Stephen Harper

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Stephen Harper
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{{Other people|Stephen Harper}}{{pp-move-indef}}{{short description|22nd Prime Minister of Canada}}{{Use Canadian English|date=October 2015}}{{good article}}{{Use mdy dates|date=September 2017}}{{pp-semi-blp|small=yes}}

style="background:silver;" align="center"
name Stephen Harper| order = 22nd Prime Minister of Canada| honorific-prefix = The Right Honourable

Privy Council of Canada>PC| image = Stephen Harper by Remy Steinegger.jpg| net_worth = |caption=Harper in 2010| monarch = Elizabeth II| predecessor = Paul Martin| successor = Justin Trudeau| signature = Stephen Harper Signature-rt.svg| monarch3 = Elizabeth IIJohn Reynolds (Canadian politician)>John Reynolds
    Conservative Party of Canada>Conservative (2003–present)GovernorGeneral{edih} Leader of the Official Opposition (Canada)>Leader of the OppositionGrant Hill (politician)>Grant Hill | primeminister2 = Paul MartinBill Graham (Canadian politician)>Bill GrahamGrant Hill (politician)>Grant Hill | birth_name = Stephen Joseph Harper195930}}| birth_place = Toronto, Ontario, Canada Laureen Harper>December 11, 1993}}| children = 2 Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada>Leader of the Conservative PartyDon PlettJohn Walsh (Canadian politician)>John Walsh| deputy4 = Peter MacKay| term_start4 = March 20, 2004| term_end4 = October 19, 2015John Lynch-Staunton {{small>(interim)}}Rona Ambrose {{small>(interim)}}Canadian Alliance>Leader of the Canadian Alliance| term_start5 = March 20, 2002| term_end5 = December 7, 2003John Reynolds (Canadian politician)>John Reynolds {{small|(ad interim)}}| successor5 = Position abolished| parliament6 = Canadian| riding6 = Calgary HeritageCalgary Southwest (2002–2015)| term_start6 = June 28, 2002| term_end6 = August 26, 2016| predecessor6 = Preston Manning| successor6 = Bob Benzen| parliament7 = Canadian| riding7 = Calgary West| term_start7 = October 25, 1993| term_end7 = January 14, 1997| predecessor7 = Jim Hawkes| successor7 = Rob Anders}}Stephen Joseph Harper {{postnom|PC}} (born April 30, 1959) is a Canadian economist, entrepreneur, and retired politician who served as the 22nd prime minister of Canada for nearly a decade, from February 6, 2006, to November 4, 2015. Harper has served as the leader of the International Democrat Union since February 2018.NEWS,weblink Harper elected chairman of the International Democrat Union, February 21, 2018, iPolitics, April 11, 2018, Over his career, Stephen Harper was elected to the House of Commons seven times, and served nine years as prime minister of Canada, winning three elections as party leader. Harper was the first prime minister to come from the modern Conservative Party of Canada, though older centre-right conservative parties have been active since Canada's founding.Harper was one of the founding members of the Reform Party of Canada and under that banner was first elected to the House of Commons of Canada in 1993 in Calgary West. He did not seek re-election in the 1997 federal election. Harper instead joined and later led the National Citizens Coalition, a conservative lobbyist group.National Citizens Coalition (NCC) â€“ Harper's presidency was a critical period {{webarchive|url= |date=March 3, 2016 }}. The Harper Index, May 11, 2007. Retrieved April 16, 2011 In 2002, he succeeded Stockwell Day as leader of the Canadian Alliance, the successor to the Reform Party and returned to parliament as Leader of the Opposition by winning Preston Manning's former seat. In 2003, Harper reached an agreement with the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada, Peter MacKay, for the merger of their two parties to form the Conservative Party of Canada. Harper was subsequently elected as the party's first leader in March 2004. As party leader, Leader of the Opposition, and then Prime Minister Harper represented the riding of Calgary Southwest in Alberta from 2002 to 2015. He also represented Calgary Heritage from 2015 until 2016 after the Conservatives lost the 2015 election.WEB,weblink Former prime minister Stephen Harper resigns as MP, Tonda MacCharles, August 26, 2016, The Toronto Star, September 4, 2016, The 2006 federal election resulted in a minority government led by the Conservative Party with Harper becoming the 22nd prime minister of Canada. This was to become Canada's longest-serving minority government, but by proportion of seats it was also the smallest minority government since Confederation. In the 2008 federal election, the Conservative Party outperformed and won a stronger minority, showing a moderate increase in the percentage of the popular vote and increased representation in the House of Commons of Canada, with 143 of 308 seats. The 40th Canadian Parliament was eventually dissolved in March 2011, after a no-confidence vote that deemed the Cabinet to be in contempt of parliament.WEB,weblink Harper government topples on contempt motion, triggering May election, Bruce Cheadle, March 25, 2011, The Canadian Press, CTV News, March 26, 2011, In the federal election that followed, the Conservatives won a decisive majority government which was the first majority mandate since the 2000 federal election. In total, the Conservative Party won a majority of 166 seats in 2011, an increase of 23 seats from the October 2008 election.Ray Argyle, Turning Points: The Campaigns That Changed Canada â€“ 2011 and Before (2011) excerpt and text search ch 1In the 2015 federal election, Harper won his seat of Calgary Heritage WEB, Conservative leader Stephen Harper wins Calgary Heritage riding,weblink Global News, Global News, October 20, 2015, 2015-10-19, but overall the Conservative Party lost power following nearly a decade in power. Prime Minister Harper continued to serve until November 4, 2015, when Justin Trudeau and a Liberal Party of Canada government was officially sworn in.WEB,weblink When does Justin Trudeau become prime minister?,, October 20, 2015, February 17, 2016, WEB,weblink How Justin Trudeau will officially become prime minister | Toronto Star,, October 22, 2015, February 17, 2016, NEWS, Liberals projected to win majority,weblink October 19, 2015, Toronto Star, October 19, 2015, NEWS, Justin Trudeau to be prime minister as Liberals surge to majority,weblink October 19, 2015, CBC News, October 19, 2015, Harper officially stepped down as party leader on October 19, 2015, and Rona Ambrose was subsequently chosen as interim leader on November 5, 2015.NEWS, Stephen Harper resigns as Conservative leader,weblink October 19, 2015, CTV News, October 19, 2015, WEB,weblink Conservatives to elect interim leader on Nov. 5,, October 26, 2015, February 17, 2016, On May 26, 2016 he was named as a senior board member for the Conservative Party Fund.NEWS,weblink Harper's Conservative Party fundraising role appears unprecedented, expected to mobilize base – The Hill Times, 2017-01-23, The Hill Times, 2018-04-24, en-US, After 2015, Harper slowly began to step away from Canadian politics and took on a number of international business and leadership roles, founding a global consulting firm, appearing on US and British media, and being elected leader of the International Democrat Union. In 2017, the former Speaker of the House, Andrew Scheer, was elected as Harper's successor as leader of the Conservative Party.NEWS,weblink Andrew Scheer elected new Conservative leader, Harris, Kathleen, CBC News, May 27, 2017, May 27, 2017,

    Early life and education

    Harper was born and raised in Leaside,WEB,weblink What it's like living in Stephen Harper's old house, Toronto Star, October 19, 2015, February 17, 2016, Toronto, the first of three sons of Margaret (née Johnston) and Joseph Harris Harper, an accountant at Imperial Oil.William Johnson, Stephen Harper and the Future of Canada, p. 7 The Harper family traces its ancestry back to Yorkshire, England with Christopher Harper having emigrated from Yorkshire to Nova Scotia in 1784, where he later served as Justice of the Peace in the area that is now New Brunswick.NEWS, MacGregor, Roy, Tracing the Prime Minister's family tree,weblink May 20, 2015, Globe & Mail, Al Smith, "Prime Minister Harper's Tantramar Roots", in The White Fence: Newsletter of the Tantramar Heritage Trust, Issue # 45, April 2010. Accessed September 26, 2015Harper attended Northlea Public School and, later, John G. Althouse Middle School and Richview Collegiate Institute, both in Etobicoke, Toronto. He graduated from high-school in 1978, and was a member of Richview Collegiate's team on Reach for the Top, a televised academic quiz show for high school students.O'Connor, Naoibh,WEB,weblink 'Nerds' tops in Canada, October 9, 2006, unfit,weblink" title="">weblink October 19, 2006, , The Vancouver Courier, August 5, 2004. Retrieved October 9, 2006. Harper enrolled at the University of Toronto but dropped out after two months.William Johnson, Stephen Harper and the Future of Canada, p. 12 He then moved to Edmonton, Alberta, where he found work in the mail room at Imperial Oil. Later, he advanced to work on the company's computer systems. He took up post-secondary studies again at the University of Calgary, where he completed a bachelor's degree in economics in 1985. He later returned there to earn a master's degree in economics, completed in 1991.Harrison, Trevor W., (2012) "Stephen Harper." The Canadian Encyclopedia Historica Canada last ed. June 11, 2015. Throughout his career, Harper has kept strong links to the University of Calgary. Trained as an economist, Harper was the first prime minister without a law degree since Joe Clark.

    Political beginnings

    {{See also|Electoral history of Stephen Harper}}Harper became involved in politics as a member of his high school's Young Liberals Club.ENCYCLOPEDIA,weblink Stephen Harper, MiniBio,, February 15, 2009, He later changed his political allegiance because he disagreed with the National Energy Program (NEP) of Pierre Trudeau's Liberal government.William Johnson, Stephen Harper and the Future of Canada, p. 19 He became chief aide to Progressive Conservative MP Jim Hawkes in 1985, but later became disillusioned with the party and the government of Brian Mulroney, especially the administration's fiscal policy and its inability to fully revoke the NEP until 1986. He left the PC Party that same year.WEB,weblink Stephen Harper,, 2006, February 15, 2009, He was then recommended by the University of Calgary's economist Bob Mansell to Preston Manning, the founder and leader of the Reform Party of Canada. At that time Harper "didn't see himself as a politician", Mansell told CBC News in 2002, adding, "Politics was not his first love."NEWS, Daniel, Schwartz,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink Stephen Harper, CBC News, April 4, 2002, February 14, 2003, yes, Manning invited him to participate in the party, and Harper gave a speech at Reform's 1987 founding convention in Winnipeg. He became the Reform Party's Chief Policy Officer, and he played a major role in drafting the 1988 election platform. He is credited with creating Reform's campaign slogan, "The West wants in!"NEWS, Rex, Murphy,weblink Rex Murphy: Stephen Harper's new priority,, March 22, 2007, February 15, 2009, Harper ran for the House of Commons of Canada in the 1988 federal election, appearing on the ballot as Steve Harper in Calgary West and losing by a wide margin to Hawkes, his former employer. After Reform candidate Deborah Grey was elected as the party's first MP in a 1989 by-election, Harper became Grey's executive assistant, and was her chief adviser and speechwriter until 1993.Geoff White, "Ottawa will be hearing from Reform MP", Calgary Herald, April 21, 1989, pg. A5. He remained prominent in the Reform Party's national organization in his role as policy chief, encouraging the party to expand beyond its Western base, and arguing that strictly regional parties were at risk of being taken over by radical elements.Paul Gessell, "The "other' parties are picking up big followings", Kitchener-Waterloo Record, October 26, 1990, A9. He delivered a speech at the Reform Party's 1991 national convention, in which he condemned extremist views.George Oake, "Reform Party tries to avoid appearance of extremism", Toronto Star, April 6, 1991, pg. A12Harper's relationship with Manning became strained in 1992, because of conflicting strategies over the Charlottetown Accord. Harper opposed the Accord on principle for ideological reasons, while Manning was initially more open to compromise. Harper also criticized Manning's decision to hire Rick Anderson as an adviser, believing that Anderson was not sufficiently committed to the Reform Party's principles.William Johnson, Stephen Harper and the Future of Canada, (Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 2005), pp. 179–83 He resigned as policy chief in October 1992.Harper stood for office again in the 1993 federal election, and defeated Jim Hawkes amid a significant Reform breakthrough in Western Canada. His campaign likely benefited from a $50,000 print and television campaign organized by the National Citizens Coalition against Hawkes, although the NCC did not endorse Harper directly.Kenneth Whyte, "The right-wingers duke it out in the Calgary West corral", The Globe and Mail, October 2, 1993, pg. D2

    Reform MP (1993–97)

    Harper emerged a prominent member of the Reform Party caucus. He was active on constitutional issues during his first parliament, and played a prominent role in drafting the Reform Party's strategy for the 1995 Quebec referendum. A long-standing opponent of centralized federalism, he stood with Preston Manning in Montreal to introduce a twenty-point plan to "decentralize and modernize" Canada in the event of a "no" victory.Neville Nankivell, "Reform's voice will grow louder", Financial Post, October 31, 1995, p. 23 Harper later argued that the "no" side's narrow plurality was a worst-case scenario, in that no-one had won a mandate for change."Harris joins other leaders in calling for change", Hamilton Spectator, October 31, 1995, pg. A1Though socially libertarian, Harper has expressed some socially conservative views on certain issues.NEWS, Richard, Dufour,weblink Who is Stephen Harper, the Conservative poised to be Canada's next prime minister?, World Socialist Web Site, International Committee of the Fourth International, January 20, 2006, February 15, 2009, In 1994, he opposed plans by federal Justice Minister Allan Rock to introduce spousal benefits for same-sex couples. Citing the recent failure of a similar initiative in Ontario, he was quoted as saying, "What I hope they learn is not to get into it. There are more important social and economic issues, not to mention the unity question."Marta Gold, "Same-sex fight going to Ottawa", Hamilton Spectator, June 10, 1994, pg. A3 Harper also spoke against the possibility of the Canadian Human Rights Commission or the Supreme Court changing federal policy in these and other matters.Joan Crockett, "Robinson lays equality complaint", Hamilton Spectator, June 22, 1994, pg. A12At the Reform Party's 1994 policy convention, Harper was part of a small minority of delegates who voted against restricting the definition of marriage to "the union of one man and one woman".Edward Greenspon, "Stephen Harper: a neo-con in a land of liberals", Globe and Mail, March 23, 2002, A17. He actually opposed both same-sex marriage and mandated benefits for same-sex couples, but argued that political parties should refrain from taking official positions on these and other "issues of conscience".Johnson, Stephen Harper, p. 222Harper was the only Reform MP to support the creation of the Canadian Firearms Registry at second reading in 1995, although he later voted against it at third reading stage. He said at the time that he initially voted for the registry because of a poll showing that most of his constituents supported it, and added that he changed his vote when a second poll showed the opposite result. It was reported in April 1995, that some Progressive Conservatives opposed to Jean Charest's leadership wanted to remove both Charest and Manning, and unite the Reform and Progressive Conservative parties under Harper's leadership.Susan Delacourt, "Charest, Manning dismiss reports of parties' merging", Globe and Mail, April 4, 1995, pg. A5Despite his prominent position in the party, Harper's relationship with the Reform Party leadership was frequently strained. In early 1994, he criticized a party decision to establish a personal expense account for Manning at a time when other Reform MPs had been asked to forego parliamentary perquisites.Geoffrey York, "Reform MPs snarl at party rebuke", Globe and Mail, April 8, 1994, pg. A4 He was formally rebuked by the Reform executive council despite winning support from some MPs. His relationship with Manning grew increasingly fractious in the mid-1990s, and he pointedly declined to express any opinion on Manning's leadership during a 1996 interview.Edward Greenspon, "Reform's renewal off to slow start", Globe and Mail, August 1, 1996, A4; Edward Greenspon, "Manning seeks to repeat party's surge", Globe and Mail, August 2, 1996, pg. A4 This friction was indicative of a fundamental divide between the two men: Harper was strongly committed to conservative principles and opposed Manning's inclinations toward populism, which Harper saw as leading to compromise on core ideological matters.NEWS, Whyte, Kenneth, Kenneth Whyte, That Manning and Harper would clash has always been a safe bet, The Globe and Mail, Toronto, April 9, 1994, D2, NEWS, Ibbitson, John, John Ibbitson, Who is Stephen Harper?, January 14, 2006,weblink The Globe and Mail, Toronto, yes,weblink" title="">weblink January 16, 2009, {{Failed verification|date=December 2011}}These tensions culminated in late 1996 when Harper announced that he would not be a candidate in the next federal election. He resigned his parliamentary seat on January 14, 1997, the same day that he was appointed as a vice-president of the National Citizens Coalition (NCC), a conservative think-tank and advocacy group."Stephen Harper named A NCC Vice-President", Canada NewsWire, January 14, 1997 He was promoted to NCC president later in the year.In April 1997, Harper suggested that the Reform Party was drifting toward social conservatism and ignoring the principles of economic conservatism.Thomas Walkom, No title [Second of Five Parts], Toronto Star, April 6, 1997, pg. A1 The Liberal Party lost seats but managed to retain a narrow majority government in the 1997 federal election, while Reform made only modest gains.

    Out of parliament


    Soon after leaving parliament, Harper and Tom Flanagan co-authored an opinion piece entitled "Our Benign Dictatorship", which argued that the Liberal Party only retained power through a dysfunctional political system and a divided opposition. Harper and Flanagan argued that national conservative governments between 1917 and 1993 were founded on temporary alliances between Western populists and Quebec nationalists, and were unable to govern because of their fundamental contradictions. The authors called for an alliance of Canada's conservative parties, and suggested that meaningful political change might require electoral reforms such as proportional representation. "Our Benign Dictatorship" also commended Conrad Black's purchase of the Southam newspaper chain, arguing that his stewardship would provide for a "pluralistic" editorial view to counter the "monolithically liberal and feminist" approach of the previous management.WEB, Harper, Stephen, Flanagan, Tom, Our benign dictatorship,weblink Next City, October 6, 2015,weblink" title="">weblink May 29, 1998, 1997, Harper remained active in constitutional issues. He was a prominent opponent of the Calgary Declaration on national unity in late 1997, describing it as an "appeasement strategy" against Quebec nationalism. He called for federalist politicians to reject this strategy, and approach future constitutional talks from the position that "Quebec separatists are the problem and they need to be fixed".Susan Delacourt, "Seeds planted for opposition to unity plan", Globe and Mail, September 18, 1997, pg. A1 In late 1999, Harper called for the federal government to establish clear rules for any future Quebec referendum on sovereignty.Stephen Harper, "Why Chrétien mustn't flag", Globe and Mail, December 2, 1999, pg. A17 Some have identified Harper's views as an influence on the Chrétien government's Clarity Act.Chantal Hebert, "Harper takes pragmatic approach to Quebec", Toronto Star, April 26, 2002, pg. A25As president of the NCC from 1998 to 2002, Harper launched an ultimately unsuccessful legal battle against federal election laws restricting third-party advertising.Daniel Leblanc, "Groups vow to fight new election bill", Globe and Mail, June 8, 1999, pg. A4; "Gagged by statute", National Post, June 8, 2000, pg. A19 He led the NCC in several campaigns against the Canadian Wheat Board,National Citizen's Coalition, "NCC To Back New Court Challenge To Wheat Board Monopoly", Canada NewsWire, February 9, 1998, 11:15 report; National Citizen's Coalition, "NCC to blitz prairies with anti-Wheat Board radio ads", Canada NewsWire, August 25, 1999 and supported Finance Minister Paul Martin's 2000 tax cuts as a positive first step toward tax title, Toronto Star, February 29, 2000, p. 1In 1997, Harper delivered a controversial speech on Canadian identity to the Council for National Policy, a conservative American think tank. He made comments such as "Canada is a Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term, and very proud of it", "if you're like all Americans, you know almost nothing except for your own country. Which makes you probably knowledgeable about one more country than most Canadians", and "the NDP [New Democratic Party] is kind of proof that the Devil lives and interferes in the affairs of men."Full text of Stephen Harper's 1997 speech,, December 14, 2005 These statements were made public and criticized during the 2006 election. Harper argued that the speech was intended as humour, and not as serious analysis.Susan Riley, "Harper's suspect evolution", December 16, 2005, pg. A18Harper considered campaigning for the Progressive Conservative Party leadership in 1998, after Jean Charest left federal politics. Among those encouraging his candidacy were senior aides to Ontario Premier Mike Harris, including Tony Clement and Tom Long.Jack Aubry, "Battle lines being drawn up for ideological heart of Tories", Hamilton Spectator, April 7, 1998, pg. C3; David Frum was also mentioned as a possible supporter. He eventually decided against running, arguing that it would "burn bridges to those Reformers with whom I worked for many years" and prevent an alliance of right-wing parties from taking shape.Scott Feschuk, "Harper rejects run at Tory leadership", Globe and Mail, April 10, 1998, pg. A1 Harper was sceptical about the Reform Party's United Alternative initiative in 1999, arguing that it would serve to consolidate Manning's hold on the party leadership.Rosemary Spiers, "Preston Manning's fork in the road", Toronto Star, February 18, 1999, p. 1; "But who will lead it?", Globe and Mail, February 22, 1999, pg. A10 He also expressed concern that the UA would dilute Reform's ideological focus.Michael Taube, "United Alternative needs policy, not Reform party lite", Hamilton Spectator, February 25, 1999, pg. A14


    When the United Alternative created the Canadian Alliance in 2000 as a successor party to Reform, Harper predicted that Stockwell Day would defeat Preston Manning for the new party's leadership. He expressed reservations about Day's abilities, however, and accused Day of "[making] adherence to his social views a litmus test to determine whether you're in the party or not".Tim Harper, "Bible belts", Toronto Star, June 17, 2000, p. 1 Harper endorsed Tom Long for the leadership, arguing that Long was best suited to take support from the Progressive Conservative Party."That sound you hear is the shifting of conservative ground", April 21, 2000, Globe and Mail, pg. A12 When Day placed first on the first ballot, Harper said that the Canadian Alliance was shifting "more towards being a party of the religious right".Paul Adams, "Front-runner rides tide of religious conservatism", Globe and Mail, June 26, 2000, pg. A1After the death of Pierre Trudeau in 2000, Harper wrote an editorial criticizing Trudeau's policies as they affected Western Canada. He wrote that Trudeau "embraced the fashionable causes of his time, with variable enthusiasm and differing results", but "took a pass" on the issues that "truly defined his century".Stephen Harper, "On second thought", National Post, October 5, 2000, pg. A18 Harper subsequently accused Trudeau of promoting "unabashed socialism", and argued that Canadian governments between 1972 and 2002 had restricted economic growth through "state corporatism".Stephen Harper, "Get the state out of the economy", National Post, February 8, 2002, pg. A14After the Canadian Alliance's poor showing in the 2000 election, Harper joined with other Western conservatives in co-authoring a document called the "Alberta Agenda". The letter called on Alberta to reform publicly funded health care, replace the Canada Pension Plan with a provincial plan and replace the Royal Canadian Mounted Police with a provincial police force. It became known as the "firewall letter", because it called on the provincial government to "build firewalls around Alberta" to stop the federal government from redistributing its wealth to less affluent regions.Stephen Harper, Tom Flanagan et al., "The Alberta Agenda" {{webarchive|url= |date=November 18, 2004 }}, National Post, January 26, 2001, A14. Alberta Premier Ralph Klein agreed with some of the letter's recommendations, but distanced himself from the "firewall" comments.Jill Mahoney, "No 'firewall' needed around Alberta, Klein says", Globe and Mail, February 8, 2001, A9.Harper also wrote an editorial in late 2000 arguing that Alberta and the rest of Canada were "embark[ing] on divergent and potentially hostile paths to defining their country". He said that Alberta had chosen the "best of Canada's heritage—a combination of American enterprise and individualism with the British traditions of order and co-operation" while Canada "appears content to become a second-tier socialistic country ... led by a second-world strongman appropriately suited for the task". He also called for a "stronger and much more autonomous Alberta", while rejecting calls for separatism.Stephen Harper, "Separation, Alberta-style: It is time to seek a new relationship with Canada", National Post, December 8, 2000, A18. In the 2001 Alberta provincial election, Harper led the NCC in a "Vote Anything but Liberal" campaign.National Citizens Coalition, "NCC Ad Campaign Urges Albertans Not to Vote Liberal", Canada NewsWire, February 13, 2001, 11:45 report. Some articles from this period described him as a possible successor to Klein.Chantal Hebert, "Alberta, Quebec sing from same complaint book", Toronto Star, February 14, 2001, p. 1.Harper and the NCC endorsed a private school tax credit proposed by Ontario's Progressive Conservative government in 2001, arguing that it would "save about $7,000 for each student who does not attend a union-run public school". Education Minister Janet Ecker criticized this, saying that her government's intent was not to save money at the expense of public education.Richard Mackie, "School tax-credit plan hailed as a money saver", Globe and Mail, June 19, 2001, A5.Day's leadership of the Canadian Alliance became increasingly troubled throughout the summer of 2001, as several party MPs called for his resignation. In June, the National Post newspaper reported that former Reform MP Ian McClelland was organizing a possible leadership challenge on Harper's behalf.Sheldon Alberts, "Harper mounts campaign to lead the right: Behind the scenes", National Post, June 30, 2001, pg. A06 Harper announced his resignation from the NCC presidency in August 2001, to prepare a campaign.National Citizen's Coalition, "Stephen Harper to Step Down as NCC President", Canada NewsWire, August 13, 2001

    Canadian Alliance leadership, 2002–03

    Stockwell Day called a new Canadian Alliance leadership race for 2002, and soon declared himself a candidate. Harper emerged as Day's main rival, and declared his own candidacy on December 3, 2001. He eventually won the support of at least 28 Alliance MPs,NEWS, Number 28 for Harper, Canada NewsWire, March 6, 2002, including Scott Reid, James RajotteNEWS, Six Alliance MPs declare or reaffirm support for Harper's leadership bid, The Canadian Press, December 7, 2001, and Keith Martin.NEWS, Five More MPs endorse Harper, Canada NewsWire, February 20, 2002, During the campaign, Harper reprised his earlier warnings against an alliance with Quebecois nationalists, and called for his party to become the federalist option in Quebec.NEWS, Stephen, Harper, A vision of federalism for all Canadians, National Post, January 19, 2002, A18, He argued that "the French language is not imperilled in Quebec", and opposed "special status" for the province in the Canadian Constitution accordingly.NEWS, Arpon, Basu, Alliance candidate Stephen Harper says French not threatened in Quebec, Canadian Press, January 19, 2002, He also endorsed greater provincial autonomy on Medicare, and said that he would not co-operate with the Progressive Conservatives as long as they were led by Joe Clark.NEWS, Brian, Laghi, Harper launches campaign, The Globe and Mail, December 4, 2001, A8, On social issues, Harper argued for "parental rights" to use corporal punishment against their children and supported raising the age of sexual consent.NEWS, Brian, Laghi, Harper campaigns on social issues, The Globe and Mail, February 21, 2002, A4, He described his potential support base as "similar to what George Bush tapped".NEWS, Ian, Hunter, The cult of policy, The Globe and Mail, March 7, 2002, A19, The tone of the leadership contest turned hostile in February 2002. Harper described Day's governance of the party as "amateurish","No more Mr. Nice Guy in Alliance leadership race", Kitchener-Waterloo Record, February 4, 2002, pg. A3 while his campaign team argued that Day was attempting to win re-election by building a narrow support base among different groups in the religious right.Robert Fife, "Day accused of courting evangelicals", National Post, February 9, 2002, pg. A06 The Day campaign accused Harper of "attacking ethnic and religious minorities".Campbell Clark, "Harper attacking minorities, Day leadership camp charges", Globe and Mail, February 12, 2002, pg. A12 In early March, the two candidates had an especially fractious debate on CBC Newsworld.Brian Laghi, "Harper, Day swap insults in debate", Globe and Mail, March 8, 2002, pg. A4 The leadership vote was held on March 20, 2002. Harper was elected on the first ballot with 55% support, against 37% for Day. Two other candidates split the remainder.After winning the party leadership, Harper announced his intention to run for parliament in a by-election in Calgary Southwest, recently vacated by Preston Manning. Ezra Levant had been chosen as the riding's Alliance candidate and declared that he would not stand aside for Harper; he later reconsidered.Dawn Walton, "Rookie Levant ready to run", Globe and Mail, March 28, 2002, pg. A8; Sheldon Alberts, "'Troubled' Levant lets Harper run", National Post, March 29, 2002, pg. A01 The Liberals did not field a candidate, following a parliamentary tradition of allowing opposition leaders to enter the House of Commons unopposed. The Progressive Conservative candidate, Jim Prentice, also chose to withdraw."Alliance leader won't face Tories in byelection bid", Winnipeg Free Press, March 31, 2002, pg. A8 Harper was elected without difficulty over New Democrat Bill Phipps, a former United Church of Canada moderator. Harper told a reporter during the campaign that he "despise[d]" Phipps, and declined to debate him.Jeffrey Simpson, "He makes Harper think uncharitable thoughts", Globe and Mail, May 7, 2002, pg. A19; Phipps later said that he was "shocked" by Harper's language. See Louise Elliott, "NDP candidate slams Alliance leader for personal comment, refusal to debate", Canadian Press, May 9, 2002,Harper officially became Leader of the Opposition in May 2002. Later in the same month, he said that the Atlantic Provinces were trapped in "a culture of defeat" which had to be overcome, the result of policies designed by Liberal and Progressive Conservative governments. Many Atlantic politicians condemned the remark as patronizing and insensitive. The Legislature of Nova Scotia unanimously approved a motion condemning Harper's comments,Brian Laghi, "Motion by MLAs condemns Harper", Globe and Mail, May 31, 2002, pg. A5; The motion was brought forward by Nova Scotia NDP leader Darrell Dexter. which were also criticized by Premier of New Brunswick Bernard Lord, federal Progressive Conservative leader Joe Clark and others. Harper refused to apologize, and said that much of Canada was trapped by the same "can't-do" attitude.Louise Elliott, "Harper calls Canada a nation of defeatists, defends remark about easterners", Canadian Press, May 29, 2002, 17:23 report; Brian Laghi, "Premiers tell Harper his attack was wrong", Globe and Mail, May 30, 2002, pg. A8In March 2003, their speeches in favour gaining no traction in parliament, Harper and Stockwell Day co-wrote a letter to The Wall Street Journal in which they condemned the Canadian government's unwillingness to participate in the 2003 invasion of Iraq.WEB,weblink Edited Hansard * Table of Contents * Number 074 (Official Version),, May 21, 2013, NEWS, David, Beers,weblink No Bush, please â€” we're Canadian,, Tommy Douglas Research Institute, January 25, 2006, February 15, 2009,weblink" title="">weblink June 2, 2008,

    Conservative Party leadership, 2004–06

    {{see also|2004 Conservative Party of Canada leadership election}}On January 12, 2004, Harper announced his resignation as Leader of the Opposition, to run for the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada. Harper was elected the first leader of the Conservative Party, with a first ballot majority against Belinda Stronach and Tony Clement on March 20, 2004. Harper's victory included strong showings in Ontario, Quebec, and Atlantic Canada.

    2004 federal election

    Harper led the Conservatives into the 2004 federal election. Initially, new Prime Minister Paul Martin held a large lead in polls, but this eroded because of infighting, Adscam (a scandal that came as a result of a Government of Canada "sponsorship program" in the province of Quebec and involving the Liberal Party of Canada) and other scandals surrounding his government. The Liberals attempted to counter this with an early election call, as this would give the Conservatives less time to consolidate their merger.{{Citation needed|date=March 2011}}Martin's weak performance in the leader's debate, along with an unpopular provincial budget by Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty in Ontario, moved the Conservatives into a lead for a time. However, comments by Conservative MPs, leaked press releases slandering the then prime minister, as well as controversial TV attack ads suggesting that the Conservatives would make Canada more like the United States, caused Harper's party to lose some momentum.{{Citation needed|date=March 2011}}Harper made an effort to appeal to voters in Quebec, a province where the Reform/Alliance side of the merged party had not done well. He was featured in several of the Tories' French-language campaign ads.{{Citation needed|date=March 2011}}The Liberals were re-elected to power with a minority government, with the Conservatives coming in second place. The Conservatives managed to make inroads into the Liberals' Ontario stronghold, primarily in the province's socially conservative central region. However, they were shut out of Quebec, marking the first time that a centre-right party did not win any seats in that province. Harper, after some personal deliberation, decided to stay on as the party leader. Many credited him with bringing the Progressive Conservative Party and Canadian Alliance together in a short time to fight a close election.{{Citation needed|date=March 2011}}

    Agreement with the BQ and the NDP

    Two months after the federal election, Stephen Harper privately met Bloc Québécois leader Gilles Duceppe and New Democratic Party leader Jack Layton in a Montreal hotel. On September 9, 2004, the three signed a letter addressed to then-Governor General Adrienne Clarkson, stating,NEWS,weblink Winnipeg Free Press, Frances Russell, Deception, thy name is Harper, March 30, 2011, April 25, 2011, }}On the same day the letter was written, the three party leaders held a joint press conference at which they expressed their intent to co-operate on changing parliamentary rules, and to request that the Governor General consult with them before deciding to call an election.NEWS, Chung, Andrew, Bloc leader accuses Harper of lying about coalition,weblink March 27, 2011, Toronto Star, March 26, 2011, At the news conference, Harper said "It is the Parliament that's supposed to run the country, not just the largest party and the single leader of that party. That's a criticism I've had and that we've had and that most Canadians have had for a long, long time now so this is an opportunity to start to change that." However, at the time, Harper and the two other opposition leaders denied trying to form a coalition government.NEWS, Harper, Layton, Duceppe sought 'co-opposition' in 2004 letter to GG,weblink Montreal Gazette, March 27, 2011, yes,weblink" title="">weblink April 1, 2011, Harper said, "This is not a coalition, but this is a co-operative effort."One month later, on October 4, Mike Duffy, who was later appointed as a Conservative senator by Harper, said "It is possible that you could change prime minister without having an election", and that some Conservatives wanted Harper to temporarily become prime minister without holding an election. The next day Layton walked out on talks with Harper and Duceppe, accusing them of trying to replace Paul Martin with Harper as prime minister. Both Bloc and Conservative officials denied Layton's accusations.On March 26, 2011, Duceppe stated that Harper had tried to form a coalition government with the Bloc and NDP in response to Harper's allegations that the Liberals may form a coalition with the Bloc and the NDP.NEWS, Payton, Laura, Harper wanted 2004 coalition: Duceppe,weblink March 26, 2011, CBC News, March 26, 2011,

    Leader of the Opposition

    The Conservative Party's first policy convention was held from March 17 to 19, 2005, in Montreal. Harper had been rumoured to be shifting his ideology closer to that of a Blue Tory, and many thought he'd wanted to move the party's policies closer to the centre. Any opposition to abortion or bilingualism was dropped from the Conservative platform. Harper received an 84% endorsement from delegates in the leadership review.Despite the party's move to the centre, the party began a concerted drive against same-sex marriage. Harper was criticized by a group of law professors for arguing that the government could override the provincial court rulings on same-sex marriage without using the "notwithstanding clause", a provision of Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms. He also argued, in general, for lower taxes, an elected Senate, a tougher stance on crime, and closer relations with the United States.{{Citation needed|date=May 2011}}Following the April 2005 release of Jean Brault's damaging testimony at the Gomery Commission, implicating the Liberals in the scandal, opinion polls placed the Conservatives ahead of Liberals. The Conservatives had earlier abstained from the vote on the 2005 budget to avoid forcing an election. With the collapse in Liberal support and a controversial NDP amendment to the budget, the party exerted significant pressure on Harper to bring down the government. In May, Harper announced that the government had lost the "moral authority to govern". Shortly thereafter, the Conservatives and Bloc Québécois united to defeat the government on a vote that some considered to be either a confidence motion or else a motion requiring an immediate test of the confidence of the House.{{Citation needed|date=May 2015}} The Martin government did not accept this interpretation and argued that vote had been on a procedural motion, although they also indicated that they would bring forward their revised budget for a confidence vote the following week. Ultimately, the effort to bring down the Government failed following the decision of Conservative MP Belinda Stronach to cross the floor to the Liberal Party. The vote on the NDP amendment to the budget tied, and with the Speaker of the House voting to continue debate, the Liberals stayed in power. At the time, some considered the matter to be a constitutional crisis.WEB,weblink The Confidence Convention and the May 2005 Vote on the Public Accounts Committee Report,, April 20, 2010, WEB,weblink National Post, May 14, 2005,, April 20, 2010, yes,weblink" title="">weblink April 25, 2011, mdy-all, Harper was also criticized for supporting his caucus colleague MP Gurmant Grewal.WEB, Peter, O'Neil,weblink Is he telling the truth? Doubts linger about Gurmant Grewal, Ottawa, Free Dominion, May 28, 2005, February 15, 2009, Grewal had produced tapes of conversations with Tim Murphy, Paul Martin's chief of staff, in which Grewal claimed he had been offered a cabinet position in exchange for his defection.The Liberals' support dropped after the first report from the Gomery Commission was issued. On November 24, 2005, Harper introduced a motion of no confidence on the Liberal government, telling the House of Commons "that this government has lost the confidence of the House of Commons and needs to be removed". As the Liberals had lost NDP support in the house by refusing to accept an NDP plan to prevent health care privatization, the no-confidence motion was passed by a vote of 171–133. It was the first time that a Canadian government had been toppled by a straight motion of no confidence proposed by the opposition. As a result, parliament was dissolved and a general election was scheduled for January 23, 2006.On February 27, 2008, allegations surfaced that two Conservative Party officials offered terminally ill, Independent MP Chuck Cadman a million-dollar life insurance policy in exchange for his vote to bring down the Liberal government in a May 2005, budget vote.NEWS,weblink Tories tried to sway vote of dying MP, widow alleges, The Globe and Mail, February 27, 2008, Galloway, Brian, Laghi, Gloria, yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 2, 2008, If the story had been proved true, the actions may have been grounds for charges as a criminal offence since, under the Criminal Code of Canada, it is illegal to bribe an MP.NEWS,weblink Conservatives made million-dollar offer to MP Cadman: book, CBC News, February 27, 2008, April 2, 2014, When asked by Vancouver journalist Tom Zytaruk about the alleged life insurance offer then-opposition leader Stephen Harper states on an audio tape "I don't know the details. I know there were discussions"WEB, Liberals to RCMP: Investigate Tory bribe claims,weblink CTV, and goes on to say "The offer to Chuck was that it was only to replace financial considerations he might lose due to an election". Harper also stated that he had told the Conservative party representatives that they were unlikely to succeed. "I told them they were wasting their time. I said Chuck had made up his mind."NEWS, PM files libel suit, Dion refuses to apologize,weblink CTV News, March 13, 2008, March 28, 2011, In February 2008, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) investigated the allegations that Section 119's provisions on bribery and corruption in the Criminal Code had been violated.WEB,weblink Harper heard on tape discussing financial inducements for late MP, The Canadian Press, February 28, 2008, Panetta, Alexander,weblink" title="">weblink March 17, 2008, yes, NEWS,weblinkweblink December 3, 2009, PDF, Letter requesting investigation to RCMP Commissioner William Elliot, The Toronto Star, March 1, 2008, Leblanc, Dominic, yes, mdy, The RCMP concluded their investigation stating that there was no evidence for pressing charges.NEWS,weblink No charges to be laid in Cadman affair: RCMP, CBC, May 16, 2008, April 2, 2014, Harper denied any wrongdoing and subsequently filed a civil libel suit against the Liberal Party. Because libel laws do not apply to statements made in the House of Commons, the basis of the lawsuit was that statements made by Liberal party members outside the House and in articles which appeared on the Liberal party web site made accusations that Harper had committed a criminal act.NEWS, Canada PM sues opposition for libel,weblink Agence France-Presse, Google, March 13, 2008, March 28, 2011, yes,weblink" title="">weblink May 20, 2011, The audio expert hired by Harper to prove that the tape containing the evidence was doctored reported that the latter part of the tape was recorded over, but the tape was unaltered where Harper's voice said "I don't know the details, I know that, um, there were discussions, um, but this is not for publication?" and goes on to say he "didn't know the details" when asked if he knew anything about the alleged offer to Cadman.NEWS, The Canadian Press,weblink Audio expert says Cadman tape not altered,, October 10, 2008, April 2, 2014,

    2006 federal election

    File:Harper,-Stephen-Jan-23-06.jpg|thumb|left|Stephen Harper giving a victory speech to party members in Calgary after the Conservatives won the 2006 federal election.]]The Conservatives began the campaign period with a policy-per-day strategy, contrary to the Liberal plan of holding off major announcements until after the Christmas holidays, so Harper dominated media coverage for the first weeks of the election. Though his party showed only modest movement in the polls, Harper's personal numbers, which had always significantly trailed those of his party, began to rise. In response, the Liberals launched negative ads targeting Harper, similar to their attacks in the 2004 election. However, their tactics were not sufficient to erode the Conservative's advantage, although they did manage to close what had been a ten-point advantage in public opinion. As Harper's personal numbers rose, polls found he was now considered not only more trustworthy, but a better choice for prime minister than Martin.NEWS, News Staff, Harper seen as most trusted leader, poll finds,weblink, January 11, 2005, September 21, 2006, Immediately prior to the Christmas break, in a faxed letter to NDP candidate Judy Wasylycia-Leis, the Commissioner of the RCMP, Giuliano Zaccardelli announced the RCMP had opened a criminal investigation into her complaint that it appeared Liberal Finance Minister Ralph Goodale's office had leaked information leading to insider trading before making an important announcement on the taxation of income trusts. On December 27, 2005, the RCMP confirmed that information in a press release. At the conclusion of the investigation, Serge Nadeau, a top Finance Department civil servant, was charged with criminal breach of trust. No charges were laid against then Finance Minister Ralph Goodale.NEWS,weblink CBC,, February 15, 2007, April 20, 2010, The election gave Harper's Conservatives the largest number of seats in the House, although not enough for a majority government, and shortly after midnight on January 24, Martin conceded defeat. Later that day, Martin informed Governor General Michaëlle Jean that he would resign as prime minister, and at 6:45 p.m. Jean asked Harper to form a government. Harper was sworn in as Canada's 22nd prime minister on February 6, 2006.In his first address to parliament as head of government, Harper opened by paying tribute to the Queen of Canada, Elizabeth II, and her "lifelong dedication to duty and self-sacrifice".WEB,weblink 39th Parliament, First Session, Edited Hansard, No. 003, Wednesday, April 5, 2006,, January 30, 2011, He also said before the Canada-UK Chamber of Commerce that Canada and the United Kingdom were joined by "the golden circle of the Crown, which links us all together with the majestic past that takes us back to the Tudors, the Plantagenets, the Magna Carta, habeas corpus, petition of rights, and English common law".WEB,weblink Prime Minister Harper introduces Australian counterpart to Parliament,, April 20, 2010, yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 29, 2010, mdy, Journalist Graham Fraser said in the Toronto Star that Harper's speech was "one of the most monarchist speeches a Canadian prime minister has given since John Diefenbaker".NEWS,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, September 29, 2007, Fraser, Graham, Toronto Star, PM shucks Reform roots for a royal connection, August 19, 2006, April 20, 2010, mdy-all, An analysis by Michael D. Behiels suggests a political realignment may be underway based on the continuance of Harper's government.Michael D. Behiels, "Stephen Harper's Rise to Power: Will His 'New' Conservative Party Become Canada's 'Natural Governing Party' of the Twenty-First Century?", American Review of Canadian Studies Vol. 40, No. 1, March 2010, pp. 118–145After the election, the Conservative party were charged with improper election spending, in a case that became known as the In and Out scandal. It dragged on for years, but in 2012 they took a plea deal, admitting both improper spending and falsifying records to hide it.

    Prime Minister (2006–15)

    2008 federal election

    On October 14, 2008, after a 5-week-long campaign, the Conservatives increased their seat count in parliament to 143, up from 127 at the dissolution of the previous parliament; however, the actual popular vote among Canadians dropped slightly by 167,494 votes. As a result of the lowest voter turnout in Canadian electoral history, this represented only 22% of eligible Canadian voters, the lowest level of support of any winning party in Canadian history.WEB,weblink Macleans, August 28, 2009, Governing with consent, January 30, 2011, Meanwhile, the number of opposition Liberal MPs fell from 95 to 77 seats. 155 MPs are required to form a majority government in Canada's 308-seat parliament, relegating Harper to minority government once again.

    2008 parliamentary dispute and prorogation

    On December 4, 2008, Harper asked Governor General Michaëlle Jean to prorogue parliament to avoid a vote of confidence scheduled for the following Monday, becoming the first Canadian prime minister to do so.NEWS,weblink Harper running away from Parliament, The Province, December 5, 2008, December 5, 2008, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 15, 2012, mdy-all, The request was granted by Jean, and the prorogation lasted until January 26, 2009. The opposition coalition dissolved shortly after, with the Conservatives winning a Liberal supported confidence vote on January 29, 2009.

    2010 prorogation

    {{see also|2010 Canada anti-prorogation protests|Prorogation in Canada}}File:Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper & Governor General of Canada Michaëlle Jean @ 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games Heads of State Reception.jpg|thumb|right|Prime Minister Stephen Harper & Governor General of Canada Michaëlle Jean at 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games Heads of State Reception]]On December 30, 2009, Harper announced that he would request the governor general to prorogue parliament again, effective immediately on December 30, 2009, during the 2010 Winter Olympics and lasting until March 3, 2010. Harper stated that this was necessary for Canada's economic plan. Jean granted the request. In an interview with CBC News, Prince Edward Island Liberal Member of Parliament Wayne Easter accused the Prime Minister of "shutting democracy down".NEWS,weblink Parliament prorogued: Necessary move or undemocratic?, POV, CBC News, December 30, 2009, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, April 2, 2014, NEWS,weblink PM 'shutting democracy down', says Easter, December 31, 2009, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, April 2, 2014, Tom Flanagan, Harper's University of Calgary mentor and former chief of staff, also questioned Harper's reasoning for prorogation, stating that "I think the government's talking points haven't been entirely credible" and that the government's explanation of proroguing was "skirting the real issue—which is the harm the opposition parties are trying to do to the Canadian Forces" regarding the Canadian Afghan detainee issue.WEB,weblink Gov't not 'credible' on proroguing: ex-Harper advisor, CTV News, January 12, 2010, April 20, 2010, Small demonstrations took place on January 23 in 64 Canadian cities and towns and five cities in other countries.NEWS,weblink Grassroots fury greets shuttered Parliament, Delacourt, Susan, Richard J. Brennan, January 5, 2010, January 20, 2010, Toronto Star, A Facebook protest group attracted over 20,000 members.NEWS,weblink Thousands protest Parliament's suspension, January 23, 2010, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, January 24, 2010, A poll released by Angus Reid on January 7, found that 53% of respondents were opposed to the prorogation, while 19% supported it. 38% believed Harper used the prorogation to curtail the Afghan detainee inquiry, while 23% agreed with Harper's explanation that the prorogation was necessary economically.NEWS, Prorogation hurtles 'out of dusty law texts into the mainstream',weblink January 7, 2010, The Globe and Mail, Gloria, Galloway,

    2010 Senate appointments

    Harper, on January 29, 2010, advised the Governor General to appoint new Conservative senators to fill five vacancies in the Senate, one each for Quebec, Newfoundland and Labrador, and New Brunswick, and two for Ontario. The new senators were Pierre-Hugues Boisvenu, of Quebec; Bob Runciman, of Ontario; Vim Kochhar, of Ontario; Elizabeth Marshall of Newfoundland and Labrador; and Rose-May Poirier, of New Brunswick. This changed the party standings in the Senate, which had previously been dominated by Liberals, to 51 Conservatives, 49 Liberals, and five others.NEWS,weblink SenateWatch: Five vacancies? Why not a baker's dozen instead?, CBC, January 3, 2010, April 2, 2014,

    2011 vote of no confidence

    Harper's Cabinet was defeated in a no-confidence vote on March 25, 2011, after being found in contempt of parliament. Harper thus, in accordance with constitutional convention, advised the Governor General to call a general election.Government's defeat sets up election call. CBC News, March 25, 2011 This was the first occurrence in Commonwealth history of a government in the Westminster parliamentary tradition losing the confidence of the lower house on the grounds of contempt of parliament. The no-confidence motion was carried with a vote of 156 in favour of the motion and 145 against."Business of Supply (Division 204)". 40th Parliament, 3rd Session â€“ Edited Hansard, No. 149, March 25, 2011. The motion presented by the Leader of the Opposition was "That the House agree with the finding of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs that the government is in contempt of Parliament, which is unprecedented in Canadian parliamentary history, and consequently, the House has lost confidence in the government."

    2011 election

    On May 2, 2011, after a five-week campaign, Harper led the Conservatives to their third consecutive election victory—the first time a centre-right party has accomplished this in half a century. The Conservatives increased their standing in parliament to 166, up from 143 at the dissolution of the previous parliament. This resulted in the first centre-right majority government since the Progressive Conservatives won what would be their last majority in 1988. The Conservatives also received a greater number of total votes than in 2008. Notably, the Conservatives had a significant breakthrough in southern Ontario, a region where neither they nor the Reform/Alliance side of the merger had done well in the previous two decades. They managed to win several seats in Toronto itself; no centre-right party had won seats in the former Metro Toronto since 1988.The election ended five years of minority governments, made the New Democratic Party the Official Opposition for the first time, relegated the Liberals to third place for the first time, brought Canada's first Green Party Member of Parliament, and reduced the Bloc Québécois from 47 to 4 seats.After the election, the Conservatives were accused of cheating in the Robocall scandal, mainly suppressing votes by directing voters to bogus polling stations.NEWS,weblink Elections Canada investigating 'robocalls' that misled voters, March 18, 2012, Maher, Stephen, McGregor, Glen, February 27, 2012, Ottawa Citizen, {{dead link|date=October 2017 |bot=InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted=yes }} There were complaints in 247 of Canada's 308 ridings, but only one person was charged; Conservative staffer Michael Sona was convicted and jailed.

    2015 election

    Under the Canada Elections Act, a general election had to take place no later than October 19, 2015. On August 2, at Harper's request, Governor General David Johnson dropped the writs of election for October 19. In that election, Harper's Conservative Party was defeated by Justin Trudeau's Liberals, and became the Official Opposition, dropping to only 99 seats out of 338. This was mainly because of a collapse of Conservative support in southern Ontario, a region that swung heavily to them in 2011. They lost all of their seats in Toronto, and won only three seats in the Greater Toronto Area. They were also shut out of Atlantic Canada—the first time in decades that there will be no centre-right MPs from that region. Harper was reelected in Calgary Heritage, essentially a reconfigured version of his former riding.Hours after conceding defeat on election night, Harper resigned as leader of the Conservative Party and returned to the backbench.WEB, Stephen Harper resigns as Conservative leader,weblink CTVNews, October 20, 2015, Harper resigned as Prime Minister during a meeting with Governor General David Johnston, who accepted the resignation, after which Johnston invited Trudeau to form a government on November 4, 2015.

    Conservative backbencher and departure from politics

    File:The former Prime Minister of Canada, Mr. Stephen Harper calls on the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, in New Delhi on January 15, 2018.jpg|thumb|Harper with Narendra ModiNarendra ModiHarper returned to Ottawa as a Conservative backbencher and addressed a meeting of the Conservative caucus that included defeated MPs in November.NEWS,weblink Former PM Stephen Harper will be in the House for key votes, Ambrose says, CBC News, December 10, 2015, December 10, 2015, Lunn, Susan, Interim leader Rona Ambrose stated that Harper would be in the House for key votes as the member for Calgary Heritage, but had earned the right to keep a low profile after his service as Prime Minister. In February, 2018, he stated that he could have still “easily” been leader of the Conservative Party, but he chose not to amass too much power in order to secure the party’s fortunes in the future.NEWS,weblink Stephen Harper says he could still ‘easily’ be Conservative leader, 2018-05-14, In December 2015, Harper had set up Harper & Associates Consulting Inc., a corporation that lists him a director alongside close associates Ray Novak and Jeremy Hunt.Harper announced in May 2016 that he plans to resign his seat in the House of Commons during the summer before the fall session of parliament.WEB,weblink Stephen Harper Inc.: Former PM sets up company, Payton, Laura, May 25, 2016, CTV News, May 27, 2016, On May 26, 2016, he was named as a board member for the Conservative Party’s fundraising arm. In the same month, Harper delivered a speech to the 2016 Conservative party convention where his accomplishments as party leader and prime minister were honoured by the party.WEB,weblink Stephen Harper's next move: Heading up his own company, May 26, 2016, CBC News, May 27, 2016, In October 2017, Harper received media attention for criticizing Justin Trudeau's handling of the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement started by the United States under President Donald Trump, stating that Trudeau was too unwilling to make concessions to the U.S., sided too closely with Mexico, and tried to advance left-wing policies through the renegotiations.WEB, Panetta, Alexander, NAFTA Negotiations 'Going Very Badly,' Stephen Harper Writes in Memo Blasting Trudeau Government,weblink October 27, 2017, National Post (from The Canadian Press), October 28, 2017, WEB, Quinn, Greg, Trudeau's Predecessor Says It's Conceivable Trump Will Scrap Nafta,weblink October 11, 2017, Bloomberg News, October 28, 2017, On February 2, 2018, Harper revealed in a statement that he knew about the sexual assault allegations against then Conservative MP Rick Dykstra during the 2015 election but could not justify removing him as a candidate because the investigation was closed by police a year before the election.NEWS,weblink Harper says he could not justify dumping Dykstra in 2015, CBC News, 2018-03-22, en, On March 26, 2018, Harper attended the international Fellowship of Christians and Jews Gala at Mar-a-Lago where he stated that he expressed support American President Donald Trump speech on Jerusalem.NEWS,weblink Trump gets big cheers at Jewish-Christian gala at Mar-a-Lago, palmbeachpost, 2018-04-26, On May 9, he expressed support for Trump's decision to withdraw from the Iran deal by lending his signature to an ad that appeared in The New York Times a day after the decision.NEWS,weblink Harper Shows Support For Trump’s Iran Decision In Full-Page NYT Ad, 2018-05-09, HuffPost Canada, 2018-05-10, en-CA, NEWS,weblink Former Canadian PM Harper in ad to Trump: 'You are right about Iran' {{!, CBC News|work=CBC|access-date=2018-05-10|language=en-US}}

    Domestic policy

    File:Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper @ the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto.jpg|thumb|right|Harper appearing at a gala at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto to celebrate the discovery of {{HMS|Erebus|1826|6}}, one of two ships wrecked during John FranklinJohn Franklin

    Constitutional issues

    After sidestepping the political landmine for most of the first year of his time as prime minister, much as all the post-Charlottetown Accord prime ministers had done, Harper's hand was forced to reopen the Quebec sovereignty debate after the opposition Bloc Québécois were to introduce a motion in the House that called for recognition of Quebec as a "nation". On November 22, 2006, Harper introduced his own motion to recognize that "the Québécois form a nation within a united Canada."NEWS,weblink CBC News, Quebecers form a nation within Canada: PM, November 22, 2006,, April 2, 2014, Five days later, Harper's motion passed, with a margin of 266–16; all federalist parties, and the Bloc Québécois, supported it.NEWS, Québécois motion passes, 266–16, November 27, 2006,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, September 29, 2007, Canadian Press, Toronto Star, December 6, 2006, In 2004, Harper said "the Upper House remains a dumping ground for the favoured cronies of the prime minister".NEWS, Harper appoints 9 to Senate,weblink Toronto Star, August 27, 2009, Richard J., Brennan, Between 2006 and 2008, by which time Harper was prime minister, he did not put any names to the Governor General for appointment to the Senate, resulting in 16 Senate vacancies by the October 2008 election.NEWS, Steven Chase, Harper targets Senate reform,weblink The Globe and Mail, October 15, 2008, October 19, 2008, yes,weblink" title="">weblink October 16, 2008, mdy-all, The one exception was Michael Fortier. When Harper took office, he directed the Governor General to appoint Michael Fortier to both the Senate and the Cabinet, arguing the government needed representation from the city of Montreal.weblink" title="">"Fortier 'didn't want to run' in federal election" . CTV News. February 7, 2006. Although there is a precedent for this action in Canadian history, the appointment led to criticism from opponents who claimed Harper was reneging on his push for an elected Senate. In 2008, Fortier gave up his Senate seat and sought election as a Member of Parliament (MP), but was defeated by a large margin by the incumbent Bloc Québécois MP.NEWS, Canadian Press, Michael Fortier gets trounced by Bloc incumbent in Montreal-area riding,weblink The Daily Courier (Kelowna), The Daily Courier, Kelowna, BC, October 14, 2008, March 28, 2012, {{dead link|date=December 2017 |bot=InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted=yes }}After the October 2008, election, Harper again named Senate reform as a priority. By December, he recommended the appointment of 18 senators and, in 2009, provided an additional nine people for appointment as senators. Many of those appointed had close ties with the Conservative Party, including the campaign manager of the Conservative Party, Doug Finley. Critics accused Harper of hypocrisy (the Liberals coined the term "Harpocrisy"). Conservative Senator Bert Brown defended Harper's appointments and said "the only way [the Senate]'s ever been filled is by having people that are loyal to the prime minister who's appointing them".

    Economic management

    File:Stephen-Harper-January-26-2012.png|thumb|right|150px|Harper during the 'Special Address' at the 2012 Annual Meeting of the World Economic ForumWorld Economic ForumDuring Harper's tenure, Canada had budgetary surpluses from 2006 to 2008 of $13.8 and 9.6 billion respectively. Following the 2008 financial crisis, Canada ran deficits from 2009-2013. The deficit was $55.6 billion in 2009 and was gradually lowered to $5.2 billion in 2013. In 2014, the federal budget was balanced with a surplus of $1.9 billion.WEB,weblink Canada's deficits and surpluses, 1963-2014, CBC, March 18, 2014, For the first 11 months of 2015, the federal government was on track for a $7.5 billion surplus. Following the 2015 federal election and a change in government, the 2015 fiscal year ended in a $1 billion deficit instead.WEB,weblink Federal government ran $1B deficit for last fiscal year, CBC, October 7, 2016, In 2010, Canada had the lowest debt-to-GDP ratio in the G7 economies.NEWS,weblink Debt-to-GDP ratio shows Canada's strength, February 24, 2010, June 4, 2011, CBC News, The Economist magazine stated that Canada had come out the recession stronger than any other rich country in the G7.NEWS,weblink The least-bad rich-world economy: The charms of Canada â€“ Good policies, good behaviour and good fortune: if only others could be as lucky, May 6, 2010, June 4, 2011, The Economist, NEWS,weblink Canada's resilient economy: The Goldilocks recovery, May 6, 2010, June 4, 2011, The Economist, In 2013, Canada came out with Global Markets Action Plan to generate employment opportunities for Canadians.WEB,weblink Global Market Action Plan, April 19, 2015, Canada’s Economic Action Plan, NEWS,weblink Tories’ new foreign-affairs vision shifts focus to ‘economic diplomacy’, April 19, 2015, The Globe and Mail, November 27, 2013, WEB,weblink There Is More to Foreign Policy Than Trade, April 19, 2015, Canadian International Council, November 28, 2013, yes,weblink" title="">weblink May 11, 2015,

    2011 Census

    Ahead of the Canada 2011 Census, the government announced that the long-form questionnaire (which collects detailed demographic information) will no longer be mandatory. According to Minister of Industry Tony Clement, the change was made because of privacy-related complaints and after consulting with Statistics Canada. However, Canada's privacy commissioner reported only receiving three complaints between 1995 and 2010, according to a report in the Toronto Sun.Munir Sheikh, Canada's Chief Statistician appointed on Harper's advice,NEWS,weblink A tale called Contempt: Ignatieff looks to spin master narrative to unseat Harper, Ottawa Citizen, March 27, 2011, April 28, 2011, {{dead link|date=June 2016|bot=medic}}{{cbignore|bot=medic}} resigned on July 21, 2010, in protest of the government's change in policy.NEWS,weblink StatsCan boss quits over census changes, Vancouver Sun, Proudfoot, Shannon, July 21, 2010, July 21, 2010, Ivan Fellegi, the former Chief Statistician of Canada, criticized the government's decision, saying that those who are most vulnerable (such as the poor, new immigrants, and aboriginals) are least likely to respond to a voluntary form, which weakens information about their demographic.NEWS,weblink Former StatsCan head slams census decision by Tories, The Canadian Press, Ditchburn, Jennifer, July 1, 2010, October 20, 2010, The move was opposed by some governmental and non-governmental organizations.On July 19, 2010, representatives from several following institutions signed a letter expressing their disapproval of the change: American Statistical Association;NEWS,weblink Don't mess with census, statisticians tell Tories, Thorne, Stephen, July 17, 2010, The Globe and Mail, and Registered Nurses Association of Ontario all opposed the change. However, the Fraser Institute supported the change.MAGAZINE,weblink Why Attack the Long Census?, July 27, 2010, Donald, Gutstein, The Tyee, August 11, 2010, The provincial governments of Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Manitoba, also opposed the change.NEWS,weblink Census consensus eludes premiers: Several scold Harper, Montreal Gazette,


    Under Stephen Harper, the annual budget of Veterans Affairs Canada increased from $2.85 billion in 2005–2006 to $3.55 billion in 2014–2015, while the quantity of veterans served has declined from 219,152 in 2008–2009 to 199,154 in 2015.NEWS, Veterans Affairs Canada, Veterans Affairs Canada's (VAC) budget has increased as the number of veterans has declined, Veterans Affairs Canada,weblink NEWS, Veterans Affairs Canada, 90% of VAC budget goes to services, Veterans Affairs Canada,weblink Nine Veterans Affairs offices were closed between 2012 and 2015, and 900 positions were phased out from the department since 2009. Former Minister of Veterans Affairs Erin O'Toole stated that the closures were made to modernize Veterans Affairs, by moving services online and to Service Canada locations.WEB,weblink 9 ridings where anger over Veterans Affairs could hurt the Conservatives, CTV News, August 24, 2015, October 18, 2015, Zilio, Michelle, In 2006, Harper implemented the New Veterans Charter passed with all party support by the previous Liberal government.WEB,weblink Ask The Globe: Has Harper really increased spending on veterans?, September 14, 2015, The Globe and Mail, October 18, 2015, This charter gave veterans the option to select a lump-sum payment, an annual installment over the number of years of a Veteran's choosing, or a combination of these two payment options.WEB,weblink New Veterans Charter, Veterans Affairs Canada, October 23, 2014, July 30, 2016, WEB,weblink New Veterans Charter, Veterans Ombudsman, August 15, 2014, July 30, 2016, Under Harper, the Canadian government spent $700, 000 fighting a class-action lawsuit brought by a group of wounded Afghan veterans who argued that the new Charter was discriminatory.WEB,weblink Feds spend $700,000 in court fighting veterans class-action lawsuit, Maclean's, January 28, 2015, October 18, 2015, The Canadian Press,

    Foreign policy

    File:Cristina Kirchner and Canada PM Stephen Harper.jpg|thumb|President of Argentina Cristina Kirchner and Harper in TorontoTorontoFile:G7 summit 2015.jpg|thumb|Harper at the 2015 G-7 summit with Shinzō Abe, Barack Obama, Angela Merkel, François Hollande, David Cameron, and Matteo Renzi in Bavaria, GermanyGermanyDuring his term, Harper has dealt with many foreign policy issues relating to the United States, the War on Terror, the Arab–Israeli conflict, free trade, China, and Africa.He has reduced defence spending to 1% of Canadian GDP.WEB,weblink Canadian Military Spending as a Percent of GDP, CIPS, In 2009, Harper visited China. During the visit Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao publicly scolded Harper for not visiting earlier, pointing out that "this is the first meeting between the Chinese premier and a Canadian prime minister in almost five years";NEWS, China publicly scolds Harper for taking too long to visit,weblink The Globe and Mail, December 3, 2009, John, Ibbitson, Harper in response said that, "it's almost been five years since we had yourself or President Hu in our country."{{citation needed|date=October 2015}} In 2008, former prime minister Jean Chrétien had criticized Harper for missing opening ceremonies for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing;NEWS, Harper has messed up relations with China: Chrétien,weblink August 19, 2008, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 15, 2012, in response, Dimitri Soudas, a spokesperson for Harper, called the remarks hypocritical, pointing out that Chrétien "attended one of six Olympic opening ceremonies during his 13 {{sic}} years as prime minister".Tibbets, Janice. (19 August 2008) "Harper Erred on Olympics: Chretien", Windsor Star.On September 11, 2007, Harper visited Australia and addressed its parliament.NEWS, Harper praises Australian troops, elected senate,weblink CTV News, September 10, 2007, February 6, 2008, On January 20, 2014, Harper addressed the Israeli Knesset in Givat Ram, Jerusalem.NEWS, Stephen Harper's speech to the Israeli Knesset,weblink CBC News, January 20, 2014, July 4, 2014, During mid-2015, Harper repeatedly voiced his opinion that Russia should be excluded from association with the G7 group of nations because of Russia's support for Russian-speaking Ukrainian dissidents. On June 8, Harper said,"Mr. Putin ... has no place at the [G7] table, and I don't believe there's any leader who would defend Mr. Putin having a place."NEWS, Terry Milewski,weblink Stephen Harper renews attack on Russia's Vladimir Putin over Ukraine, CBC News, June 8, 2015, February 17, 2016, Michael Ignatieff criticized Harper for cutting foreign aid to Africa by $700 million, falling short of the UN Millennium Development Goals, and cutting eight African countries from the list of priority aid recipients.


    On March 11 and 12, 2006, Harper made a surprise trip to Afghanistan, where Canadian Forces personnel had been deployed as part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force since late 2001, to visit troops in theatre as a show of support for their efforts, and as a demonstration of the government's commitment to reconstruction and stability in the region. Harper's choice of a first foreign visit was closely guarded from the press until his arrival in Afghanistan (citing security concerns), and is seen as marking a significant change in relationship between the government and the military. Harper returned to Afghanistan on May 22, 2007, in a surprise two-day visit which included visiting Canadian troops at the forward operating base at Ma'Sum Ghar, located {{convert|25|km|mi|0}} south of Kandahar, making Harper the first prime minister to have visited the front lines of a combat operation.NEWS, PM hints Canada may stay in Afghanistan past 2009,weblink CTV News, May 23, 2007, February 6, 2008,

    Israeli and Jewish affairs

    {{See also|International reactions to the 2006 Lebanon War}}(File:Toronto protest banner criticising Harper's Israel-Lebanon response.jpg|thumb|A banner criticizing Harper's response to the 2006 Israel–Lebanon conflict, Toronto)Harper has shown admiration for the State of Israel since the early 1990s. Friends and colleagues describe his views as being the product of thinking and reading deeply about the Middle East. "Toronto Rabbi Philip Scheim, who accompanied Harper to Israel" in 2014 said, "I sense that [Harper] sees Israel as a manifestation of justice and a righting of historical wrongs, especially in light of the Holocaust."Csillag, Ron. January 23, 2014. January 23, 2014.At the outset of the 2006 Israel–Lebanon conflict, Harper defended Israel's "right to defend itself" and described its military campaign in Lebanon as a "measured" response, arguing that Hezbollah's release of kidnapped Israel Defense Force (IDF) soldiers would be the key to ending the conflict.NEWS, Harper sides firmly with Israel, July 13, 2006, The Globe and Mail,weblink Canadian Press,weblink" title="">weblink July 18, 2006, Speaking of the situation in both Lebanon and Gaza on July 18, Harper said he wanted "not just a ceasefire, but a resolution" but such a thing would not happen until Hezbollah and Hamas recognize Israel's right to exist. Harper blamed Hezbollah for all the civilian deaths. He asserted that Hezbollah's objective is to destroy Israel through violence.NEWS, Neutral stance rejected, Mike, Blanchfield, July 19, 2006, National Post, December 6, 2006,weblink yes,weblink" title="">weblink August 7, 2006, The media noted that Harper did not allow reporters opportunities to ask him questions on his position. Some Canadians, including many Arab and Lebanese Canadians, criticized Harper's description of Israel's response.NEWS, Harper dodges questions on Israel-Lebanon crisis,weblink July 17, 2006, Ottawa Citizen,, CanWest News Service, March 5, 2011, yes,weblink" title="">weblink June 28, 2011, mdy-all, In December 2008, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations recognized Harper's support for Israel with its inaugural International Leadership Award, pointing out Harper's decision to boycott the Durban II anti-racism conference, and his government's "support for Israel and [its] efforts at the U.N. against incitement and ... the delegitimization of Israel"."Presidents Conference to honor Harper" {{webarchive |url= |date=December 6, 2008 }}, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, December 4, 2008In March 2009, Harper spoke at a Parliament Hill ceremony organized by Chabad-Lubavitch to honour the Jewish victims of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, which included an attack on the Nariman House. He expressed condolences over the murder at Chabad's Mumbai centre of Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife Rivka. Harper described the killings as "affronts to the values that unite all civilized people". Harper added that the quick instalment of a new rabbi at the Chabad centre in Mumbai as a signal that the Jewish people will "never bow to violence and hatred"."Harper: Anti-Semitism 'pernicious{{'"}}, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, March 13, 2009.In 2010, Canada lost a bid for a seat on the UN Security Council. While initially blaming the loss on his rival Ignatieff, Harper later said that it was due to his pro-Israeli stance. Harper then said that he would take a pro-Israeli stance, no matter what the political cost to Canada.NEWS, Cannon blames Ignatieff for Canada's UN vote loss,weblink October 12, 2010, CBC News, The Canadian Press, March 30, 2011, NEWS, Harper Says He'll Support Israel Even If It Hurts Canada Politically,weblink November 9, 2010, CityNews, Toronto, March 30, 2011, yes,weblink" title="">weblink November 17, 2010, NEWS, Anti-Semitism on the rise here and abroad, PM says,weblink November 8, 2010, Toronto Star, March 30, 2011, Richard J., Brennan, Ignatieff criticized Harper's stance as a "mistake", saying Canada would be better able to defend Israel through the Security Council than from the sidelines and pointed out that it is the Security Council that will determine if sanctions are imposed on Iran. Ignatieff also accused Harper of steering the discussion away from implementing the two-state solution, and instead rendering all discussion into a competition "about who is Israel's best friend".NEWS, Susan, Delacourt, Harper has burned bridges abroad, Ignatieff says,weblink Toronto Star, November 2, 2010, Harper backed Israel's 2014 war in Gaza and condemned Hamas. Harper said, "It is evident that Hamas is deliberately using human shields to further terror in the region."NEWS,weblink Stephen Harper accuses Hamas of using human shields, urges world leaders to side with Israel, National Post, July 13, 2014,

    Free trade with EFTA

    On June 7, 2007, the Conservative government announced it had finalized free trade negotiations with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Under this agreement, Canada increased its trade ties with Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. In 2006, the value of trade between these partners was $10.7 billion. Canada had originally begun negotiations with the EFTA on October 9, 1998, but talks broke down because of a disagreement over subsidies to shipyards in Atlantic Canada.WEB,weblink Canada â€” European Free Trade Association (EFTA) â€“ Free Trade Agreement, February 6, 2008, January 28, 2008, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada,weblink" title="">weblink May 20, 2011, yes, mdy-all,

    United States

    {{see also|Canada–United States relations}}File:Barack Obama meets Stephen Harper.jpg|thumb|left|United States President Barack ObamaBarack ObamaFile:Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and U.S. State Secretary Hillary Clinton at the Haiti Ministerial Preparatory Conference in Montreal, January 25, 2010.jpg|thumb|left|Harper and US State Secretary Hillary Clinton at the Haiti Ministerial Preparatory Conference addressing earthquake relief in MontrealMontrealShortly after being congratulated by George W. Bush for his victory, Harper rebuked US Ambassador David Wilkins for criticizing the Conservatives' plans to assert Canada's sovereignty over the Arctic Ocean waters with armed forces.NEWS, Harper rebukes U.S. envoy over Arctic dispute, January 27, 2006, Globe and Mail,weblink Gloria Galloway, December 16, 2007, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 4, 2008, mdy-all, Harper's first meeting as prime minister with the US president occurred at the end of March 2006.The government received American news coverage during the Democratic Party's 2008 presidential primaries after the details of a conversation between Barack Obama's economic advisor Austan Goolsbee, and Canadian diplomat Georges Rioux were revealed. Reportedly Goolsbee was reassuring the Canadians that Obama's comments on potentially renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) were more political rhetoric than actual policy. The accuracy of these reports has been debated by both the Obama campaign and the Canadian Government. The news came at a key time nearing the Ohio and Texas primaries, where perceptions among Democratic voters was (and is) that the benefits of the NAFTA agreement are dubious. Thus the appearance that Obama was not being completely forthright was attacked by his opponent Hillary Clinton.NEWS, Alexander, Panetta,weblink Harper denies aide leaked Obama document, Ottawa,, March 4, 2008, February 15, 2009, yes,weblink" title="">weblink January 16, 2009, mdy-all, ABC News reported that Harper's chief of staff, Ian Brodie was responsible for the details reaching the hands of the media.WEB, Jennifer, Parker,weblink Clinton Campaign Demands Obama Answers on NAFTA, ABC News, February 29, 2008, February 15, 2009, Harper has denied that Brodie was responsible for the leak, and launched an investigation to find the source. The Opposition, as well as Democratic strategist Bob Shrum,NEWS, Brian Laghi,weblink Harper meddling in U.S. primaries, Democrats say,, March 3, 2008, February 15, 2009, yes,weblink" title="">weblink July 9, 2008, mdy-all, criticized the Government on the issue, stating they were trying to help the Republicans by helping Hillary Clinton win the Democratic nomination instead of Obama. They also alleged the leak would hurt relations with the United States if Obama ever were to become President.NEWS,weblink PM denies top aide leaked Obama NAFTA memo,, March 4, 2008, April 2, 2014, Obama was elected President in November. In February, Obama made his first foreign visit, as president, to Ottawa, in which he affirmed support for free trade with Canada, as well as complimenting Canada on its involvement in Afghanistan.NEWS,weblink PM, Obama talk trade, Afghanistan, pledge 'clean energy dialogue{{'-, |publisher=CBC News|date=February 19, 2009|accessdate=April 2, 2014}}

    Environmental policy

    {{POV section|date=July 2016|talk=Talk:Stephen_Harper/Archive_7#Environmental_Policy}}File:Stephen Harper @ Vancouver Island University's Deep Bay Marine Field Station.jpg|thumb|right|Stephen Harper visiting Vancouver Island University's Deep Bay Marine Field StationDeep Bay Marine Field StationSince Harper's government took office in 2006, Canadian greenhouse gas emissions fell from 749 to 726 Mt of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2 eq). From 1993 until 2006, during the previous Liberal government greenhouse gas emissions increased from 600 to 749 Mt of CO2 eq.WEB,weblink National Greenhouse Gas Emissions, April 17, 2015, Environment Canada, The reduction corresponded Canada's decreased economic output during the Great Recession and emissions began increasing slightly in 2010, when the economy began recovering.WEB,weblink Reality check: Have greenhouse gas emissions decreased as the economy grows?, Global News, August 7, 2015, August 31, 2015, Young, Leslie, Other significant factors in Canada's decreased emissions during Prime Minister Harper's time in office are initiatives such as the carbon tax in British Columbia, the cap and trade system in Quebec, Ontario's coal-fired power plants, and the Clean Air Regulatory Agenda which regulates emissions for automobiles and light trucks.WEB,weblink Passenger Automobile and Light Truck Greenhouse Gas Emission Regulations, Environment Canada, April 4, 2010, October 11, 2015, MAGAZINE,weblink Aglukkaq touts emissions cuts, numbers tell another story, Maclean's, April 4, 2014, August 31, 2015, Geddes, John, WEB,weblink Drew Hasselback: Federal guarantee gives Lower Churchill financing a sovereign touch, Financial Post, January 31, 2014, In 2006, Canada's Clean Air and Climate Change Act was introduced to address air pollution as well as greenhouse gas emissions; it never became law.WEB,weblink Little green lies: Prime Minister Harper and Canada's environment, iPolitics, February 28, 2012, October 18, 2015, Boyd, David R., WEB,weblink Bill C-30: Canada's Clean Air and Climate Change Act, Parliament of Canada, November 14, 2006, Frédéric Beauregard-Tellier: Economics Division, Sam N.K. Banks, Kristen Douglas: Law and Government Division, and Lynne C. Myers, Tim Williams: Science and Technology Division, January 31, 2019,weblink" title="">weblink December 8, 2015, yes, mdy-all, In 2006, the Clean Air Regulatory Agenda (CARA) was established to "support Government of Canada efforts to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) and air pollutant emissions in order to improve the environment and health of Canadians".WEB,weblink Clean Air Regulatory Agenda, Environment Canada, October 19, 2015, 2011-11-28, In December 2011, the Harper administration announced that Canada would formally withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol.NEWS,weblink Canada formally abandons Kyoto Protocol on climate change, The Globe and Mail, September 6, 2012, September 15, 2015, Curry, Bill and Shawn McCarthy, Then Environment Minister Peter Kent stated, "It's now clear that Kyoto is not the path forward for a global solution to climate change." In December 2012, Canada became the first signatory to formally withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol.WEB,weblink It's official: Harper government withdraws from Kyoto climate agreement, Postmedia, December 14, 2012, September 15, 2015, De Souza, Mike, NEWS,weblink Canada Pulling out of Kyoto Accord, Kennedy, Mark, December 12, 2011, National Post,

    Renewable energy

    Other federal initiatives include the 2011 loan guarantee towards the Lower Churchill Project in Labrador, which is scheduled for completion in 2017.NEWS,weblink Lower Churchill Project: Ottawa Guarantees $6.2-Billion Hydroelectric Project On Muskrat Falls For Newfoundland And Labrador, The Huffington Post, August 19, 2011, The Lower Churchill's two hydroelectric installations at Gull Island and Muskrat Falls will have a combined capacity of over 3,074 MW and have the ability to provide 16.7 TW·h of electricity per year, which is enough to "reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking 3.2 million vehicles off the road each year".WEB,weblink Lower Churchill Project, Nalcor Energy, June 8, 2013, NEWS,weblink Harper pledges to support major $6.2 billion hydroelectric project, The Toronto Star, March 31, 2011,

    Public transit

    From 2006 to 2013, the Harper administration invested over $5 billion towards public transit projects in Canada.WEB,weblink Minister Denis Lebel confirms Harper Government's record infrastructure investment will boost Canadian communities, Infrastructure Canada, June 1, 2013, WEB,weblink On the Right Track, Canadian Metalworking, Hendley, Nate, November 5, 2015, yes,weblink" title="">weblink July 15, 2016, mdy-all, In 2006, the federal government provided $697 million towards the York-University-Spadina Subway Extension.WEB, BUS RAPID TRANSIT SERVICE BREAKS GROUND IN MISSISSAUGA,weblink Metrolinx, Metrolinx, April 23, 2014, In September 2013, former finance minister Jim Flaherty invested a federal contribution of $660 million towards the Scarborough Subway Extension.NEWS,weblink Harper pledges federal funding for Toronto’s subway extension, The Globe and Mail, September 22, 2013, NEWS,weblink Ottawa will help pay for Scarborough subway, The Toronto Star, September 22, 2013, NEWS,weblink Major transit announcement incoming: Harper expected to boost TTC funding during Toronto visit, The National Post, June 18, 2015,


    Starting in 2006, the Harper government implemented policies that had the effect of reducing transparency. During this government, scientists employed by the government were not able to speak with the media and inform the public of their findings without government permission,JOURNAL, Evans Ogden, Lesley, May 5, 2016, Nine years of censorship, Nature, en, 533, 7601, 26–28, 10.1038/533026a, 27147016, NEWS,weblink Hundreds of world's scientists urge Harper to end funding cuts, Leung, Marlene, CTVNews, February 9, 2017, en-CA, WEB,weblink Harper government's muzzling of scientists a mark of shame for Canada {{!, Toronto Star||access-date=February 9, 2017}}NEWS,weblink Silencing Scientists, Klinkenborg, Verlyn, September 21, 2013, The New York Times, February 9, 2017, 0362-4331, the government made significant cuts to research and other forms of data collection,NEWS,weblink Scientists raise red flags over government research cuts, CBC News, February 9, 2017, en, NEWS,weblink StatsCan recommended move to voluntary census, Tony Clement says, Toronto Star, Campion-Smith, Bruce, July 16, 2010, July 21, 2010, and significant destruction and inaccessibility of government-held data and documents occurred.WEB,weblink That's no way to treat a library, scientists say {{!, Toronto Star||access-date=February 9, 2017}}NEWS,weblink PM says his government encouraged RCMP to destroy disputed long-gun data, CBC News, February 9, 2017, en, During the Harper government, it was not possible for government employed scientists to openly speak about the government policy that prohibited communication with the media. However, following the election of a new government in 2015, several scientists who are or were employed by the government have come forward to confirm the allegations made by anonymous sources during the Harper years.The government made drastic cuts to scientific research and data collection. Over 2,000 scientists were dismissed and funding was cut from world renowned research facilities. Cuts were also made to many essential programs, some so deep that they had to shut down entirely, including the monitoring of smoke stack emissions, food inspections, oil spills, water quality, and climate change. During this time, the long form census was also discontinued as a mandatory part of the census. This was ostensibly due to privacy concerns, however, the number of complaints about privacy proved to be minimal.WEB, LAURA PAYTON, Parliamentary Bureau,weblink Few complaints about census: privacy commissioner, Toronto Sun, July 14, 2010, February 19, 2012, The government closed a number of government libraries without consultation on the closings or the process involved. The manner in which it was done received significant criticism because it has resulted in the remaining information being put into a disarray, rendering it inaccessible for research.

    Supreme Court nominations

    Harper chose the following jurists to be appointed as justices of the Supreme Court of Canada by the governor general:

    Marshall Rothstein

    In keeping with Harper's election promise to change the appointment process, Rothstein's appointment involved a review by a parliamentary committee, following his nomination by the prime minister. Rothstein had already been short-listed, with two other candidates, by a committee convened by Paul Martin's previous Liberal government, and he was Harper's choice. Harper then had Rothstein appear before an ad hoc, non-partisan committee of 12 members of parliament. This committee was not empowered to block the appointment, though, as had been called for by some members of Harper's Conservative Party.NEWS, Globe and Mail, fee required,weblink February 20, 2006, December 6, 2006, Committee to judge next Supreme Court appointee, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 23, 2006, mdy-all,

    Thomas Cromwell

    On September 5, 2008, Harper nominated Thomas Cromwell of Nova Scotia Court of Appeal to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant by the departure of Michel Bastarache. By and large Cromwell's nomination was well received, with many lauding the selection;NEWS, Globe and Mail,weblink September 5, 2008, September 10, 2008, Harper nominates Nova Scotian to Supreme Court, {{dead link|date=December 2017 |bot=InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted=yes }}NEWS, Globe and Mail,weblink September 9, 2008, September 10, 2008, No sign of a hidden agenda, {{dead link|date=December 2017 |bot=InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted=yes }} however, dissent has been noted surrounding the nomination. First, Harper bypassed parliament's supreme court selection panel, which was supposed to produce a list of three candidates for him to choose from. Second, Newfoundland justice minister Jerome Kennedy criticized the appointment, citing the Newfoundland government's belief that constitutional convention stipulates that a Newfoundlander should have been named to the court in the rotation of Atlantic Canadian supreme court representation.NEWS, Globe and Mail, Kirk Makin,weblink September 9, 2008, Harper blasted over hasty top-court nomination, {{dead link|date=June 2016|bot=medic}}{{cbignore|bot=medic}}

    Marc Nadon

    On October 3, 2013, Harper announced the nomination of supernumerary Federal Court of Appeals Marc Nadon to the supreme court to replace the retiring Morris Fish.WEB, Prime Minister of Canada,weblink PM announces appointment of Justice Marc Nadon to the Supreme Court of Canada, October 3, 2013, yes,weblink" title="">weblink October 4, 2013, mdy, The appointment was challenged by both Ontario lawyer Rocco Galati and the provincial government of Quebec as being contrary to the appointment criteria of section 6 of the Supreme Court Act. In response, Harper referred the criteria issue to the supreme court, as well as the question of whether the government's amendments to the criteria were constitutional. The supreme court subsequently ruled in Reference re Supreme Court Act, ss. 5 and 6 that the Nadon appointment was invalid, and that the federal government could not unilaterally amend the Supreme Court Act. Harper subsequently nominated Clement Gascon to the position instead.{{citation needed|date=March 2016}}


    (File:QEII Golden Jubilee Medal ribbon.png|100px)(File:QEII Diamond Jubilee Medal ribbon.png|100px){| class="wikitable"
    | Notes
    100px) Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal for Canada
    100px) Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for Canada
    Harper received the Woodrow Wilson Award on October 6, 2006, for his public service in Calgary. The awards ceremony was held at the Telus Convention Centre in Calgary, the same place where he made his victory speech.NEWS, Kathleen, Harris, Czekaj, Laura,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, October 1, 2011, Conservatives back in minority power, North Bay Nugget, Sun Media, October 14, 2008, July 12, 2011, Time magazine also named him as Canada's Newsmaker of the Year in 2006. Stephen Handelman wrote "that the prime minister who was once dismissed as a doctrinaire backroom tactician with no experience in government has emerged as a warrior in power".NEWS, CTV News, Time Magazine dubs Harper Cdn. newsmaker of 2006, CTV,weblink December 17, 2006, On June 27, 2008, Harper was awarded the Presidential Gold Medallion for Humanitarianism by B'nai B'rith International. He is the first Canadian to be awarded this medal.NEWS, Andrew Mayeda, PM calls UN conference an 'anti-Western hatefest{{'-, |work=National Post |url= |date=June 28, 2008 |accessdate=January 30, 2011 }}{{dead link|date=May 2017 |bot=InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted=yes }}On July 11, 2011, Harper was honoured by Alberta's Blood tribe. He was made honorary chief of the Kainai Nation during a ceremony, in which they recognized him for making an official apology on behalf of the Government of Canada for the residential schools abuse. Harper issued this apology in 2008. The chief of the tribe explained that he believes the apology officially started the healing and rebuilding of relations between the federal and native councils. Lester B. Pearson, John Diefenbaker, and Jean Chrétien are the only other prime ministers of Canada to have been awarded the same honorary title."Harper honoured by Alberta's Blood Tribe", CBC News, The Canadian Press, July 11, 2011On September 27, 2012, Harper received the World Statesman of the Year award. This award was offered through a US group of various faith representatives. This occurred at a black tie banquet in New York. Jean Chrétien was one of the previous recipients from Canada."Stephen Harper World Statesman", CBC News, The Canadian Press, September 27, 2012In August 2016 President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine awarded Stephen Harper with the highest award for foreigners – Order of Liberty.WEB,weblink УКАЗ ПРЕЗИДЕНТА УКРАЇНИ №340/2016, Office of the President, August 22, 2016, August 22, 2016,

    Honorary degrees

    Honorary Degrees{| border="1" border="1" cellpadding="4" cellspacing="0" style="width:100%; margin:0.5em 1em 0.5em 0; border:1px #056 solid; border-collapse:collapse;"
    ! style="background:#f5f5f5; width:20%;"| Location !! style="background:#f5f5f5; width:20%;"| Date !! style="background:#f5f5f5; width:40%;"| School !! style="background:#f5f5f5; width:20%;"| DegreeIsrael}} 22 January 2014 Tel Aviv University Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)weblinkweblink{{Expand list|date=June 2018}}

    Personal life

    File:Stephen Harper & Larry Smith watched football game.jpg|thumb|right|Stephen Harper and former CFL player Larry Smith watching a 2012 football game in MontrealMontrealFile:Harper Canada Day 09.jpg|thumb|right|Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaking at 2009 Canada Day celebrations on Parliament Hill in OttawaOttawaHarper married Laureen Teskey on December 11, 1993.PM-to-be's wife kept low profile {{webarchive|url= |date=July 28, 2013 }}, The Vancouver Sun Laureen was formerly married to New Zealander Neil Fenton from 1985 to 1988.Kingston, Anne, "Wife of the party" {{webarchive |url= |date=May 18, 2011 }}, Maclean's, August 13, 2007 The Harpers have two children: Benjamin and Rachel. Harper is the third prime minister, after Pierre Trudeau and John Turner, to send his children to Rockcliffe Park Public School, in Ottawa. He is a member of the evangelical Christian and Missionary Alliance and attends church at the East Gate Alliance Church in Ottawa.NEWS, Colin, Campbell,weblink The church of Stephen Harper, Macleans, February 20, 2006, August 2, 2006, yes,weblink" title="">weblink October 11, 2007, {{better source|reason=More recent source needed|date=February 2016}} According to party literature, he is learning Spanish.WEB, 10 Things you might not know about ... Harper,weblink Conservative Party of Canada, May 3, 2012, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 3, 2012, An avid follower of ice hockey, he has been a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs since his childhood in the Leaside and Etobicoke communities in Toronto.NEWS,weblink Kennedy, Mark, PM Harper set to finish book on Canada's sport, Postmedia News, December 20, 2011, January 9, 2012, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 15, 2012, mdy-all, Harper is also a fan of the Calgary Flames. He published a book, (A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs and the Rise of Professional Hockey) (2013), which chronicles the growth of professional hockey, particularly in Toronto,NEWS, Keller, Tony,weblink A Great Game: Stephen Harper's hockey history captures the pulse of a young Canada, The Globe and Mail, Toronto, ON, November 6, 2013, November 8, 2013, and writes articles occasionally on the subject.NEWS,weblink Harper, Stephen, Long before Leafs, T.O. had a team to call its own, The Star, December 23, 2006, October 17, 2008, Toronto, yes,weblink" title="">weblink October 1, 2008, mdy-all, Harper appeared on The Sports Network (TSN) during the broadcast of the Canada–Russia final of the 2007 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships. He was interviewed and expressed his views on the state of hockey, and his preference for an overtime period in lieu of a shoot-out.NEWS, Tuck, Simon, Harper prefers 'team' approach to shootouts, Globe and Mail,weblink January 6, 2007, yes,weblink" title="">weblink January 16, 2009, mdy-all, In February 2010, Harper interviewed former National Hockey League greats Wayne Gretzky and Gordie Howe for a Saskatoon Kinsmen Club charity event.NEWS,weblink Harper, Howe, Gretzky. No leftwingers in sight, The National Post, February 18, 2010, David, Akin, David Akin, March 13, 2010, {{dead link|date=February 2012}}Harper had a cameo appearance in an episode of the television show Corner Gas which aired March 12, 2007.NEWS,weblink Don't quit your day job, The Regina Leader Post, August 30, 2006, Karen, Brownlee, December 6, 2006, yes,weblink" title="">weblink October 13, 2007, mdy-all, He owns a large vinyl record collection and is a fan of The Beatles and AC/DC.NEWS, A., Dunfield,weblink Lighter side: C'est what?, The Globe and Mail, June 25, 2004, April 4, 2006, yes,weblink" title="">weblink June 26, 2006, mdy-all, ' In October 2009, he joined Yo-Yo Ma on stage in a National Arts Centre gala and performed "With a Little Help from My Friends". He was also accompanied by Herringbone, an Ottawa band with whom he regularly practises.NEWS,weblink Harper gets on stage with a little help from his wife, Ottawa Citizen, October 2, 2009, Joanne, Chianello, October 2, 2009,weblink" title="">weblink October 6, 2009, yes, He received a standing ovation after providing the piano accompaniment and lead vocals for the song.NEWS,weblink PM gets by with help from Yo-Yo Ma, CBC News, October 4, 2009, April 2, 2014, In October 2010, Harper taped a cameo appearance in an episode of the television show Murdoch Mysteries, which aired July 20, 2011, during the show's fourth season.NEWS,weblink Prime Minister Harper Shoots Cameo On Murdoch Mysteries, CityNews Toronto, Rogers Media, October 15, 2010, March 11, 2011, yes,weblink" title="">weblink June 29, 2011, NEWS,weblink Harper's Murdoch cameo, and other famous political pop culture mashups, The Globe and Mail, Phillip Crawley, July 13, 2011, July 21, 2011, Anita, Li, He was the first prime minister to employ a personal stylist, Michelle Muntean, whose duties range from coordinating his clothing to preparing his hair and makeup for speeches and television appearances. While she used to be on the public payroll, she has been paid for by the Conservative Party since "some time [in] 2007".NEWS,weblink Stephen Harper's stylist no longer on public payroll, May 18, 2010, March 6, 2011, The Canadian Press, As of 2013, the Harper family had two cats, Stanley and Gypsy.WEB, Jolivet, Lindsay,weblink Letter writer gets reply, framed cat photo from Prime Minister Harper | Daily Buzz â€” Yahoo! News Canada,, March 21, 2013, May 21, 2013, They have fostered other cats as well.WEB,weblink October 28, 2015, yes,weblink" title="">weblink October 11, 2013,

    Electoral record

    {{Canadian federal election, 1988/Electoral District/Calgary West}}{{Canadian federal election, 1993/Electoral District/Calgary West}}{{Canadian federal by-election, May 13, 2002/Electoral District/Calgary Southwest}}{{Canadian federal election, 2004/Electoral District/Calgary Southwest}}{{Canadian federal election, 2006/Electoral District/Calgary Southwest}}{{Canadian federal election, 2008/Electoral District/Calgary Southwest}}{{Canadian federal election, 2011/Electoral District/Calgary Southwest}}{{Canadian election result/top|CA|2015|Calgary Heritage|percent=yes|change=yes|expenditures=yes}}{{CANelec|CA|Conservative|Stephen Harper|37,263|63.77|−10.65|–}}{{CANelec|CA|Liberal|Brendan Miles|15,172|25.97|+18.50|–}}{{CANelec|CA|NDP|Matt Masters|4,255|7.28|−4.84|–}}{{CANelec|CA|Green|Kelly Christie|1,246|2.13|−3.37|–}}{{CANelec|CA|Libertarian|Steven Paolasini|246|0.42|–|–}}{{CANelec|CA|Independent|Larry R. Heather|114|0.20|–|–}}{{CANelec|CA|Independent|Korry Zepik|73|0.12|–|–}}{{CANelec|CA|Independent|Nicolas Duchastel de Montrouge|61|0.10|–|–}}{{Canadian election result/total|Total valid votes/Expense limit|58,430|100.00| |$214,423.85}}{{Canadian election result/total|Total rejected ballots|228|0.39|–}}{{Canadian election result/total|Turnout|58,658|73.13|–}}{{Canadian election result/total|Eligible voters|80,213}}{{CANelec/hold|CA|Conservative|−14.58}}{{CANelec/source|Source: Elections CanadaWEB,weblink October 19, 2015 Election Results — Calgary Heritage (Validated results), Elections Canada, October 20, 2015, November 4, 2015, WEB,weblink Elections Canada Online | Final Candidates Election Expenses Limits,, October 19, 2015, February 17, 2016, yes,weblink" title="">weblink August 15, 2015, }}All electoral information is taken from Elections Canada. Italicized expenditures refer to submitted totals, and are presented when the final reviewed totals are not available.


    • BOOK, Stephen J. Harper, 1, 2013, A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs & the Rise of Professional Hockey, Toronto, Simon & Schuster, 978-1-4767-1653-4,
    • (Right Here, Right Now (book)|Right Here, Right Now: Politics and Leadership in the Age of Disruption)BOOK, Stephen J. Harper, 1, 2018, Right Here, Right Now: Politics and Leadership in the Age of Disruption, Toronto, Signal, 978-0-7710-3862-4,

    See also

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    Further reading

    {{See also|List of books about Prime Ministers of Canada}}
    • Behiels, Michael D. "weblink" title="">Stephen Harper's Rise to Power" (PDF) American Review of Canadian Studies Spring 2010, Vol. 40 Issue 1, pp. 118–45
    • Chantal, Hébert. (2007) French Kiss: Stephen Harper's Blind Date with Quebec Vintage Canada, {{ISBN|9780676979084}}
    • Cody, Howard. "Minority Government in Canada: The Stephen Harper Experience" American Review of Canadian Studies 2008 38(1): 27–42
    • Flanagan, Tom. (2009) Harper's Team: Behind the Scenes in the Conservative Rise to Power (2nd ed), {{ISBN|978-0-7735-3545-9}}
    • Gutstein, Donald. Harperism: How Stephen Harper and his think tank colleagues have transformed Canada (2014)
    • Johnson, William. (2006) Stephen Harper & the Future of Canada (2nd ed) Douglas Gibson, {{ISBN|0-7710-4350-3}}
    • Mackey, Lloyd. (2005) The pilgrimage of Stephen Harper ECW Press {{ISBN|1-55022-713-0}}
    • Martin, Lawrence. Harperland: The Politics of Control Viking Canada (2010). {{ISBN|978-0-670-06517-2}}
    • Plamondon, Bob. Full Circle: Death and Resurrection in Canadian Conservative Politics (2006), 472 pp., {{ISBN|978-1-55263-855-2}}
    • Richer, Andrew. "A Defense Renaissance? The Canadian Conservative Government and the Military", American Review of Canadian Studies (2013) 433 pp 424–450. online
    • Wells, Paul. The Longer I'm Prime Minister: Stephen Harper and Canada, 2006– (2013)

    External links

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