Dimitri Soudas: Timeline of recent controversies
Published Monday, March 31, 2014 7:45PM EDT
Last Updated Monday, March 31, 2014 11:27PM EDT
Dimitri Soudas, the ousted executive director of the Conservative Party, has had a long career in federal politics. He started out as a press secretary after the Conservatives won the 2006 election, eventually becoming Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s director of communications and a loyal Tory.
He courted controversy along the way and was known for his sometimes acrimonious relationship with Parliament Hill reporters.
Here are some of the highlights of Soudas’s time within the Conservative Party:
April 2010 – After serving as a press secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office, Soudas was promoted to director of communications. As Harper’s chief spokesperson, he was no stranger to controversies. Among those that attracted media attention were accusations that Soudas tried to influence the Port of Montreal's choice for a new chairman in 2007. Soudas denied personally intervening in the process and Harper defended him.
June 2011 – Soudas announced that he would leave his position in September to spend more time with his wife and three young children. Soudas’ marriage did not work out; he later began dating Conservative MP Eve Adams.
September 2011 – Soudas joined the Canadian Olympic Committee as executive director of communications. In October 2012, The Canadian Press revealed that the Olympic committee urged Immigration Minister Jason Kenney's office to fast-track the citizenship of a Chinese-born table tennis star so that he could compete for Canada at the Summer Games in London. Kenney's office said it had no communication with Soudas about the athlete’s citizenship application.
June 2013 – Soudas was under scrutiny once again when it was revealed that he had received repeated notices from Revenue Quebec between May 2008 and April 2011 about the back taxes he owed. Soudas blamed clerical errors and said he’s never refused to pay his taxes.
Dec. 7, 2013 – Soudas left his post at the Canadian Olympic Committee to return to his Conservative Party family and help run the 2015 election campaign.Many wondered why he made the move just two months before the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
March 19, 2014 – Soudas’s partner, Eve Adams, angered the crowd after showing up at a board meeting for the new riding of Oakville-North Burlington. According to Canadian Press sources, she was asked to leave after an unpleasant exchange, which included a threat to call police. Adams is running for the Tory nomination in that new riding after a recent move. She currently holds the Mississauga-Brampton South seat.
March 30, 2014 – Soudas was ousted as the Conservative Party’s executive director amid controversy surrounding his fiancee’s nomination bid. Tories in the local riding association had complained that Soudas appeared to be intervening in the nomination process on Adams's behalf.