CNN crew descends on Cape Breton to talk Trump
Reporting team talks to locals and tourism marketers, shoots scenery and waterfront real estate
A reporting team from CNN is in Cape Breton today interviewing tourism marketers, legal professionals and local people in the wake of a wildly popular website encouraging Americans to move to the island if Donald Trump becomes U.S. president.
A reporter, a producer and a camera operator have been on the go in Cape Breton since early Tuesday morning shooting interviews.
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The CNN crew was drawn here by the continuing interest in Cape Breton generated by a tongue-in-cheek website called "Cape Breton If Trump Wins," launched two weeks ago by local radio DJ Rob Calabrese.
In it, he extols the island's scenery, friendly people and reasonable real estate prices. The website has had hundreds of thousands of hits and has generated international news coverage.
The CEO of the island's marketing agency, Destination Cape Breton, said she was interviewed by CNN earlier today. Mary Tulle said she was told the report will be packaged for airing tomorrow on the global affairs program Amanpour, hosted by Christiane Amanpour.
She said the CNN crew are squeezing a lot into their day.
"They're off looking at real estate and waterfront real estate, and what the dollar value of that is," said Tulle. "Then they'll just be heading off and I think they'll be doing some independent shoots and of course, [talking to] more locals."
CNN has also spoken to the man who started it all, Rob Calabrese, for his second CNN interview since launching the website.
The news organization has interviewed immigration lawyer Damien Barry of Sampson McPhee, who last week launched an information video on YouTube in response to inquiries about how to move to Canada.
He has been fielding immigration questions that have come to Calabrese, Destination Cape Breton, Golf Cape Breton, and to himself directly.
"I think I got 50 inquiries at this stage," he said.
Barry is telling interested potential immigrants to Canada that moving here is not as simple as just deciding to come. He said study and work permits may be a good way to start.
'An openness for immigrants'
Barry, however, said Nova Scotia can be more appealing than other provinces to a certain kind of immigrant, because of its nominee program for those who intend to buy or establish a business.
"I think Nova Scotia provides a lot more options than other provinces would provide," he said.
"With the demographic we have here, aging population and so on, I definitely think there's a need and there's an openness for immigrants here to Nova Scotia."
No matter how many Americans ultimately decide to take the plunge and move to Cape Breton, Tulle is sure the coming tourism season will benefit from all the coverage.
With files from Radio-Canada's Sabrina Fabian