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The year under Harper’s thumb

Jan 23

Stephen Harper’s Conservatives win 124 out of 308 House Of Commons seats (36.3 percent of the popular vote) and form a minority government.

Feb 6

Harper is sworn in. He identifies five policy priorities — federal accountability, tax reform, crime, child care and healthcare — but instead pushes changes to the age of consent and rolling back same-sex marriage.

May 24

Harper, who had promised a more open government, announces he’ll no longer give news conferences for the national media, because journalists give him a hard time over picking and choosing who asks questions.

Aug 18

Toronto’s International AIDS Conference closes without a visit from Harper, who is said to fear being booed.

Sep 25

Harper eliminates the Court Challenges Program, the Law Commission Of Canada and cuts $5 million in funding to the Status Of Women, which closes 75 percent of its regional offices.

Dec 6

After campaigning on a promise to introduce a motion to revisit same-sex marriage, Harper finally does so halfheartedly, knowing this vote will fail — it does, 175 to 123. This is the sixth time the House Of Commons has voted in support of same-sex marriage.