canadians in more locations.

Expansion of the tour came on the same day that news emerged that Trudeau, his family and some friends spent the holidays on a private Bahamian island owned by the Aga Khan, a wealthy philanthropist, hereditary spiritual leader of the world’s Ismaili Muslims and a long-time Trudeau family friend.

The first leg of the tour is to start at the end of next week with Trudeau travelling Highway 401 from Ottawa to London, Ont., with an overnight at Canadian Forces Base Trenton.

That will be followed up by stops in British Columbia, Quebec and the Prairies, with events still being planned for the Atlantic provinces.

Purchase says the events will be a mix of traditional town hall-style, question-and-answer sessions and more informal mingling with people in coffee shops and church basements.

“We see this as part of a concerted effort to remain connected to Canadians, at home in their communities,” she says.

“The prime minister wants to hear from them how they are feeling at the start of 2017, what their concerns and anxieties are and what we can do to help alleviate that.”

The tour may also be intended to reverse the slippage in Trudeau’s popularity over the final months of 2016 as he deflected allegations of unethical fundraising practices over his appearance at multiple events where donors contributed as much as $1,500 to the Liberal party in order to rub shoulders with the prime minister.

It will also feed into consultations leading up to his government’s second budget, likely to be introduced in February or March.

The budget, the highlight of the winter parliamentary sitting, is expected to focus on the government’s innovation strategy, which Purchase describes as anticipating economic opportunities of the future and helping middle-class Canadians take advantage of them.

In addition to the tour, Trudeau is to convene a cabinet retreat in Calgary on Jan. 22-24.

He held a retreat in nearby Kananaskis in the spring, but Purchase says the Calgary gathering will give ministers a chance to tap into the mood in the oilpatch following decisions late last year to approve two pipelines and to impose a national price on carbon as part of a pan-Canadian climate change strategy.

Trudeau will not be attending the Jan. 20 inauguration of Donald Trump as president of the United States, an event not customarily attended by Canadian prime ministers.

As for the Davos summit, Jan. 17-20, the PMO says the Canadian government will be well-represented by a number of cabinet ministers.

“The forum is a prime opportunity to highlight Canada’s strength as a place to invest, grow and establish new business opportunities and our ministers will be doing that work and building new relationships,” said spokesman Cameron Ahmad.

This year’s summit is focused on a theme close to Trudeau’s heart: developing ways to ensure the benefits of economic growth and social progress are spread more equitably, to counter the frustration over unevenly shared prosperity that has led to an explosion of protectionism, populism and nativism around the globe.

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Justin Trudeau plans campaign-style tour of Canada

  1. He is travelling to try to promote innovation?????!!!! What a joke!!! This liberal government is totally blind to innovation. Here is my experience with this government. I approached them, sending emails to my MP, the Prime Minister, the Minister of Defence, and the Science and technology Ministers. I detailed how I had been working on a science project for over 35 years and have finally been successful in the development of an entirely new propulsion system. I have converted centrifugal force into directed thrust. I have a working prototype and a patent pending. This new propulsion system will replace every jet and rocket engine. It continually accelerates in outer space. It can be adapted for commercial, and even domestic lifting purposes. It has no speed limit. It works in any environment, air, under water, in space. It is a completely closed unit with no external vents or moving parts. This will create several entirely new industries. Our liberal government has totally ignored me or shuffled me off to some bureaucrat who has no understanding, power, or ability to help.
    This new invention could have provided tens of billions of dollars in tax revenue for our federal and various provincial governments. But now I find myself in discussions with corporations in other countries. This will end up being further developed and manufactured somewhere other than Canada. The related industries will be developed outside of our country and we will miss the economic development, jobs, and tax revenue that this will create. This could have been avoided if these Liberals had any foresight, business experience, or just general intelligence.
    I am so disappointed with this government. It makes me wonder if there is a single intelligent brain among the entire government.

    • Call the Aga Khan maybe he can help.

  2. Certainly different than spending time and money in other countries.
    The problem is these “pit stops/coffee shops” will be filled with nothing but fans and sycophants.
    Realistic and constructive thoughts rarely if ever get heard and certainly not acted on.

  3. He will have a lame duck tour.

  4. I suppose it’s good Justin gets out on a tour like this. He’s the Liberal’s cover boy after-all and they might as get as much use out of him as they can before his looks are gone.

  5. Trudeau accepts a gift from the Aga Khan worth thousands of dollars in vacation time on a private island, a person whose Foundation receives millions of dollars from the Government of Canada.

