Tories: Joining U.S. continental missile defence system may help Canada with NAFTA talks

Conservatives say it might help Canada's bargaining position on the NAFTA file if the Liberal government were to agree to American demands that it join the US continental missile defence system.

But leader Andrew Scheer says he still thinks there is a chance to preserve NAFTA as a trilateral trade deal between Canada, the US and Mexico, and that Canada shouldn't give in to one-on-one trade talks with the US yet.

Scheer's interim predecessor Rona Ambrose warned last month it would be ``dangerous'' for the Conservatives to attack the government as it tries to get a new NAFTA deal, fearing it would look as though they were siding with President Donald Trump.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the idea of one-on-one trade talks with the US yesterday, and last week he described drawing a line in the sand with the U-S over the idea of a five-year sunset clause in NAFTA.

Scheer said there's more the prime minister could do to both manage the talks and protect Canadian workers.

He also repeated his concerns about Canada's retaliatory tariffs on US goods, a response to Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs, taking effect a full month after the American measures did.