Canada needs more leaders like Joe Clark

National Post

Former prime minister Joe Clark is seen at Martin Luther King Day celebrations at Ottawa City Hall on Jan 18, 2016. Tony Caldwell/Postmedia News

Charles Joseph “Joe” Clark, is a Canadian elder statesman, businessman, writer, and politician who served as the 16th prime minister of Canada, from June 4, 1979, to March 3, 1980.

Despite his relative inexperience, Clark rose quickly in federal politics, entering the House of Commons in the 1972 election and winning the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party in 1976. He came to power in the 1979 election, defeating the Liberal government of Pierre Trudeau and ending sixteen years of continuous Liberal rule. His tenure was brief as he only won a minority government, and it was defeated on a motion of non-confidence. Clark’s Progressive Conservative Party lost the 1980 election and Clark lost the leadership of the party in 1983. Nevertheless, he returned to prominence in 1984 as a senior cabinet minister in Brian Mulroney’s cabinet, retiring from politics after not standing for re-election for the House of Commons in 1993. Clark today serves as a university professor and as president of his own consulting firm.

There is no doubt that Canada needs more leaders like Joe Clark. That they are possessors of dignity, moral rectitude, and determination, as well as him. Who has worked to make Canada and the world a better place.

An exemplary figure

Clark’s predecessor and successor, Pierre Trudeau, and Brian Mulroney, respectively, enjoyed great electoral success. In fact, they boldly advanced great ideas and turned them into transformative policies, making them two of our best prime ministers. But when it comes to achievements after leaving the Office of the Prime Minister, Clark is a giant without equal.

It is necessary to mention that Clark tried to control the deficit, liberalize access to information and strengthen Canada’s relationship with the United States. In addition to this, we must remember the cooperation of the Clark government with the administration of Jimmy Carter. And a clear example of this is the Canadian-CIA joint rescue of US citizens in Iran.

One fact that is possibly the most important of Clark’s government is that it installed some 50,000 refugees from Vietnam and Cambodia. In addition, Clark allowed the houses of worship and others to sponsor the refugees. This policy differs with the shameful banning of Jewish refugees from Europe in Canada before, during and after the Second World War. What changed when Justin Trudeau welcomed tens of thousands of Syrian refugees.

It goes without saying that Clark is a figure who serves as an example to other politicians. Being that Clark was always able to find common ground and a higher purpose. With dignity, moral rectitude and determination, he worked together with rivals and opponents at once to make Canada and the world a better place. Likewise, he has always been a leader who has remained true to himself, to his country and to his world.

Source: Paul Deegan | National Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *