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Pictures, photographs of Pierre Elliot Trudeau, former prime minister of Canada. As prime minister, Pierre Trudeau espoused participatory democracy as a means of making Canada a "Just Society."
     
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Pierre Elliot Trudeau Pictures, Photographs
Former Prime Minister of Canada

Trudeau is seen by many as embodying the spirit of his age: youth, ambition, and anti-conformism.

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Pierre Elliot Trudeau, 1982

As prime minister, Trudeau espoused participatory democracy as a means of making Canada a "Just Society." His desire for greater citizen involvement in government appears to have been frustrated by lack of support within his party, and he later opposed greater involvement for citizens in representative democracy. He vigorously defended the newly implemented universal health care and regional development programs as means of making society more just.

 
Pierre Trudeau having a good time.

In the 1979 election Trudeau's government was defeated by Progressive Conservatives led by Joe Clark who formed a minority government. Trudeau announced his intention to resign as Liberal Party leader; however, before a leadership convention could be held Clark's government was defeated in the Canadian House of Commons by a Motion of No Confidence and the party persuaded Trudeau to stay on as leader and fight the election. Trudeau defeated Clark in the February 1980 election winning a majority government.
 
Joni Mitchell accepts award from Pierre Elliot Trudeau

Trudeau's legacy in Quebec is mixed. Some credit his actions during the October Crisis as crucial in terminating the FLQ as a force in Quebec and ensuring that the campaign for Quebec separatism took a democratic and peaceful route. Trudeau is also credited by many for defeat of the 1980 Quebec referendum. Nationalist Quebecers have often portrayed his policy of bilingualism not as an exercise in establishing equity but as an exercise in the assimimilation of the French into a monolithic anglophone Canada.

Barbara Streisand and Pierre Trudeau

Former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau is seen by many as embodying the spirit of his age: youth, ambition, and anti-conformism. Trudeau's energy, charisma, and confidence as Canada's prime minister are often cited as reasons for his popularity even though a large number of Canadians disapproved of his policies.

Margaret Thatcher and Pierre Trudeau

Trudeau's most enduring legacy is the 1982 Canadian constitution. Some hail his creation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms in the 1982 constitution as having had a profoundly positive effect on the nation. It is seen as advancing civil rights and liberties and, notwithstanding clause aside, has become for many Canadians a deeply respected institution.

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From CBC's The Greatest Canadian

A triumphant return
Trudeau didn't go gently after all. Only a few months into his retirement, Trudeau was called back to government after Prime Minister Joe Clark lost a vote of confidence.

Pierre Memorabilia, AuctionsWinning a majority government in 1980, Trudeau returned to his federalist cause with renewed vigour. In May 1980, René Lévesque would be holding a referendum on sovereignty-association, effectively asking Quebecers to separate from Canada. In a series of characteristically passionate, cutting speeches, Trudeau swayed the public's vote to "No," and when the referendum took place, 60 per cent of Canadians were against separatism.

The Constitution
The victory at the 1980 referendum was just the beginning.

Energized, Trudeau began working to achieve his most ambitious goal: to "patriate" the British North America Act and create a new, Canadian-controlled Constitution. He wanted to include a Charter of Canadian Rights and Freedoms in the Constitution, one that would ensure individual rights were protected within a large, government-ruled country.

He had his work cut out for him. It would take 18 months of battling before any kind of resolution could be reached. Notably, Lévesque and seven other premiers formed the "Gang of Eight," in an effort to stop Trudeau's Constitution from being approved. During a series of last-chance negotiations in November 1981, a compromise was reached and all of the premiers, with the exception of Lévesque, signed Trudeau's Constitutional Resolution.

When Queen Elizabeth II came to Canada on April 17, 1982 to proclaim Canada's new Constitution, it was the crowning moment for Trudeau.



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Pierre Elliot Trudeau biography, pictures, and information about the former prime minister of Canada. This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from this Wikipedia article.
 


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