Some Canadian officials are diverting some focus from fighting raging wildfires sweeping that country to planning for a possible return of Donald Trump to the White House.
Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly remarked during a Wednesday interview that Canada is formulating a “game plan” before the 2024 U.S. presidential election.
Joly was elected to represent the Ahuntsic-Cartierville region in Canada’s House of Commons in 2015 before being elevated to her current role.
“We are certainly working on scenarios,” Joly said during her interview with a Montreal radio station Wednesday.
“In general, there is our game plan, precisely to be able to manage what could be a rather difficult situation,” Joly said, according to a National Post report.
“I will work with my colleagues and with the mayors, the provincial premiers, with the business community, with the unions, with everyone in the country, so that we are ready regardless of the election outcome.”
She also drew parallels between the current situation and Canada’s past interactions with the Trump administration, particularly in areas of trade.
“The other aspect of the question is more about knowing how we as a democracy are able to thwart the growth of the far right in our country, because it’s happening in the United States, it’s happening in Europe,” she said.
“So one can’t be naive here, Patrick; it’s happening right now with us, there is, we know that there is certainly a radicalization of the [Canadian] Conservative Party.”
The U.S. embassy in Ottawa declined to comment on Joly’s remarks, the report noted.
Many Canadians would struggle to consider Washington falling drastically out of step with Canada, said University of Ottawa national-security professor Thomas Juneau.
“What would have been extremely far-fetched scenarios maybe ten years ago, today are not impossible anymore,” he said in an interview with the National Post.
Professor Juneau added Canada may face political refugees, economic protectionism between Canada and the U.S., and a shock to Ottawa’s reliance on the U.S. for intelligence-sharing and scientific cooperation.