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Justin Trudeau says Liberals suffered from too much navel-gazing

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau asks a question during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on May 7

Adrian Wyld/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau says the party's drop in support in the last 10 years or so can be put down to too much navel-gazing.

Trudeau said Saturday the Liberals were more concerned during that time with their own fate rather than that of Canadians.

He said that attitude illustrates why the party went from 172 seats in 2000 to its current 35-member caucus.

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"The biggest problem was that we...started thinking more about ourselves than we did about Canadians," Trudeau said at a meeting of the party's Quebec wing in Victoriaville, Que.

He told reporters he believes he has changed that culture since becoming leader in April 2013.

"Despite all the media, the social media, the advertising, it's the work on the ground and the human contact that count," he said.

Trudeau refused to criticize his predecessors' policies over the last decade.

The Liberals have only eight of the 75 seats in Quebec and Trudeau acknowledged they have bridges to rebuild in the province.

"Not only will Quebecers be present in my government, they will be listened to.

"It won't just be a prime minister from Quebec but there will be ministers from Quebec in strong positions."

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