Michelle Rempel Garner

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Michelle Rempel Garner

Michelle Rempel Garner - Member of Parliament.jpg
Minister of Western Economic Diversification
In office
July 15, 2013 – November 4, 2015
Prime MinisterStephen Harper
Preceded byLynne Yelich
Succeeded byNavdeep Bains
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Calgary Nose Hill
Assumed office
October 19, 2015
Preceded byDiane Ablonczy
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Calgary Centre-North
In office
May 2, 2011 – October 19, 2015
Preceded byJim Prentice
Succeeded byRiding abolished
Personal details
Michelle Godin

(1980-02-14) February 14, 1980 (age 41)
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Political partyConservative
Spouse(s)Jeffrey Garner (m. 2019)
ResidenceCalgary, Alberta, Canada
Alma materUniversity of Manitoba (BA, 2003)
ProfessionAdministrative professional, Member of Parliament

Michelle Rempel Garner PC MP (née Godin;[1] born February 14, 1980) is a Canadian politician from Alberta. She has been a federal Member of Parliament since 2011 and served as a minister in the Harper government. A Conservative MP, Rempel Garner represents the electoral riding of Calgary Nose Hill. Prior to this, she served as the MP for Calgary Centre-North until 2015 holding the seat for the Conservatives following the retirement of Jim Prentice from federal politics.[2]

Following her election in 2011, Rempel Garner was appointed as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment. In 2013, she was appointed Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification Canada.

On November 20, 2015, Rempel Garner was appointed as the Official Opposition Critic for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, within the shadow cabinets of Rona Ambrose and Andrew Scheer. On November 29, 2019, she was appointed as the Official Opposition Critic for Industry and Economic Development.[3] On September 8, 2020 Rempel Garner was named the Conservative Shadow Minister for Health by Conservative leader Erin O'Toole.[4]

Rempel Garner has served as the Vice-Chair for multiple Parliamentary Standing Committees including the Standing Committee on Health (October 9, 2020 to Present), Industry, Science and Technology (February 18, 2020 – August 18, 2020), and Citizenship and Immigration (September 21, 2017 – September 11, 2019).[5]

Early life and career[edit]

Rempel Garner was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She is of partial Franco-Manitoban ancestry through her father.[1] Rempel Garner completed a degree in economics at the University of Manitoba.[6] Rempel Garner helped to pay her way through school by playing as a classically-trained pianist.[1]

Prior to being elected, Rempel Garner worked as the Director of the University of Calgary's Institutional Programs Division.[7] She is credited with leading a redesign of the University's service delivery model which resulted in sponsored research funding revenues increasing from $7M in 2007 to over $100M in 2009. She had also previously worked in the technology commercialization division of the University of Manitoba.[8]

Federal politics[edit]

Rempel Garner became involved in federal politics by volunteering with the federal riding association of Diane Ablonczy,[1] and she later served as president of the Conservative Party riding executive for her riding of Calgary—Nose Hill.[9] After the resignation of Jim Prentice, Rempel was encouraged to run for his old seat of Calgary Centre-North by members of the Calgary business community and the Conservative party, but only decided to do so after talking with Rona Ambrose.[1] Rempel was acclaimed as the Conservative Party of Canada candidate in Calgary Centre-North on December 17, 2010, in anticipation of a by-election to replace Prentice.[10] The uncalled by-election was superseded by the 2011 federal election. In the 2013 federal riding redistribution, Rempel Garner's riding was split into the two ridings of Calgary Confederation and Calgary Nose Hill. Since this redistribution, Rempel Garner has run as a Conservative in Calgary Nose Hill.[11]

