BC MP Nathan Cullen back home after U.S. tour during election

Many Americans are wrestling with what to do next, now that Donald Trump has been elected president, MP Nathan Cullen reports.

  • Dec. 15, 2016 6:00 a.m.

MP Nathan Cullen was among those honoured by Maclean's magazine in 2016

Many Americans are wrestling with what to do next, now that Donald Trump has been elected president, MP Nathan Cullen reports.

The Skeena-Bulkley Valley representative is back on Canadian soil after a eight-day tour with the US State Department through Washington, D.C., Louisiana, and Ohio.

In Cleveland, Cullen visited both campaign parties where supporters watched the results.

“People were in absolute tears of joy, and tears of sadness,” he said.

Cullen himself said he was shocked with Tuesday night’s results, “simply because one of a dozen things would have disqualified (Trump) in my mind.”

He said it was clear that Trump had channeled a lot of fear and frustration in white America. Some Democrat supporters asked him about how to immigrate to Canada.

“I would laugh, thinking they’re making a joke – they wouldn’t laugh,” he said. “It was a serious conversation.”

Many election waters reported on social media the Canadian Immigration website going down for part of the evening. Cullen said he welcomes Americans seeking refuge north of the border, but encouraged them to wait and see what Trump will do.

“There’s another shoe to drop,” he said.

Cullen was also recently recognized by Maclean’s magazine as Parliament’s best orator of 2016.  A veteran MP, Cullen says he prepares for speeches in the House by mind-mapping what he intends to say, and how. He plots a central topic in the middle of a blank page and connects all the elements he hopes to address. That linear approach ideally produces a compelling speech.

“I don’t want to be too romantic about it, but the same person can ask the exact same question in two tonally different ways, and you’d think that two different things were going on,” he says. “I always want to walk them back a bit and say, ‘I know we’re asking about an oil spill here, but what feeling are we trying to accomplish? Do we want them to say yes? Do we want to embarrass them?’”

Cullen, who has represented the B.C. northwest, a riding larger than the country of Poland, for over 12 years, says it’s his constituents in the northwest who keep him grounded.

“The distance helps in a way,” he says. “I have to work very hard at translating things that are going on here to make sense there. I feel the bubble coming over me when I’m in Ottawa. The echo chamber starts almost immediately, and it disappears almost instantaneously when I’m back home.”

Just Posted

Over thirteen percent of Bella Coola residents rely on Food Bank

Demand for Christmas Hampers up by 45 families this year

Site C dam goes ahead, cost estimate now up to $10.7 billion

Premier John Horgan says Christy Clark left him no other choice

Verdict to be delivered December 15 for three on trial in Anahim murders

The fates of Christian Craciun, Andrew Jongbloets, and Serena Rhem (Mack) will be decided on December 15 at 10am.

‘I fell asleep’ admits second mate in Nathan E. Stewart fuel spill

The tug spilled more than 100,000 litres of diesel off B.C.’s northern coast

Northwest’s new MRI hits milestone

Stakeholders celebrate 500th scan of diagnostic imaging device

VIDEO: New series takes in-depth look at sexual harassment in B.C.

Black Press takes a hard look at sexual harassment in B.C.

Horgan says pot smokers may face same outdoor rules as cigarette smokers

B.C. is developing its rules on recreational marijuana

Truck driver volunteers to take dog lost in B.C. back home to Alberta

Frankie, a pit bull service dog, was found wandering in the Lower Mainland

B.C. teacher suspended after explicit images projected to class

Jeffrey Rohin Muthanna had been viewing porn on a school laptop for two years

Man who pledged to give B.C. hockey team millions charged with fraud

Mike Gould has since repaid $8,000 he allegedly owed Cranbrook restaurant, owner says

Strong economy fuels housing sales in B.C.: report

Economist says demand for houses is being supported by a large number of millennials entering the market

Tequila, hammers and knives: what not to bring on an airplane

Vancouver International Airport staff provide tips on travelling during the holidays

New fighter-jet competition to have national ‘economic interest’ requirement

Trudeau government wants to replace Canada’s aging CF-18s with 88 new fighters by as early as 2025

The top-binged shows on Netflix in 2017

Which show did you cheat on your spouse with by watching ahead?

Most Read