|Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Winnipeg Centre
|Preceded by||David Walker|
|Chair of the Standing Committee on
Government Operations & Estimates
5 February 2015
|Preceded by||Pierre-Luc Dusseault|
9 June 2011 – 24 October 2013
|Preceded by||John McKay|
|Succeeded by||Pierre-Luc Dusseault|
December 13, 1955 |
|Political party||New Democratic Party|
|Profession||carpenter, trade unionist|
Patrick D. "Pat" Martin (born December 13, 1955 in Winnipeg, Manitoba) is a Canadian politician. He has been a member of the House of Commons of Canada since 1997, representing the riding of Winnipeg Centre for the New Democratic Party. He is currently the Opposition critic for Public Works and Government Services Canada.
Martin graduated from Argyle High School in 1974. He worked as a journeyman carpenter for several years, and was employed in forest service, mines and construction. Martin also served as business manager of the Manitoba Carpenters Union from 1989 to 1997, and was vice-president of the Manitoba Federation of Labour for a time. He has been a member of the executive of the Manitoba Building Trades Council, and was part of the Winnipeg 2000 Economic Development Committee.
Martin was first elected to the Canadian House of Commons in the 1997 federal election, defeating Liberal incumbent David Walker by a margin of 10,979 votes to 9,895. His riding of Winnipeg Centre, formerly known as Winnipeg North Centre, was successively represented from 1921 to 1984 by J. S. Woodsworth and Stanley Knowles, two of the most prominent social democratic politicians in Canadian history. Martin's victory over Walker returned the riding to the NDP for the first time since 1988. Martin was re-elected in the 2000 federal election, defeating Liberal Kevin Lamoureux by 11,263 votes to 9,310. He increased his margin of victory in the 2004 election, defeating Liberal candidate David Northcott by about 3,000 votes.
Martin is an outspoken critic of the monarchy of Canada, both in parliament and in the media, citing the marriage of the Prince of Wales to the Duchess of Cornwall as a reason to abolish the monarchy.
In his book, Speaking Out Louder: Ideas That Work For Canadians, Jack Layton, then the Leader of the NDP, thanked Martin and his wife for loaning their Saltspring Island farmhouse for secluded writing."
When Liberal leadership candidate Joe Volpe received donations totalling $108,000 from Apotex executives and their wives and children, Martin suggested that these donations had the appearance of fraud. He filed an official complaint on May 29, asking elections commissioner Raymond Landry to investigate whether an attempt had been made to circumvent the Elections Act which banned corporate donations. Volpe responded by promising to return any donations that contravened the letter or spirit of the law.
In June 2008, Martin introduced a motion into the House of Commons calling on the government to amend the coat of arms to incorporate symbols representing Canada's First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.
Martin has introduced a private member's bill, C-248, in Parliament to exonerate Louis Riel  On May 5, 2011 at the Royal Ontario Museum Martin debated Tom Flanagan on the topic "Louis Riel deserved to Hang". In a National Post article he argued that Riel was a hero, not a traitor and, in reference to George R. D. Goulet's 1999 book on Riel, that Riel's execution was a "case of both justice and mercy denied".
On February 5 of 2015, Martin stated that he would file a lawsuit against anyone who claimed he lived in Salt Spring Island. "They're going to get their asses sued," said Martin adding "I know a thing or two about libel," referring to his issue with a defamation suit, which he settled for an undisclosed sum with an Edmonton telemarketer. Martin owns a hobby farm on Salt Spring Island that be bought with his former wife and currently resides in Osborne Village in the riding of Winnipeg South Centre. When asked about a Salt Spring community event calendar from the local NDP association inviting people to "Come by and hear an Ottawa update from Salt Spring's unoffical [sic] MP Pat Martin," by Winnipeg Free Press journalist Mia Rabson, Martin stated that the Riding Association President "was being funny by calling him that."
Youth For Christ
In 2010, while Youth For Christ was in the development stages of building a youth centre at the corner of Higgins and Main that would include a multi-sport gym, dance studio, fitness centre, skate-and-BMX park, drop-in centre, theatre, classroom, counselling facilities and a job-training centre, Martin stated that the social-service organization were "evangelical fundamentalists" who were "preying on vulnerable kids"  and that the organization "offering much-needed sports opportunities is just their way of luring in young prospects."  Martin also stated that the Federal government and City of Winnipeg providing funding to the inner city development equated to "taxpayer-funded proselytization."  An article by the Winnipeg Free Press Editorial Board stated that if "the MP believes [Youth For Christ] should not receive any taxpayer money because he faithfully believes the organization is trying to convert "vulnerable, impressionable kids" to fundamentalist Christian views. If the good parliamentarian has any evidence to support his allegations, he should produce it immediately, or withdraw his comments."  One week after criticising the organization and facing mounting criticism, Martin said he supported the development at Higgins and Main by stating that "Anything happening in the inner city is better than nothing." 
On November 17, 2011, Martin was criticized for using profane language on his Twitter account expressing anger over the Conservative government's use of closure in limiting debate in the House of Commons tweeting: "This is a fucking disgrace" and "There’s not a democracy in the world that would tolerate this jackboot shit." He also used profane language to criticize those on Twitter that had challenged his use of profanity tweeting "Fuck you" to one twitter user. Martin refused to apologize. On December 20, 2012, Pat Martin tweeted: I'm not 'worked up' so much as 'fed up' with the rat faced whores in the [Conservative Party of Canada] who neglect to invite me to ancemnts [sic] in my riding" and "Look...Given the parliamentary session we've just endured, the term 'rat faced whores' is using a great deal of restraint…" after not receiving an invitation to an event in his riding.
