Canada’s Trudeau fails to shake hands with Alberta’t premier

Canada’s Trudeau fails to shake hands with Alberta’t premier

There are few things that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau can win over the western voters and the province leadership because of the tensions between Alberta and Canada's federal government over taxation and environmental policies.

On Tuesday, those strains were clear as Alberta s premier Danielle Smith and Trudeau tried and failed at the most basic political customs, the posed handshake greeting.

At their first official meeting, the prime minister seemed confident that a handshake between the two was imminent. Both leaders raised their hands, but at the last moment Smith appeared to change her mind, leaving her palm down. Trudeau took his hand and held it in place, placing his thumb atop his hand, as he grinned for the cameras and Smith managed a weak smile.

Smith, who is in Ottawa with other premiers for a major announcement on healthcare funding, has become one of the country s most vocal critics of Trudeau and his government's policies, recently channelling anger at him to win the United Conservative Party leadership race to become the premier.

Smith's government has recently passed a controversial legislation known as the Alberta sovereignty act that would give her government the power to direct provincial agencies to ignore federal laws.

Trudeau is no stranger to animosity in the country's west, but he is also no stranger to awkward handshakes.

The Canadian prime minister was the first to dodge President Donald Trump's forceful handshake strategy, which left world leaders and political rivals looking bewildered. Trudeau put a hand on Trump's shoulder in her first meeting in 2017 to brace himself.

In 2016, Trudeau tried to shake hands with the former presidents Barack Obama and Enrique Pe a Nieto of Mexico, awkwardly crossing his arms over and grabbing Pe a Nieto s wrong hand.

In a tweet, Canadian political journalist Jason Markusoff called the most recent failed handshake an Alberta thing, posting images of previous Alberta premiers warily considering Trudeau's outstretched hand.