Harper congratulates Obama, issuing statement after Romney concedes

The Canadian Press
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U.S. Democratic party supporters celebrate at a Democrats Abroad election night gathering in Toronto on Tuesday.

OTTAWA — Stephen Harper formally congratulated U.S. President Barack Obama on his re-election to the White House in Wednesday’s early morning hours.

The prime minister’s office issued a statement from India moments after Obama’s Republican challenger Mitt Romney formally conceded in a speech from Boston.

“Over the last four years, the president and I have worked on several important bilateral initiatives to generate jobs and growth in both our countries. This includes the Beyond the Border Action Plan, which will speed up trade and travel across our borders while also enhancing security,” Harper said in the statement.

“We are also working together with other partners to conclude the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, which seeks to boost trade in the Asia-Pacific region.”

Perhaps taking his cues from Romney, Harper’s statement was released nearly two hours after major American television networks and news agencies declared Obama the winner.

Harper told reporters on his Indian trade mission that he looked forward to working with and Obama over the next four years.

“We’ve had a very good and effective working relationship focused on jobs and growth in the global economy,” Harper said.

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, meanwhile, released his statement within minutes of the U.S. networks’ projections.

Harper watched the election returns with his wife, Laureen, from their hotel in New Delhi.

Mulcair’s office released its congratulatory remarks within minutes of the U.S. networks calling the Obama victory late Tuesday night.

Mulcair’s “heartfelt congratulations” reflected the unabashed support that many of Canada’s New Democrats have heaped on Obama in recent days.

“President Obama knows that a nation can achieve more when its citizens work together to lift each other up. He also recognizes that sustainable development is crucial to ensuring a brighter future for our children and grandchildren,” Mulcair said.

“These are values that New Democrats are proud to share.”

The NDP’s pro-Obama sentiments were close to the surface Tuesday night when Canadian MPs gathered at a U.S. Embassy event at an Ottawa hotel to watch the returns of the hard-fought U.S. race.

“I hope and pray that Obama wins just because I hope social democracy has a chance in the world because I really despair that if Romney wins, it’s a rise of neo-conservatism around the world,” said New Democrat MP Pat Martin.

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, attending the same gathering, said Canada was poised to work with its top ally and friend to find ways to create jobs and build the economy.

“The bottom line is our government has worked very well with the last two administrations, and I’m convinced we’ll work well going forward,” said Baird.

Organizations: Canadian MPs, U.S. Embassy, Ottawa hotel

Geographic location: U.S., OTTAWA, India Boston Canada Asia-Pacific New Delhi.Mulcair

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Recent comments

  • OK
    November 07, 2012 - 18:21

    A Harper- Romney situation would be too much imo

  • Billy
    November 07, 2012 - 15:04

    I guess America wasn;t ready for a white president.

  • SG
    November 07, 2012 - 10:02

    I am delighted that Obama won. I don't know either Candidate except for what I read and watch via News Reports. Obama seems to be genuinely interested in doing what is in the best interests of Americans. Romney seemed to put more emphasis on Business and Corporate Ideals which are important but I feel what is best for the every day citizen should take priority.

  • SG
    November 07, 2012 - 09:50

    Captain Canuck Harper's statement had nothing to do with playing politics. He like other Leaders and Politicians waited until Mitt Romney formally conceded which was the proper protocol. (The prime minister’s office issued a statement from India moments after Obama’s Republican challenger Mitt Romney formally conceded in a speech from Boston.)

    • captain canuck
      November 07, 2012 - 10:55

      Yes, I agree. See my response to Garth's response below... My bad: my sarcasm didn't come through. Sorry.

  • Captain Canuck
    November 07, 2012 - 08:46

    Waited two hours. Imagine: playing politics with politics!

    • Garth Staples
      November 07, 2012 - 09:11

      The networks are not officials of the election apparatus here nor in the USA! What if their pronouncements had been wrong? They have been before. Remember? The PM was totally correct in following protocol. Some commentators try to breathe political motives into everything, then have the gall to accuse politicians of being partisan etc.

    • captain canuck
      November 07, 2012 - 10:52

      I agree with you this time Garth. (and lately also agreeing with you retroactively). It is obvious that it was made to look political by the writer... playing politics with playing politics with politics. Follow that logic! All that matters in that is whether the White House sees a political move in it... and we don't blip their radar, sooo...