Former prime minister Brian Mulroney speaks at the University of Calgary on Sept. 13, 2016. (Photo: Larry MacDougal/CP)
Ex-PM talks Trump, ClintonMulroney, who was the Progressive Conservative prime minister from 1984 until 1993, also diplomatically waded into U.S. politics, where immigration has also been a hot-button issue.
"We have a good process now. People don't just walk in the front door here.""Who's the more qualified? Obviously because of her background, Hillary. She's spent her whole life in public policy," he said, predicting that the outcome of the election will turn on who does better in the televised debate in about two weeks. But Trump, he said, has "caught a wave" with his hardline stance on immigration, particularly from Mexico and Muslim countries — a view Mulroney said he doesn't share. Mulroney's speech to the university's law faculty focused on another controversial issue dominating Canadian politics — pipelines.
Urges Trudeau to act on Energy EastHe urged Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to take a leadership role in ensuring new pipelines like TransCanada's (TSX:TRP) $15.7-billion Alberta-to-New Brunswick Energy East pipeline are built. "This Canadian energy and resource agenda under the prime minister's personal direction would provide hundreds of billions of dollars in new investments, millions of new jobs, bring West and East much closer together and be as transformational and beneficial to the country as any major policy initiative undertaken in Canada in the last 70 years," he said. The regulatory process for Energy East has been mired in controversy. Last week, the National Energy Board recused all three panellists assigned to review the 4,500-kilometre project amid bias concerns. "That's an administrative matter that (Trudeau) will have to resolve," Mulroney told reporters. "All of the institutions that have an impact on this have to proceed with integrity and independence so that when the solution comes forward, it's accepted by all the players."
Promotes Kinder Morgan, tooThough Energy East was the focus of Mulroney's speech, he said other proposals, like Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain expansion to the Vancouver area, must go ahead. The NEB has recommended Ottawa approve Trans Mountain, which also faces still opposition from local communities, and a decision is expected later this year. Trudeau should make breaking the logjam a priority, said Mulroney. "This is the big-ticket item for him right now because the prosperity is staring us in the face." When asked whether he believes Trudeau will take that advice, Mulroney said: "We're going to find out."
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