Former U.S. Ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman speaks at a breakfast function in Ottawa on Feb. 26, 2015. (Photo: Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
Canada has made business for our dairy farmers in Wisconsin and other border states very difficult. We will not stand for this. Watch!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 25, 2017
U.S. President Donald Trump walks along the West Wing Colonnade at the White House in Washington on April 21, 2017. (Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP via CP)That was the same advice offered by several actors Tuesday. These ex-ambassadors, the Canada-U.S. Business Council lobby group and Obama's former White House public-diplomacy director Brett Bruen all said the Canadian government should meet the complaints with calm. Instead, said Bruen, the government should build political alliances. He urged it to speak with Americans who agree with Canada's position. For example, he suggested reaching out through the Home and Garden network to homebuyers hurt by more expensive wood. He said that would give Canada power in a negotiation later. The Canadian government has been working on building such alliances. It's no accident some in government have taken to renaming ''softwood lumber,'' as, ''home lumber.'' Also, federal ministers are now fanning out across the U.S.
"It's goofy stuff, unbecoming of our relationship, and frankly unbecoming of the leader of our country."The latest was Treasury Board president Scott Brison, who spoke at the same Detroit conference as the ex-ambassadors. He also spoke about his ongoing efforts with American colleagues to co-operate on regulations, in an effort to trim product costs. Brison used a hockey analogy for that bilateral co-operation, one built upon the Detroit legend whose name will soon adorn a binational bridge, funded by Canada. ''A Gordie Howe hat trick is a goal, an assist and a fight. It's a bit like the Canada-U.S. trade relationship. ... The fights only last about five minutes. So let's keep our sticks on the ice,'' Brison said in an interview. ''Let's put some pucks on the net in areas where there's absolute agreement.''
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