John Duncan (Canadian politician)

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The Honourable
John Duncan
PC
Chief Government Whip
In office
July 15, 2013 – October 19, 2015
Prime Minister Stephen Harper
Preceded by Gordon O'Connor
Succeeded by Andrew Leslie
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Vancouver Island North
In office
October 14, 2008 – October 19, 2015
Preceded by Catherine J. Bell
Succeeded by Rachel Blaney
In office
June 2, 1997 – January 23, 2006
Preceded by Ray Skelly
Succeeded by Catherine J. Bell
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for North Island—Powell River
In office
October 25, 1993 – June 2, 1997
Preceded by Ray Skelly
Succeeded by Riding Abolished
Personal details
Born John Morris Duncan
(1948-12-19) December 19, 1948 (age 67)
Winnipeg, Manitoba
Political party Conservative
Residence Courtenay, British Columbia
Profession Forestry

John Morris Duncan, PC, MP, (born December 19, 1948) is a Canadian politician. He served as a Member of the Canadian Parliament from 1993 to January 2006 and again from October 2008 until August 2015. On August 6, 2010, he was appointed to the Canadian Cabinet as Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians, and Minister responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency until his resignation on February 15, 2013 over his inappropriate written communication to the Tax Court of Canada.[1] He later returned to Cabinet as Chief Government Whip, and served in that capacity until the 2015 election, which saw both Duncan's own defeat and the defeat of the government.

Education[edit]

Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and raised in British Columbia, Duncan attended the University of British Columbia and graduated with a B.Sc. F from their Faculty of Forestry in 1972. Duncan's first experience as an elected official was as an alderman in Ucluelet, British Columbia from 1982-83.[2]

Entrance to politics[edit]

In the 1993 election, Duncan was elected as a member of the Reform Party. He has served in all that party's incarnations up until the 2006 federal election, when he lost his seat to Catherine J. Bell of the New Democratic Party by 630 votes.

Duncan was the Conservative Party's Official Opposition Critic for Natural Resources. During that time he served on the Natural Resources Committee. He helped shape Conservative Party policy on west coast offshore oil and gas, softwood lumber trade and the pine beetle epidemic.

While in parliament, he was a member of the "Restaurant Caucus" in the House of Commons, a group of MPs who have interests in the restaurant industry.

Duncan's Private Member's Bill C - 259 passed the 38th Parliament to receive Royal Assent to eliminate the excise tax on jewelry. Duncan made parliamentary history as the first MP to have a Private Member's bill related to cutting taxation pass.

He won the Vancouver Island North Conservative Party nomination for the 2008 federal election and was elected with 45.78% of the vote.

On December 2, 2008, the New Democratic Party asked the RCMP to investigate John Duncan's alleged secret recording of a private NDP conference. He had apparently received the invitation to participate by mistake, in place of NDP MP Linda Duncan who had "a similar email address".[3][4] This happened within the context of the 2008–09 Canadian parliamentary dispute.

On August 6, 2010, in a minor cabinet shuffle, he joined cabinet as Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development.[5][6][7]

Under the Harper government, several key bills with a direct effect on aboriginal communities have stalled. As a result, First Nations across Canada have embarked on a widespread and prolonged series of demonstrations under the banner of "Idle No More." In addition, Attawapiskat chief Theresa Spence began a fast in December 2012 to demand a meeting with Harper and a Crown representative. In response, Duncan wrote to Spence requesting she give up her hunger strike and meet with him. "I didn’t ask for Minister Duncan," Spence replied. "And I have dealt with him before. When I observe him, he doesn't have a mind of his own because, before he would answer a question, he would always look at his people. He's not the Prime Minister."[8]

On February 15, 2013, he resigned from his cabinet position as Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development after improperly advocating to a tax court on behalf of a constituent in June 2011,[9] and was replaced by James Moore.[10] He returned to cabinet in the more junior role as Minister of State and Chief Government Whip in July 2013.[11][12]

In the Canadian federal election, 2015, Duncan sought reelection in the newly created riding of Courtenay—Alberni, but was defeated by Gord Johns of the NDP.

Electoral record[edit]

