History was made on this date in 1984 when former cabinet minister John Turner announced he was putting his name forward in the race to succeed Pierre Trudeau.
In his ground-breaking new biography of Turner, John Turner: An Intimate Biography of Canada’s 17th Prime Minister, journalist Steve Paikin describes what the future PM brought to the leadership campaign.
“Turner returned to public life determined to be different from his predecessor,” Paikin wrote. “He had no problem separating himself from Trudeau’s views on many issues, figuring those views had made the Liberal Party a non-starter in too much of Canada. He was content to move closer to the business community, thinking Trudeau had created too much antagonism between business and government.”
Turner who was victorious at that year’s June leadership convention, served as Prime Minister briefly, and then guided his party through the re-building process until stepping down as leader in 1990.