Pacific scandal

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Pacific scandal,

1873, a major event in Canadian political history. Charges were made in Parliament that the Conservative administration of Sir John A. MacdonaldMacdonald, Sir John Alexander,
1815–91, Canadian statesman, first prime minister of the Dominion of Canada, b. Glasgow. His parents settled in 1820 in Kingston, Ont. Macdonald first practiced law.
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 had accepted campaign funds from Sir Hugh AllanAllan, Sir Hugh,
1810–82, Canadian financier and shipowner, b. Scotland. He emigrated to Canada in 1826, was employed by a large shipbuilding company in Montreal, and later founded the Allan Line of steamships.
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 in return for a promise to award Allan's syndicate the contract to build the Canadian Pacific Railway. Macdonald's statement that the contract and the contributions were unconnected was received with skepticism. Donald A. Smith (later Lord StrathconaStrathcona and Mount Royal, Donald Alexander Smith, 1st Baron
, 1820–1914, Canadian fur trader, financier, and railroad builder, b. Scotland.
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) broke with Macdonald over the crisis and through his publicly expressed lack of confidence in Macdonald was partly responsible for the Conservative administration's downfall. The government was forced to resign because of the scandal, and the Conservative party was badly defeated in the ensuing elections.
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References in periodicals archive ?
The 1870s were bad years for Macdonald, with the Pacific Scandal, the mess he made of the birth of Manitoba and the uneven leadership he gave in opposition.
He comments decisively that "Macdonald embraced the wrong side of history." Even after the Pacific Scandal that nearly destroyed him, Macdonald "continued to chase election fluids in the wrong places as avidly as he ever did," and he left file Canadian political system in those wrong places after he died.
Macdonald's eagerness to realize his vision led to the Pacific Scandal and the downfall of his Conservative government in 1873, giving Mackenzie's Liberal coalition an opportunity to implement their own vision of a Canada stretching from sea to shining sea.
This assessment is difficult to accept in its entirety when one examines Bengough's trenchant illustrations of the Pacific Scandal and Macdonald's subsequent follies.
Macdonald's first effort to build the Pacific railway (ending in the Pacific Scandal), and his second and successful attempt to do the same (with its ties to Macdonald's so-called National Policy).
The phones were red hot last night as you condemned the buckets of FA whitewash being poured over the Cathay Pacific scandal.
Given the onset of the Pacific scandal in 1873, when the government was charged with accepting illicit funds from Sir Hugh Allan in return for the contract to build the transcontinental Canadian Pacific Railway, this was no easy task.

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