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Canada Obama isn't interfering in Canada's election, but why did he speak up at all?

08:55  19 october  2019
08:55  19 october  2019 Source:   nationalpost.com

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So why would Obama speak up , why now and why for Trudeau? “They are obviously very close personally Obama remains incredibly popular in Canada . When he appeared at an NBA finals game in “These are all leaders that have been very committed to the U. S .-led or should I say, former U. S

Analysis: Obama isn ' t interfering in Canada ' s election , but why did he speak up at all ? Kelly McParland: Now who's interfering in an election ? This election isn ’ t about me, it’s about you,” he bellowed. The ad tested well, improving Liberal fortunes four per cent with NDP voters, and in the last

a group of people sitting at a table: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) meets with former US president Barack Obama at Liverpool House in Montreal for dinner on June 6, 2017. © Prime Ministers Office / Adam Scotti Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) meets with former US president Barack Obama at Liverpool House in Montreal for dinner on June 6, 2017.

Barack Obama’s surprise endorsement of Justin Trudeau Wednesday wasn’t illegal, not outside the farthest reaches of a far right fantasyland. It wasn’t election interference, either, not in the way the term has come to be used since the last U.S. campaign. To compare Obama, a private citizen, expressing his views on the politics of another country, to the massive, coordinated campaign of misinformation, voter suppression, hacking and leaks undertaken by Vladimir Putin’s Russia in 2016 would be cynical, stupid or just outright delusional. There is no credible comparison. (Matt Wolking, a “rapid reaction” spokesman for the Trump re-election campaign, did call it “FOREIGN ELECTION INTERFERENCE” on Twitter. But if you take that as credible, that’s on you.)

COMMENTARY: Barack Obama — and other non-Canadians — should stay out of our election

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Barack Obama himself admits to speaking no languages other than English. However, according to the President of Indonesia Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, during a telephone conversation Obama was able to deliver a basic four-word He has picked up bits and phrases of a small number of other languages.

Meanwhile, Obama gang interfered in Russia election interference investigation to protect Obama ' s emails while crookedly spying on @realdonaldtrump. Again the Clinton email scandal cover- up is as much about protecting Obama as it is about protecting Clinton.https

What Obama’s endorsement was, though, was unusual. It wasn’t unprecedented, not even for Obama. But it was rare. Robert Bothwell, a professor of history and international relations at the University of Toronto, told the Associated Press that you’d have to go back more than 100 years to find a similar American intervention. In 1917, Theodore Roosevelt, who was president from 1901 to 1909, travelled to Canada to speak in favour of conscription, Bothwell said. But even he did not endorse a specific candidate. “I’m surprised,” said Ian Bremmer, an American political scientist and president of the Eurasia Group, a consulting firm. “I can’t remember a time when a former president has made an endorsement in a Canadian election.”

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If Vladimir Putin intervened to help Donald Trump, that’ s an outrage. But then so is the long US record of foreign interference .

Why do they not remember that attempts to influence elections happens everywhere all the time. About the only thing we could have done is: Close up any holes in our security that were being Why didn' t the Obama Administration do anything to stop the Russian government from interfering in our

a group of people sitting at a table:  Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) meets with former US president Barack Obama at Liverpool House in Montreal for dinner on June 6, 2017.© Prime Ministers Office / Adam Scotti Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) meets with former US president Barack Obama at Liverpool House in Montreal for dinner on June 6, 2017.

So why would Obama speak up, why now and why for Trudeau? “They are obviously very close personally,” Bremmer said. “Obama no question has a favourite in the race.” He also wouldn’t do it, Bremmer believes, unless he thought it could make a difference. And it might. Obama remains incredibly popular in Canada. When he appeared at an NBA finals game in Toronto in June he received a lengthy and deafening ovation . (Compare that to the chorus of boos that Ontario Premier Doug Ford endured at the Raptors championship parade.) But it could just as easily do the opposite. “Some people may feel this is an unwarranted foreign intrusion in Canada’s election,” Nelson Wiseman, a political science professor at the University of Toronto, told the Associated Press.

