Kudlow: Canada's Trudeau Stabbed Us In The Back


President Donald Trump's top economic adviser Larry Kudlow slammed "double-crossing" Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Sunday over his statement criticizing the United States on trade policy.

Trudeau said Saturday that Canada will "move forward with retaliatory measures" on July 1 in response to the Trump administration's decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

"I have made it very clear to the President that it is not something we relish doing, but it something that we absolutely will do," Trudeau said. "Canadians, we're polite, we're reasonable, but we also will not be pushed around."

"It was a betrayal," Kudlow said on CNN's "State of the Union."

"I was there, involved in these late night negotiations. President Trump was charming, good faith," Kudlow said. "They were getting along famously. He went through those two days of conferences talking about the need for a new free trade system, no tariffs, no barriers, no subsidies. He is a trade reformed... and we were very close to making a deal with Canada on NAFTA, and then we leave, and Trudeau pulls this sophomoric political stunt for domestic consumption."

"If you're going through a treaty process and you have good faith... You don't walk away and start firing bullets."

On Saturday Trump accused Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of making "false statements" and said that the US will not endorse a G7 communique:

In his interview Sunday, Kudlow accused Trudeau of making his comments for "domestic political consumption" and doing "a great disservice to the whole G7."

"He really kind of stabbed us in the back," Kudlow said. "Trudeau made an error. He should take it back. He should pull back on his statements."

Kudlow accused Trudeau of “pouring collateral damage" on the high-stakes talks with North Korea tonight/tomorrow.

"He ought to come out and apologize in the name of the western allies,” Kudlow said of Trudeau. "He ought to come out today and wish President Trump well in the negotiations instead of taking pot shots at him."


JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: Hello. I'm Jake Tapper in Washington, where the state of our union is solo. And I'm not talking about the new "Star Wars" movie.

President Trump is in Singapore for what could be the biggest meeting of his entire presidency. North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un is also on the ground meeting with Singapore's prime minister.

But, right now, it is the news President Trump made on the way to his meeting in Singapore that is rattling world order. As President Trump is preparing to improve U.S. relations with that brutal dictator, he seems to be throwing out two days of diplomacy with U.S. allies, slamming Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as -- quote -- "very dishonest and weak" and announcing that the U.S. will not sign a joint statement agreed to by all nations at the summit.

Let's go straight to Singapore and CNN's Kaitlan Collins.

Kaitlan, what is the latest?

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Jake, this is real. It is actually happening.

It's something that a lot of doubters and experts didn't think it would actually come to this, but President Trump and Kim Jong-un are finally on the same soil, Kim Jong-un landing earlier today, President Trump landing just a few minutes ago.

And now everyone will be watching to see what comes out of this potentially historic summit when the two leaders do sit down Tuesday morning here to talk and see what comes out of that. What is the president looking for?

He has said denuclearization in the past, but, lately, he's been saying it will only take one minute for him to see what it is, if Kim Jong-un is serious about committing to denuclearization.

That is something that is still largely up for discussion, that it's not clear what the North Koreans are willing to commit to.

That is going on the heels of this G7 summit that the president really upended as soon as he got on Air Force One with a single tweet, tweeting about the prime minister in the way that he did. Certainly a lot of diplomatic moves here, Jake, to keep an eye on.

TAPPER: All right, Kaitlan Collins in Singapore, thanks so much.

Now, here with me is the top White House economic adviser, Larry Kudlow. He was with the president at the G7 summit. He was doing a lot of the negotiating on that communique.

Larry, thanks so much for joining us.


TAPPER: We really appreciate it, as always.


TAPPER: But let's start with this unprecedented decision from the president to not endorse the communique that you had been negotiating.

Was this the plan all along, or was this completely a reaction to Justin Trudeau, the Canadian prime minister?

KUDLOW: Completely a reaction. I appreciate you putting that out there.

Look, we went there. All the punditry was saying, A, President Trump might not even go to G7, B, we will never sign a communique because, C, we're not going to work with other people.

