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A liberal by definition is a person who favours reform especially in government economics and religion and who prefers democratic or republican forms of government in a constitutional state This definition generally outlines the definition of the Liberal Party of Canada but as we will see the Liberals are often difficult to define because they occupy the centre of the political spectrum Part of the reason for the Liberals past success is based on their ability to keep both French and English Canada relatively happy I History The Liberal Party was formed around the year 1867 This name was given to the party from the reform groups of Canada East and Canada West in the late 1840s The party members lead the charge for a responsible government The early Liberals did not gain power federally until 1873 and since that time the Liberals have held power 58 of last 100 years 34 of last 50 Also every leader of the party has been Prime Minister with the exception of Edward Blake The following is a list of the leaders of the federal Liberal party Alexander Mackenzie-leader1867-1878 Edward Blake-leader 1878-1887 Sir Wilfrid Laurier-leader 1887-1919 WLM King-leader 1919-1948 Louis St Laurent-leader 1948-1957 Lester B Pearson-leader 1957-1968 Pierre Elliott Trudeau-leader 1968-1984 John Turner-1984-1989 Jean Chretien-leader 1990-present The Liberal Party has been in power for 58 of the last 100 years and hopes to maintain this record in the upcoming election II Present Leader Jean Chretien is the present leader of the federal Liberals He was born in 1934 at Shawiningan Que He studied law at the Laval University and after completing his bars practised law for several years in Shawiningan Mr Chrtien joined the Shawiningan law firm of Chrtien Landry Deschnes Trudel and Normand in 1958 He served as director of the Bar of Trois-Rivires in 1962-63 In 1963 he was elected to the House of Commons The following is a list of parliamentary positions
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