Best MPs On Twitter: Our List Of The Politicians To Follow In Canada

The Huffington Post Canada  |  By Posted: 05/10/2012 4:32 pm Updated: 05/10/2012 9:45 pm

Best Mps Twitter Canada
Our totally unscientific survey of the best MPs on Twitter targeted politicians who engage with users and make us laugh. (CP)

When politics and Twitter collide bad things often happen. Just ask Pat F-Bomb Martin.

But profanity isn't the only problem when it comes to politicians online. Canada's Parliament contains plenty of MPs who seem to have missed the news that we've entered the 21st century. That said, there are some rays of light.

Some in Ottawa have figured out exactly how to engage, entertain and inform their fellow users. Here's our look at the 14 MPs who are doing just that.

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  • Best MPs On Twitter

    Here's our totally unscientific look at which Canadian politicians are making the best use of Twitter. (CP)

  • 14. Rona Ambrose

    Tory ministers dominated our <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/09/worst-mps-twitter-canada_n_1504199.html?ref=canada-politics" target="_hplink">worst MPs on Twitter list</a>, but <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/MinRonaAmbrose" target="_hplink">Rona Ambrose</a> is an exception to the rule. While she could stand to pick up a few more followers, Ambrose is on the right track, heavily peppering her feed with retweets. She also responds to journalists, a sure sign of a strong political account. (CP)

  • 13. Marc Garneau

    Besides tweeting at a furious pace, former astronaut and current Liberal MP <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/MarcGarneau" target="_hplink">Marc Garneau</a> can be seen regularly carrying on conversations with other users. Nothing warms our hearts more than to see one of our politicians engaging with Canadians. (CP)

  • 12. Peter Julian

    NDP MP <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/mpjulian" target="_hplink">Peter Julian</a> is active, interesting and engaged. Good number of photos as well. (CP)

  • 11. Denis Coderre

    With nearly 60,000 followers, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/DenisCoderre" target="_hplink">Denis Coderre</a> is one of the most popular Canadian MPs on Twitter. He responds to users, retweets news and generally keeps things lively and diverse. And although most of his tweets are in French, he's not afraid of an English post from time to time. (CP)

  • 10. Carolyn Bennett

    Liberal MP <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/Carolyn_Bennett" target="_hplink">Carolyn Bennett</a> has more than 7,000 tweets, a sure sign of a Twitter addict. She also has been known to <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/Carolyn_Bennett/media/slideshow?url=http%3A%2F%2Fyfrog.com%2Fnyvsfevj" target="_hplink">tweets photos of her dinner</a>, a sure sign she stays connected at all times. (CP)

  • 9. Olivia Chow

    With more than 17,000 followers, Olivia Chow doesn't need our help. But we love her tweets, especially the funny ones. This <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/oliviachow/status/198021722232979457" target="_hplink">Rob Ford zinger stands out</a>: "Dear journalists, the lilac tree in front of my #Toronto house is in bloom, come and take a photo by the fence, I won't call 911." (CP)

  • 8. James Moore

    Another Tory minister who bucks his party's Twitter trend is <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/JamesMoore_org" target="_hplink">James Moore</a>. His account shows all the usual signs of engagement, but to be perfectly honest it was the <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/JamesMoore_org/media/grid" target="_hplink">cute photos</a> of his <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/JamesMoore_org/media/slideshow?url=pic.twitter.com%2FrFgZ2LPR" target="_hplink">two dogs</a> that secured his spot on the list. (CP)

  • 7. Megan Leslie

    NDP MP <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/meganlesliemp" target="_hplink">Megan Leslie</a> has one of the most active accounts in Parliament. Our favourite tweet in recent months? "Finally found a parking spot in Whitehorse. No need to call Bev Oda's driver. http://yfrog.com/nwtxmtzj" (CP)

