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Justin Trudeau calls Pierre Poilievre's pro-crypto stance ‘irresponsible leadership'

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(Kitco News) - Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made his thoughts on cryptocurrencies quite clear in a Tuesday Twitter post in response to the pro-crypto platform of the country's newly elected opposition leader Pierre Poilievre.

“We’ll also call out questionable, reckless economic ideas [...] Telling people they can opt out of inflation by investing in cryptocurrencies is not responsible leadership,” the head of government said. 

Trudeau doubled down on those remarks in a separate television appearance, adding that “responsible leaders” shouldn’t advocate for individuals to “invest their life savings in volatile cryptocurrencies.”

These comments from Trudeau come after the Calgary-born Poilievre clenched the role as the leader of the Conservative Party of Canada by winning 68.15% of the votes, setting the stage for a face-off with the incumbent Liberal Party led by Trudeau.

During his campaign, Poilievre criticized the Bank of Canada for its reckless spending during the COVID-19 pandemic and blamed Trudeau and his finance ministers for driving up inflation in the country by creating “$400 billion in cash out of thin air” through its policy of quantitative easing.

“Government is ruining the Canadian dollar, so Canadians should have the freedom to use other money, such as bitcoin,” Poilievre said on the campaign trail. “Canada needs less financial control for politicians and bankers and more financial freedom for the people. That includes freedom to own and use crypto, tokens, smart contracts and decentralized finance.”

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The remarks from Trudeau were in direct response to comments Poilievre made this past winter when he advised Canadians that investing in Bitcoin could allow them to “opt-out” of inflation. He then went on to promise that he would make Canada “the blockchain capital of the world” and stop the proposed Canadian CBDC project if elected as the next prime minister. 

Poilievre also promised that if elected, he would “keep crypto legal and reject a China-style crackdown,” and will work with the provinces and territories to eliminate a “cobweb of contradictory rules” that currently dictate the fate of cryptos and blockchain technology in the country. 

“Choice and competition can give Canadians better money and financial products. Not only that, but it can also let Canadians opt-out of inflation with the ability to opt-in to cryptocurrencies. It's time for Canadians to take back control of their money and their lives by making Canada the freest country on earth,” Poilievre said. As of July 2022, inflation in Canada stood at 7.6%, representing the highest level in the past 40 years. 

The politician indicated that he wants crypto to be treated like gold and other commodities for taxation purposes, and intends to foster “a new, decentralized, bottom-up economy” by creating a more permissive regulatory environment.

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