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It’s the end of an era for Canadian politics.
One of Canada’s most influential politicians, and the former Prime Minister, resigned from his parliament seat a few days ago. This is the end; it appears, not just for his status as MP but also of his political career.
The outpour of love and support for his efforts to serve Canada was a mark of his success. Even the Liberals could not hold back their admiration. Harper’s successor and the current Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said, “He conducted himself with grace and with full respect for not just the office but the country we serve and love so well.”
Although he may be gone from politics, the legacy of his success will remain for a long time. Here are the top 5 achievements of Harper’s government.
1. Balanced the budget in a hostile economy
The contrast between Harper’s government and the present governments, on economy, cannot be more pronounced. As Alberta and Ontario struggle to reduce the debt despite rising oil prices, they need to take a page out of Harper’s book who managed to balance the budget even after one of the worst economic crises in recent history.
2. Reduced taxes, cut MP salaries and even his own pension
Businesses thrived under Harper’s government as he reduced corporate taxes and cut down the GST to five percent from seven. And when he needed money to run the government, he took millions out of his own pension.
3. Apologized for previous mistakes
Although the Liberals like to claim they are the ultimate defenders of minorities, it was Harper who formally apologized to Chinese immigrants for the head tax and the First Nations community for previous wrongdoings.
4. Increased the age of consent
In 2008, Harper successfully managed to raise the age of consent from 14 to 16. This was a major leap in preventing sexual exploitations of minors and the first time the government changed the age of consent since 1892.
5. Won at foreign policy
One of the most enduring legacies of Harper’s government is his successful approach towards Canada’s foreign policy. He never wavered in his support for Israel while standing up to Vladimir Putin on his aggression towards Ukraine.