Patrons at the Paramount Fine Foods, a popular Middle Easter restaurant chain, were surprised by a visit from Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau on Monday, April 13. The prime ministerial hopeful was perfectly at ease as he weaved his way in between tables shaking hands and taking pictures with those who requested (almost everyone). One lucky lady even got a hug.
Trudeau said he was here to meet the Lebanese community and the people of Mississauga as well as showcase the strong candidates from the area. “Politics needs to be done in an open and engaged way”, he explained and this was his way of showing how.
Paramount’s President and CEO Mohamad Fakih gave him a lesson in flipping flat bread prompting questions about what he was going to name it.
Fakih said that Trudeau’s visit to the restaurant was a demonstration of his support for business owners like himself. “I like what the Liberal party stands for and what they are doing for the GTA. We are a new business and this visit means a lot to us. Justin Trudeau shows that he stands for new entrepreneurs and new ideas, and that he is interested in the area.”
Omar Alghabra, Liberal candidate for Mississauga Centre who helped organized the event explained it was “non-scripted” (hence not publicised) visit to connect with the local community.
Iqra Khalid, Liberal candidate for Mississauga-Erin Mills, believes that “Justin Trudeau represents change and a new Canada” and is excited to be a part of the new times.
Navdeep Bains, Liberal candidate for Mississauga-Malton, said Mohamad Fakih is a supporter who runs a successful restaurant and “it was a great opportunity to meet people here”.
Sven Spengemann, Liberal candidate for Mississauga-Lakeshore, said the visit represented the energy and excitement of Team Trudeau. “Canada is for everybody and everybody is special. We are here to serve”.
There is no doubt that Justin Trudeau has a charismatic presence and that people warm up to him. But whether his personal touch will swing the election in his favour remains to be seen.