Kevin O’Leary isn’t afraid to speak his mind when it comes to business or the many deals that come his way on Shark Tank. He also doesn’t hold back his criticism of politicians from his home country of Canada, including the Prime Minister.
According to The Huffington Post Canada, O’Leary believes that Justin Trudeau, the current Prime Minister won’t last four years.
“The Trudeau mandate is going to end in economic catastrophe. The budget I see coming is going to be between $40 and $45 billion deficit,” said O’Leary, who said that he saw Trudeau spend $4 billion in his first 60 days and not create any jobs.
O’Leary continued, “A third of that is going to be wasted because the government can’t spend that much money — never could regardless of which party.”
Earlier this week, O’Leary, who also goes by the moniker Mr. Wonderful, wondered how Trudeau could sleep at night while the future of Canadian kids was at stake, according to The Toronto Sun.
“Looks like Trudeau Jr. is taking a page from his father’s playbook. When in doubt, spend,” said O’Leary, referring to former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau and who feels that Canada is no longer growing.
O’Leary continued, “Blowing through $40 billion of inefficient government spending won’t fix the country’s problems. Instead, it will ensure his legacy will be felt by his children’s children, who will still be paying for this irresponsible waste.”
According to CBC News, O’Leary appeared at the Manning Centre Conference in Ottawa, where he reportedly teased the idea of running for the leadership of the federal Conservative Party. He warned that he would be Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s “worst nightmare,” and claimed that many engineering students that he speaks to plan to leave Canada due to high taxes and the low dollar.
“Our financial policy in this country… is broken,” said O’Leary to a round of applause.
The businessman also said that he wanted to hold the federal and provincial governments accountable for their actions.
“I’ve decided that in every government policy or government spending from now on, I’m going to spend a tremendous amount of energy exposing it to the public and showing them where it’s broken,” said O’Leary.
Even though Kevin O’Leary has insisted that he’s a political “agnostic,” he was reportedly “making the rounds” at the conference by shaking hands, taking pics, and sharing his ideas, according to MacLean’s.
“One knock against O’Leary’s potential candidacy may be that he doesn’t speak French, but he said that doesn’t matter,” said Stephanie Levitz, who reported that Kevin O’Leary thinks the prospect of jobs is most important to Quebec residents.
The Shark Tank star’s sharp observations on politics and spending has been compared to that of Donald Trump. However, he said that the only thing he and Trump have in common is starring on reality television. According to CTV News, he is a vocal critic of Trump’s proposal to build a wall between the United States and Mexico.
“I’m half Lebanese, half Irish. I wouldn’t be here if there was a wall in Canada,” said O’Leary.
Laura Stone, a writer for The Globe and Mail, said that it would be easy to dismiss Kevin O’Leary’s political observations and aspirations as mere publicity for him, but notes that may not be the case.
“Seeing it solely as a self-promotional exercise would be a mistake,” said Stone. “In an era of Rob Ford populism and Donald Trump’s rise, brash figures such as Mr. O’Leary, who rose to fame on CBC’s Dragons’ Den, have suddenly become serious contenders in the modern political landscape.”
[Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images]