Author Topic: PM broaches key issues in phone chat with Bush  (Read 68 times)

Lincoln

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PM broaches key issues in phone chat with Bush
« on: November 03, 2004, 04:52:58 PM »
PM broaches key issues in phone chat with Bush
CTV.ca News Staff

Prime Minister Paul Martin pressed his newly-elected American counterpart on a number of sticky bilateral issues, including mad cow and softwood, when the two spoke Wednesday afternoon.

According to a spokesperson for the prime minister, during their 10-minute chat Martin and Bush agreed to discuss those issues and more when they next meet at the APEC Summit in Chile later this month.

Bush even agreed to visit Canada at some point, Melanie Gruer told The Canadian Press.

Despite Gruer's upbeat tone, Martin was downplaying expectations for a sudden warming of relations between Ottawa and Washington when he talked to reporters earlier in the day.

"We tend to focus on the presidential elections, when a great number of the problems we face, whether it's mad cow or softwood lumber, are in fact in the Senate and in Congress," Martin said.

"That's why we opened up the Canada/U.S. Secretariat in Washington and we really intend to make use of it."

In a scrum outside the Liberal Party caucus meeting, Martin said Bush would need to adopt a "new multilateralism" if he really wants to solve the world's problems.

When asked if he would consider a request to send Canadian troops into Iraq, should Bush issue one, Martin had a pat answer.

"We're playing a very important role in Afghanistan (and) we are doing so in Haiti,'' he said, adding, "There is a limit to the capacity we can devolve.''

Canadian opposition MPs aren't being nearly as diplomatic about Bush's win, nor Martin's pronouncements on relations between the North American neighbours.

"I think we have the same situation we did in the last election when the Liberal government unwisely and again supported the losing side in the election,'' Conservative Leader Stephen Harper said, referring to some Liberal MPs' endorsements of Democrat John Kerry.

"The prime minister has to say to Bush, 'You call yourself a free trader, now step up to the plate," Conservative Foreign Affairs Critic Stockwell Day said.

And the Liberal MP known for her outspoken criticism of Bush, Carolyn Parrish, said she was "dumbfounded," but buoyed by the result.

"I heard this circulating in the halls here and believe that if Kerry had won, we might have been in a very difficult position if he had come to us and said `Look, we need peacekeeping forces there (in Iraq) to put this thing to bed.' How could we have said no?''

NDP Leader Jack Layton said the election outcome means Canada must take a firm stand against the U.S. missile defence program.

"One of the most important issues is to stop a new arms race from creating one of the most dangerous worlds that we could ever imagine,'' Layton said.

"This means that Canadians have to speak up against the missile defence system and say no to participation.''

With files from The Canadian Press

http://sympaticomsn.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/1099345283163_94754483?hub=topstories

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Re: PM broaches key issues in phone chat with Bush
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2004, 05:33:23 PM »
I'm just wondering... how many people here give a shit about Canada?
 

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Re: PM broaches key issues in phone chat with Bush
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2004, 06:18:35 PM »
All 3 leaders are idiots.  Nothings gonna change, the US has bigger problems than Lumber right now.
 

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Re: PM broaches key issues in phone chat with Bush
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2004, 07:43:29 PM »
I'm just wondering... how many people here give a shit about Canada?

You guys deserve Bush.
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