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Rae finds Trudeau’s praise for Stephen Harper hard to swallow

Bob Rae caught on video pretending to gag as PM praised Stephen Harper


 
Former interim Liberal leader Bob Rae is shown in this still image taken from video from the 2016 Liberal Biennial Convention Winnipeg Saturday, May 28, 2016. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered rare praise Saturday for Conservative predecessor Stephen Harper but at least one Liberal elder statesman found it a bit hard to swallow. Rae was caught on video sticking two fingers in his mouth, pretending to gag. THE CANADIAN PRESS

Former interim Liberal leader Bob Rae is shown in this still image taken from video from the 2016 Liberal Biennial Convention Winnipeg Saturday, May 28, 2016. (CP)

WINNIPEG — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered rare praise Saturday for Conservative predecessor Stephen Harper but at least one Liberal elder statesman found it a bit hard to swallow.

Bob Rae was caught on video sticking two fingers in his mouth, pretending to gag.

The former interim Liberal leader later refused to comment on his gesture, which was caught on video by a reporter for The Canadian Press.

The video, posted on Twitter, quickly made the rounds at the Liberal national convention, provoking both hilarity and consternation.

Rae’s gag reflex was stimulated during a speech by Trudeau to the convention, the first such gathering since the Liberals defeated Harper’s Conservatives in last fall’s election.

After taking a few pokes at the Tories, who were simultaneously holding their own convention in Vancouver, Trudeau turned serious.

“We need to remember that even though they may be our opponents, they’re not our enemies. They’re our neighbours and our friends,” he said.

“So, I want to take a moment. You see, there are only a handful of people alive who know what it’s like to do this job … And I can tell you, even if you weren’t a fan of his politics, there can be no doubting Stephen Harper’s commitment to our country.”

Trudeau asked Liberals to join him in thanking Harper, who has let it be known he will retire from politics over the summer, for “his many years of public service.”

Trudeau, the eldest son of former prime minister Pierre Trudeau, said he’s among the few who know first hand that it’s not easy to be part of a prime minister’s family. So he also thanked Harper’s wife, Laureen, and his children, Ben and Rachel, for “standing with him through thick and thin.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks at the 2016 Liberal Biennial Convention Winnipeg Saturday, May 28, 2016. (Photograph by John Woods)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks at the 2016 Liberal Biennial Convention Winnipeg Saturday, May 28, 2016. (Photograph by John Woods)

Trudeau was not all sweetness and light when it came to the Conservatives, however.

He also noted that the Tories had been debating at their convention whether to delete the party’s policy on marriage being the union between one man and one woman.

“Among other things, they’re debating the merits of marriage equality. In 2016. More than a decade after we made same-sex marriage legal in Canada,” Trudeau said to gales of laughter.

“Well, better late than never, right? Who knows, ten years from now they might finally be willing to admit that climate change is real. Or that tax cuts for rich people don’t help the middle class,. Or that government shouldn’t legislate what women are allowed to wear on their heads.”

The Conservatives voted Saturday to drop the sections of its policy opposing same-sex marriage.



 

Rae finds Trudeau’s praise for Stephen Harper hard to swallow

  1. LOL Not everybody is into ‘sunny ways’

    • Alternatively, the speechwriter could have, so to speak, stuffed that sentence down Trudeau’s throat, and Trudeau, giving the speech, was effectively barfing it out. And Rae is merely telling it like it is. And alternatively, the sun could also beat down quite mercilessly on people. Harmful radiation, for example.

      • For example, debates are healthy for a country. Is the speechwriter also involved in trying to shut down debate in the House?

        • Such a gross overstatement about what was happening.

          • If you are referring to my comment on debates specifically, I think you mean specifically a gross over-generalization? I do hope my doubts are not true, and I do hope what Trudeau said is as sincere as he can explain it to be accurate, rather than just for the appearance of a generous gesture. I do hope so, as Trudeau seemed so promising on the starting out.

  2. Love these mature statesmen. Let’s keep blaming elbowgate on the NDP because Libs are never responsible for how they react.

    • Maybe you missed it, but Justin Trudeau actually took responsibility for elbowgate.

      I can see how you might not know that. I mean, it was only in every single news item for days. But if you are only looking for what you want to see, you will miss the truth.

      • I wasn’t speaking about the leader per say but rather all of the Lib partisans who blog and say it was all the NDP’s fault that poor Justin had to get up and walk across the floor to escort the Con whip to his seat while telling the NDP to get the fuck out of his way so he could get on with ramming bill 6 down the throats of Canadians. It truly is amazing how partisans have labelled Justin’s actions as making him more humane as opposed to more of a bully. It isn’t even the ridiculous behavior displayed that makes him a bully

        • but rather his inventing bill 6 that limited the ability of the opposition to debate. Even Harper wasn’t that big of a bully. Amazing that Justin could teach him lessons yet no Lib partisans can see it.

  3. Harper was committed to making Canada unrecognizable. That’s not the same thing as being committed to Canada.

    • What do you think the Lib’s bill 6 was going to do to Canada? Limiting the ability of the opposition to debate in house is changing Canada and our parliamentary system and that dud bill came directly from Justin Trudeau’s Liberals. Most Canadians don’t pay attention to parliamentary procedure. You believe because Justin is warm and fuzzy out in public, he doesn’t have an ambitious side but he does. Pay attention.

  4. Jeez. Can’t a former party leader be left to express his views on another without the world knowing about it? I guess being part of all those Question Periods with Harper during his time in Parliament left an indomitable bad feeling of Harper in Rae’s stomach.

    • When one displays it openly, they get their picture taken and when they act like a child, the picture makes the news.

  5. Bob Rae, as premier of Ontario, let his own MPP’s vote against his own gay rights legislation. Gag on that Bob.

    Took Mike Harris to get the job done on gay rights in Ontario.

  6. Once again Trudeau shows he has more smarts, and more class, than the entire conservative caucus.

    While they continue with their childish heckling in the House, Trudeau makes a high profile speech praising their former leader’s commitment to this country.

    • Yes, it is a shame his words and his actions (bill 6) don’t always match. He isn’t exactly classy, just wiley.

  7. Classy move on Trudeau’s part. Less so (much less so) on Rae’s.

    • Rae at least is being honest. Trudeau is spewing kind words and at the same time is trying to pass legislation like bill 6 to stop debate by the opposition in the house when in fact he only got 39.4 percent of the vote in the election. He is kind of snake oil salesman.

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