December 13, 2005

Stop bashing us, upset US tells Canada

OTTAWA (Reuters) - The United States made an unprecedented
foray into Canada's election campaign on Tuesday, warning
politicians not to bash Washington in their bid to win voter
support on January 23.

"Canada never has to tear the United States down to build
itself up," U.S. Ambassador David Wilkins said in a televised

"It may be smart election politics to thump your chest and
constantly criticize your friend and your No. 1 trading
partner. But it's a slippery slope and all of us should hope it
doesn't have a long-term impact on our relationship."

Wilkins didn't specify whom his remarks referred to, though
they appear aimed at Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin, who
has regularly attacked the United States over a bilateral
dispute over softwood lumber exports.

Last week Martin publicly criticized the administration of
U.S. President George W. Bush for its approach on climate
change, saying Washington should listen to the "global
conscience" on the environment.

Wilkins said emissions of greenhouse gases in the United
States were, in fact, growing at a slower rate than in Canada.

"I would respectfully submit to you that when it comes to a
'global conscience' the United States is walking the walk," he

Canada generally tilts more to the left than the United
States and opinion polls show most Canadians dislike U.S.
President George W. Bush.