One photo shows a group of men holding a drink up to Justin Trudeau's mouth. Another shows a woman licking his face. But such selfies with life-size cardboard cut-outs of the Canadian prime minister at diplomatic events are now a thing of the past. After complaints from opposition members of parliament, Canada's global affairs department has asked diplomats to stop using cut-outs of Trudeau at events, reports the CBC. It isn't clear how often the cut-outs were used, but one appeared at a Canadian tourism booth at the South By Southwest festival in Texas earlier this month, reports the Toronto Star. The Canadian embassy in Washington also rush-ordered a $110 cut-out of Trudeau ahead of Canada Day celebrations last year.
Noting the US embassy in Ottawa has a cut-out of former President Obama, diplomats described the idea as a "hoot" that would generate "serious selfie action," though some said it didn't seem "very prime ministerial," according to emails revealed by a freedom of information request from members of Canada's opposition Conservative Party. A Conservative MP has used the opportunity to compare Trudeau to a cut-out, noting his "shallow façade," while a party spokesman argues the "Canadian brand is much more than the prime minister." Global Affairs Canada, however, gave no reason for its order to abandon the Trudeau cut-outs, which can still be purchased by anyone at HistoricalCutouts.com. Plenty of other political figures are available, too.