Trudeau is the 3rd leader hosted by Trump: Here's how the first 2 meetings went
British PM Theresa May and Japan PM Shinzo Abe visited White House with varying results
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and U.S. President Donald Trump will likely discuss jobs, the middle class and the flow of goods and people across the border on Monday — while Trudeau tries to find the right balance between reassuring Canadians and not provoking the unpredictable president.
Trudeau won't be the first leader to meet Trump at the White House, so the prime minister will have a couple of previous encounters to study if he so chooses: visits by British Prime Minister Theresa May and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Here's a look at how each meeting went for the prime ministers and how they were perceived by the media in their home countries.
Theresa May, Jan. 27
The official line:
In Trump's first meeting with a foreign leader at the White House since becoming president, May said Trump had reaffirmed both countries' "unshakeable commitment" to NATO.
Trump had previously suggested that the military alliance was "obsolete" and that the U.S. might not come to the aid of countries that don't meet targets for their own defence spending.
May said the two agreed it is important for member countries to "invest properly to face our shared challenges together."
She also left the U.S. with the first steps toward an early trade deal with Britain once it leaves the European Union.
The boisterous Trump and reserved May took pains to demonstrate a readiness to maintain close ties between the United States and Britain, something that is particularly important for May as she steers Britain out of the European Union.
They posed for photos before a bust of Winston Churchill in the Oval Office — a minor obsession for sections of the British press — and Trump accepted an invitation from the Queen to visit Britain this year.
The two leaders held hands briefly as they walked down the White House colonnade to their news conference in the East Room.
The reaction in the U.K.:
May's trip delighted those who think Trump's presidency will be good for Britain, but alarmed others who loathe the brash Republican populist.
British Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said May "clearly spent her time with Trump dodging his despicable comments on torture, on women, on Muslims and on Mexicans."
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said May "failed to challenge Trump and stand up for our values."
The perception of May's visit has only soured over time: She was condemned for being slow to criticize Trump's immigration ban of seven predominantly Muslim countries, and the Speaker of Britain's House of Commons said he strongly opposes letting Trump address the U.K. Parliament.
But the trip drew approval from the pro-Brexit sections of Britain's press.
"It was one of the most extraordinary days in the long history of U.K.-U.S. relations," said the Daily Mail under the headline "Love-In at the White House" with a picture of the hand-holding moment.
Several media outlets, including The Telegraph, reported that Trump held May's hand because the president "may have a fear" of slopes and stairs.
A U.K. official said Trump was merely being chivalrous.
The British government said Trump held Theresa May's hand last week because he has a "phobia of stairs and slopes" <a href="https://t.co/QIwUiYI4h1">https://t.co/QIwUiYI4h1</a> <a href="https://t.co/58CQrnHkDm">pic.twitter.com/58CQrnHkDm</a>—@liamstack
Shinzo Abe, Feb. 10 and 11
The official line:
Trump said he wanted to bring the alliance with Japan "even closer."
Abe, a nationalist adept at forging relationships with self-styled strongmen overseas, had been the only world leader to meet the Republican before his inauguration.
Flattering the billionaire businessman, Abe said he would welcome the United States becoming "even greater."
One of Trump's first acts as president was to pull the U.S. back from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Abe stressed the importance of a "free and fair common set of rules" for trade and said that was the purpose of the TPP, but both leaders held out the possibility of a future bilateral deal.
He also invited Trump to visit Japan this year. Trump accepted, according to a joint statement.
Stepping carefully into Japan's longstanding territorial dispute with China over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea, Trump said the U.S. is committed to the security of Japan and all areas under its administrative control.
Trump didn't repeat controversial campaign comments about Japan developing its own nuclear weapons, and neither country lingered over their differences on international trade.
The optics were closely controlled and largely positive.
After a working lunch on economic issues, the two leaders boarded Air Force One with their wives for a trip to Trump's Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida. They dined with New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft at the club Friday night and played golf Saturday.
Media weren't allowed to view the golf round, though Trump tweeted an official photo with the two leaders exchanging a high-five.
Having a great time hosting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the United States! <a href="https://t.co/Fvjsac89qS">https://t.co/Fvjsac89qS</a> <a href="https://t.co/OupKmRRuTI">https://t.co/OupKmRRuTI</a> <a href="https://t.co/smGrnWakWQ">pic.twitter.com/smGrnWakWQ</a>—@realDonaldTrump
The reaction in Japan:
The initial response from English-language media in the country seems to be wariness.
Kyodo News said in a report that the two leaders had taken "baby steps" on bilateral trade, but future negotiations could cost Abe political capital in Japan.
Media also said concerns about Trump are lingering at the Bank of Japan.
"What the BOJ is doing now might be considered currency manipulation by President Trump," Yuzo Sakai, manager of foreign-exchange business promotion at Tokyo Forex and Ueda Harlow Ltd., was quoted as saying in the Japan Times. "The possibility cannot be ruled out that President Trump will launch a verbal attack on the BOJ in the future."
There were several sideshows, including Trump tweeting about Abe using his given name ("Heading to Joint Base Andrews on #MarineOne with Prime Minister Shinzō earlier today"), and some black plastic placed over the Mar-a-Lago windows so he and Abe could golf out of the media's view.
But the moment that caught the most attention online was Trump and Abe's 19-second handshake and the look on Abe's face when it was over.
Your face when you get done with an awkwardly long photo-shoot handshake with Trump <a href="https://t.co/SpRB8pcEMr">pic.twitter.com/SpRB8pcEMr</a>—@MadisonU
With files from The Canadian Press and The Associated Press