Justin Trudeau is having the week from hell.
A new photo of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wearing blackface has surfaced, just moments after a yearbook photo showed him wearing brownface at a 2001 party.
Trudeau apologized Wednesday night for wearing brownface at a 2001 “Arabian Nights”-themed party – hours after TIME published the photo.
However, shortly after his apology, a new photo emerged showing the Canadian PM wearing blackface “makeup” in high school to sing “Day-O,” a Jamaican folk song famously performed by African-American singer Harry Belafonte.
Five weeks before election day on Oct. 21, Trudeau is in a dead heat with the Conservative Party. According to CBC News’ poll tracker on Sept. 18, which aggregates all publicly available polling data, the Conservative Party and the Liberal Party were polling at 34.4% and 34.2% respectively. The New Democratic Party was polling at 13.5% and the Green Party was polling at 9.7%.
Responding to the brownface photo to reporters, Trudeau acknowledged he was in the picture, which shows his face, neck and hands darkened. “I shouldn’t have done that. I should have known better but I didn’t and I’m really sorry,” Trudeau said.
During his statement, which he made aboard his campaign plane in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Trudeau was asked multiple times by reporters if he would resign. The prime minister avoided answering the question directly. “I take responsibility for my decision to do that. I shouldn’t have done it. I should’ve known better,” he said.
He added: “It was something that I didn’t think was racist at the time, but now I recognize it was something racist to do, and I am deeply sorry.”
When asked about what he has to say to members of his staff who are part of minority groups, Trudeau responded, “I have a number of calls to friends and colleagues tonight, and I will have many more calls to make.”
At least seven of Trudeau’s 35 cabinet ministers are from ethnic minority communities.
Trudeau went on to say, “I have worked all my life to try and create opportunities for people to fight against racism and intolerance, and I can just stand here and say that I made a mistake when I was younger, and I wish I hadn’t.”
When asked whether there were any other embarrassing photos or moments that he wanted to own up to, he responded: “The fact of the matter is that I’ve always—and you’ll know this—been more enthusiastic about costumes than is sometimes appropriate.”
Before Trudeau’s address, National Council of Canadian Muslims released a statement before Trudeau’s address, calling on the Prime Minister to apologize. Following his comments, the group tweeted: “We thank the Prime Minister for his apology.
“Prime Minister Trudeau’s apology came less than an hour after NCCM called on him to apologize for wearing blackface/brownface. Promises made, promises kept. That’s the NCCM way.”
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