The Unite the Right Movement and the Brokerage of Social Conservative Voices Within the New Conservative Party of Canada

Laura Devaney

Abstract


2003 marked a year of significant change in the political landscape, particularly for the Canadian right. After ten years of division, the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada (PCs) and the Canadian Alliance united to create the Conservative Party of Canada. This union required a balancing of the interests of both of its founding parties who, on certain issues, espoused very different views. One important example of this was social conservatism. In this paper, the author examines the new party’s attempt to balance the two parties’ differing opinions on social conservatism. In order to accomplish this, the paper first examines the differences between the two parties, and then examines how conflicting interests were resolved under the banner of the ‘New Conservative Party.’ The author concludes that by deliberately declarin socially conservative issues beyond the scope of party policy, the new conservative party has been able to strike a balance between the interests of the voting population and the interests of its more socially conservative members, who are able to express their preferences by means of a free vote.


Keywords


Social Conservatism, New Conservative Party

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