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Bennett Campbell

Bennett Campbell
24th Premier of Prince Edward Island
In office
September 18, 1978 – May 3, 1979
MonarchElizabeth II
Lieutenant GovernorGordon L. Bennett
Preceded byAlexander B. Campbell
Succeeded byJ. Angus MacLean
Member of Parliament
for Cardigan
In office
April 13, 1981 – September 4, 1984
Preceded byDaniel J. MacDonald
Succeeded byPat Binns
Leader of the Prince Edward Island Liberal Party
In office
December 9, 1978 – April 13, 1981
Interim: September 18 – December 9, 1978
Preceded byAlexander B. Campbell
Succeeded byGilbert Clements (interim)
MLA (Assemblyman) for 3rd Kings
In office
May 11, 1970 – April 13, 1981
Preceded byThomas A. Curran
Succeeded byJoey Fraser
Personal details
Born(1943-08-27)August 27, 1943
Montague, Prince Edward Island
DiedSeptember 11, 2008(2008-09-11) (aged 65)
Cardigan, Prince Edward Island
Political partyPrince Edward Island Liberal Party
Other political
Margaret Shirley Chiasson
(m. 1970)
ResidenceCardigan, Prince Edward Island
Alma materSt. Dunstan's University
OccupationTeacher and Civil servant
Minister of Education (1972–1978)
Provincial Secretary (1974–1976)
Minister of Finance (1976–1978) Federal:
Minister of Veterans Affairs (1981–1984)

William Bennett Campbell, PC (August 27, 1943 – September 11, 2008) was a politician and the 24th premier of Prince Edward Island.

Born in Montague, Prince Edward Island, Campbell was a teacher by profession before entering politics in 1970 and was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island as a Liberal candidate.[1] In 1972, he became Minister of Education;[2] Provincial Secretary in 1974; and Minister of Finance in 1976.

When Liberal leader and PEI Premier Alexander B. Campbell (no relation) announced his retirement, Bennett Campbell was elected interim leader of the PEI Liberal Party by the caucus and was sworn in as premier on September 18, 1978.[3] On December 9, he was elected leader at the party's leadership convention.[4]

His government was defeated in the general election held the next year.[5] He remained party leader and leader of the opposition until he decided to enter federal politics. He won the seat for Cardigan in the House of Commons of Canada through a 1981 by-election following the death of Daniel J. MacDonald.[6] On September 22, 1981, he took over Macdonald's cabinet portfolio and became Minister of Veterans Affairs in the government of Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau.[7] He retained his portfolio when John Turner succeeded Trudeau as Liberal leader and prime minister, but lost his seat to Pat Binns in the 1984 election that brought down the short-lived Turner government.[8][9]

In the 1986 provincial election, Campbell attempted to regain his former district of 3rd Kings,[10] but lost to Progressive Conservative incumbent Joey Fraser by 16 votes.[11][12]

On September 11, 2008, Campbell died of cancer.[13][14]

Electoral record

Canadian federal by-election, 13 April 1981
On the death of Daniel J. MacDonald, 30 September 1980
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Bennett Campbell 8,166 49.04 +0.86
Progressive Conservative Wilbur MacDonald 7,813 46.92 +2.02
New Democratic Aubrey Cantello 674 4.05 -1.86
Total valid votes 16,653 100.00
1984 Canadian federal election: Cardigan
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Progressive Conservative Pat Binns 10,566 53.36 +6.44
Liberal Bennett Campbell 8,344 42.14 -6.90
New Democratic Lorne Cudmore 891 4.50 +0.45
Total valid votes 19,801 100.00


  1. ^ "Official Provincial General Election Returns, 1970" (PDF). Elections PEI. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-08-10.
  2. ^ "Woman named to PEI Cabinet". The Globe and Mail. October 11, 1972.
  3. ^ "PEI successor to Campbell is a Campbell". The Globe and Mail. September 18, 1978.
  4. ^ "Campbell is PEI Liberal leader". The Globe and Mail. December 11, 1978.
  5. ^ "PEI Tory win costs Liberals last province". The Globe and Mail. April 24, 1979.
  6. ^ "Seat in Commons held by Liberals in PEI by-election". The Globe and Mail. April 14, 1981.
  7. ^ "PM repairs Liberal weak spots by naming four new ministers". The Globe and Mail. September 23, 1981.
  8. ^ "Tory tide sweeps away more than half of Cabinet". The Globe and Mail. September 5, 1984.
  9. ^ "Tory tide claims 25 seats of 32 in Atlantic region". The Globe and Mail. September 5, 1984.
  10. ^ "Former premier hoping to regain seat". The Globe and Mail. April 21, 1986.
  11. ^ "Official Provincial General Election Returns, 1986" (PDF). Elections PEI. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-05-25. Retrieved 2015-08-10.
  12. ^ "Liberals win P.E.I., Premier loses seat". The Globe and Mail. April 22, 1986.
  13. ^ "Former premier Bennett Campbell dies". The Guardian. September 12, 2008. Archived from the original on December 8, 2015. Retrieved 2015-08-09.
  14. ^ "Former P.E.I. premier dies". CBC News. September 12, 2008. Retrieved 2015-08-09.
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Bennett Campbell
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