POLITICS

A quick look at the federal cabinet ministers who changed portfolios Monday

02/09/2015 01:38 EST | Updated 04/11/2015 05:59 EDT
OTTAWA - Three federal cabinet ministers were given new responsibilities Monday by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in the wake of former foreign affairs minister John Baird's abrupt resignation last week.

Here's a look at who they are.

Foreign Affairs Minister Rob Nicholson

Shuffled from: Defence, where he had been minister since July 2013.

Political pedigree: Represents the Ontario riding of Niagara Falls. Sat as a Progressive Conservative MP from 1984 to 1988 and then was elected as a Conservative in 2004. He was in charge of the justice portfolio at the height of the Conservatives' overhaul of crime legislation.

Quote: "When people find themselves oppressed, attacked, when their freedom is threatened, when people are being murdered, Canada has a record second to none to stepping up and assisting people who find themselves in that situation. If you go back over Canadian history, you'll find that we were never in the business of conquering other lands or taking lands from people, or oppressing people. We've always stepped in to assist the people whose freedom was being threatened." — Foreign Affairs committee, Sept. 9th, 2014.

Defence Minister Jason Kenney

Shuffled from: Employment and Social Development, where he had been minister since 2013. Will continue as Minister of Multiculturalism as well.

Political pedigree: represents the Alberta riding of Calgary Southeast. Has been an MP since 1997. Chairs the cabinet committee on operations and is a member of the cabinet committees for foreign affairs and security, and planning and priorities.

Quote: "I cannot think of an organization in my lifetime, or perhaps all of modern history, that represents such brazen evil, such deprivation, and it cannot be overstated." — House of Commons on the motion to engage in air strikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, October 6, 2014.

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Minister of Employment and Social Development Pierre Poilievre

Shuffled from: Was minister of state for democratic reform and will keep that responsibility along with his new job and also take on responsibility for the National Capital Commission.

Political pedigree: Has represented the Ottawa-area riding of Nepean-Carleton since 2004. When the Conservatives formed government, he helped John Baird usher through the Federal Accountability Act. Was parliamentary secretary to the prime minister during the controversy over irregularities in the party's campaign finances.

Quote: "Regardless of where people come from around the world, they can cherish this democratic institution that we inherited from the British parliamentary tradition. Our success is entirely founded on all of the attributes that this system brings. It brings responsible government, common law, limited government, and economic freedom, all of the basic pillars of a free society that have allowed countries throughout our civilization to enjoy so much prosperity and well-being. " — House of Commons, Dec. 3, 2014.