Dion, Stéphane

Dion, Stéphane

(stāfän` dyôn), 1955–, Canadian politician, b. Quebec, grad. Laval Univ., Quebec (B.A. 1977, M.A. 1979), Institut d'études politiques, Paris. A political science professor at the Univ. of Moncton, N.B. (1984), and the Univ. of Montreal (1984–96), he was first elected to the Canadian parliament, as a Liberal, in 1996. He served as minister of intergovernmental affairs (1996–2003) and minister of the environment (2004–6) under Jean ChrétienChrétien, Jean
(Joseph Jacques Jean Chrétien) , 1934–, Canadian politician and prime minister (1993–2003), b. Quebec. He received his legal education at Quebec's Laval Univ. and was a practicing lawyer until his 1963 election to parliament.
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 and Paul MartinMartin, Paul Edgar Philippe, Jr.,
1938–, Canadian politician, prime minister (2003–6) of Canada, b. Windsor, Ont. The scion of a politically active family (his father served in parliament and ran unsuccessfully for Liberal party leader three times), Martin became a
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, respectively. Following the Liberal partyLiberal party,
Canadian political party. Prior to confederation in 1867, reform parties advocating greater local participation in provincial governments, free trade, and increased separation of church and state existed in Canada West, Canada East, and the Maritime Provinces.
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's defeat in the 2006 elections, Martin resigned as party leader, and Dion, who was not favored to succeed him, was nonetheless elected to the post. Under Dion the party lost additional seats in the 2008 elections, and when he later resigned Michael IgnatieffIgnatieff, Michael Grant
, 1947–, Canadian politician, writer, and academic, b. Toronto, B.A. Univ. of Toronto (1969), Ph.D. Harvard (1976), M.A. Cambridge (1978). He was an assistant professor at the Univ.
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 became interim party leader. Dion is noted as the author of the Clarity Act (2000), which set precise and strict terms for any future move to establish independence for Quebec.
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