|Member of Parliament|
|Assumed office |
November 27, 2000
|Preceded by||Hec Clouthier|
|Born||May 23, 1960|
Sarnia, Ontario, Canada
|Political party||Conservative (since 2003)|
|Residence(s)||Pembroke, Ontario, Canada|
|Alma mater||University of Western Ontario (BSc)|
Cheryl Gallant Canadian politician who represents the riding of Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke in the House of Commons of Canada. She is a member of the Conservative Party of Canada. She is currently[when?] the longest-serving woman in the federal caucus.(born May 23, 1960) is a
Early life and career
Gallant was born in Sarnia, Ontario. She attended the University of Western Ontario, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry. Prior to becoming a politician, she worked for a major Canadian life insurance company as a group insurance executive and for a time as an office manager of a family-owned professional practice. Gallant has been married since 1985, and is the parent of four daughters. She has served as the Chair of the City of Pembroke Downtown Development Commission and as a member of the Economic Advisory Committee for the city.
Gallant won her seat in the 2000 federal election, defeating Liberal incumbent Hec Clouthier and making history as the first woman elected to federal office in Renfrew County. Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke was one of only three Ontario federal riding districts not to elect a Liberal. Gallant took advantage of local opposition to Bill C-68, the Firearms Act, and benefited from backlash to Clouthier's support for gun control.
She is currently a member of the Conservative Party of Canada in the House of Commons of Canada, having previously been a member of the Canadian Alliance party from 2000 to 2003. She is largely viewed as one of the most vocal social conservatives in the House of Commons. While a popular figure among the Christian Right and property rights activists, she regularly draws the ire of opponents. Serving in a riding with the largest military base and only national nuclear research facility in Canada, she has advocated for increased federal support for CFB Petawawa and the Chalk River Laboratories.
During the 37th Parliament, Gallant served as deputy house leader of the Official Opposition. She has served as CPC critic for science, research and development, was a member of the Commons Standing Committee on National Defence and Veteran's Affairs, and the Standing Committee on Industry. She has also served as opposition critic of Canadian Heritage, Amateur Sport, the National Capital Commission, Science, Research and Development, the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario, and Small Business. In the 39th Parliament, she served as government vice-chair of the House NATO committee and on the House Committee for Natural Resources.
In the 38th Parliament, Gallant served as a member on the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure of the Standing Joint Committee on Library of Parliament, and the Library of Parliament.
Her service continued in the 39th Parliament, where she served on the committee for the Status of Women, National Defence, and Library of Parliament.
During the 40th Parliament, she served for varying lengths of time as a member on the following committees: National Defence, the Library of Parliament, the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure on the Standing Committee on National Defence, Scrutiny of Regulations, Natural Resources, and Transport, Infrastructure, and Communities.
In the 2008 election, Gallant won her fourth term in Parliament, winning 28,906 of 47,314 votes (61.1% of the total). Her nearest rival, Liberal candidate Carole Devine, received 9,740 votes (20.6%).
Gallant won her fifth term in Parliament in a landslide election, collecting 27,462 of 51,398 votes (53.43% of the total). Her closest opponent, Independent Hec Clouthier, received 9,611 votes (18.70%).
In the 41st Parliament, Gallant serves as a member of the Standing Committee on Industry, Science, and Technology, as well as the Standing Committee on National Defence. She was elected by colleagues to represent Canada as Chair of the Canadian-North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Parliamentary Association. The Canada-NATO Parliamentary Association consists of membership of all political parties represented in the House of Commons.
In March 2012, Gallant traveled to Norway to observe Canadian Forces from Petawawa participate in NATO exercises. In April 2012, she received second place in The Hill Times poll for Best Conservative Constituency MP.
Gallant was re-elected for a sixth term in 2015. In a statement on April 2, 2019, Gallant addressed the Speaker in the House regarding carbon pricing in Canada stating that the effects would necessitate higher tuition fees on college and university students to make up for increased heating and carbon payments.