Following Rempel Garner's election to the House of Commons of Canada, she was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment on May 25, 2011. She received positive media coverage in late 2011 for her strong performance during Question Period, and was seen as a rising star within the Conservative caucus.[1] Rempel Garner played a role in the multi-partisan effort to create Sable Island National Park Reserve.[6] On November 21, 2012, Canadian newsmagazine Maclean's named her as one of their "Parliamentarians of the Year" in the "Rising Star" category,[12] which Rempel repeated on November 24, 2014.[13] Rempel was recognized as the MP with the 7th biggest social media influence in November 2013.[14] The 2013 Hill Times Annual Most Valuable Politician & All Politics Poll awarded Rempel 2nd place in the "Best Up-and-comer MP" category behind Justin Trudeau.[15]

Along with three other Albertan politicians, Rempel Garner is a signatory of the Buffalo Declaration, which charges that "Alberta is not ... an equal participant in confederation" and likens the relationship between Alberta and the rest of Canada to "colony, rather than equal partner." Signatories have proposed structural and policy solutions to address these issues.[16][17]

Rempel Garner has also been a vocal advocate for legal firearms ownership in Canada. In May 2020, Rempel Garner sponsored Parliamentary Petition E-2574, which aims to reverse the federal government's executive order that banned 1500 "assault style" weapons. This became the most signed e-petition in Canada's history with over 230,000 signatures.[18]

Rempel Garner was one of the co-chairs of the 2013 Conservative Party of Canada's national convention held in Calgary.[19]

Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification[edit]

On July 15, 2013, she was appointed Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification.[20] She was then the youngest female cabinet minister in Canadian history.[6]

In this role, Rempel Garner aimed to improve the delivery and efficiency of the department's services by focusing its attention on commercializing technology in emerging sectors such as green energy.[21] To this end, she oversaw a series of investments that aimed to "accelerate technology development and performance validation, as well as the commercialization of key instruments associated with the underground storage of carbon dioxide (CO2)."[22] Such projects aim to further Canada's international climate change efforts and help keep the Canadian energy sector competitive.[22][23] These investments have included WINN, a $100 million five-year initiative that offered repayable contributions for small and medium-sized enterprises with operations in Western Canada, especially in emerging sectors such as clean energy,[24] as well as the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure program, which saw $150 million delivered to communities across Canada for critical and legacy infrastructure projects.[25]

During her time as the Minister of State, Rempel Garner also highlighted the importance and growing international demand for British Columbia's wine industry with strategic investments for the industry in partnership with UBC Okanagan.[26]

In opposition[edit]

On November 20, 2015, Rempel Garner was appointed the Official Opposition Critic for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.[27] In this role, she was an advocate for human rights and advocated for the protection of ethnic minorities, including the Yazidis.[28] In 2016, a motion put forward by Rempel Garner, which acknowledged the genocide of the Yazidis and called on the government to expedite the processing of Yazidi refugees coming to Canada, passed unanimously.[29] Rempel Garner also sponsored Parliamentary Petition E-1310 during this time, which petitioned the government to explicitly condemn the practice of female genital mutilation in its guide for new citizens.[30] Rempel Garner tabled a bill amending Canada's bestiality laws in December 2017, which stalled at first reading. Approximately a year later, a government bill addressing the same concerns was tabled by Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould.[31]

From November 2019, Rempel Garner served as Conservative Shadow Minister for Industry and Economic Development. In this role, she has advocated for policies that would compel companies to be more transparent on their data collection practices.[32] With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Rempel Garner called for greater oversight and transparency from the federal government on state-sponsored cell phone contact tracing applications, calling for express consent and strict limits on data collection.[33]

As Critic for Innovation and Economic Development, Rempel Garner also supported potential legislative solutions to address the lack of reliable internet access in Canada, which is a barrier to equality of opportunity and economic growth for many Canadians.[34] To this end, in May 2020, Rempel Garner launched the Conservative Party's ‘Connect Canada’ consultation initiative for action on rural internet access. The initiative delivered a report outlining policy proposals that would aim for all Canadians to have access to affordable and reliable internet by the year 2021.[35]

