Canada’s Trudeau, trailing in polls, goes on attack two weeks before vote

OTTAWA, Sept 6 (Reuters) – Canadian Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, trailing in opinion polls, attacked his main rival on Monday for waffling on gun control and vaccine mandates as the campaign enters its final stretch ahead of the Sept. 20 election.

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole on Sunday scrapped a campaign promise to eliminate a ban on some assault weapons, a sensitive issue in Canada after mass shootings in recent years. Trudeau sought to capitalize on his opponent’s shift with just two weeks left to reverse his fortunes.

O’Toole “will say anything to try and get elected,” Trudeau told supporters at a campaign event in southern Ontario, Canada’s most-populous province. “That’s not leadership. That’s not integrity.”

After being criticized by O’Toole for calling the election two years early during a rising fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Trudeau assailed his rival’s opposition to vaccine mandates, including for his own candidates.

Trudeau said O’Toole was pandering to anti-vaxxers just as he had to the gun lobby. Anti-vax hecklers have shouted abuse and even death threats at Trudeau throughout his campaign.

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Source: Reuters