Gallant was challenged for the Conservative nomination in Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke for the 2019 election by Mike Coates, the campaign manager for former Conservative leadership candidate Kevin O'Leary. However, Gallant was successful in winning the nomination 866 votes to 522.
On October 21, 2019, Gallant was re-elected for her seventh term in office after winning 30,387 of 57,506 ballots cast, or 52.67% of the vote. She is the longest serving woman in the federal caucus. During the ensuing 43rd Canadian Parliament, she introduced one private member bill, Bill C-222, An Act to amend the Expropriation Act (protection of private property) which sought to disallow the exemption of a public hearing in cases where private land is being expropriated for the purposes of "restoring historical natural habitats or addressing, directly or indirectly, climate variability". It was brought to a vote on February 17, 2021, but defeated with only Conservatives Party members voting in favour. In the 2020 Conservative Party of Canada leadership election she endorsed Peter MacKay.
She won re-election in 2021, despite being "nowhere to be found" during the campaign, according to CTV News Ottawa. During the campaign, Gallant claimed "Now that the pandemic is passing, they’re rebranding climate change as a climate emergency in order to justify climate lockdowns." The claim was cited by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as an example of a need for Conservative leader Erin O'Toole to control his candidates.
Shortly before the 2004 election, Gallant made headlines for her criticism of Bill C-250, an amendment to the Criminal Code introduced by NDP MP Svend Robinson which would protect sexual orientation from hate propaganda. Among other things, Gallant claimed that the bill would limit freedom of opinion, make sections of the Bible "hate literature" and provide protection to pedophiles.
During the 2004 election, a controversy erupted when Gallant compared abortion to the beheading of Iraq War hostage Nick Berg. The Conservative Party then announced that she was suffering from laryngitis, and after this, she did not appear at some scheduled debates.
Gallant resurfaced in the spotlight on March 17, 2005, when she suggested that Christians were being persecuted by the Liberal Party in a flyer she sent to her constituents. Conservative leader Stephen Harper, confronted with the news, said "I'll let Cheryl Gallant explain those remarks herself; I haven't seen them."
Several constituents have accused Gallant of obtaining birth-date information from passport applications during the 2006 campaign. Her office regularly sent out greeting cards to constituents when their birthday came. One affected resident told the Ottawa Citizen, "The principle is really bothering me: that my information has been gathered without my knowledge. I don't know how it's going to be used." Two families who received cards have sent letters to the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, asking confirmation the MP won't use the collected personal information. The Office of the Privacy Commissioner has no jurisdiction in investigating such matters. Gallant's aide says the Member receives many requests for birthday and anniversary cards, and the office is unsure how the information was put on the list, since Gallant receives thousands of requests for salutations and the birth date could have been on one of the request forms returned by a constituent. In addition, two constituents named Mr. and Mrs. White, who were unsatisfied with the response they received from Gallant's office, contacted the Liberal MP for Ottawa-Vanier Mauril Bélanger. Bélanger contacted the Office of the Ethics Commissioner on their behalf, who found grounds for and did conduct a preliminary inquiry into the matter. Although in their report they commented "personal information should only be used for the purpose for which it is gathered, or for a use consistent with that purpose," they found Gallant's use of the information did not further her private interests as alleged. Because the use of the constituents' information did not meet the definition in Section 3(2) of the Member's Code for furthering private interests, the Office of the Ethics Commissioner discontinued their inquiry.
Of around 60 major candidates in 15 Eastern Ontario and Western Quebec ridings, Gallant was the only one who didn't attending a meeting with the Ottawa Citizen editorial board. "Ms. Gallant's decision to duck every difficult question from the media is nothing short of childish", commented Citizen columnist Kelly Egan. Gallant has stated that she was focused on campaigning locally in order to keep in touch with the concerns of local constituents.
