The Canada-U.S. Relationship and Key Issues

March 23, 2023

President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit Canada from March 23 to 24, 2023. Many issues are up for discussion with Prime Minister Trudeau. Before this visit, on behalf of the National Post, le Journal de Montréal and le Journal de Québec, Leger surveyed Canadians and Americans to explore their perspectives on the Canada-U.S. relationship, key issues and political figures in the two countries.


The Canada-U.S. Relationship

Americans see the relationship more positively, but are less likely to see Canada as their closest ally.

  • Americans (90%) are more likely to perceive the Canada-U.S. relationship as good than Canadians (78%).
  • 61% of Canadians identify the U.S. as their country’s closest ally, 47% of Americans identify Canada as their country’s closest ally.

Key Issues

Some policy friction is possible when it comes to progress on climate change vs. the expansion of energy resources.

  • Canadians (73%) are more likely than Americans (63%) to think the Canada-U.S. relationship should be strengthened with respect to the fight against climate change.
  • Americans (76%) are more likely than Canadians (69%) to think the Canada-U.S. relationship should be strengthened with respect to the development of both countries’ energy and oil resources.  
  • A nearly identical proportion of Canadians (39%) and Americans (38%) think their country should accept fewer immigrants than in the past.

Canadian and American Political Figures

  • Canadians (51%) have more positive impressions of Joe Biden than Americans (42%).
  • Donald Trump is more popular in the U.S. (39% of Americans have a positive impression of him, compared to only 16% of Canadians).
  • 58% of Americans don’t know whether they would prefer Pierre Poilievre or Justin Trudeau to be prime minister of Canada (29% prefer Trudeau and 13% prefer Poilievre).


  • A web-based survey was conducted with a representative sample of 1,527 Canadians and 1,006 Americans. Respondents had to be able to speak either English or French and were randomly recruited using LEO’s online panel.
  • The data was collected from March 17 to 19, 2023.
  • Typically, a margin of error on a non-probability sample drawn from a panel is not provided, but for comparison, the margin of error for a probability sample of 1,527 respondents is ± 2.5%, 19 times out of 20 and a probability sample of 1,006 respondents is ±3.1%, 19 times out of 20.
  • Results were weighted by gender, age, mother tongue, region, education and presence of children in the household to ensure a representative sample of the Canadian and U.S. population.

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