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Trump about Canada during NAFTA talks: I can’t kill these people

Staff Writer |
A media leak of off-record comments by President Trump has roiled the negotiations with Canada over the North American Free Trade Agreement.

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Trump has been trying to negotiate a new NAFTA with both trading partners. He announced Monday that he has secured a tentative deal with Mexico and said “we’ll see” if Canada can be part of the new agreement. The administration had set a deadline of Friday for a deal with Canada, Fox News reported.

But The Toronto Star reports that it obtained comments from an off-the-record portion of an Oval Office interview between Trump and Bloomberg News. In those remarks, Trump said he isn’t making compromises with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government, but isn’t going to say so publicly because “it’s going to be so insulting they’re not going to be able to make a deal.”

“Here’s the problem. If I say no, the answer’s no. If I say no, then you’re going to put that, and it’s going to be so insulting they’re not going to be able to make a deal... I can’t kill these people,” he said of Trudeau’s government.

In another remark he did not want published, Trump said the deal would be “totally on our terms” and reportedly suggested he had tried to spook the Canadians with the threat of auto tariffs.

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