    How is this NOT a conflict of interest.

    • It is! They just find ways around the truth.

  6. So after a year of traveling the world and meeting with millionaires and attending lavish private parties, he’s finally decided to tour Canada? I’m sure it’s nothing to do with being shot down in the media for barely being in Canada at all does it? It’s too late Turdeau, nobody cares about you and you’re gonna be gone next election, so fast, and by a landslide.

  7. Frankly I’m tired of hearing about Travel’in Trudeau and all the nothing he is doing. We have military veterans killing themselves and their families, and what’s he doing about it or anything else in Canada….. nothing but traveling. Military personnel in this country should be treated like rock stars, not like something you scrape off the bottom of your boot.
    When is Travel’in Trudeau going to start doing the real job of the PM, instead of what he thinks it is which is traveling leaching off the public purse. is this con man going to start really doing something for this country, instead of just making up taxes to fuel liberal pet projects or is this it, is this all the man is, just some fraud that’s going to travel around for the next 3 years of his term while important issues flap in the wind.

    • What can you expect from a trust fund baby, who has never had to earn a living?
      From his mother ( and father too) he learned life is a party….for those who can afford it.
      And have you ever looked at the facial expressions on the lame brains that are into the “selfie” culture….it’s all about looks, and mememememe.
      That he is so generous with other peoples’ money , for his own photo ops, is something else he probably thinks is funny too.

      He and his freeloading wife ( and mother, in-laws, nannies- & others in his entourage) are having such a good time- while laughing all the way to the ( off shore-tax-free) bank.

  8. He should use a bicycle…sounds like a long trip, and with the entourage of his mother, in-laws, kids, wife, makeup artists, hairstylists, nannies, and others necessary ( for him) to boost his ego and affirm his narcissistic ego – could leave a huge carbon footprint.

    Better still, how about he use his untaxed trust fund to sponsor his selfie tour?

  9. Now Canadians know why so many Muslims are working in the federal government! He is buds with Khan. Islam will be running Canada in the near further? I wonder if junior is a closet Muslim?

  10. This is as “grass-roots” as your gonna get…I will not be able to meet with our esteem P.M. (since I live in a area that is not on his itinerary), however, I would like to state, as in my opinion, that we as a country are going to get screwed by those other nations that feel the need to be in control of all matters to the rest of the world…My belief is that we should take care of our house first, then give help to those who need it most. At one time we had the opportunity to become a self-sustaining entity with all our natural resources, but instead the leaders of the day choose to sell most of it off so we could buy it back as a finished product, and now we citizens are paying the price. Would not the unemployment figures be down had we become self-sustaining? Would not inflation be a little instead of a lot had we governed the prices for our own finished products? Why would our taxes be so high if we did not have to import finished goods? Because most of the natural resources are sold, or foreign interests OWN companies that raw materials are harvested, we are now at a point that we really have no say to what happens to those countries who REALLY could use a helping hand…I just don’t see how we, as a nation, could rely on the field of technology to pull us out this quagmire when this particular field had been on the table all along and yet nothing seems to have changed…(unless you include the Carbon Tax)

  11. Have fun!

  12. Trudeaus optics are dreadful, he simply has to start abiding by his own pronouncemments and guidelines. Openness, consultation, honesty etc none of which is happening. The provinces are being ordered around on matters of Provincial duri Its ato his shame, sadstriction, take it or leave it approach is dictatorial not cooperative. He is succeeding in making Harper look really good.

  13. These will be closed door “Campaign Meet and Greets”. If you aren’t a card carrying member of the LPC you ain’t gett’n in. There will be the usual parade of Unicorn seekers and Rainbow watchers and the flashes from the selfies will blind those who attend. There won’t be an honest question asked and the answers will vary so far from the truth so as to make him seem almost credible!

  14. The two main reason are his popularity is falling faster than his mom underware at a stones concert and the government credit card is maxed out on his other 10 vacations in a little more than a year. I would doubt very much it will be in any churches but instead probaly mosque’s and only in 3-4 provinces why only 4 he is to scared to show up in the other 6 the locations will be secrete to fill the timmy’s with liberals supporters only.

  15. They should call it the “Echo Chamber Tour”.

  16. I would like to know what this charade of a tour is costing us. We the middle class can’t take anymore hits to the pocket book. It would be my guess that it’s costing about $15,000 a day.