Caroline Mulroney poised to plunge into Ontario politics

After publicly hinting at the federal Conservative leadership convention last weekend that she was ready to jump into politics, Caroline Mulroney appears poised to seek a nomination to run for Patrick Brown's Ontario PCs.

Businesswoman and daughter of former prime minister ​eyes PC nomination in Toronto-area riding

Caroline Mulroney, the daughter of one of Canada's longest-serving Conservative prime ministers, is expected to try to run as a candidate for Ontario's Progressive Conservatives. (CBC News)

Move over, Trudeaus. There's another Canadian political family working on its dynasty.

CBC News has learned Brian Mulroney's eldest child, Caroline, is poised to jump into the political arena.

Sources tell CBC News that Mulroney wants to run for the Ontario Progressive Conservatives in the next election and is hoping to secure a party nomination in the Greater Toronto Area. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss Mulroney's plans.

Mulroney attracted attention last weekend when she appeared as one of the masters of ceremonies at the federal Conservative leadership convention. During her speech to introduce the candidates, she poked fun at the current prime minister, wondering aloud why someone would want to run for their dad's old job.

However, she also told CBC News that she was open to entering the political arena herself.

"I think politics is definitely something that I've always thought about as a career," she said. "And what I've learned from watching my father and so many of our friends participate in it, it's all about timing and opportunity and getting all those things right."

Brian Mulroney's daughter talks about running for the Conservatives with CBC's Catherine Cullen 2:03

It seems the timing will be right relatively soon.

Brown's PCs are polling well ahead of Premier Kathleen Wynne's Liberals, about a year out from the June 2018 Ontario election. Wynne's personal approval rating is especially low, but Wynne's supporters have indicated she plans to stick around for the campaign.

More than a name?

Mulroney is a lawyer and partner at BloombergSen, an investment counselling firm. She studied at Harvard College and New York University and co-founded the Shoebox Project for Shelters, which distributes a shoebox of gifts at Christmastime to women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Her Twitter bio describes her as "personal assistant to 4 busy kids."

At the Conservative convention, Mulroney talked about what she thought would make her a good political candidate.

"I've travelled a lot across this country because of my father's job — I've had that experience. I've been able to meet a diverse group of Canadians, so I would bring that to it," Mulroney said. "I'm somebody who's been working my whole life. I've got a career in law and in finance. I've worked in the non-profit world starting a charity. I'm a mother raising four children."

After the 2015 election, some reports speculated that Mulroney might run for leader of the federal Conservative Party, hoping to go head-to-head with Justin Trudeau in 2019. However, the suppositions of anonymous "Tory insiders" did not pan out.

When asked Friday, Mulroney declined to comment on a provincial run.

About the Author

Catherine Cullen

Parliamentary Bureau

Catherine Cullen is a senior reporter covering politics and Parliament Hill in Ottawa.

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