In June 2020, Rempel Garner passed a motion with support from other opposition parties to have the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology study the effects of foreign takeovers and the Investment Canada Act.[36]

In September 2020, Rempel Garner was appointed Shadow Minister for Health by Erin O'Toole.[37]


In 2018, The Canadian Press ranked one of Rempel Garner's news releases as containing "a lot of baloney" on its "baloney meter", which it describes as "a project ... that examines the level of accuracy in statements made by politicians". This was in reference to claims that Canada was facing a "crisis" in regards to migrant accommodation.[38] Rempel Garner responded to this allegation by alleging that the news organization was working as a "spin tool" for the Prime Minister's Office.[39] Later, an independent journalist criticized the response.[40]

In 2020, Rempel Garner made headlines for working from Oklahoma as a sitting Canadian MP during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following news reports, Rempel Garner indicated she had left Canada for an “unexpected and urgent private personal matter”.[41] The National Post reported in August 2020 that since the pandemic began in March, "there has been no indication that the Conservative MP had returned to Canada."[42]

Rempel Garner has been accused of blocking users on Twitter. The hashtag #BlockedByRempel trended on Twitter with replies from Canadians who alleged that they had been blocked by Rempel Garner.[43] She claims to have been a victim of gendered social media abuse and to have received threats of violence in her role as a female Parliamentarian.[44] Rempel Garner won a court case against a Toronto area man who threatened her with violence over social media.[37] In 2018, APTN national news reported that Rempel blocked an Indigenous youth representative on Twitter, and the report asked whether "this move sets a 'dangerous precedent' for politicians facing criticism online."[45] The Toronto Star revealed that "it only took Rempel about five minutes to block his Twitter account after he turned to social media to critique her stance on immigration."[46] "It’s not the fact that she blocked me personally that’s upsetting me,” the deputy youth leader said. “It’s the fact that this is an elected member of Parliament. She’s a Canadian politician and she’s taking these kinds of steps to block out this kind of information from Canadian citizens.”[47]


In 2010, Rempel Garner was named one of Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women in the "Future Leaders" category by the Women's Executive Network.[48] In November 2014 Rempel was named one of Calgary's Top 40 Under 40 by Avenue magazine.[6] In 2016, Rempel was selected as one of the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders.[49] Rempel Garner was named one of "Alberta's 50 Most Influential People of 2016" by Alberta Venture Magazine, citing her "strong debate performances in the House of Commons" and "her fierce support of women in politics".[50] In 2018, Rempel was ranked third on the list of "Most Valuable Politicians" by The Hill Times.[51]

Electoral record[edit]

2019 Canadian federal election: Calgary Nose Hill
Party Candidate Votes % ±% Expenditures
Conservative Michelle Rempel 38,588 69.8 +9.76
Liberal Josephine Tsang 8,703 15.7 -11.19
New Democratic Patrick King 5,304 9.6 +0.74
Green Jocelyn Grossé 1,554 2.8 +0.26
People's Kelly Lorencz 1,089 2.0 -
Independent Peggy Askin 71 0.1 -
Total valid votes/Expense limit 55,309 100.0
Total rejected ballots 262
Turnout 55,571 66.9
Eligible voters 83,064
Conservative hold Swing +10.48
Source: Elections Canada[52][53]
2015 Canadian federal election: Calgary Nose Hill
Party Candidate Votes % ±% Expenditures
Conservative Michelle Rempel 32,760 60.04 –9.25 $106,493.93
Liberal Robert Prcic 14,671 26.89 +15.84 $4,646.34
New Democratic Bruce Kaufman 4,836 8.86 –3.92 $17,607.32
Green Laurie Scheer 1,384 2.54 –4.21 $2,630.75
Libertarian Edward Gao 727 1.33 $1,101.19
Democratic Advancement Faizan Butt 184 0.34
Total valid votes/Expense limit 54,562 100.00   $217,293.27
Total rejected ballots 255 0.47
Turnout 54,817 67.19
Eligible voters 81,582
Conservative hold Swing –12.54
Source: Elections Canada[54][55]
2011 Canadian federal election: Calgary Centre-North
Party Candidate Votes % ±% Expenditures
Conservative Michelle Rempel 28,443 56.53 0.00 $82,363.77
New Democratic Paul Vargis 8,048 15.99 +0.67 $15,914.50
Liberal Stephen Randall 7,046 14.00 +2.23 $55,742.32
Green Heather MacIntosh 6,578 13.07 −2.22 $42,457.33
Marxist–Leninist Peggy Askin 203 0.40 +0.02 $0.00
Total valid votes/Expense limit 50,318 100.00   $
Total rejected ballots 200 0.40
Turnout 50,518 60.55
Eligible voters 83,431


