André Ouellet

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André Ouellet, P.C., Q.C. (born April 6, 1939) is a former Chairman of Canada Post, and a long time Liberal politician in Canada.

First elected to the Canadian House of Commons in a 1967 by-election, Ouellet served in a number of different positions in the cabinets of Prime Ministers Pierre Trudeau and Jean Chrétien. In his capacity as Registrar General of Canada, he was one of the four signatories of the Proclamation of the Constitution Act of 1982 (along with Queen Elizabeth II, Prime Minister Trudeau, and Justice Minister Jean Chrétien. Ouellet represented the safe Liberal seat of Papineau in Montreal for almost thirty years. Even when the Liberals were crushed by the Progressive Conservative Party in the election of 1984, he retained his seat by a substantial margin. In opposition, Ouellet became the Liberal's leading figure in the constitutional negotiations that led to the Charlottetown Accord, and was a strong advocate for the constitutional reform proposal, which was rejected in a 1992 referendum.

With the return to power of the Liberals after the 1993 election, Ouellet was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs by the new prime minister, Jean Chrétien. Despite his experience, Ouellet was not popular in Quebec, and the lasting legacy of the Charlottetown Accord hurt him. After the close result of the 1995 Quebec referendum, Chrétien wanted to present a new face of his government in Quebec. In 1996, Chrétien appointed Ouellet to head the Canada Post Corporation. Ouellet's seat in the Canadian House of Commons was taken by Pierre Pettigrew in a by-election later that year.

As cabinet minister, Ouellet had served as Postmaster General. As Chairman of Canada Post, he implemented reform that led to record profits in the corporation. Recently, controversy surrounded Ouellet as Canada Post was one of the organizations embroiled in the Sponsorship Scandal. As a result, Ouellet was suspended from his position at Canada Post in February 2004 by Prime Minister Paul Martin. He resigned as Chairman of Canada Post on August 12, 2004, after it was revealed that he failed to provide invoices for hundreds of thousands of dollars of personal expenses, and that he handed out untendered contracts.

External links[edit]

26th Ministry – Cabinet of Jean Chrétien
Cabinet Posts (2)
Predecessor Office Successor
legislation enacted Minister of Foreign Affairs
1995–1996
Lloyd Axworthy
Perrin Beatty Secretary of State for External Affairs
1993–1995
styled as Minister of Foreign Affairs
legislation enacted
Parliament of Canada
Preceded by
Guy Favreau
Member of Parliament for Papineau
1967–1988
Succeeded by
The electoral district was abolished in 1987.
Preceded by
The electoral district was created in 1987.
Member of Parliament for Papineau—Saint-Michel
1988–1996
Succeeded by
Pierre Pettigrew

Electoral record (partial)[edit]

Canadian federal election, 1993: Papineau—Saint-Michel
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
Liberal André Ouellet 20,064 51.98 +5.99 $41,411
     Bloc Québécois Daniel Boucher 15,148 39.24 $18,649
     Progressive Conservative Carmen de Pontbriand 1,686 4.37 -28.86 $26,388a
     New Democratic Party Gisèle Charlebois 708 1.83 -13.27 $477
     Natural Law André Beaudoin 678 1.76 $386
     Marxist-Leninist Serge Lachapelle 141 0.37 -0.12 $80
     Abolitionist P.A. D'Aoust 98 0.25 $0
     Commonwealth Normand Normandeau 78 0.20 -0.24 $0
Total valid votes 38,601 100.00
Total rejected ballots 1,241
Turnout 39,842 75.45 +5.31
Electors on the lists 52,808
a Does not include unpaid claims.

Source: Thirty-fifth General Election, 1993: Official Voting Results, Published by the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada. Financial figures taken from the official contributions and expenses submitted by the candidates, provided by Elections Canada.
Canadian federal election, 1988: Papineau
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
Liberal André Ouellet 18,122 45.99 $43,413
     Progressive Conservative Frank Venneri 13,094 33.23 $39,468
     New Democratic Party Giovanni Adamo 5,948 15.10 $22,192
Rhinoceros Carole Ola Clermont 987 2.51 $0
Green H. Joseph Vega 469 1.19 $0
     Communist Line Chabot 235 0.60 $18
     N/A (Marxist-Leninist) Francine Tremblay 193 0.49 $130
     N/A (Revolutionary Workers League) Michel Dugré 178 0.45 $513
     Commonwealth Normand Bélanger 174 0.44 $0
Total valid votes 39,400 100.00
Total rejected ballots 907
Turnout 40,307 70.14
Electors on the lists 57,470
Source: Report of the Chief Electoral Officer, Thirty-fourth General Election, 1988.
Canadian federal election, 1984: Papineau
Party Candidate Votes %
Liberal André Ouellet 12,754 38.99
     Progressive Conservative Tony Iacobaccio 12,053 36.85
     New Democratic Party Paul Comtois 4,295 13.13
Rhinoceros Christian Jolicoeur 1,925 5.89
     Parti nationaliste Gilles Maillé 1,169 3.57
     Communist Suzanne Dagenais 147 0.45
     Social Credit Roland Mireault 147 0.45
     Commonwealth Gilles Gervais 113 0.35
     Non-affiliated Doris Lacroix 104 0.32
Total valid votes 32,707 100.00
Total rejected ballots 659
Turnout 33,366 70.36
Electors on the lists 47,423
Source: Report of the Chief Electoral Officer, Thirty-third General Election, 1984.