Facing minority Parliament, Trudeau tells MPs to play nice with opposition


OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is telling his caucus to play nice as Liberal MPs meet today before the House of Commons resumes sitting again next week.

Trudeau says Canadians sent their elected officials a clear message to do better and they have to take that seriously.

He says political grandstanding doesn’t create jobs, and his governing party needs to reach across party lines and regional divides to work on behalf of Canadians.

Trudeau says the government’s top priority is ratifying the new North American trade deal because continued economic access to the United States is essential to the livelihoods of millions of Canadians.

He says the agenda also includes a new ban on assault weapons, strengthening health care, battling climate change, and seeking meaningful reconciliation with First Nations.

But he says none of that is doable is unless the MPs from all parties work together, and that effort starts with the Liberals.

“It’s up to us to work more with other parties, to work more across the country, as we take Parliament seriously. We need to make it work,” he said is in his opening speech to caucus.

“Bickering, grandstanding, petty politics — none of these things create jobs. They don’t make anyone’s retirement safer, or our environment cleaner. Collaboration, dialogue, and constructive debate however can.”

The Liberals were reduced to a minority government in October’s election and will need co-operation from at least one of the other official parties in order to get anything passed in Parliament.


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