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Confident rookie MP one of a new breed of Tory women". The Globe and Mail. 9 December 2011. Retrieved 2015-12-20.
  2. ^ "Michelle Rempel elected in Calgary Centre-North; Harper re-elected". Global Calgary. 2 May 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  3. ^ "Tories release list of 'shadow cabinet' members". iPolitics. 29 November 2019. Retrieved 2019-11-29.
  4. ^ "O'Toole names shadow cabinet with Rempel Garner, Poilievre and Stubbs in key pandemic positions members". National Post. 8 September 2019. Retrieved 2020-12-01.
  5. ^ "ROLES - HON. MICHELLE REMPEL GARNER". House of Commons. 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  6. ^ a b c d "Michelle Rempel: Avenue Calgary's 2014 Top 40 Under 40". Avenue Calgary. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  7. ^ Ottawa Citizen. "Michelle Rempel". Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  8. ^ Financial Post. "WXN'S 2010 AWARD WINNERS". Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  9. ^ "About Michelle". Michellerempel.ca. Archived from the original on 20 January 2013. Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  10. ^ Schneider, Katie (17 December 2010). "Tory hopeful nominated to replace Prentice". Calgary Sun. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
  11. ^ "MPs face nomination battles, redrawn ridings in lead-up to 2015". 25 January 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  12. ^ "Parliamentarians of the Year 2012 — Michelle Rempel, rising star". Maclean's Magazine. 21 November 2012. Retrieved 29 November 2012.
  13. ^ "Parliamentarians of the Year 2014 — Michelle Rempel, rising star". Maclean's Magazine. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
  14. ^ "Twitter on the Hill: Jason Kenney, Paul Wells the top influencers so far". 20 November 2013. Archived from the original on 29 November 2014. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  15. ^ "National News: Elizabeth May named one of Canada's Top 3 Most Valuable MPs for 2013". Northumberland View. 16 December 2013. Retrieved 28 December 2012.
  16. ^ "-The Buffalo Declaration". The Buffalo Declaration. 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  17. ^ "Alberta MPs issue Buffalo Declaration to call on Ottawa to address western alienation". 21 February 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  18. ^ "Conservative MP Rempel Garner's petition against federal firearm ban closes with more than 230,000 signatures". 7 September 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  19. ^ "Tory convention energizes Conservative core for 2015 campaign". Calgary Sun. 2 November 2013. Retrieved 4 March 2015.
  20. ^ "The Honourable Michelle Rempel". Archived from the original on 2013-10-02.
  21. ^ "2013-14 Departmental Performance Report". 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  22. ^ a b "Harper Government Supports New CO2 Field Research Station to Promote the Advancement of Carbon Capture and Storage Technology". 12 February 2015. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  23. ^ "FEDERAL GOVERNMENT INVESTS $4.9 MILLION IN FIELD RESEARCH STATION". 12 February 2015. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  24. ^ "Harper Government Announces New Initiative to Support Technology Commercialization and Business Growth in the West".
  25. ^ "The Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program is launched in Western Canada". 19 May 2015. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  26. ^ "Why everybody loves Kelowna". 28 July 2015. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  27. ^ "Interim Conservative Leader Rona Ambrose taps women for top shadow cabinet jobs". 20 November 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  28. ^ "michelle-rempel-to-speak-at-conservative-riding-association-event-in-vernon". Vernon Morning Star. February 20, 2018. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  29. ^ "When genocide became a political prop in Ottawa". iPolitics. November 13, 2017. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  30. ^ "New citizenship guide to warn against 'abhorrent' practice of female genital mutilation". 25 January 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  31. ^ Aiello, Rachel (October 18, 2018). "Feds to ban all forms of bestiality, crack down on animal fighting". CTV News. Retrieved October 18, 2018.
