Trudeau should have known better than to accept a vacation from a billionaire

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is getting good at apologizing. But unlike his remorseful messages to indigenous and LGBTQ communities, yesterday he had to say sorry for something that was truly his fault.

Trudeau should have known better than to accept a vacation on the private island of a billionaire. And for all his talk of the Aga Khan being a family friend, the conflict of interest commissioner pointed out that they barely spoke for 30 years, until Trudeau became Liberal leader.

Despite all the controversies around Bill Morneau and small-business taxes this fall, the Liberals are finishing 2017 high in the polls. It’s a lesson that much of what makes news in Ottawa doesn’t resonate across the country.

But there is another moral to this story that the Liberals shouldn’t overlook. For all their talk of fighting for the middle class, they clearly think they’re entitled to things other Canadians could never afford. One of the greatest risks in politics is to be tone deaf. And that’s becoming a recurring pattern for Trudeau and Morneau. It hasn’t hurt them yet, but that doesn’t mean it won’t in the future.

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