By in news on Jan 14, 2017 |

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau answered questions at Western University Friday evening.

The town hall, part of a cross-country tour, filled Alumni Hall to its capacity with just under 2,000 attendees.

Due to space and safety concerns over the size of the crowd, the event changed locations twice. After consultation with the city, organizers chose Alumni Hall as the venue.

Potential attendees lined up all the way down Western Road hoping to see the Prime Minister. Organizers reportedly turned away thousands once Alumni Hall reached capacity.

Those who did make it had the opportunity to ask the Prime Minister some difficult questions – and they took full advantage of it.

Debt, investment in education, Indigenous issues, mental health, veterans care – the crowd at Western didn't shy away from the big issues.

There were moments of tension – the first question on the budget and Canada's debt was particularly antagonistic, drawing both cheers and boos – but also moments of laughter and emotion.

Trudeau identified a student as wearing a "Harvard" sweater.

"Mr. Prime Minister," the student responded, "It's a Western sweatshirt."

Trudeau recovered quickly.

"You guys know as well as I do ... Western is the Harvard of Canada," he said to laughs.

An emotional refugee to Canada took the opportunity to thank Trudeau.

Trudeau said that he can't take credit – Canadians can.

Listen to the full story above.

Audio story by Mohammad Abrar.

Written story and photos by Richard Raycraft.

Special thanks to Mohtaseem Rahman.