James Whitney

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James Whitney

Sir James Pliny Whitney KCMG (born October 22, 1843 in Williamsburgh Township , Upper Canada , † September 25, 1914 in Toronto , Ontario ) a Canadian politician who was Chairman of the Conservative Party of Ontario between 1896 and 1914 and Prime Minister of Ontario from 1905 to 1914 was.


Member of the Legislative Assembly and Chairman of the Conservative Party

Whitney was after attending the Cornwall Collegiate and Vocational School in the 1860s employee in the law firm of John Sandfield Macdonald before he began in 1871 to study law . After graduation and admission as a lawyer , he took up an activity as a lawyer himself in 1875 .

In a by-election on January 1, 1888, Whitney was elected as a candidate for the Conservative Party of Ontario in the constituency of Dundas for the first time to a member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario , to which he belonged for more than 26 years until his death on September 25, 1914.

In 1896 he succeeded George Frederick Marter as chairman of the Conservative Party of Ontario and held this position until his death.

In the elections of March 1, 1898, he was the top candidate of his party for the first time and was able to improve the result from 30 to 43 seats in the 94-member parliament. But the strongest force remained the Ontario Liberal Party of Prime Minister Arthur Sturgis Hardy , which lost seven seats but still had a clear absolute majority with 51 seats. In the subsequent elections to the National Assembly on May 29, 1902, the Conservatives were able to improve their results again and now had 48 seats in the legislative assembly, which was enlarged to 98 seats. The Liberal Party under Prime Minister George William Ross , who had ruled since October 20, 1899 , only had a slim majority of one seat and had 50 members.

In the elections of January 25, 1905, Whitney won a landslide victory with his Conservative Party and gained 21 seats, so that they had 69 in the 98-member parliament. The loser in the election was Prime Minister George William Ross's Ontario Liberal Party, which had only 29 MPs and had to go into opposition after 33 years in government .

Prime Minister of Ontario 1905 to 1914

Whitney then became the sixth Prime Minister of Ontario on February 8, 1905, succeeding Ross, and held that office for more than nine years until his death on September 25, 1914. He was also between February 8 and May 30, 1905 Attorney General.

As Prime Minister he followed a progressive course. His government founded the Ontario Hydro electricity company , but also issued the controversial Regulation 17 , which severely restricted schooling in French , but was eventually reversed after protests.

In the elections for the legislative assembly, the Conservative Party was confirmed with a large majority. In the elections of June 8, 1908, the CP received 86 seats in the 106-member parliament, while the LP lost another ten seats and only had 19 members. In the elections to the legislative assembly of December 11, 1911, the Conservative Party lost three seats, but still had a majority in parliament with 83 members, while the Ontario Liberal Party gained these three seats and was represented by 22 members. In the last election during Whitney's lifetime, the Conservative Party had 84 members in the 111-member legislative assembly and the Liberal Party had 26 seats.

For his services, Whitney was made Knight Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George (KCMG) and then carried the suffix "Sir".

After his death, William Howard Hearst followed him as Prime Minister and Chairman of the Conservative Party of Ontario.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Canadian Provinces (rulers.org)