MEDIA RELEASE, March 20, 2005
CONSERVATIVE PARTY STILL HOLDING ON TO DAVID
ORCHARD’S LEADERSHIP CAMPAIGN DONATIONS — SIXTEEN MONTHS
The legal contract that David Orchard signed with the
Progressive Conservative Party of Canada (now
Conservative Party) when he entered the leadership race
in January '03, included the proviso that all campaign
donations sent to the party headquarters for processing
(to give donors a tax credit receipt) would be returned
to the candidate within 2 business days. He was also
guaranteed a return of his refundable deposit of
$15,000, as long as he fulfilled all his obligations,
which he did before the end of 2003.
In December 2003, David Orchard Campaign submitted to
the party over $50,000 in donations sent to him to help
pay his campaign debts. This amount has never been
returned to him, and neither has his $15,000 deposit.
When it was clear that the funds were being withheld
by the Conservative Party without cause or due process,
Orchard launched a lawsuit in late February '04 to
regain what belonged to him. (See documents related to
the case on
The Conservative Party offered a settlement on
December 17, '04 which David Orchard accepted, fully
expecting to have his funds returned to him promptly.
This, however, has not happened because the Conservative
Party insists on a release that has nothing to do with
the donations and apparently everything to do with the
Conservative Party wanting to punish David Orchard
further for opposing the so-called merger and trying to
protect the name of the Progressive Conservative Party.
(Legal documents on
The Conservatives are asking the court to force
Orchard to agree to their extraordinarily broad
conditions of release, and Orchard's lawyer will argue
that the party must abide by its offer of returning the
funds (with interest and legal costs) and accept a
release pertaining to the case only.
For more information, contact Marjaleena Repo, tel: