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Belinda Bedazzled:

Love bug misses "plant" in Conservative Party

by Judi McLeod,

January 29, 2005

Ga-ga over blonde‘ Conservative' MP Belinda Stronach from the get go, the Canadian media were long on Belinda's looks and short on her substance when she ran unsuccessfully for leadership of the Canadian Conservative Party.

Belinda-bedazzled in a style reminiscent of the way they once were over the charisma of late Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau back in the days of Trudeaumania, the media missed out on a Stronach story that would likely matter most to rank and file Canadian Conservatives: a Liberal opportunist with money was taking on the Conservative Party from the top.

Never mind that Stronach, with no political experience, coveted the prime ministership of Canada. How this Liberal found a home in the fledgling Conservative Party remains an unwritten story to this day.

On Friday, the media were in raptures that Conservative MPs Peter MacKay and Belinda Stronach are a couple, or as reporter Barbara Yaffe put it: "nipped by the love bug."

Before the lovestruck MacKay's confirmation in a telephone call that he was "smitten" by the twice divorced mother of two, Ottawa was in gossip mode about the Conservative Party of Canada's worst kept secret.

The circumspect Western Standard was the first to hint about how the love bug had hit the political couple, on a tip from Canada Free Press.

But some in the mainline media are embroidering a love story right up there with King Edward VIII, who confessed to the world via radio broadcast, that he was giving up the British throne for "the woman I love".

While their media is looking for love in all the wrong places, Canadians are looking for relief from the long-reigning, scandal-plagued Liberal government.

Before the Stronach-MacKay romance even blossomed, Conservative MPs were complaining that Stronach is a plant. and for sentimental reporter types, they don't mean the kind that needs to be watered.

On the eve of the vote on the Liberal's same-sex marriage bill, are newspaper pictures of swain Peter MacKay looking downright heterosexual lovestruck.

In pictures and in words, MacKay doesn't seem to be thinking with his political head.

Unfortunately, this is not The Sound of Music; it's Paul Martin's Canada.

Perhaps MacKay should take himself back in time to the last Progressive Conservative convention. If he's not too busy sending flowers, he should take a sobering read of a Googled article from a feisty online publication known as The Republic, "Vancouver's opinionated newspaper: "She's (Stronach) no stranger to national politics. She bankrolled the alliance Party and used her money to manipulate the Progressive Conservative Party out of existence, at once supporting both Peter MacKay, whose hidden agenda at the last PC convention was to kill Canada's founding party, and David Orchard, whose explicit agenda at the same convention was to kill any merger with the alliance."

If that's not wakeup call enough for the lovestruck MacKay, consider that Canada Free Press strongly believes that former Liberal MP Dennis Mills launched Stronach as his parting shot for Liberal powerbrokers.

Mills, wiped out by New Democrat Leader Jack Layton in last June's federal election, was corporate vice president of Magna International, the giant auto parts corporation owned by Belinda's daddy, Frank Stronach.

after election defeat, he returned to the Magna fold, never to be heard from again.

Back in the days when he was grooming Stronach for public office, Ottawa Life wrote that "Dennis Mills is very close to Belinda."

While still a backbencher MP in 2003, Mills threw pictures of a statue of Pierre Elliott Trudeau on his then website as the prelude to a Night of Recognition celebrations with Belinda Stronach as "Master of Ceremonies".

"Can there really be any serious doubt that Blondie Belinda is a Liberal, dispatched by the Liberals as the sugar-and-spice hammer against the advancement of a vulnerable new Conservative Party in Canada?" CFP wrote on Feb. 9, 2004.

Liberals capable of big tent invasion is hardly a new concept in dirty Canadian politics. Griping Tory friends have been telling CFP for months that Stronach is meeting with no resistance in an agenda that seems to be aimed at undermining the new party. according to them, her agenda's in play for the Conservative Party's upcoming Montreal convention. They're saying some delegates are finding the fees too expensive, that Montreal is inconvenient as a travel destination, yada, yada, yada.

For Canadian Conservatives, the Canadian Love affair of the Century couldn't be happening at a possibly worse time.

The Liberals, elected to minority status last June, are forging ahead with same-sex marriage. Talk of snap elections is in the air, and Conservative Leader Stephen Harper has only recently come out of the sulk he's been in since Election Day.

Meanwhile, MacKay's beloved is still "undecided" on the imminent same-sex vote.

Ironically when Time Magazine named Stronach as one of Canada's most influential women last april, they couldn't have been more on the money.

"Suffice it to say I'm very happy and quite smitten," says MacKay.

Well, Pete, the whole world loves a lover, except when the well being of a nation is at stake.

Sure, beloved Belinda is dazzling. So was World War I's Mata Hari.

Canada Free Press founding editor Most recent by Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years experience in the print media. Her work has appeared on, Drudge Report,, Glenn Beck. Judi can be reached at: [email protected]

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