Stephen LeDrew

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Stephen Ralph LeDrew (born 1953) is a Toronto-based lawyer and broadcaster. He served as President of the Liberal Party of Canada from 1998 to 2003, and was a Mayor of Toronto candidate in the 2006 municipal election. He hosts LeDrew Live on CP24 and also co-hosts CP24 Live at Noon as well as being the news station's political analyst.

Legal career[edit]

As a lawyer, LeDrew served as the Executive Assistant to the Solicitor General of Canada, Government Affairs Counsel for Manulife, and Director of Operations in the Prime Minister's Office. After serving in government, he practiced administrative law in the private sector for over 25 years.

Political career[edit]

LeDrew was elected president of the Liberal Party of Canada in March 1998, then re-elected in March 2000, serving until November 2003. Occasionally outspoken, he famously derided the Chrétien government's plan to severely limit corporate donations to political parties as being as "dumb as a bag of hammers".[1]

On September 28, 2006, immediately prior to nomination cut-off date, LeDrew announced his candidacy for Mayor of Toronto in that year's municipal election against incumbent David Miller, centre-right challenger Jane Pitfield and a host of fringe candidates. Although he received considerable media coverage and was invited to participate in election debates with Miller and Pitfield, LeDrew finished a distant third with only 1.3% of the vote.

Broadcasting[edit]

From 2007 until 2009, LeDrew co-hosted a talk show with Michael Coren on CFRB 1010 in Toronto titled Two Bald Guys With Strong Opinions. In January 2009, LeDrew began co-hosting a weekday noon news programme with Ann Rohmer on CP24 tiled Live at Noon working there as a political analyst. Due to these television commitments, LeDrew quit his CFRB 1010 show on March 25, 2009.

Personal[edit]

In 2005, LeDrew was forced to declare personal bankruptcy by his sole creditor, the federal government. At that time LeDrew claimed this action against him was incited by his stand against Jean Chrétien's efforts to remain as party leader without a leadership review vote, contrary to the constitution of the Liberal Party of Canada. LeDrew owed C$364,140 in back taxes, which he had been in the process of paying down. The court ordered him to pay 74% of this amount, even though LeDrew had earlier offered to pay 100% of his arrears over time; the government had rejected this offer. The judge on the case noted that LeDrew placed priority on personal expenses rather than his tax obligations.[2] LeDrew stated in reply at the time that his children and their needs came first, and he would not have done anything different. LeDrew is a divorced father of four children.

Stephen LeDrew is past president of the National Club in Toronto.

Electoral record[edit]

2006 Toronto municipal election, Mayor of Torontoedit
Candidate Total votes  % of total votes
David Miller 332,969 56.97
Jane Pitfield 188,932 32.32
Stephen LeDrew 8,078 1.38
35 other candidates 54,508 9.33
Total valid votes 584,484 100.00

For full results, see Toronto municipal election, 2006.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Dan Hays
President of the Liberal Party of Canada
1998–2003
Succeeded by
Michael Eizenga