The Edmonton Sun, Saturday, March 19, 2005
What goes around comes around, says former Progressive Conservative David
By Ajay Bhardwaj
Orchard, who twice ran for the leadership of the Progressive Conservative
party, had a deal with MP Peter MacKay to prevent the merger of the PCs and the
Canadian Alliance in 2003. The deal fell apart when MacKay agreed to merge the
A furious MacKay lashed out Thursday at Ottawa-area
MP Scott Reid for bringing forward a constitutional
amendment that would give larger ridings more delegates
than smaller ridings at conventions. The idea was a
deal-breaker when the parties were discussing merging.
"I fought to keep all along the Progressive
Conservative party of Canada and build it up," said
Orchard from Montreal, where he was refused entry as a
member-observer in the Conservative party meeting.
"I ran on that platform. I stuck with it. I signed an
agreement with him, shook hands with him, looked him in
the eye and he said 'you won't have to worry about me
reneging on this.' Then he went ahead and the rest is
"I think what happened was they broke an agreement.
They broke a pledge that he had made to the membership
and maybe some of that is coming back to haunt him. I
But Edmonton-Leduc MP James Rajotte said while MacKay
and Orchard had an agreement in principle, party members
were free to amend the constitution and policies.
"I think what Peter did was for the good of the
country, (because of) the fact that we needed to merge
these two parties in order to provide a real alternative
for Canadians," Rajotte said.