Margaret Trudeau says she dreads 'bullying' attack ads against son Justin

Sure, she's his mom and all that. But Margaret Trudeau told host Robyn Bresnahan on CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning Wednesday that the nasty campaign attacks that seem bound to come Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau's way are "straight out bullying" and she's ashamed of Canadians for it.

Famed political mom says she has a more 'peaceful view of life than aggressively breaking down other people'

Justin Trudeau and his mother Margaret celebrate after he won the Federal Liberal leadership Sunday April 14, 2013 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

Sure, she's his mom and all that.

But Margaret Trudeau told CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning Wednesday that she's dreading "that horrible game of politics" and the nasty campaign attacks she feels are bound to come Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau's way in this year's federal election.

"All that attacking, all that meanness, all the partisanship… I have a bigger, peaceful view of life than aggressively breaking down other people. I try to build up people, not break them down, and in politics, it seems now the game is breaking down your opponents," she told host Robyn Bresnahan during an interview to promote her new book The Time of your Life.

We spoke to her about her latest book, and how she's dealing with the aging process.

"I'm not looking forward to the attack ads. I think it's straight out bullying, and I'm ashamed of Canadians for doing this — having this as part of their platform," she said.

Canada's most famous political mom talked about her own aging process and the effect the death of her mother had on her own outlook, but also warned listeners not to underestimate her son because of his "boyish good looks."

"Could I remind people that when Mr. Harper shanghaied the Progressive Conservative Party… Reform-Alliance... he was 43? And Justin is 43," she pointed out.

"Justin has a wisdom... I'm very biased as his mum — but Justin's been through an awful lot in his life, and he's grown up on the knee of one of the world's great leaders."

Margaret Trudeau praised her late ex-husband for his gifts as a father and suggested that contributed to her son's political skills.

"Pierre was an extraordinary teacher — he really was one of the best, and he raised the boys so, so well; to have a global view, to have compassion, to be humanitarians, to really be concerned about alleviating suffering," she said.

'Oh no'

Did she want the younger Trudeau to enter politics? What did she say?

"It really wasn't advice, it was 'Oh, no' — but I knew I couldn't change his mind," she said.

"He's been on this path for quite a long time. Justin, from the time he was a little boy, was a born leader, he always led all the family things, all the games, all the huge things that we did with the children, he was always the leader."

"He's also a team player — he knows how to bring people together," she said, perhaps echoing what her son's advisers want us to know about his style of politics.

Margaret Trudeau also spoke fondly of a recent dinner with her son's family, when her grandson Xavier drew a picture of his family, including his grandmother with "cracks" [wrinkles] on her face.

"'You know why grandma has those lines Xav?'" Margaret quotes Justin as saying, "'Because she's laughed her whole life.'"

"I wanted to say 'I've cried too,'" she added.

"I tell the children I want everyone to love the life that they're in. To be who they are... and make it the best life they can."


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