President Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper shake hands.
:: The President, in his first foreign trip since being sworn in to office in January, visited Canada today, where crowds of Canadians greeted him with cheers and American flags.
From the AP:
As Obama pulled up to Parliament Hill under gray skies, a cheering crowd of more than 1,000 people greeted him. A woman along his motorcade route carried a sign that read "Yes we CANada!"
Obama touched down late morning in Ottawa, heading into a day of meetings. He came bearing a pro-trade message to assuage Canadian concerns over protectionism; a promise of a new strategy in Afghanistan as Canada moves to pull out all its troops there; and talk of clean-energy cooperation as controversy hangs over Canada's massive oil-rich tar sands.
Some of the headlines from the Canadian press today:
"The world's most recognizable man"
"Obama is like the sun, too powerful to look at directly"
"Obama is CHANGE writ extravagantly"
"The western world's only political rock star"
You may recall that in the past, Bush’s visits to Canada engendered massive protests by Canadian citizens. What a welcome difference! From Think Progress:
– “Thousands of protesters marched on Parliament Tuesday, rallying against President Bush’s visit and the U.S.-led war in Iraq. Twelve people were arrested after scuffling with police on the fringes of the peaceful demonstration.”
– “But with thousands of protesters expected to demonstrate against Mr. Bush, the White House decided to cut short his visit to Ottawa and travel to Halifax instead.”
Image courtesy of whitehouse.gov