'I'm sorry I said what I said' - Macleans.ca

‘I’m sorry I said what I said’


Justin Trudeau attempts to explain himself.

“I’m sorry I said what I did. I was wrong to relate the area of the country that Mr. (Stephen) Harper is from with the people who live there and with the policies that he has that don’t represent the values of most Canadians,” said Trudeau, who was speaking at the Vancouver Art Gallery, on the final stop of his B.C. tour.

Trudeau said Conservatives are making the comments an issue because “they are panicking they might lose a byelection in Calgary Centre.” He dismissed any notion that his remarks may have hurt the Liberals’ chances in Calgary. “There is a sense that people (in Calgary) are tired of being taken for granted by a government that is taking this country in the wrong direction,” he said. “The energy has an awful lot of Conservatives very frightened. So when they get scared they attack.”


‘I’m sorry I said what I said’

  1. Dang. Looks like we’ve all been part of one huge focus group since the first trial balloon.

    • You think they do have lots more in the can?

      • Depends how low the thin skinned/ hyper-political bar is set.

        (btw – the trial balloon I was referring to was the initial JT campaign response yesterday pm, not the first in a possible treasure trove of similar JT quotes. The search engines are working overtime)

        • Then it would seem to me that it would be better to bring them out after JT was elected leader. I don’t think the Liberals can survive one more disastrous campaign. Why let the cat out of the bag now?

          • Could be anyone who watched the original program that remembered and brought it to Sun’s attention. A sort of piling on after McGuinty thing.

  2. Justin said Albertians…,McGuinty said Alberta,
    There would be no story had they said Conservatives.

    Trudeau did not apologize for stating that Quebec should run the country.

    It was a feeble and poor apology…it won’t help his “we are all Canadian” cause.

    • Has Harper ever apologized for anything [other than to FNs, which to be fair wasn’t all his fault, ]
      Really. That’s an honest question. At the moment i can’t come up with a single contrite, genuine apology from Harper related to anything he has said politically.

      • According to Tom Flanagan on last night’s PnP Harper apologized for the culture of defeat marks at the beginning of the 2006 campaign. None of the other panelists disputed Flanagan, but I can’t find any campaign coverage from the time to confirm it.

        I think its also worth noting that while the PM and the PM hopeful’s past divisive comments can be compared in content, they’re very different in context. Trudeau is running as a candidate to ‘bring people together’ and to practice non-divisive politics, (at one point in this interview he even says he’s not going negative, which is an odd thing to describe a non tampered with interview you freely gave). If that’s your appeal as a candidate, you can’t have clips floating around the internet of you saying highly divisive things.

        • I wouldn;t disagree with some of that . I imagine this hurts Trudeau’s brand.

          But your context point is off – basically spin. Harper’s said lots of things about representing the whole country, right after he’s finished disparaging different parts of it. He just hasn’t been able [until recently] to stop saying mean things about parts of it he doesn’t like.

          Before Harper i cannot recall a PM making these kind of bigoted comments – not even PET actually said he thought westerners were all bums and creeps.
          Edit: Forgot about Chretien’s remarks about AB…but that was just Jean being a kidder.

          • I’m not familiar with the bums and creeps comment, though I hope no federal leader would ever use that kind of language to describe any part of the nation.

            To address my point on context, I’m not trying to diminish what Harper’s done, just point out that why people vote for Harper is very different than why Trudeau is trying to convince people to vote for him. Harper’s greatest strength as a campaigner is his policy focus. He’s not the kind of leader who can create a coalition of electorates through sheer force of personality (like Mulroney or Trudeau the elder), rather he’s created that coalition through a pretty consistent policy message, and effect attacks on the personal leadership of his opponents.

            Trudeau greatest electoral advantage is like his father, being the personal brand that carries his party. Specifically an image as a national unifier. People will vote for him in part because of that personal brand, not because of policy. If you’re a policy candidate like Harper glib comments on brand politics can hurt you, but it doesn’t diminish your big draw, namely policy. Its also why Harper’s comments on healthcare did hurt him in 2004 and to a lesser extent in 2006, because they presented policy possibilities must voters didn’t want. For candidates like Trudeau national divisive comments like last night’s hits a lot closer to home. Which is why I think last nights re-discovered comments will hurt Trudeau far more than Harper’s “culture of defeat” comments ever did.

      • When did Harper bad mouth a province or say a particular province should run the country?

        • Keep scrolling and reading… “culture of defeat” (Eastern Canada)… kcm brought this one to our attention below:

          “You’ve got to remember that west of Winnipeg the
          ridings the Liberals hold are dominated by people who are either recent
          Asian immigrants or recent migrants from eastern Canada: people who live
          in ghettoes and who are not integrated into western Canadian society.”

          …I know there are other examples, but this makes for a good start…

        • Love the fact you limit the sin of derogating other Canadians to a slur on a particular province per se.

  3. Well he’s being kind to Cons here. They attack because they’re Cons. It’s what they do.

    But they certainly do seem to be frightened about the byelection.

    • Cons as in the party structure, its executives and leadership or Cons as in those who believe in the ideology of Canadian conservatism?

      • Whatever that party is that Harper’s running…wing-nut/tea-baggers/Repubs north….isn’t ‘conservatism’ of any kind.

        I was PC for 30 years….and then I tried Reform in all it’s disguises…nope, it’s not conservatism

        I am socially progressive, fiscally conservative. Harper’s bunch is the opposite.

        • What policies suggest that the Current government represents tea bagging Republicans?

          • They call them SoCons now, but it’s old SoCred again.

            And when they dropped the word ‘Progressive’ they reverted to about 1950.

