Saturday, January 21, 2017
Another Billionanaire Tries His Hand At Politics
Kevin O'Leary, an entrepreneur and "Shark Tank" star, announced his entrance into the race to lead the Conservative Party in Canada.
The "Shark Tank" star, nicknamed Mr. Wonderful, announced his campaign in a video posted on his Facebook page after flirting with the idea for months.
He spoke about his background as the child of Lebanese and Irish immigrants and how Canada was the "land of opportunity" for his family.
"That's the promise of Canada. It always has been," O'Leary said. "Somehow, we've lost that. It's been squandered. And there's a reason — his name is Justin Trudeau.
"Today, with you, I'm starting my journey to do something special for him," O'Leary continued. "I'm going to help him find his real calling in 2019 — 'cause it's not running Canada. He doesn't know what he's doing."
O'Leary said Trudeau's "feeling of failure" is "permeating everything" in the country.
"I'm going to be his worst nightmare, but I'm doing it for us — you, me, my kids, yours," O'Leary said.
He likened Trudeau negotiating with US President-elect Donald Trump to "Godzilla versus Bambi" in a November interview after Trump won.
"I think Trump versus Trudeau is Godzilla versus Bambi," O'Leary told the CBC. "It's going to end very badly. You need someone that can negotiate."
With his announcement, O'Leary enters a crowded field to take over for Stephen Harper, Canada's former prime minister, as the leader of the Conservative Party. There are 13 other candidates, including current and former members of Parliament — some of whom have been campaigning since last spring.
He also waited until the morning after the French-language debate to announce his candidacy, meaning the reality-TV star didn't have to participate. O'Leary doesn't speak French, according to the CBC.
O'Leary's campaign will have to scramble to make up for lost time, with the Conservative Party's election five months away, on May 27.
Canada's next federal election is in 2019.