Donald Trump must think Canadians are a gullible lot.
That's because every time he's undermining the Canadian economy, he professes his deep love for the country.
It happened in June after the Trump administration slapped huge tariffs on Canadian steel imports, claiming they were a national security threat to the United States.
And it occurred again today after his off-the-record comments were reported in the Toronto Star that he wouldn't budge in trade talks with Canada.
According to the newspaper, Trump revealed that he wouldn't say this publicly because "it's going to be so insulting they're not going to be able to make a deal".
What did he do afterward? Professed his love for Canada, of course.
Trump now has Canadian dairy farmers in his sights because he can't stand the supply-management system, which brings stability to the sector and prevents food waste. He also withdrew from the Paris Agreement on climate change and disrupted the Western Alliance, both to the benefit of Russian president Vladimir Putin.
And Trump thinks that by endlessly claiming that he loves Canada, its residents will fall for this line just like ex-Playboy model Karen McDougal did.
She told CNN's Anderson Cooper that Trump repeatedly claimed that he loved her during a 10-month affair in 2006 and 2007—even as he was seeing porn star Stormy Daniels and was married to Melania, who had just given birth to their son.
Trump also declared that he loved Canada when he was running for president in 2015. And he claimed to love Canada in 2017 when he talked about building a wall along the Mexican border.
He's a real lover boy, that Trump.
This passion, however, is unrequited.
Polls show that Agent Orange, as Trump is sometimes called, is deeply loathed by most Canadians.
One such survey by Campaign Research in June showed that 81 percent of Canadians and 86 percent of Canadian women disapproved of Trump.
Nearly three-quarters believed that Trump had harmed the Canadian economy. Around the same amount supported the Trudeau government's decision to impose retaliatory tariffs in response to Trump's steel tariffs.
But the messages of love from Trump continue, even after his name was stripped off a luxurious hotel in downtown Toronto.
It's gotten to the point where significant numbers of Canadians don't even want to visit the United States as long as Trump is in the White House.
Clearly, Trump's "I love Canada" mantra is designed to blunt the growing outrage against him north of the 49th parallel.
What he fails to recognize is that Canadians aren't nearly as susceptible to his flattery as some of his former girlfriends were.