President Donald Trump‘s protectionist speech in his inaugural address on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., is creating uncertainty north of the border.
“We have never been in a situation where the United States has done willful destruction to Canada and the Canadian economy. But we may have to stare a different animal in the face,” said David Taras, a political analyst at Mount Royal University.
“The United States may have changed. It may not be the United States we think it is.”
Taras warned there’s lots at stake with Trump’s protectionist rhetoric acting as the main theme of the inaugural address.
“He has to be very careful because there’s millions of jobs, American jobs that are dependent on trade with Canada,” Taras said.
READ MORE: President Trump could pose ‘unprecedented’ challenges to Canada’s economy
The new Trump attitude is troubling for Canadian oil producers. The head of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) said U.S. policy changes could threaten Canada’s energy industry.
“I think that it is a bit of a check for Canada that when we only have one customer that we’re reliant on we need to ensure that we are looking for new markets,” Tim McMillan said.
The uncertainty over what a Trump presidency means extends to Calgarians of Mexican heritage. Oscar Rio with the Calgary Mexican Cultural Society said thousands are nervous about family and friends abroad.
“If things go the way he (Trump) promised, it’s not going to be good for Mexico. It’s not going to be good ultimately for my family in Mexico and my family in the United States. It’s not going to be good for them,” Rio said.
Rio said there are 6,000 to 10,000 Mexicans living and working in Calgary.
Thousands of Canadians are travelling to Washington D.C. to participate in a massive Women’s March, including Michelle Morgan, star of the CBC TV show Heartland and a Calgarian herself.
READ MORE: Women’s March on Washington more than just an anti-Trump rally
“It’s the things he (Trump) said about women, his general attitude about women that concerns me,” Morgan said. “But (the march) became an exciting opportunity, a historical event and also hopefully something that’s going to be really inspiring.”
In Calgary, 2,500 people are expected to participate in a similar event on Saturday.
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