Matchmaker - Macleans.ca

Matchmaker

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If you were looking to add another layer of intrigue to Diane Ablonczy’s current situation, consider just how far back she and the Prime Minister go, as explained in Anne Kingston’s 2007 profile of Laureen Harper.

Teskey soon found herself drawn to the fresh energy and excitement of Reform, the grassroots conservative party born out of disillusionment with Mulroney conservatism. She designed communication materials for the party, including a poster for Reform MP Deborah Grey who had taken Stephen Harper to Ottawa as her assistant. Yet Teskey’s and Harper’s paths didn’t cross until a Reform party assembly in Saskatoon in 1990. The couple was more forcefully introduced by Cynthia Williams, Harper’s former fiancée, who met Teskey when the two worked at GTO. Thinking they would hit it off, Williams asked Laureen to join her and Harper for lunch. “I like Laureen a lot,” she says. Calgary Conservative MP Diane Ablonczy also recalls nudging the two together. “Stephen was sick with bronchitis from being in a basement suite,” she says. “I said to Laureen, ‘Stephen needs to get out more, why don’t you ask him out?’ She’s just so peppy, she’s a tonic for anybody. So she said ‘Do you think he would go?’ ” Not long after, Teskey was helping Harper with graphics for his M.A. thesis. The couple bonded over a shared zeal for smaller government and a love of cats.