Justin Trudeau is on vacation—again.
The Prime Minister and his family are off to Costa Rica for two weeks.
I do not begrudge the Prime Minister a vacation. His is a demanding job and like everyone else he should be entitled to a holiday.
That said, at a time when rampant inflation has many Canadians struggling to put food on the table, the notion of our PM spending roughly $200,000 of their money for two weeks of fun in the sun is a bitter pill to swallow. Even more so given that thousands of Canadians—eager to travel after two years of Trudeau-imposed restrictions—cannot do so because Mr. Trudeau’s government is incapable of providing basic government services, like passports—I somehow doubt he and his family had to wait in line. Nor is he likely to be “randomly” selected for a PCR test.
To be fair, travel does cost more when you’re a world leader. For security reasons, the PM is not allowed to travel on commercial or private aircraft, and the Trudeau’s have said they will be paying for their own accommodations. That said, given the current plight of so many Canadian families, it would have been more prudent (and certainly better public relations) to spend his vacation time at the cottage, in Canada.
The PM’s luxury vacations have long been a sore spot for many Canadians.
In 2017, he accepted an illegal vacation on the Island of the Aga Khan—at the same time the billionaire was lobbying the government. In 2019, he spent roughly $200,000 on a Costa Rica visit, and flew 4,200 km roundtrip to Ottawa from Florida—where he was, once again, on vacation—for “private meetings” (this as details of the SNC Lavalin scandal continued to emerge). Last year, he chose to go surfing rather than mark the first National Day of Truth and Reconciliation—a new national holiday his own government created.
It has also not escaped the notice of many Canadians that this vacation comes after he spent all but 11 days last month travelling.
Canadians understand that the PM needs to do his job and, often, that involves travel. True he did attend G7 and NATO summits, and the Papal visit, but most of July’s travel was not government business but rather fundraisers (four) and photo-ops.
For most people, travelling to another province or country to check out local points of interest, attend special events and take pictures is called a vacation.
After racking up roughly 26,000 km on the taxpayer’s dime (and burning roughly 120 tonnes of CO2) to raise money and take pictures, Canadians have to be wondering: are we headed into another election?
Whatever the case, this summer travel has only served to solidify the perception of our Prime Minister as entitled, hypocritical and out of touch with Canadians.