After a heated exchange, Martin swore off Twitter and tweeted "I apologize for my regrettable and inappropriate language", and "It seems some people shouldn’t tweet so with this, I sign off."  An NDP spokesperson confirmed Martin’s decision stating "these comments were simply inappropriate and unacceptable," and that "Mr. Martin agrees and we understand that he has decided to stop using his Twitter account." 
Defamation lawsuit and donations
Upon revelations about the robocall scandal in February, Martin publicly accused Racknine of being behind the automated calls that saw voters misdirected to non-existent polling locations during the May 2011 federal election. Racknine filed a defamation lawsuit for $5 million in damages. Martin ended up settling the defamation lawsuit against him and publically apologized and stated that RackNine was "merely an innocent intermediary not a participant in electoral fraud". Due to the costs awarded to Racknine, Martin received a loan from the NDP and accepted donations from unions to help fund his defamation suit and pay for the settlement. Documents filed with the federal ethics commissioner showed Martin accepted contributions to a legal defence fund from the Canadian Labour Congress, the United Steelworkers and the Canadian Union of Public Employees, and 14 other unions or locals.
Duff Conacher, founder of Democracy Watch, asked Martin to disclose the exact amount each of the two dozen organizations has donated to the trust fund set up to pay off his legal bill. "You're not allowed to be in the appearance of a conflict of interest, even if the gift does not change your mind from what you already believed. You can't have it. If you have that, you don't have democracy. You have a system of where the dollar wins and that's not democracy," said Conacher  Martin said it would be "ludicrous" to think the donations would influence his position on labour issues saying that "If anybody thinks I could become more friendly to trade unions, then they don’t know me very well," adding "I’m a socialist and trade unionist and former head of the carpenters’ union in Manitoba."  In two instances, the ethics commissioner directed Martin to return more than $20,000 involving donations from two unions that he had dealings with as an MP.
Underwear comments in House of Commons
After standing in the House of Commons during a procedural vote, which is against protocol, Martin said that his tight underwear required him to stand. The comments trended across twitter and made international headlines including CNN’s Ridiculist. Martin later admitted that the story was fabricated.
|Canadian federal election, 2011|
|New Democratic||Pat Martin||13,928||53.66%||+4.74%|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||25,955||100.00%|
|Total rejected ballots||248||0.95%|
|Canadian federal election, 2008|
|New Democratic||Pat Martin||12,285||48.9%||+0.5%||$42,608|
|First Peoples National||Lyle Morrisseau||212||0.8%||--|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||25,113||100.0%||$77,206|
|Canadian federal election, 2006|
|New Democratic||Pat Martin||13,805||48.4%||+3.02%||$58,778|
|Liberal||Ray St. Germain||6,940||24.3%||-10.38%||$27,375|
|Total valid votes||28,508||100.00%|
|Total rejected ballots||231|
|Canadian federal election, 2004|
|New Democratic||Pat Martin||12,149||45.38%||$51,914|
|Green||Robin (Pilar) Faye||1,151||4.29%||$2,087|
|Marijuana||John M. Siedleski||346||1.29%|
|Independent||Douglas Edward Schweitzer||92||0.34%|
|Total valid votes||26,768||100.00%|
|Total rejected ballots||188||0.70%|
|Canadian federal election, 2000: Winnipeg Centre|
|New Democratic||Pat Martin||11,263||41.26||$55,756.93|
|Progressive Conservative||Michel Allard||1,915||7.02||$1,460.02|
|Total valid votes||27,295||100.00|
|Total rejected ballots||236|
|Electors on the lists||52,383|
|Sources: Official Results, Elections Canada and Financial Returns, Elections Canada.|
|Canadian federal election, 1997|
|New Democratic||Pat Martin||10,979||40.9%|
|Reform||Reginald A. Smith||3,095||11.5%|
|Progressive Conservative||Campbell Alexander||2,442||9.1%|
|Total valid votes||26,847||100.0%|
- "Canada Votes 2008 - Winnipeg Centre - Candidate Profiles". CBC News. 2008. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- "Bill Blaikie deserves our support" (fee required). Globe and Mail (Toronto). December 13, 2002. section A, p. 25. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- Friscolanti, Michael (April 18, 2002). "NDP MPs say Robinson must be demoted: Manitoba premier agrees". National Post (Toronto). section A, p. 12.
- MacCharles, Tonda (February 11, 2005). "Cheers, jeers in Ottawa greet marriage plan". Toronto Star. section A, p. 6.
- Bryden, Joan (May 31, 2006). "Volpe vows to return donations if they violate spirit of law". Canadian Press.
Martin initially accused Volpe of deliberately orchestrating fraudulent donations, but withdrew these comments after he was threatened with a libel suit.
- "Coat of arms ignores aboriginal people, MP says". CBC News. May 22, 2014. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- "Private Member's Bill C-248 (40th Parliament, 3rd Session)". LEGISinfo. Parliament of Canada. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- Rabson, Mia (November 17, 2010). "'Riel was a hero, not a traitor'". Winnipeg Free Press. section A, p. 6. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- "Louis Riel 'murdered by the Crown,' MP says". CTV. November 17, 2009. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- Taber, Jane (November 16, 2010). "Correcting the record on Louis Riel and separatist coalitions". The Globe and Mail (Toronto). Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- "History Wars at the ROM: Four Debates on Canada's History". Cvltvre. Retrieved May 8, 2011.
- Martin, Pat (May 6, 2011). "A hero, not a traitor". National Post (Toronto). Retrieved May 8, 2011.