Mr. Poilievre was born to a 16-year-old mother in Calgary, and was adopted by his parents, Marlene and Don Poilievre, teachers from Saskatchewan. He attended the University of Calgary, where he was active in the on-campus conservative club, and graduated with a degree in international relations. Before running for office, Mr. Poilievre worked for Stockwell Day, then a member of the Canadian Alliance. Mr. Poilievre married his wife, Anaida, in 2017 and they have two children, Valentina and Cruz.
Prior to his first-ballot victory in the September 2022 Conservative Party leadership race, Pierre Poilievre was the Official Opposition’s main finance critic.
The Alberta-raised former political staffer was elevated to cabinet in 2013 under prime minister Stephen Harper, first as minister for democratic reform and then as employment minister.
In late January 2022, as then-conservative leader Erin O’Toole struggled with internal caucus divisions over whether to embrace the trucker convoy movement heading for Ottawa to protest pandemic restrictions, Mr. Poilievre broke ranks with his embattled leader. He fully endorsed the movement, posing for photos with protestors and delivering doughnuts to truckers.
Within days, Mr. O’Toole was out, the leadership race was on and Mr. Poilievre was in. He maintained his front-runner status throughout the months-long campaign.
After his decisive leadership win, Mr. Poilievre kept a low profile throughout the public inquiry into the government’s invocation of the Emergencies Act. He largely avoided the Parliament Hill news media, focusing instead on asking questions in the House of Commons and touring the country.
As leader, his focus has shifted away from pandemic policies in favour of a consistent economic message centered on calling for lower taxes. His shadow cabinet selections hinted at a more progressive stand on social issues. He has also prioritized party efforts to reach out to immigrant communities.