Friday, August 26, 2016

Stephen Harper to give up Calgary seat today

The Canadian Press Posted: Aug 26, 2016 6:25 AM MT Last Updated: Aug 26, 2016 6:35 AM MT
Former prime minister Stephen Harper will resign today as a member of Parliament, The Canadian Press has learned. Harper is expected to issue a statement later this morning, 10 months after he lost the federal election and stepped down as Conservative party leader. "We put everything on the table, we gave everything we have to give, and we have no regrets whatsoever," he told supporters on election night. But the 57-year-old had chosen to stay on as an MP for his riding of Calgary-Heritage and routinely showed up for votes in the House of Commons over the last few months. Harper was first elected as a Reform MP in 1993 and would go on to become the first leader of the modern day Conservative Party in 2003.

Move into consulting Harper will now make a move into consulting on international issues alongside two of his most trusted former advisers. The trio are listed as directors on a corporation first set up in December called Harper and Associates Consulting. Harper's decision to keep his seat followed the precedent set by his predecessor. When Liberal prime minister Paul Martin lost to Harper in 2006, Martin remained an MP until the Commons' was dissolved for the 2008 election. To resign from the House of Commons, an MP must submit a letter to the Speaker. Harper is also expected to send out a statement and video message on his social media channels. The last time he spoke to supporters was in May at the party's convention. "We have a proud record, but the past is no place to linger," Harper said. "Now is the time to look forward. Our party's journey is only beginning." The party will choose a new leader next May.

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