CANADA: Trudeau vs. the Premiers

Confrontations on energy and amending the constitution

Government budgets frequently stir up political battles. But the one that Pierre Elliott Trudeau put before Ottawa's House of Commons last week amounted to what one of the Prime Minister's political enemies called "a declaration of war." The budget included a $9.9 billion national energy program that caused wails of anguish in the U.S., as well as out west in Canada's energy-rich prairie provinces.

Trudeau recommended that there be 50% Canadian ownership of the country's oil and gas industry by 1990. At present, 17 of the 25 largest oil and gas companies, which...

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