Canadian Senator Denise Batters asks “What does political power look like?” before deep-diving into the evolution of the Trudeau Foundation and its political power and influence over the Prime Minister's Office (PMO).
The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation was named after former Canadian prime minister Pierre Trudeau, current sitting prime minister Justin Trudeau’s father. Founded in 2001, the Canadian charity claims to foster research and scholarships in the fields of social sciences and humanities.
The federal government granted the charity $125 million dollars at its inception to help fund its core operations.
But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
The Trudeau Foundation “then became a reception point for huge foreign cash, cold storage for senior Liberal elites, and a nexus for political power and influence,” claims Batters.
“Power, money, and influence is the name of the game… there’s a saying, ‘Who do you know in the PMO?’ Under the Trudeau government, the concentration of power and influence has evolved. It’s more complicated. The PMO uses outside organizations and a series of appointments to prominent positions to help keep Trudeau and his liberal government in office. This is a story about an organization that shares the same name as the prime minister. This is the story about how it began getting a lot of cash from foreign donors at the same time as seaming straight lines of appointments and political influence appeared between the Trudeau Foundation and the Trudeau government. The implications of this are extraordinary.”
Batters goes on to lay it all out. The political cover that scandal-laden Trudeau has garnered from Trudeau Foundation members has serious consequences for Canadian politics and governance.
Foundation alumni and affiliates include:
- Senator Peter Harder, the former head of the Canada China Business Council.
- Huguette Labelle, tasked with senator appointments in her role as chair of the apparently non-partisan Senator Advisory Board.
- Anne McLellan, former Liberal cabinet minister, deputy prime minister, justice minister, and attorney general, who was also appointed to “special advisor” in the SNC-Lavalin scandal in which high-ranking government officials were accused of meddling in the justice system to benefit the Quebec based private engineering firm
- David Johnston, a board member since 2018, who was appointed as “special rapporteur” to probe foreign election interference, wherein he explicitly denounced the necessity of a full public inquiry, which will proceed regardless.
- Senator Frances Lankin
- Senator Renée Dupuis
- Former Senator Patricia Bovey
- Senator Michèle Audette
- Senator Patti LaBoucane-Benson, the Senate government deputy leader
Batters points out how these “reliable allies” are called upon for political cover whenever scandal-laden Trudeau needs them, and that all comes back to influence.
“Foreign powers have quickly discovered that it’s easier to fly under the radar than it is to slip through the big metal bars at the Prime Minister's Office. If you just approach organizations like the Trudeau Foundation and shower them with money, you can still get power and influence,” furthers Batters.
Batters highlights that when Trudeau was elected leader in 2015, substantial funds were pouring into the Trudeau Foundation from foreign contributors, notably the hostile Chinese Communist Party (CCP); donations that have only continued to grow.
The line blurring on the involvement of the CCP in Canadian relations in clear under Justin Trudeau, from CCP regime police stations operating on Canadian soil, to soft approaches on suspected CCP spyware, Huawei, and a complete absence of the Liberals to classify the treatment of the Chinese Uyghur population as genocidal.
“It’s clearer every day that the Bejing regime actively influenced the last two Canadian [federal] elections. Trudeau was advised about it and did nothing,” Batters summarizes. “Justin Trudeau once again turned to his Trudeau foundation contacts to help manage his way out of this mess. He tapped former CEO Morris Rosenburg
to report on foreign interference in the 2019 and 2021 elections. He concluded ‘nothing to see here.’”
The expose by Senator Batters concludes that the Trudeau Foundation has morphed into a vehicle for amassed power and political influence over the prime minister. The web of connections from prominent figureheads coupled with the insidious infiltration of foreign funds increases concerns of democratic meddling by external entities, further blurring the lines between the CCP and the Canadian government.