          • So by changing the name of their party the suddenly represented the values of half a century ago?

          • You might remember Reform broke away from the PCs…became their own party. They were quite different ….SoCred, SoCons, not ‘conservative’

          • What’s kind of policy positions does a classic Canadian conservative take in your view?

          • For starters….Canadians can have anything they damn well want, as long as we can pay for it.

          • That’s a hard balancing act.

          • Not really.

          • I’d argue that the idea that Canadians should have what they want but with the caveat of being able to pay for it represent two very different views of government. Objections to big government aren’t just about fiscal efficiency.

          • No, it’s just supply and demand

            Objections to ‘big govt’ are purely rhetorical.

          • I think you’ll find most libertarians, on both the right and the left, disagree with you on that.

          • Libertarians are moochers….and bat shit crazy.

          • You are one of the most articulate people I have ever conversed with on the subjects of political philosophy and the pressing policy issues of our day. Truly, it is astounding the measures to which you go to offer a thoughtful account of your opinions. Don’t ever give in to the pressure to simply use oddly structured zingers and talking points, because if that day ever comes than that very well might signal the end of rational debate in this country.

          • Heh….well I can’t write an explanatory essay every time, and it wouldn’t do any good anyway.

            Ayn Rand said Libertarians were ‘right-wing hippies’ and I agree with her.

          • :)

  4. now can we get on to the money laundering going on in montreal with a guy by the name of demitri ?

    • National post is guarding that story pretty jealously I’d presume.

  5. Well I think he should run with but try to shift it from being a politicians of Alberta rather than Alberta theme. but I guess this isn’t exactly making it worse.

  6. I am still not sure if Trudeau thinks Canadians who voted for Harper are Canadians or not – Harper Cons have won a few elections on the trot now, so what is Trudeau talking about? People who voted for Cons – the majority of Canadians outside Quebec – are bad people?

    It is hard to know with deep thinker that is Trudeau.

    • 60% of Canadians didn’t vote for Harper

      • And 81% of Canadians didn’t vote for Trudeau’s party, what’s your point?

        • ‘People who voted for Cons – the majority of Canadians outside Quebec’ was what you said. That’s simply not true.


    • many aren’t bad, but a good too many are ideologues or ill-informed

    • Won a few? ummm….more like stole a few.

  7. So first we are told that Justin’s factually accurate comments were “taken out of context” and now we are told that really wasn’t the case and Justin is somewhat sorry and apparently it is now all about values and let’s forget that real point in Justin’s comments was not at all about values it was about who should be running Canada and according to Justin at the time it was clearly people from Quebec and not people from some other “area of the country”
    What a pathetic response.

    Perhaps Justin should have unequivocally apologized and then shut up.

    • He’s apologized. It isn’t perfect, nothing in politics ever is. Has Harper ever apologized for stuff like this:

      “You’ve got to remember that west of Winnipeg the
      ridings the Liberals hold are dominated by people who are either recent
      Asian immigrants or recent migrants from eastern Canada: people who live
      in ghettoes and who are not integrated into western Canadian society.”

      Please spin this away. It is at least as retarded as JT’s equating of Harper’s policies/world view with Alberta.[ more so in my partisan mind]
      They both need/needed to grow up. At least in my mind Harper’s road to adulthood is a lot longer one than Trudeaus.

      • I am not excusing the comments from Harper but in response I would point out that those comments are in the public domain and in spite of them Harper has been elected as the PM. Now Justin Trudeau has to answer for his poorly chosen words thus far I would submit that Justin’s response has been lacking.

        That said I also highly doubt that anyone who is currently on the Justin cheerleading bus is about to jump off because of these comments. I will say that it does demonstrate a pattern of Liberal elitism when Justin suggests that only when Quebec based Liberals are entitled to correctly rule Canada does the country move in the proper direction (again according to Justin Trudeau). This level of arrogant elitism is what average Canadians despise about Liberals and naturally Conservatives are politically capitalizing on Justin’s error.

        As for Harpers comments that you posted they were (in my view) certainly ignorant in contrast but they were not elitists. It’s one thing to mock those who support other political parties but in my view quite another to suggest that ONLY when Quebecers run the country does it move the right way – this all coming from someone (Justin Trudeau) who is born into privilege that is proportionally provided more so by Alberta taxpayers then from any other Province.

  8. When you get down to it i suppose the real damage Trudeau has done to himself is reawakening questions of whether he is ready for real power and responsibility? He’s been a meat head, pandering to a home grown audience like that. But luckily for him he’s running against SH and TM, not perfection.
    Dang that CPC war room is good though eh! Pulling that clip out right on cue after the McGuinty gaffe, and just in time to get it to air in Calgary.
    Anyone spot a puffing wheezing PP legging it over to Sun tv from the PMO bunker?

  9. Thats no apology!! |How stupid.

    • What kind of apology do you want to see then? Why should he apologize for saying he thinks Harper doesn’t rep the values of most Canadians? That’s a matter of debate, not fact. The rest of his remarks are simply standard politics.

      • Strategically it would have been smarter to leave out the bits about Conservative meddling, and just own the comments. After all, Liberal members are terrified of what kind of spin the Conservatives will put on their chosen candidate for the next election. Why point out that they’ve already have a pretty damaging Trudeau file?

  10. Most of the Alberta Conservative backbenchers I have seen operating in the House are useless buffoons, Harper’s lapdogs and yes men and women, slapping their hands together, guffawing and hollering as ordered, and stumbling along as they try to read their PMO prepared cheap shots at the opposition. Come on Albertans, you can do better.