Well, we did in good faith. I personally negotiated with Prime Minister Trudeau, who, by the way, I basically liked working with, but not until this sophomoric play.

I mean, we went through it. We agreed. We compromised on the communique. We joined the communique in good faith.

TAPPER: But what did he say that was so offensive? President Trump accused him of lying.

KUDLOW: Well, he holds a press conference, and he said the U.S. is insulting. He said that Canada has to stand up for itself. He says that we are the problem with tariffs.

Well, the infactual, the non-factual part of this was, they have enormous tariffs. I mean, they have tariffs on certain dairy and food products of 290, 295 percent. He was polarizing.

I mean, here's the thing. I mean, he really kind of stabbed us in the back. He really, actually -- you know what? He did a great disservice to the whole G7. He betrayed...

TAPPER: Trudeau did?

KUDLOW: Yes, he did, because they were united in the G7. They came together.

And I was there extensively. I was involved in these late-night negotiations. President Trump was charming, good faith.

I -- I was in the bilateral meeting with Trudeau and President Trump. And they were getting along famously. President Trump actually -- and this is music to my ears, Jake. He went through those two days of conference talking about the need for a new free trade system, no tariffs.

TAPPER: Right.

KUDLOW: No tariff barriers.

TAPPER: No subsidies.

KUDLOW: No subsidies.

He is a trade reformer, as I have argued again and again. And he put that out.

And so they had this bilateral meeting. We were very close to making a deal with Canada on NAFTA, bilaterally perhaps. And then we leave, and Trudeau pulls this sophomoric political stunt for domestic consumption.

It pains me...


TAPPER: But President Trump does that all the time, though, doesn't he?


KUDLOW: No, he doesn't.

TAPPER: He doesn't say things for domestic consumption?

KUDLOW: No, the point is, if you are going through a treaty process, a communique, and you have good faith...

TAPPER: Right.

KUDLOW: And -- and those leaders were together.

I mean, I was right smack in the middle of it on Friday night and Saturday morning. You don't walk away and start firing bullets.

Now, look...

TAPPER: I can't believe that an adviser to President Trump...


TAPPER: ... is saying that, because President Trump does that all the time. He does things for -- for domestic consumption.

KUDLOW: Jake, not in -- not after you pull a treaty or a deal together.

TAPPER: But let's look at the language of the communique.

KUDLOW: That's the point I'm trying to make here.

TAPPER: Let's look at the language -- yes, let's look at the language of the communique that you helped negotiate, that President Trump walked away from.

Here is the part that is on trade, which is the part that, obviously, I think President Trump is most interested in.

KUDLOW: Yes. Yes.

TAPPER: "We acknowledge that free, fair and mutually beneficial trade and investment, while creating reciprocal benefits, are key engines for growth and job creation. We strive to reduce tariff barriers, non-tariff barriers and subsidies. We call for the start of negotiations this year to develop stronger international rules on market-distorting industrial subsidies and trade-distorting actions by state-owned enterprises."

That is what President Trump believes in.


TAPPER: Why walk away from it just because of something Justin Trudeau said for domestic consumption?

KUDLOW: No, not something.

Look, you -- yes, for domestic political consumption. But it was a global statement. The whole world listened to what he said.

Look, you're reporting it here in Washington, as you must.


KUDLOW: I get that.

You just don't behave that way, OK? It is a betrayal, OK? He is essentially double-crossing -- not just double crossing President Trump, but the other members of the G7, who were working together and pulling together this communique.

You know, you never get everything you want. There are compromises along the way. President Trump played that process in good faith.

So, I ask you, he gets up in the airplane and leaves. And then Trudeau starts blasting him in a domestic news conference? I'm sorry. It is a betrayal. That is a double-cross.

It pains me because I like Trudeau. I was working with him. We were together putting words on paper. I'm changing "the"s to "a"s when it comes to reforming the international system. They all agreed. This is so important.

They all agreed that the WTO...

TAPPER: So why walk away from the agreement? That's what I don't understand.

KUDLOW: Well, then ask Mr. Trudeau that. That's the question.

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