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THE ÉMINENCE GRISE

Liberal: The late Mitchell Sharp provided advice for Jean Chrétien. Paul Martin didn't seem to have a mentor, but he spoke often and with pride about the accomplishments of his late father, Paul Martin Sr., who served in the cabinets of four Liberal prime ministers and was considered by some as the father of medicare.

Conservative: Former prime minister Brian Mulroney. Stephen Harper has publicly credited Mr. Mulroney with givinghim advice, and many of his former staffers are in key government positions. Mr. Harper even holds impromptu question-and-answer sessions with reporters from Mr. Mulroney's favoured third step on the stairs leading from the House of Commons to his office. THE LOBBYIST

Liberal: Mike Robinson: principal at Earnscliffe Strategy Group and one of Paul Martin's top strategists.

Conservative: Mike Coates, president and CEO of Hill and Knowlton Canada and a top Harper team strategist and adviser.

THE HANGOUTS

Liberal: Hy's Steakhouse and cocktail bar; D'arcy McGee's Irish Pub on Sparks Street.

Conservative: Hy's Steakhouse (it underwent a renovation after the Tory victory, but with its dark wood and plush seating looks pretty much the same) and D'arcy McGee's continue to be favourites of all sorts and political stripes of staffers. The new power breakfast spot is the Sheraton Ottawa Hotel.

THE OTTAWA FRIENDS

Liberal: Bill and Cathy Graham, John and Trish Godfrey and Jim and Heather Peterson (the men were all Martin cabinet ministers). The wives are good friends of Sheila Martin.

Conservative: Treasury Board President John Baird, caucus chairman Rahim Jaffer and Alberta MP James Rajotte. Laureen Harper is said to be particularly fond of Mr. Baird.

THE BEST FOREIGN BUDDY

Liberal: Irish rock star Bono

(pictured below left).

Conservative: Australian Prime Minister John Howard.

THE HAIRDRESSER

Liberal: Paul Martin wasn't fussy about who cut his hair and frequented different barbershops around town.

Conservative: Rinaldo's. It was the choice hair salon of the Mulroneys, and its haircutters are responsible for Stephen Harper's new election 'do.

THE BIGGEST CATCH

Liberal:

David Emerson (right)

Conservative: David Emerson

THE POWER COUPLE

Liberal: Key strategists David Herle and Terrie O'Leary.

Conservative: Pollster David Crapper, who helped with polling during the election campaign, and his wife, Elizabeth Roscoe, who had a key role in the transition, finding staff for ministers' offices.

THE BUZZ

Liberal: Predictions as to when the Martin government would fall.

Conservative: Can we form a majority government in 18 months?

THE BEST PARTIER

Liberal: Conservative MP Belinda Stronach.

Conservative: Liberal MP Belinda Stronach.

THE PET PROVINCE

Liberal: Ontario

Conservative:

Quebec

THE MUSE

Liberal: The board -- the group of senior strategists around Paul Martin consisting of Scott Reid, Tim Murphy, David Herle, Karl Littler and Terrie O'Leary.

Conservative: University of Calgary professor Tom Flanagan.

THE CUISINE

Liberal: Paul Martin loved Kraft Dinner.

Conservative: Stephen Harper has been known to buy hot dogs from street vendors.

THE DRINK

Liberal: Coffee. Paul Martin said he drinks between 10 and 15 cups of coffee a day (with milk).

Conservative: Stephen Harper is a bit of a Coca-Cola junkie.

THE ATTITUDE

Liberal: Arrogant and

entitled.

Conservative: Focused and petulant.