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Liberal Party of Canada

Liberal Party of Canada
Current Leader:Paul Martin, Jr
Headquarters:Suite 400
81 Metcalfe Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1P 6M8
Political ideology:liberal

The Liberal Party is the current governing party of Canada. It is often called "Canada's governing party" due to the fact that it has governed for 62 of the past 75 years. It is one of only two parties that have alternately governed Canada since Confederation, the other being the Progressive Conservativess. In its early history it was the party of free trade, Quebec, and opposition to excessive imperialism. From its earliest years, however, the Liberal party has been accused of, or credited with, not having any great vision but rather reflecting whatever policies could best get them elected. In the period just before and after the Second World War, the Liberal Party became a champion of social goals.

Under Canada's longest serving Prime Minister, William Lyon Mackenzie King, Canada's welfare state was created. These efforts were followed by Lester B. Pearson's introduction of universal health care. Under Pierre Trudeau this mission evolved into the goal of creating a "just society". In recent years, however, the party has been accused of "campaigning on the left and ruling on the right".

Known colloquially as the "Grits" (originally "Clear Grits"), the Liberal Party has held power for a substantial majority of the past century -- in fact, in the entire history of the Liberal Party, there has only been one non-interim leader, Edward Blake, who was never Prime Minister of Canada.

The Liberal Party is a member of the Liberal International.

Leaders of the Liberal Party:


1 Herb Gray served as Leader of the Opposition from June 23 until Chrétien was re-elected to Parliament in December 1990.

Provincial Liberal Parties

Each province in Canada has its own Liberal Party. Though these are not linked to the federal Liberals, relations are often close. This is especially true with the Parti libéral du Québec and the Ontario Liberal Party. Other provincial Liberal parties, such as the BC Liberal Party, differ markedly from the federal party.