At a fundraiser in Missouri a few days ago Trump was bragging about lying to Justin Trudeau, Canada’s prime minister. The topic was Canada’s trade balance with the U.S. Trump claimed Canada ran a surplus and had a short argument with Trudeau about this. Needless to say, Trudeau knows the numbers, while Trump goes with whatever he thinks will advance his agenda – which in this case was building support for his tariffs on steel and aluminum.
Perhaps worse than the lie itself was Trump’s retelling of it to the Missouri crowd. He seemed proud that he could “get away” with being able to make statements that have no relationship to verifiable facts. The problems with Trump’s behavior are manifold and well recounted by Charles Blow in the NYT.
No doubt Trudeau is aware of how just carelessly Trump treated him and Canada – our largest trading partner and closest ally. Trump seems to think that the U.S. doesn’t need any one else. At this rate we could well find out.