The White House is assailing Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, saying he “stabbed us in the back” and undermined U.S. President Donald Trump after Trump left the G-7 economic summit early for Singapore.
White House trade adviser Peter Navarro told Fox News, “There’s a special place in hell for any foreign leader that engages in bad-faith diplomacy with President Donald J. Trump and then tries to stab him in the back on the way out the door … that’s what bad faith Justin Trudeau did with that stunt press conference.”
Navarro added, “To my friends in Canada, that was one of the worst political miscalculations of the Canadian leader in modern Canadian history. All Justin Trudeau had to do was take the win.”
Trump left the Group of Seven summit in Quebec early Saturday to head to Singapore for his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
After Trump left, Trudeau called new U.S. tariffs on aluminum and steel “insulting.”
“We leave and then he pulls this sophomoric political stunt for domestic consideration,” White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told CNN. “You just don’t behave that way. It’s a betrayal.”
Kudlow said Trump negotiated the communique in “good faith,” and had called at the summit for “no tariffs, free trade.”
But Kudlow said Trump “gets up in a plane and then … Trudeau stabs him.” He said Trump “is not going to let a Canadian prime minister push him around.”
U.S. wouldn’t sign communique
While airborne, Trump ordered U.S. officials to refuse to sign the traditional end-of-summit communique.
“Based on Justin’s false statements at his news conference, and the fact that Canada is charging massive Tariffs to our U.S. farmers, workers, and companies, I have instructed our U.S. reps not to endorse the communique as we look at tariffs on automobiles flooding the U.S. market!” Trump said on Twitter.
“PM Justin Trudeau of Canada acted so meek and mild during our G7 meetings only to give a news conference after I left saying that, ‘US Tariffs were kind of insulting’ and he ‘will not be pushed around.’ Very dishonest & weak. Our Tariffs are in response to his of 270% on dairy!” he added.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel told ARD television that Trump’s withdrawal from the communique through a tweet is “sobering and a bit depressing.”
French President Emmanuel Macron attacked Trump’s stance, saying, “International cooperation cannot be dictated by fits of anger and throwaway remarks.” He called Trump’s refusal to sign the communique a display of “incoherence and inconsistency.”
Trudeau did not respond to the U.S. attacks, instead declaring the summit a success.
“The historic and important agreement we all reached” at the summit “will help make our economies stronger and people more prosperous, protect our democracies, safeguard our environment, and protect women and girls’ rights around the world. That’s what matters,” Trudeau said.
But foreign minister Chrystia Freeland said, “Canada does not believe that ad hominem attacks are a particularly appropriate or useful way to conduct our relations with other countries.”
Canada refuses to budge
Trudeau closed the annual G-7 summit Saturday in Canada by refusing to budge on positions that place him at odds with Trump, particularly the new steel and aluminum tariffs that have drawn the ire of Canada and the European Union.
He said in closing remarks that Canada will proceed with retaliatory measures on U.S. goods as early as July 1.
“I highlighted directly to the president that Canadians did not take it lightly that the United States has moved forward with significant tariffs,” Trudeau said following the summit. “Canadians, we’re polite, we’re reasonable, but we will also not be pushed around.”
British Prime Minister Theresa May echoed Trudeau, pledging to retaliate for tariffs on EU goods.
“The loss of trade through tariffs undermines competition, reduces productivity, removes the incentive to innovate and ultimately makes everyone poorer,” May said. “And in response, the EU will impose countermeasures.”
U.S. Republican Sen. John McCain, a vocal Trump critic, offered support for the other six world leaders at the Canadian summit.
“To our allies,” McCain tweeted, “bipartisan majorities of Americans remain pro-free trade, pro-globalization & supportive of alliances based on 70 years of shared values. Americans stand with you, even if our president doesn’t.”
Trudeau and May also bucked Trump on another high-profile issue: Russia. Trump suggested Russia rejoin the group after being pushed out in 2014 when it annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula. Trudeau said he is “not remotely interested” in having Russia rejoin the group.
May added, “We have agreed to stand ready to take further restrictive measures against Russia if necessary.”