As millions across the country decide who to vote for in the upcoming Canadian elections, former POTUS Barack Obama shared some kind words for Canada’s current Prime Minister on Twitter.
“I was proud to work with Justin Trudeau as President. He’s a hard-working, effective leader who takes on big issues like climate change,” writes Obama.
“The world needs his progressive leadership now, and I hope our neighbors to the north support him for another term.”
I was proud to work with Justin Trudeau as President. He's a hard-working, effective leader who takes on big issues like climate change. The world needs his progressive leadership now, and I hope our neighbors to the north support him for another term.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) October 16, 2019
The two leaders worked together for a short tenure between 2015-2017 and shared common ground battling climate change.
However, Liberal practices have recently been attacked by opposition leaders Jagmeet Singh, Elizabeth May, and teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg after the Trudeau government purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan in a bid to push the project forward.
Trudeau responded to Obama’s tweet just two hours later saying, “Thanks my friend, we’re working to keep our progress going.”
The exchange has garnered international attention with several major media outlets reporting on it just minutes afterwards.
Thanks my friend, we’re working hard to keep our progress going. https://t.co/l4V42PZbef
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) October 16, 2019
Once it happened, Canadian Twitterati took to the social media platform to speculate whether or not the interaction counted as “foreign interference”.
In response, Elections Canada stated that the exchange does not count as foreign interference because it was not paid for.
Here is their official statement:
“All individuals, Canadian or non-Canadian, are free to express their views on any topic during an election. A foreign citizen speaking about the Canadian election does not by itself constitute an instance of undue foreign influence under the Canada Elections Act.”
“Who has incurred the expenses and for what reason would be among the factors that need to be considered before determining if undue foreign influence has taken place.”