Justin Trudeau on the defensive against his rivals

During a long-awaited televised debate, the outgoing prime minister has battled with the conservative Andrew Sheer, who is tracking him in the polls.

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Justin Trudeau (left) and his main rival for the legislative elections of October 21, curator Andrew Scheer, during the televised debate on October 7 in Gatineau, Quebec. Sean Kilpatrick / AP

Two weeks before the October 21 Canadian legislative elections, outgoing Prime Minister and leader of the Liberal Party, Justin Trudeau, avoided the fatal blows, highlighting the results of his four years in power, during a long-awaited debate that Monday, October 7, the six main candidates.

At the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, southern Quebec, where the debate was held in English, Conservative Andrew Sheer, 40, launched the first salvo against the Liberal leader with whom he is knee-to-elbow in the polls. According to a survey by Nanos Research on October 6, commissioned by the English-language daily Globe and Mail and the CTV television channel, the Liberals came in first with 34.30% of the vote, compared to 33.40% for the Conservatives.

A devout Catholic and father of five, Mr. Sheer portrayed Mr. Trudeau as a hypocrite, recalling the "blackface" affair that shook the campaign and the outgoing prime minister. " He (Justin Trudeau) can not even remember how many times he has worn the blackface, because the fact is that he always wears a mask ", taunted the leader of the Conservative Party of Canada (right).

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"You do not deserve to rule this country"

At the beginning of the election campaign, the Liberal candidate has repeatedly apologized for being black ("blackface") several times. The controversy had begun when the American magazine Time had published a photo dating from 2001 showing a young Justin Trudeau disguised as Aladdin, the face blackened at a gala whose theme was The thousand and One Nights. He was then 29 years old and taught drama in a private school.

Continuing his diatribe, Mr. Sheer recalled the scandals surrounding Mr. Trudeau, including the case of SNC-Lavalin, the Quebec engineering firm whose leaders were found guilty of corruption. "You have interfered in criminal proceedings in progress. When did you decide that the rules did not apply to you? " quipped the Conservative candidate.

In August, the Ethics Commissioner of Canada accused Trudeau of putting pressure on the former justice minister to avoid a lawsuit against the Montreal-based engineering consulting firm, which employs 50,000 people around the world. whole. "Mr. Trudeau, you are a"phony" (slug), and you do not deserve to govern this country, " concluded Mr. Sheer, who himself had gone through a chaotic week, attacked his position against abortion and the fact that he had never mentioned his dual Canadian-American nationality.


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