  32. ^ "Data wars: Why technology advocates believe privacy regulations need serious reform". 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  33. ^ "Data wars: MP Rempel Garner Calls for Oversight of Cell Phone Tracking". 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  34. ^ "Canadians without reliable internet access being left behind, experts warn". 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  35. ^ "Conservative MP Michelle Rempel launches call to action for rural internet access". 18 November 2020. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  36. ^ "FUREY: Foreign takeovers study a good step for Canada's China file". 2 June 2020. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  37. ^ a b Csanady, Ashley (29 January 2016). "The Twitter trial you never heard about: Toronto man found guilty of harassing Michelle Rempel". The National Post.
  38. ^ Bryden, Joan (16 August 2018). "Baloney Meter: Is flow of asylum seekers at Canada-U.S. border a 'crisis'?". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. The Canadian Press.
  39. ^ Desmarais, Anna (16 August 2018). "Rempel accuses Liberals of "deploying" experts in Canadian Press article". iPolitics. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  40. ^ Klaszus, Jeremy (16 August 2018). "What's happened to Michelle Rempel?". Sprawl Media.
  41. ^ Boutilier, Alex (28 April 2020). "Conservative MP Michelle Rempel Garner working from Oklahoma during pandemic". The Toronto Star.
  42. ^ "MP Michelle Rempel Garner assures she went 'above and beyond' quarantine obligations since return to Canada from U.S." National Post.
  43. ^ Laderas, Crystal (18 December 2019). "Should politicians block you on social media?". 660 City News.
  44. ^ Horgan, Colin (15 February 2013). "'This is not acceptable': Michelle Rempel takes aim at sexist trolls". iPolitics.
  45. ^ "'Dangerous precedent': Conservative MP Michelle Rempel blocks Indigenous youth on Twitter". APTN National News. Retrieved 10 December 2020.
  46. ^ "An Indigenous youth leader says Michelle Rempel blocked him on Twitter after he disagreed with her". Toronto Star. Retrieved 10 December 2020.
  47. ^ ""It's not the fact that she blocked me personally that's upsetting me," Copegog said. "It's the fact that this is an elected member of Parliament. She's a Canadian politician and she's taking these kinds of steps to block out this kind of information from Canadian citizens."". Toronto Star. Retrieved 10 December 2020.
  48. ^ Women's Executive Network. "Previous Winners — Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women". Retrieved 12 October 2012.
  49. ^ World Economic Forum. "Young Global Leaders Class of 2016". Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  50. ^ "MP Michelle Rempel has brought the issue of "everyday sexism" into the national political conversation". Alberta Venture. 4 July 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2016.
  51. ^ "Freeland named most valuable politician, NAFTA voted biggest story in The Hill Times' 22nd Annual All Politics Poll". The Hill Times. 17 December 2018. Retrieved 17 December 2018.
  52. ^ "List of confirmed candidates". Elections Canada. Retrieved October 4, 2019.
  53. ^ "Election Night Results". Elections Canada. Retrieved November 7, 2019.
  54. ^ "October 19, 2015 Election Results — Calgary Nose Hill (Validated results)". Elections Canada. 21 October 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  55. ^ Elections Canada – Preliminary Election Expenses Limits for Candidates Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]