In February 2011, during Defence Committee hearings in St. John's before an audience which included the family and co-workers of mariners lost at sea in recent accidents on the Atlantic, Gallant remarked, "In Ontario we have inland seas, the Great Lakes, and it would never occur to any of us, even up in the Ottawa River, to count on the Coast Guard to come and help us." Gallant said federal search and ocean rescue should be coordinated with privately operated resources and local governments. Gallant's comparison of recreational boaters in sheltered inland waters to mariners on the Atlantic hundreds of miles from land drew outrage from many who had lost family at sea. She initially refused to apologize saying her remarks were misinterpreted, but on February 10, Gallant said she was sorry and did not mean to minimize ocean dangers.
On March 28, 2011, after stating in a press release that she hoped for a clean election campaign, Gallant compared Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff to Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Gallant wrote on her Twitter page: "No carbon tax please, Igaffi!" Her initial tweet was deleted, but not before it was screen-captured and distributed to the national press. She tweeted an apology to Ignatieff for her remarks on April 1.
In March 2016, Gallant caused further outrage and controversy by using the death of Corporal Nathan Cirillo as a means to generate money for her campaign through an Easter ham lottery. Cirillo was killed while standing guard at the National War Memorial on Oct. 22, 2014.
In May 2016, Gallant accused the Rideau Institute of having ties to North Korea, Iran, and Russia on account of the Institute having those countries as options on their donation page when stating their nation of origin.
In February 2021, Gallant was recorded on a Zoom meeting with a university student group, accusing Liberals of wanting to “normalize sexual activity with children”.
During the so-called "Freedom Convoy", Gallant commented on her Facebook page to "Watch for Trudeau's gang to pull off false flag operations." She advertised a Pembroke protest on her Facebook page, and has encouraged protests nationwide.
|2021 Canadian federal election|
|New Democratic||Jodie Primeau||12,263||21.0||+6.10|
|Total valid votes||58,518|
|Total rejected ballots||459|
|Source: Elections Canada|
|2019 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|New Democratic||Eileen Jones-Whyte||8,786||14.90||+6.34||$16,662.56|
|People's||David Ainsworth||1,463||2.48||none listed|
|Independent||Dheerendra Kumar||917||1.56||none listed|
|Veterans Coalition||Robert Cherrin||358||0.61||none listed|
|Libertarian||Stefan Klietsch||266||0.45||none listed|
|Independent||Jonathan Davis||200||0.34||none listed|
|Total valid votes/expense limit||58,957||99.21|
|Total rejected ballots||471||0.79||+0.33|
|Source: Elections Canada|
|2015 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|New Democratic||Dan McCarthy||4,893||8.6||-4.83||–|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||57,159||100.0||–||$222,926.86|
|Total rejected ballots||264||–||–|
|Source: Elections Canada|
|2011 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|New Democratic||Eric Burton||6,903||13.43||+2.50||–|
|Green||Rosanne Van Schie||877||1.71||-5.05||–|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||51,398||100.00||–|
|Total rejected ballots||166||0.32||-0.08|
|2008 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|New Democratic||Sue McSheffrey||5,175||10.94||-1.56||$25,911|
|Total valid votes||47,314||100.00|
|Total rejected ballots||188|
|Electors on the lists||75,223|
|Sources: Official Results, Elections Canada and Financial Returns, Elections Canada.|
|2006 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|New Democratic||Sue McSheffrey||6,505||12.5||+1.0|
|Green||Gordon S. McLeod||1,601||3.1||+0.7|
|Total valid votes||51,987||100.0|
|2004 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|New Democratic||Sue McSheffrey||5,720||11.5||+8.0|
|Green||Gordon S. McLeod||1,191||2.4|
|Total valid votes||49,917||100.0|
|2000 Canadian federal election: Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke|
|Progressive Conservative||Bob Amaron||5,287||11.3||-14.1|
|New Democratic||Ole Hendrickson||1,607||3.4||-3.2|
|Marijuana||Stanley E. Sambey||762||1.6|
|Independent||Thane C. Heins||121||0.3||*|
|Natural Law||André Giordano||78||0.2||-0.2|
|Alliance gain from Liberal||Swing||+9.2|
|Total valid votes||46,700||100.0|
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