  • 6. Peggy Nash

    Unlike <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/09/worst-mps-twitter-canada_n_1504199.html?ref=canada-politics" target="_hplink">Thomas Mulcair, who has stopped tweeting</a> since the end of the NDP leadership contest, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/PeggyNashNDP" target="_hplink">Peggy Nash</a> continues to post up a storm. Her appearance on this list also has a lot to do with her <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/PeggyNashNDP/status/197057876865454081" target="_hplink">recent allusion to the cartoon "South Park."</a> (CP)

  • 5. Justin Trudeau

    What can you say about <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/JUSTINPJTRUDEAU" target="_hplink">Justin Trudeau</a>? He's the rock star of Canadian politics and his Twitter stats show it. More than 130,000 followers and a verified check mark -- the surest sign of an online celeb. And while <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/03/13/justin-trudeau-blackberry_n_1342509.html" target="_hplink">HuffPost got into a minor tiff with Trudeau over a tweet</a> he sent out earlier this year about his BlackBerry, we're still big fans of the Liberal MP's stream. What other Canadian politician would have the guts to tweet a photo like <a href="http://twitpic.com/3aqlx9" target="_hplink">this</a>. (CP)

  • 4. Jason Kenney

    <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/kenneyjason" target="_hplink">Jason Kenney's Twitter stream</a> often resembles a travel journal. The Immigration Minister spends a lot of time travelling the country and it shows in his feed and photos. Something else we've learned from following Kenney? <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/kenneyjason/media/grid" target="_hplink">He loves purple ties</a>. (CP)

  • 3. Tony Clement

    Alright, we know we already put <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/tonyclementcpc" target="_hplink">Tony Clement</a> on our <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/09/worst-mps-twitter-canada_n_1504199.html?ref=canada-politics" target="_hplink">worst MPs on Twitter list</a>, but we do have a love hate relationship with the Tory minister. While his tweets have grown less interesting since <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/01/10/tony-clement-jackass-twitter_n_1196261.html" target="_hplink">Jackass-Gate</a>, Clement is still miles ahead of most MPs when it comes to using social media. No wonder he's been<a href="http://www.canada.com/news/Tony+Clement+vows+innovative+open+government+critics+point+poor+record/5940420/story.html" target="_hplink"> tasked with leading the Conservatives' Open Government initiative</a> to put more federal info online. (CP)

  • 2. Bob Rae

    'Interim' Liberal Leader Bob Rae may not have captured his party's permanent top job yet, but he definitely hold the attention of his Twitter followers. All 26,000 of them. He gets in on <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/bobraeMP/media/slideshow?url=http%3A%2F%2Fyfrog.com%2Fh03w0bmj" target="_hplink">photo meme action</a> and <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/12/14/bob-rae-twitter-bs-young-liberals_n_1149155.html" target="_hplink">isn't afraid to use colourful language</a>. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/09/worst-mps-twitter-canada_n_1504199.html?ref=canada-politics" target="_hplink">Compared to the accounts of fellow leaders Thomas Mulcair and Stephen Harper</a>, an absolute gem. (CP)

  • 1. Elizabeth May

    She may be the leader of the smallest party in Parliament, but <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/elizabethmay" target="_hplink">Elizabeth May</a> punches way above her weight online. The Green Party leader has nearly 40,000 followers, roughly triple the count held by <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/thomasmulcair" target="_hplink">Thomas Mulcair</a>. How did she become such a digital success? One word: engagement. May's stream shows consistent interaction with followers and journalists. The leaders of the larger parties could learn a thing or two from this plucky underdog. (CP)



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  • The Worst Politicians On Twitter

    Here's our totally unscientific look at which Canadian politicians are failing to take advantage of their presence on Twitter. (CP)

  • 11. Christian Paradis

    In more than a year on Twitter, the <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/christianparad" target="_hplink">Minister of Industry Christian Paradis</a> has posted just 35 tweets and no photos. (CP)

  • 10. Peter Kent

    The <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/mpPeterKent" target="_hplink">Minister of the Environment Peter Kent</a> last tweeted back in January, despite the flurry of coverage regarding his portfolio in recent months. On the plus side, he has posted plenty of photos, although most are of the MP smiling with constituents variety. (CP)

  • 9. Dean Del Mastro

    The parliamentary secretary to the prime minister and <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/DeanDelMastro" target="_hplink"> Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs Dean Del Mastro</a> has a classic ghost-town account: Five tweets back in 2009 and then silence. (CP)

  • 8. Vic Toews

    <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/toewsvic" target="_hplink">Minister of Public Safety Vic Toews</a> is actually relatively active on Twitter compared to his cabinet colleagues. Toews makes the list due to his role in promoting the government's online spying legislation, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/02/16/vic-toews-youtube-vikileaks-twitter_n_1281633.html" target="_hplink">a role which earned the minister heaps of scorn on the social network and sparked the #TellVicEverything and #DontToewsMeBro hashtags</a>. (CP)

  • 7. Peter MacKay

    <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/mackaycpc" target="_hplink">Defence Minister Peter MacKay</a> hasn't tweeted anything to his more than 3,000 followers since May of last year. (CP)

  • 6. Charlie Angus

    <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/charlieangusmp" target="_hplink">NDP MP Charlie Angus</a> was one of the most active MPs on Twitter. That is until he got sick of all the negativity and <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/charlie-angus/quit-twitter_b_1394617.html" target="_hplink">publicly announced he was leaving the social network</a>. His account is still online, so it's still possible he'll make a comeback. (CP)

  • 5, Nycole Turmel

    "Thomas Mulcair just gave an inspirational speech at the Economic Club of Canada luncheon!" This is what you can come to expect from the <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/nycole_turmel" target="_hplink">former interim leader of the NDP Nycole Turmel</a> on Twitter. Her stream is dominated by posts about appearances and press releases. She rarely interacts with other users and seems to be slowing down her usage since the NDP leadership race ended and she was replaced by Thomas Mulcair. (CP)

  • 4. Tony Clement

    This is the controversial one. <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/tonyclementcpc" target="_hplink">Treasury Board President Tony Clement</a> is notorious in Ottawa and beyond for his regular use of Twitter. So why does the poster child for Canadian politicians on social networks make the list?<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/01/10/tony-clement-jackass-twitter_n_1196261.html" target="_hplink"> It goes back to an incident last year in which Clement called a teen a jackass in a tweet after being corrected on a spelling mistake</a>. Clement apologized and ever since his account just hasn't quite been the same. The humour which once made the account one to watch seems to be gone. (CP)

  • 3. Daniel Paillé

    The <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/danielpaille" target="_hplink">Leader of the Bloc Québécois Daniel Paillé</a> has sent out just 89 tweets since joining in October of 2011. Despite being a federal leader not one of those 89 has been in English. (CP)

  • 2. Thomas Mulcair

    We at HuffPost have regularly been checking <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/thomasmulcair" target="_hplink">NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair's Twitter account</a> in the hope that he'll actually start using it. Since winning the leadership back in March, the account has gone completely silent. Previous to that it was extremely active. What gives? (CP)

  • 1. Stephen Harper

    With such a large staff, you would expect the prime minister to be a little more consistent with his use of Twitter. Stephen Harper's account has sent out just 12 tweets so far in 2012, many of them linking to press releases. With nearly 220,000 followers, the PM is missing out on an excellent opportunity to sell himself and the Conservative brand. Harper should take a page out of <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/BARACKOBAMA" target="_hplink">Barack Obama's playbook</a>. At the time of writing, the U.S. president had posted 14 tweets in just the last 24 hours. Obama even signs tweets that come directly from him. Come on Stephen, we don't need the Americans to be better than us at anything else. (CP)

1. Elizabeth May
https://twitter.com/#!/elizabethmay

She may be the leader of the smallest party in Parliament, but Elizabeth May punches way above her weight online. The Green Party leader has nearly 40,000 followers, roughly triple the count held by Thomas Mulcair. How did she become such a digital success? One word: engagement. May's stream shows consistent interaction with followers and journalists. The leaders of the larger parties could learn a thing or two from this plucky underdog.

2. Bob Rae
https://twitter.com/#!/bobraemp

'Interim' Liberal Leader Bob Rae may not have captured his party's permanent top job yet, but he definitely hold the attention of his Twitter followers. All 26,000 of them. He gets in on photo meme action and isn't afraid to use colourful language. Compared to the accounts of fellow leaders Thomas Mulcair and Stephen Harper, an absolute gem.

3. Tony Clement
https://twitter.com/#!/tonyclementcpc

Alright, we know we already put Tony Clement on our worst MPs on Twitter list, but we do have a love hate relationship with the Tory minister. While his tweets have grown less interesting since Jackass-Gate, Clement is still miles ahead of most MPs when it comes to using social media. No wonder he's been tasked with leading the Conservatives' Open Government initiative to put more federal info online.

4. Jason Kenney
https://twitter.com/#!/kenneyjason

Jason Kenney's Twitter stream often resembles a travel journal. The Immigration Minister spends a lot of time travelling the country and it shows in his feed and photos. Something else we've learned from following Kenney? He loves purple ties.

5. Justin Trudeau
https://twitter.com/#!/JUSTINPJTRUDEAU

What can you say about Justin Trudeau? He's the rock star of Canadian politics and his Twitter stats show it. More than 130,000 followers and a verified check mark -- the surest sign of an online celeb. And while HuffPost got into a minor tiff with Trudeau over a tweet he sent out earlier this year about his BlackBerry, we're still big fans of the Liberal MP's stream. What other Canadian politician would have the guts to tweet a photo like this. (CP)

6. Peggy Nash
https://twitter.com/#!/PeggyNashNDP

Unlike Thomas Mulcair, who has stopped tweeting since the end of the NDP leadership contest, Peggy Nash continues to post up a storm. Her appearance on this list also has a lot to do with her recent allusion to the cartoon "South Park."

7. Megan Leslie
https://twitter.com/#!/meganlesliemp

NDP MP Megan Leslie has one of the most active accounts in Parliament. Our favourite tweet in recent months? "Finally found a parking spot in Whitehorse. No need to call Bev Oda's driver. http://yfrog.com/nwtxmtzj"

8. James Moore
https://twitter.com/#!/JamesMoore_org

Another Tory minister who bucks his party's Twitter trend is James Moore. His account shows all the usual signs of engagement, but to be perfectly honest it was the cute photos of his two dogs that secured his spot on the list.

9. Olivia Chow
https://twitter.com/#!/oliviachow

With more than 17,000 followers, Olivia Chow doesn't need our help. But we love her tweets, especially the funny ones. This Rob Ford zinger stands out: "Dear journalists, the lilac tree in front of my #Toronto house is in bloom, come and take a photo by the fence, I won't call 911." (CP)

10. Carolyn Bennett
https://twitter.com/#!/Carolyn_Bennett

Liberal MP Carolyn Bennett has more than 7,000 tweets, a sure sign of a Twitter addict. She also has been known to tweets photos of her dinner, a sure sign she stays connected at all times.

11. Denis Coderre
https://twitter.com/#!/DenisCoderre

With nearly 60,000 followers, Denis Coderre is one of the most popular Canadian MPs on Twitter. He responds to users, retweets news and generally keeps things lively and diverse. And although most of his tweets are in French, he's not afraid of an English post from time to time. (CP)

12. Peter Julian
https://twitter.com/#!/mpjulian

NDP MP Peter Julian is active, interesting and engaged. Good number of photos as well.

13. Marc Garneau
https://twitter.com/#!/MarcGarneau

Besides tweeting at a furious pace, former astronaut and current Liberal MP Marc Garneau can be seen regularly carrying on conversations with other users. Nothing warms our hearts more than to see one of our politicians engaging with Canadians.

14. Rona Ambrose
https://twitter.com/#!/MinRonaAmbrose
Tory ministers dominated our worst MPs on Twitter list, but Rona Ambrose is an exception to the rule. While she could stand to pick up a few more followers, Ambrose is on the right track, heavily peppering her feed with retweets. She also responds to journalists, a sure sign of a strong political account.

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