Charles Van Horne

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Joseph Charles Van Horne (January 3, 1921 – August 27, 2003), also known as J.C. or Charlie, was a politician in New Brunswick, Canada, and the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of New Brunswick between 1966 and 1967.

A lawyer and hotel owner in the Campbellton area, Van Horne ran for the federal Progressive Conservatives in the riding of Restigouche-Madawaska in a 1955 by-election following the death of Liberal Member of Parliament Joseph Boucher. Van Horne won the election, breaking a 22-year Liberal hold on the riding.

While in Parliament, Van Horne successfully lobbied the federal and provincial governments to build a bridge between Campbellton and Pointe-à-la-Croix, Québec. The bridge opened in 1962 and is currently named for him.

In 1966, after the resignation of Cy Sherwood, Van Horne successfully ran for leader of the provincial Progressive Conservative Party. His campaign against Liberal Premier Louis Robichaud in the 1967 provincial election is considered one of the most flamboyant and extravagant in New Brunswick history. Traversing the province in a Cadillac, wearing a cowboy hat, and with Don Messer providing entertainment at each stop, Van Horne frequently attacked Robichaud's mixed Acadian and First Nations heritage, saying "these half-breeds shouldn't drink liquor". Critics also accused Van Horne of being too vague on his promises. Robichaud was re-elected, and Van Horne resigned as leader. He attempted to regain the leadership at the 1969 party leadership convention but lost to Richard Hatfield.

Van Horne remained in the Legislative Assembly and served as Minister of Tourism in the Cabinet of Richard Hatfield between 1970 and 1972 when he was fired from cabinet for going over budget. In 1975, he left politics entirely after pleading guilty to accepting a bribe over the purchase of park lands and receiving a two-year suspended sentence.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Colourful N.B. Tory leader was convicted of bribery" Globe and Mail, September 2, 2003

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Provincial Government of Richard Hatfield
Cabinet Post (1)
Predecessor Office Successor
New portfolio 'Minister of Tourism'
1970-1972
'Jean-Paul LeBlanc'
Other offices
Preceded by
Cyril Sherwood
Leader of the New Brunswick Progressive Conservative Party
1966-1967
Succeeded by
Richard Hatfield
Preceded by
Joseph Boucher
Member of Parliament for Restigouche-Madawaska
1955-1961
Succeeded by
Edgar Fournier