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Why didn’ t Obama do something about it? Because he thought Crooked Hillary Clinton would win, that’ s why . Had nothing to do with the Trump Administration, but Fake Considering that then-GOP presidential candidate Trump, as a private citizen, had no means of interfering in the U. S . election

Though he did not mention the President- elect by name, much of it obviously read like a rebuttal to Donald Trump' s campaign. Obama called for respect for the science of climate change and drew one of his biggest applause lines when he noted: "I reject discrimination against Muslim Americans."

None of that really answers the why, though. Trudeau and Obama were close, yes. But Obama was president for eight years. He made plenty of allies around the world. Since leaving office, he’s only stumped for two of them, Trudeau and Emannuel Macron , now the president of France. In his last year in office, though, he did come close to endorsing another one, Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor. He also warned Britons against voting for Brexit during that referendum campaign.

Justin Trudeau, Dominic LeBlanc, Barack Obama sitting in a suit and tie:  Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie laugh during the closing remarks after U.S. President Barack Obama addressed Parliament on June 29, 2016.© REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie laugh during the closing remarks after U.S. President Barack Obama addressed Parliament on June 29, 2016.

If you add those four together — Trudeau, Macron, Merkel and Brexit — a pattern does begin to emerge. In his last year in office, Obama was increasingly concerned by the growth of illiberalism, nationalism and populism around the world, said Derek Chollet, who was a special assistant to the president in the Obama White House and later served as Obama’s assistant secretary of defence for international security affairs. “Go back and read his last state of the union address or read the farewell address that he gave in January 2017,” said Chollet, who later wrote a book about Obama’s foreign policy . “He talks very explicitly about the dangers of this kind of politics and the challenges that we face and the kind of leadership and outlook he believed was necessary to try to answer those challenges.”

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Connect the dots. Obama saw Brexit as a dangerous expression of senseless nationalism. He endorsed Macron when the French centrist was facing off against the far-right nationalist Marine Le Pen. He praised Merkel, in Germany, when the anti-migrant, anti-Islam AFD party was surging in the polls. In every case, he spoke up for an ally or on a side in what he saw as a fight between the global forces of open trade, tolerance and the liberal consensus on one side and populism, nativism and xenophobia on the other. “These are all leaders that have been very committed to the U.S.-led or should I say, former U.S.-led, internationalist order,” Bremmer said. ”And I think that Obama’s still very comfortable with those leaders and he also knows that increasingly they’re on the back foot.” If he’s speaking up for Trudeau now, it’s probably safe to assume he sees the Liberal leader as an ally in that fight, too.

Sophie Gregoire, Michelle Obama, Justin Trudeau, Barack Obama posing for the camera:  Barack Obama, then the president of the United States, and Michelle Obama pose for a photo with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Sophie Gregoire Trudeau at the North Portico of the White House in Washington, Thursday, March 10, 2016, as they arrive for a state dinner.© Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press Barack Obama, then the president of the United States, and Michelle Obama pose for a photo with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Sophie Gregoire Trudeau at the North Portico of the White House in Washington, Thursday, March 10, 2016, as they arrive for a state dinner.

Obama is certainly not the only former national leader spending his retirement stumping for the politicians and causes he believes in. Since his defeat in 2015, former Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper has been travelling the world meeting with and praising members of the International Democratic Union, the global coalition of right-wing parties he now leads. In January, four months before Indian elections, he effectively endorsed India’s Hindu-nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “For India to realize its potential, it needs the courageous & visionary leadership of Prime Minister Modi,” he wrote on Twitter.

Obama also wasn’t the only North American politician to weigh in on Brexit. Andrew Scheer, then merely a Conservative MP, wrote an opinion piece for this newspaper, endorsing the ‘yes’ side in that referendum in June 2016. Scheer wasn’t interfering in the British vote, not in any real sense. He was expressing his opinion on a domestic matter that has global consequences, just like Obama did when he endorsed Trudeau Wednesday.

As for how Obama’s endorsement is playing in the U.S., Ian Bremmer said, effectively, that it isn’t . “It might if it was a slow news week. It is the exact opposite of a slow news week,” he said.

“I don’t think this makes the top 10.”

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