The Current

John Ibbitson: Stephen Harper changed Canada in irreversible ways

Stephen Harper worked for most of his adult life to govern with a majority and change Canada. Now, a new book about the Prime Minister suggests he has reshaped the country in irreversible ways. With Harper's attempt at a fourth election victory weeks away, we look at the politician and the man.
"A lion in autumn, weaker than in his prime, but still a force of nature," says Globe writer John Ibbitson of Stephen Harper in his new book. (The Canadian Press/Sean Kilpatrick)

"There has never been a Prime Minister as utterly contemptuous of people outside his voting coalition as Stephen Harper."- From John Ibbitson's biography on Stephen Harper

Questions about the Senate expense scandal aren't going away, no matter where Stephen Harper is on the campaign trail. 

The election is still weeks away and it's hard to say if the scandal will affect the way Canadians vote. But according to Globe writer John Ibbitson, the election results are moot... at least when it comes Stephen Harper's legacy.

"Harper would never forget the Liberal tactics.And he learned a lesson: the best way to protect yourself against a low blow is to land your own first."-  John Ibbitson on the 2000 Liberal campaign, from Stephen Harper biography

Today we hear about a new biography that details how Mr. Harper has re-shaped Canada in irreversible ways during his near decade in power -- from the size of the federal government's footprint at home to its imprint on the world stage.

John Ibbitson is writer-at-large for The Globe and Mail and author of a new biography about the Conservative Leader titled simply, "Stephen Harper." He joined us from Ottawa.

"It remains an unalterable fact that the face of the Harper government is Stephen Harper's face.That face is stern and cold.It is also intelligent and perceptive.Yes, it can be cruel, but I do not believe that Stephen Harper is at his core, a cruel man.Just a very tough one.- John Ibbitson, from Stephen Harper biography

Do you think Stephen Harper has changed Canada in irreversible ways? And if so... do you like the changes you see?

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This segment was produced by The Current's Idella Sturino.