Ex-Ontario PC leader Patrick Brown writing a book about his political 'assassination'

Patrick Brown says he sees himself as the victim of a wicked plot to end his political career — and he intends to shed light on the circumstances behind it in a new book.

Brown promises a story of 'betrayal, blackmail and backroom politicking'

Patrick Brown says he intends to use his forthcoming book to uncover the "political assassination" plot he blames for forcing him to step down from the leadership of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives. (Aaron Vincent Elkaim/Canadian Press)

Patrick Brown says he sees himself as the victim of a wicked plot to kill his political career — and he intends to shed light on the circumstances behind it in a new book.

His book — Take Down: The Political Assassination of Patrick Brown — is scheduled for release Nov 1.

Brown was the leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives until CTV News reported that two women were accusing him of sexual misconduct.

Within hours of the report becoming public in late January, many of Brown's closest advisers resigned and MPPs encouraged him to quit. At an emotional news conference, Brown denied the reports and vowed to stay on and fight the allegations.

Just hours later, he announced he would resign.

The cover of Patrick Brown's pending book about the end of his career as Ontario PC leader. (Optimum Publishing International)

In April, Brown filed an $8 million statement of claim against CTV, which has said it stands by the original report.

In announcing the book, Optimum Publishing International released a quote from Brown, who said that until the sexual misconduct allegations erupted he was poised to become Ontario's next premier.

"I was all but assassinated in public. Who did it, how and why?" Brown writes.

"This is a story of betrayal, blackmail and backroom politicking involving some of Canada's biggest political names. This was my dream, this was my nightmare." 

"Fundamentally, it's an opportunity for Patrick to tell his story and from his perspective, and to let people make their own decisions as to what went on and why it went on," said the book's publisher, Dean Baxendale.

Baxendale, who himself made a failed attempt to run as a PC candidate in Don Valley West, said he believes Brown brought about fundamental change in the party in the areas of fundraising, inclusiveness and policy.

"I think some people may well have taken from that that there was too much change within the Progressive Conservative movement in Ontario," he said.

Baxendale said he couldn't say who those people might be.

'No further comment'

Brown has faced other challenges since stepping down. A unanimous decision by his party's nominations committee barred him from running as a PC candidate. Ontario's Integrity Commissioner ruled Brown had broken the legislature's ethics rules by failing to disclose both rental income from his home and a loan from a would-be PC candidate.

At one point Brown actually jumped into the race to replace himself as PC leader, but quit the race after just 11 days, saying he wanted to focus on fighting CTV News and protecting his friends and family from rumour and innuendo.

Brown is expected to do media interviews and tour in support of the book when it is released in the fall, though Baxendale said he doesn't want to say more about the book right now to avoid interfering with Ontario's current provincial election. Ontarians go to the polls June 7.

The release is only being announced now, he said, to coincide with the sale cycle for the fall book season.

"We have no interest in creating any impact on the Ontario election and there will be no further comment until after the Ontario election."

Baxendale has carved out a niche publishing political books by prominent Conservatives; he was slated to release federal Conservative MP and former party leadership candidate Maxime Bernier's political opus Doing Politics Differently: My Vision for Canada. Bernier announced he was postponing publication indefinitely after an excerpt from the book proved controversial.


Catherine Cullen

Senior reporter

Catherine Cullen is host of CBC Radio's The House and a Senior Reporter on Parliament Hill.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?