Jean Chrétien's last day in the House of Commons
Liberal prime minister from 1993 to 2003 steps away after 40 years in the political game
He'd said goodbye to politics before, but this time it was for real.
Jean Chrétien, then in his third mandate as prime minister, was going to be leaving the House of Commons for good.
On Nov. 6, 2003, his parliamentary colleagues paid tribute to Chrétien's long career in politics, which had begun four decades before.
Over the years, Chrétien had held many key governmental positions — including serving as the deputy prime minister under John Turner — before ascending to the Prime Minister's Office during his final decade as an MP.
Chosen Liberal leader in 1990, Chrétien led his party to the polls on three occasions, winning majorities each time in 1993, 1997 and 2000.
Joe Clark, the former prime minister, alluded to that track record of electoral success when paying tribute to Chrétien on his last day in the House.
"You will know that in our most recent skirmishes, I won some debating points and he won another general election," he told the Commons, in a clip that can be viewed below.
When Chrétien addressed the House himself, he said he would miss the friends he had made in politics.
He called on his fellow MPs to uphold the dignity of Parliament.
"We have to respect each other," he said.