David R. Cooke

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David Cooke
Ontario MPP
In office
Preceded byJim Breithaupt
Succeeded byWill Ferguson
Personal details
Born (1937-08-04) August 4, 1937 (age 85)
Oshawa, Ontario
Political partyLiberal

David R. Cooke (born August 4, 1937) is a former politician in Ontario, Canada. He was a Liberal member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario from 1985 to 1990.[note 1]


Cooke was educated at Queen's University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree, and a law degree. He worked as a lawyer before entering political life.


He ran for the House of Commons of Canada in the 1979 federal election as a candidate of the Liberal Party of Canada, but lost to Progressive Conservative John Reimer by about 7,000 votes in the riding of Kitchener.[1]

He was elected to the Ontario legislature in the 1985 provincial election, defeating Progressive Conservative Don Travers by about 4,500 votes in the provincial constituency of Kitchener.[2] He was re-elected by a greater margin in the 1987 provincial election.[3] During his time in the legislature, Cooke served as a backbench supporter of David Peterson's government. He served as parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Citizenship in 1989.

David Cooke was appointed Chair of the Select Committee on Free trade when the Peterson government came into being in the Summer of 1985.[4] As such he became the principal source of facts for the concern which the government expressed during all the negotiations. Cooke and the committee would cite problems; the US negotiators kept an ongoing vigil as to those concerns, and the Canadian federal negotiators would eventually respond.

When the FTA was finally signed, Cooke became the first chair of the first Standing Committee on Economic Affairs in Ontario. As such he pioneered the pre-budget hearings which continue to this day.

The Liberals were defeated by the New Democratic Party in the 1990 provincial election, and Cooke lost his seat to NDP candidate Will Ferguson by 6,019 votes.[5]

Cooke was later appointed as an immigrant judge in the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada by Prime Minister Jean Chrétien.[6]



  1. ^ He is not to be confused with another Dave Cooke, who served as a New Democratic Party Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) in Ontario during the same period.


  1. ^ "Counting the votes: The Liberals watch from their Quebec fortress...as Conservatives sweep most of the West". The Globe and Mail. May 24, 1979. pp. 10–11. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |url= (help)
  2. ^ "Results of vote in Ontario election". The Globe and Mail. May 3, 1985. p. 13.
  3. ^ "Results from individual ridings". The Windsor Star. September 11, 1987. p. F2.
  4. ^ Wills, Terrance (November 7, 1985). "Ontario report could scuttle free-trade deal". The Montreal Gazette. pp. A–1, 2. Retrieved February 2, 2010.
  5. ^ "Ontario election: Riding-by-riding voting results". The Globe and Mail. September 7, 1990. p. A12.
  6. ^ Loney, Martin (1998). The pursuit of division: race, gender, and preferential hiring in Canada. McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP. p. 222. ISBN 978-0-7735-1769-1. Retrieved 2 February 2010. (Opinion book)

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