Tory ShirtsCreate a custom T-Shirt with this designThe term was used to designate the pre-Confederation British ruling classes of Upper Canada and Lower Canada, known as the Family Compact and the Chateau Clique, an elite within the governing classes, and oftentimes members within a section of society known as the United Empire Loyalists.
In post-Confederation Canada the terms Red Tory and Blue Tory have long been used to describe the two wings of the Conservative and previously the Progressive Conservative (PC) parties.
After the merger of the PCs with the Canadian Alliance in 2003, there was some debate as to whether the "Tory" appellation should survive at the federal level. Although it was widely believed that some Alliance members would take offence to the term, it was officially accepted by the newly-merged party during the 2004 leadership convention. Stephen Harper, leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, and the Prime Minister as of the January 23, 2006 election, regularly refers to himself as a Tory and has suggested that the new party is a natural evolution of the conservative political movement in Canada.
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