Full transcript: Justin Trudeau's victory speech calls for Canadian unity, acknowledges frustration
TORONTO -- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau managed to remain in power after the election Monday, winning the most seats but falling short of a second majority.
In his victory speech, Trudeau acknowledged the “frustration” felt by the western provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta and the desire for a louder voice for Quebec in Ottawa -- while calling for Canadian unity after a divisive campaign.
Read the full text of Trudeau’s victory speech below:
"Merci, thank you all my friends. From coast to coast to coast, tonight Canadians rejected division and negativity. They rejected cuts and austerity and they voted in favour of a progressive agenda and strong action on climate change. I have heard you, my friends. You are sending our Liberal team back to work, back to Ottawa with a clear mandate. We will make life more affordable. We will continue to fight climate change. We will get guns off our streets and we will keep investing in Canadians.
[Translated from French] Canadians have entrusted us with the responsibility of continuing to govern. But none of that would have been possible without the efforts and sacrifices of many, many people. I have so many people to thank. And I know I’m going to be spending a lot of time on the phone in the coming days. But tonight, there are a few people in particular that I have to thank.
[Translated from French] First of all, my Sophie. We began this political adventure together ten years ago because we believed in a better future, because we knew that it was worthwhile fighting for a better, more prosperous Canada. Sophie, I’m so thankful and so lucky to have you with me. I love you.
[Translated from French] And to my children, Xavier, Ella-Grace, and Hadrien, every single day you inspire me to do more and do better. All that I do, I do for you and for your generation. You remind me every day to take moments to appreciate the life we live together, and the chance that we have - and the role that I have as your father is the one that I prefer. I love you so much.
And to the very best campaign team ever assembled in Canada: our incredible candidates, staff and volunteers. None of this would have been possible without you. Thank you for the early mornings and the late nights. You’ve sacrificed a lot - taking time away from your families and friends to move Canada forward. And I cannot thank you enough. So instead, I’ll simply say this: You did it, my friends, congratulations.
To the leaders of the other parties and their families, thank you for being a part of this essential exercise in democracy. You have chosen to serve. Thank you for stepping up in this campaign and in this political life.
[Translated from French] I must of course thank the people of Papineau. It’s been over 10 years now that you are giving me your trust, and it’s a great privilege for me to continue to represent you and to always be a strong voice for you. Thank you, thank you, thank you – I can always count on you.
And of course, to my fellow Canadians -- it has been the greatest honour of my life to serve you for these past four years. And tonight, you’re sending us back to work for you. We take this responsibility seriously and we will work hard for you, for your families and for your future.
To those who voted for our party, thank you for putting your trust in our team. Thank you for having faith in us to move this country in the right direction.
And to those…who did not vote for us, know that we will work every single day for you. We will govern for everyone. Regardless of how you cast your ballot, ours is a team that will fight for all Canadians.
Dear Quebeckers, I heard your message tonight. You want to continue to go forward with us, but you also want to ensure that the voice of Quebec can be heard even more in Ottawa. And I can tell you that my team and I will be there for you.
And to Canadians in Alberta and Saskatchewan, know that you are an essential part of our great country. I’ve heard your frustration and I want to be there to support you. Let us all work hard to bring our country together.
[Translated from French] For four years, we have done everything we could to improve the life of everyone - and that is what we will continue to do in the next few years years. Friends, you are sending us to Ottawa with a clear mandate: continue to go forward and to move this country forward.
[Translated from French] You asked us to invest in Canadians, to reconcile with the Indigenous people and make it a priority, to show even greater vision and ambition as we tackle the greatest challenge of our times — climate change. And that is exactly what we will do. We know that there is a lot of work still to be done but I swear to you that we will continue what we’ve started.
[Translated from French] Because Liberals know, like all Canadians know, that it is always possible to do better.
One of my favourite prime ministers, Wilfrid Laurier, often talked about patriotism and the unifying power of common goals and aspirations and I’ve thought about that a lot since getting into politics. In my conversations with Canadians right across the country, I’ve seen firsthand that there is so much more that unites us than divides us. Canadians expect us all to focus on our shared vision of a stronger Canada, and I intend to work hard to make that a reality.
We all want safer communities, a cleaner planet, and a good quality of life. We want this for ourselves, for our neighbours and for our kids and grandkids. We seek hardship for none and prosperity for all. That is the world we’re working toward -- and if we unite around these common goals, I know we can achieve them.
In the years ahead, our team will work hard to build on the progress made by the Canadians who came before us. We will champion Canada in all its diversity. We will give voice to the voiceless - and in every decision we make as your government, we will always put this country and its people first.
[Translated from French] We will help the widow who has lost her husband after 48 years of common life. We will do more for the students who took part in the walks for climate change action. And we will be there for the mother who has two jobs and three children that needs a little bit more help at the end of the month.
We will fight for all people, including people like Dean. These last few days, I’ve done rallies across the country and at a few of them, I’ve told Dean’s story. Dean had voted Conservative his entire life. But this time around he decided to vote Liberal on behalf of his daughter. You see, he understood that this election was about so much more than just the next four years. This election is about the next 40 years. It’s about the kind of Canada that his daughter and her kids will grow up in. But tonight, I want to say this to Dean. I need to earn your vote. Not just your daughter’s. And over the coming years, I plan on doing exactly that.
My friends, this election was about you, about the world your kids will inherit. And tonight, we chose to move Canada forward. Tonight, Canadians have charted a path for the future, and I know we will walk it together.
[Translated from French] We will go forward together to a better future. Thank you very much, everyone. Thank you, Montreal."