Written by Hudson Crozier
What happened: During the Canadian trucker protests earlier this year against vaccine mandates, President Joe Biden and other U.S. officials reportedly urged Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his administration to stop them over fears of how it would affect the economy. Canadian officials revealed the information in an investigation into the government’s protest response.
What the commission found: The White House told Canada’s finance minister that American car plants would shut down if protesters blocked vital trade routes. Canada was also contacted by transportation and national security officials. Eventually, the president spoke over the phone with Trudeau, admitting that vaccine mandate protests were a “shared problem” for the two leaders, according to a Canadian official.
Days later: Trudeau invoked unprecedented emergency powers to stop the protests. The government began restricting travel, freezing protesters’ bank accounts, and threatening to arrest tow truckers who wouldn’t tow protester vehicles.
Why it matters: The “Freedom Convoy” protests were a uniquely peaceful response to Canada’s arbitrary, unscientific mandate that threatened thousands of truckers’ jobs. America, a nation founded on freedom, used its influence to encourage authoritarian measures against the protesters without condemning the police brutality that followed.