Inch by inch. Step by step. It could be the lyrics to a country and western song featured at the Calgary Stampede, but in reality it was the progress Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was making Sunday as he attended a pancake breakfast in Calgary.
The annual 10-day celebration of the cowboy way of life has become an irresistible magnet for politicians of all political stripes.
Trudeau is no exception and has made an appearance year-after-year.
“This is a moment to gather and to celebrate being able to gather once again. It’s great to see everyone in person. Happy Stampede,” said Trudeau, who was attending a breakfast hosted by his lone Liberal MP in Calgary, George Chahal.
Trudeau briefly referenced the affects of the COVID-19 pandemic and global events before spending some time flipping pancakes.
“It’s been a tough couple of years where people have had to pull together and make it through and we really saw the strength of community,” he said.
“We’re facing more challenges with the war in Ukraine and with the global inflation crisis, but at the same time we’re seeing it — time and time again — Canadians stepping up and being there for each other.”
A lone protester, carrying a Canadian flag, yelled “traitor”, “traitor” a number of times before being quietly escorted out of the parking lot and across the street.
Trudeau was mobbed as he slowly made his way through the crowd, posing for pictures, holding small children and shaking hands.
He was scheduled to visit the Stampede grounds later in the day and appear at a Liberal Party fundraiser.
The prime minister’s visit comes on the heels of the federal Conservative barbecue Saturday night where four of the five leadership candidates had one final opportunity to impress supporters.