Canadian federal election, 2015: Courtenay—Alberni
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
New Democratic Gord Johns 26,595 38.15 -2.57
Conservative John Duncan 19,631 28.16 -16.73
Liberal Carrie Powell-Davidson 15,166 21.75 +15.03
Green Glenn Sollitt 8,190 11.75 +5.03
Marxist–Leninist Barbara Biley 137 0.27
Total valid votes/Expense limit 100.0     $229,341.97
Total rejected ballots
Turnout
Eligible voters 88,673
New Democratic notional gain from Conservative Swing -9.65
This riding was created from Nanaimo—Alberni and Vancouver Island North, both of which elected a Conservative candidate in the last election. John Duncan was the incumbent from Vancouver Island North.
Source: Elections Canada[13][14]
Canadian federal election, 2011: Vancouver Island North
Party Candidate Votes % ∆%
Conservative John Duncan 27,206 46.11 +0.33
New Democratic Ronna-Rae Leonard 25,379 43.01 +1.58
Liberal Mike Holland 3,018 5.11 +0.93
Green Sue Moen 2,995 5.08 -2.90
Independent Jason Draper 304 0.52 -0.11
Marxist–Leninist Frank Martin 57 0.10
Total valid votes/Expense limit 59,003 100.0  
Total rejected ballots 187 0.32
Turnout 59,190 66.39
Eligible voters 89,150
Conservative hold Swing -0.62
Canadian federal election, 2008: Vancouver Island North
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
Conservative John Duncan 26,166 45.78 +5.17 $76,173
New Democratic Catherine J. Bell 23,681 41.43 -0.29 $80,622
Green Philip Stone 4,563 7.98 +3.14 $12,309
Liberal Geoff Fleischer 2,391 4.18 -8.65 $2,026
Independent Jason Draper 361 0.63
Total valid votes/Expense limit 57,162 100.0     $171,130
Conservative gain from New Democratic Swing +2.73
Canadian federal election, 2006: Vancouver Island North
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
New Democratic Catherine J. Bell 23,561 41.72 +7.23 $80,265
Conservative John Duncan 22,931 40.61 +5.20 $91,651
Liberal Jim Mitchell 7,243 12.83 -8.62 $28,226
Green Michael Mascall 2,735 4.84 -3.58 $8,685
Total valid votes 56,470 100.0  
New Democratic gain from Conservative Swing +1.02
Canadian federal election, 2004: Vancouver Island North
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
Conservative John Duncan 18,733 35.41 -15.62 $47,274
New Democratic Catherine J. Bell 18,250 34.49 +22.78 $43,372
Liberal Noor Ahmed 11,352 21.45 -3.39 $78,890
Green Pam Munroe 4,456 8.42 +3.22 $26,376
Marxist–Leninist Jack East 111 0.20 +0.02
Total valid votes 52,902 100.0  
Total rejected ballots 136 0.26 +0.01
Turnout 53,038 65.79 +1.31
Conservative hold Swing -19.20
Change for the Conservatives is based on the combined total of the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservatives.
Canadian federal election, 2000: Vancouver Island North
Party Candidate Votes % ∆% Expenditures
Alliance John Duncan 24,844 51.03 +3.49 $42,203
Liberal Daniel P. Smith 12,092 24.84 +3.92 $52,728
New Democratic Alex Turner 5,701 11.71 -11.57 $10,377
Progressive Conservative David R. Tingley 2,997 6.15 +2.71 $33
Green Pam Munroe 2,532 5.20 +1.95 $6,295
Independent John Krell 216 0.44
Natural Law Nancy More 205 0.42 -0.03
Marxist–Leninist Jack East 92 0.18 $90
Total valid votes 48,679 100.0  
Total rejected ballots 131 0.27 -0.07
Turnout 48,810 64.48 +0.12
Alliance hold Swing -0.22
Change for the Canadian Alliance is based on the 1997 results of the Reform Party.
Canadian federal election, 1997: Vancouver Island North
Party Candidate Votes % Expenditures
Reform John Duncan 22,769 47.54 $31,625
New Democratic Gilbert Popovich 11,152 23.28 $60,126
Liberal David Durrant 10,024 20.92 $14,397
Progressive Conservative Dave Tingley 1,650 3.44 $3,659
Green Hazel Lennox 1,559 3.25
Christian Heritage John Krell 522 1.08 $2,001
Natural Law Nancy More 218 0.45
Total valid votes 47,894 100.0  
Total rejected ballots 161 0.34
Turnout 48,055 64.36
This riding was created from Comox—Alberni and North Island—Powell River, both of which elected a Reform candidate in the previous election. John Duncan was the incumbent from North Island—Powell River.


Canadian federal election, 1993: North Island—Powell River
Party Candidate Votes % ∆%
Reform John Duncan 18,255 39.31 +37.63
Liberal Al Huddlestan 11,877 25.57 +9.46
New Democratic Raymond Skelly 7,794 16.78 −35.24
Progressive Conservative Mark von Schellwitz 3,682 7.93 −16.49
National Mark A. Grenier 3,408 7.34
Green Michael Mascall 1,015 2.19 +0.97
Natural Law Wayne A. Melvin 254 0.55
Canada Party James Peter Turner 159 0.34
Total valid votes 46,444 100.0  
Reform gain from New Democratic Swing +14.08

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan resigns from cabinet". CBC News. February 15, 2013. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  2. ^ "Canada Votes 2008 – Vancouver Island North". CBC News. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  3. ^ "North Vancouver Island MP John Duncan accused of taping NDP caucus call". CanWest News. December 2, 2008. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  4. ^ Duncan accused by NDP. BCLocalNews. December 2, 2008. Archived December 6, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ "B.C.'s Duncan named Indian Affairs minister". CBC News. August 6, 2010. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  6. ^ "Indigenous leaders, activists raise concerns about John Duncan's track record". 
  7. ^ "John Baird says he'll be a 'pussycat' in new post". CTV News. August 6, 2010. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  8. ^ "As protests swell, Attawapiskat chief stands firm on hunger strike". The Globe and Mail. December 26, 2012. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  9. ^ "John Duncan resigns as Minister of Aboriginal Affairs over 2011 reference letter". Global News. February 15, 2013. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  10. ^ "James Moore the right man for the job as aboriginal affairs minister, fellow MP says". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 16 February 2013. 
  11. ^ "Stephen Harper's new cabinet features new blood, more women and maintains economic team". Ottawa Citizen. July 15, 2013. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  12. ^ "Harper adds 8 new faces in major cabinet shakeup". CBC News. July 15, 2013. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 
  13. ^ Elections Canada – Confirmed candidates for Courtenay—Alberni, 30 September 2015
  14. ^ Elections Canada – Preliminary Election Expenses Limits for Candidates

External links[edit]

28th Ministry – Cabinet of Stephen Harper
Cabinet Posts (2)
Predecessor Office Successor
' Minister of State
2013–2015
(NB: no portfolio specified - while Chief Government Whip)
'
Chuck Strahl Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development
2010–2013
James Moore
Special Parliamentary Responsibilities
Predecessor Title Successor
Gordon O'Connor Chief Government Whip
(2013–2015)
Andrew Leslie