Justin Trudeau promised to pursue a “constructive working relationship” with President-elect Donald Trump, but assured Canadians that he will continue to make equal rights a top issue for his own administration.
“Canada is a separate country from the United States and there are things that we hold dear that the Americans haven’t prioritized,” the Canadian prime minister said at a town hall event on Thursday. “I’m never going to shy away from standing up for what I believe in, whether it’s proclaiming loudly to the world that I am a feminist, whether it’s understanding that immigration is a source of strength for us and Muslim Canadians are an essential part of the success of our country today and into the future.”
Trump infamously began his presidential campaign by demonizing undocumented immigrants and vowing to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the U.S. As recently as Wednesday, Trump has said that he would build a wall on the Mexican border and somehow get Mexico to pay for it.
During the U.S. presidential campaign, Trudeau did not hide his issues with Trump’s candidacy.
“I’m not going to pick a fight with Donald Trump right now,” he told The Huffington Post Canada last March. “But I’m not going to support him either, obviously.”
But after Trump won the election in November, the Canadian leader called to offer congratulations.
Watch more of Trudeau’s comments in the video below: