Conservative Party of Canada

The Conservative Party of Canada (French: Parti conservateur du Canada), colloquially known as the Tories, is a federal political party in Canada. It was formed in 2003 by the merger of the two main right-leaning parties, the Progressive Conservative Party (PC Party) and the Canadian Alliance, the latter being the successor of the Western Canadian-based Reform Party. The party sits at the centre-right to the right of the Canadian political spectrum, with their federal rival, the Liberal Party of Canada, positioned to their left.[8][9] The Conservatives are defined as a "big tent" party, practising "brokerage politics"[lower-alpha 3][12][13][14] and welcoming a broad variety of members, including "Red Tories" and "Blue Tories".[15][16]

Conservative Party of Canada
Parti conservateur du Canada
AbbreviationCPC (English)
PCC (French)
LeaderCandice Bergen (interim)
PresidentRobert Batherson
Deputy LeaderLuc Berthold
Senate leaderDon Plett
House leaderJohn Brassard
Founder(s)Stephen Harper[lower-alpha 1]
Peter MacKay[lower-alpha 2]
FoundedDecember 7, 2003; 18 years ago (2003-12-07)
Merger ofCanadian Alliance (CRCA),
Progressive Conservative Party of Canada (PC)
Headquarters1720–130 Albert Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1P 5G4
Membership (2022) 678,708[1]
Ideology
Political positionCentre-right[5] to right-wing[6]
European affiliationEuropean Conservatives and Reformists Party (regional partner)
Continental affiliationAsia Pacific Democrat Union
Union of Latin American Parties (associate party)
International affiliationInternational Democrat Union[7]
Colours  Blue
Senate
16 / 105
House of
Commons
119 / 338
Website
English language: www.conservative.ca
French language: www.conservateur.ca

From Canadian Confederation in 1867 until 1942, the original Conservative Party of Canada participated in numerous governments and had multiple names. However, by 1942, the main right-wing Canadian force became known as the Progressive Conservative Party. In the 1993 federal election, the PC Party's Western Canadian support transferred to the Reform Party. When it became clear that neither the PC Party nor the Reform Party/Canadian Alliance could beat the incumbent Liberals that governed since the 1993 election, an effort to unite the right-of-centre parties emerged. In 2003, the Canadian Alliance and the PCs merged, forming the Conservative Party of Canada.

During the Conservative Party's governance of Canada from 2006 to 2015, its economic decisions included reducing sales tax, reducing business taxes, balancing the national budget, creating the tax-free savings account (TFSA), and creating the Universal Child Care Benefit. In social policy, the government eliminated the long-gun registry, introduced mandatory minimum sentences for violent crimes, raised the age of consent to 16 years of age, permitted the construction of several pipelines, and withdrew Canada from the Kyoto Protocol. The government also appointed several elected senators, supported the State of Israel, negotiated the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), and negotiated the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).[17][18][19][20]

Under its first leader, Stephen Harper, the party governed with two minority governments after the federal elections of 2006 and 2008. It then won a majority government in the 2011 federal election before being defeated in the 2015 federal election by a majority Liberal government led by Justin Trudeau. Under its second and third leaders, Andrew Scheer and Erin O'Toole, the party remained in opposition after losing the elections in 2019 and 2021, respectively. On February 2, 2022, Candice Bergen was elected as interim leader by the caucus, following the ouster of O'Toole in a leadership review.


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