Ontario Premier Doug Ford is in Washington to lend a hand with the ongoing NAFTA talks between Canada and the United States.
Ford, who has turned his province upside-down in the last four months with a raft of conservative legislation and initiatives, says he is here to help and is confident that he can communicate with President Donald Trump.
“I understand maybe the president may have issues with China,” Ford told CTV News. “There shouldn’t be any issues with Canada. And we’ll get through this, I’m pretty confident.”
Ford also vowed that Ontario dairy farmers will be “taken care of” if Canada drops its commitment to supply management — a system that rigorously manages the supply of dairy products to artificially maintain higher prices.
“We’ll sit down with the prime minister and with [Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia] Freeland and make sure that the farmers, the dairy industry is taken care of,” Ford told CTV.
“We’re going to make sure, one way or another, we’re taking care of the farmers in Ontario.”
On Wednesday, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, who attracted some negative media attention for attending an anti-Trump forum in Toronto last week, sat down with Ford to provide the latest details on the talks that some U.S. legislators are losing patience with. (RELATED: Scalise Doubts Canada’s ‘Talent For Compromise’ In NAFTA Talks)
After that session, Ford headed off to the Trump International Hotel to lunch with U.S. Ambassador to Canada Kelly Knight Craft and Canadian Ambassador to the U.S. David MacNaughton.
The three went to the Trump venue at the suggestion of Craft. Ford dismissed talk that the location could be considered controversial by some.
“When someone is gracious enough to invite you to lunch (as) Ambassador Craft did … you don’t question where you go,” he said.