Trudeau meets with Ford today in first sit-down since acrimonious campaign

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is meeting with Ontario Premier Doug Ford in Ottawa today, just weeks after a federal election campaign where the Liberals repeatedly invoked the provincial leader as a way to scare Canadians away from voting for the federal Conservatives.

During the election campaign, Trudeau warned that Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer would impose deep cuts that would harm Canadians, citing Ford’s cuts in Ontario as an example.

But ahead of today’s meeting, Ford said that’s all in the past and that he harbours no bad feelings.

“It’s never personal. Politics is politics and I have pretty thick skin,” he said Thursday. “I understood what he was doing and I had a conversation with him. I told him, ‘Politics are done, and let’s roll up our sleeves and start working together.’ And he agreed.”

Yesterday, Ford announced the creation of a new Council on Provincial-Federal Relations, tasked with collaborating with federal counterparts on priorities such as infrastructure, health care and economic growth.

Today’s meeting is another in a series of outreach efforts by Trudeau after winning a minority government Oct. 21. Trudeau has also met with Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe, Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister and PEI Premier Dennis King since the election.