Transcript: 10 Questions on Canada's Prime Ministers | Sep 19, 2018

Music plays as an animated slate shows the title "10 questions."

Then, Steve sits in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and spotted purple tie.

A caption on screen reads "10 questions on Canada's Prime Ministers."

Steve says IN MORE THAN 150
YEARS, CANADA HAS HAD 23 PRIME
MINISTERS, ALL OF THEM UNIQUE
AND QUIRKY IN THEIR OWN WAYS.
JOINING US NOW FOR 10 QUESTIONS
ON THOSE LEADERS: J.D.M.
STEWART.
HE IS A HIGH SCHOOL HISTORY
TEACHER AND AUTHOR OF "BEING
PRIME MINISTER."

A picture of the book appears briefly on screen. The cover is red, with a pencil drawing of male feet resting on a desk next to a few papers.
JDM is in his forties, clean-shaven, with short brown hair. He's wearing glasses, a gray suit, white shirt and colourful striped tie.

Steve continues YOU'RE A TEACHER AT BISHOP STRAUGHAN SCHOOL, RIGHT?

JDM says I AM.

Steve says CONGRATULATIONS.
A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO LOVE HISTORY
THERE JUST BECAUSE OF YOU.

JDM says I HOPE SO.

Steve says CONGRATS.
HERE WE GO.
READY FOR TEN QUESTIONS?
QUESTION ONE, WHICH PRIME
MINISTER ONCE CAUGHT A 30-POUND SHARK.

The caption changes to "Quite the catch."

A black and white picture shows a short-haired man standing on a pier as he proudly displays several large fish on a stick.

JDM says DIEFENBAKER, AND HE WAS OFF
THE COAST OF FLORIDA AND PULLED
IT IN, AND THEN HAD A LITTLE BIT
OF A FRACAS WITH JOHN F.
KENNEDY WHO TEASED HIM ABOUT IT
LATER ON AND GOT IT STUFFED AND
PUT ON THE WALL AND WHEN KENNEDY
CAME TO OTTAWA IN 1961,
DIEFENBAKER SHOWED HIM A COPY OF
IT.

Steve says WHAT WAS THE ORIGINAL
NAME FOR THE PRIME MINISTER'S
RESIDENCE 24 SUSSEX DRIVE?

The caption changes to "Home sweet home."
Then, it changes again to "JDM Stewart. Author, 'Being Prime Minister."

JDM says ARE YOU THINKING OF THE WELSH
NAME?
IT MEANS PLACE OF PEACE.
MANY PRIME MINISTERS, MULRONEY
JOKES ABOUT IT, IT CERTAINLY
WASN'T A PLACE OF PEACE A LOT OF
THE TIME, BUT THEY'VE HAD A LOT
OF FAMILY TIME, ENTERTAINMENT,
AND SUSSEX DRIVE IS IN A STATE
OF DISREPAIR AND THEY NEED TO
FIX IT UP.

Steve says WHICH PRIME MINISTER
ONCE POSTPONED A WAR CABINET
MEETING UPON LEARNING THAT HIS
PET DOG HAD DIED.

The caption changes to "Man's best friend."

JDM says SOUNDS LIKE WE'RE TALKING
ABOUT WILLIAM LYON MACKENZIE
KING AND HIS PET DOG PAT.

A black an white picture shows an elderly man sitting outdoors with a small, scruffy dog.

JDM continues HE HAD THREE DOGS, ALL OF THEM
NAMED PAT, AND HE REFERRED TO
THEM AS THE TRUEST FRIENDS HE
EVER HAD.
WHEN ONE OF HIS PETS DIED, HE
WROTE 20 PAGES IN HIS DIARY
ABOUT HOW BEREFT HE WAS ABOUT
LOSING PAT.

Steve says NEVER MARRIED, NO
CHILDREN.

JDM says BACHELOR.

Steve says QUESTION FOUR: WHO WAS
THE ONLY PRIME MINISTER TO HAVE
OWNED A CHINCHILLA.

The caption changes to "Harper and Charlie."

JDM says OKAY, THAT'S STEVEN HARPER.
AND THE FAMILY WAS KNOWN FOR ITS
LOVE OF ANIMALS.
AS YOU KNOW, LAUREEN HARPER WAS
IN CHARGE OF FOSTERING SOME
CATS.
THEY ARE CAT PEOPLE, NOT DOG
PEOPLE.

A colour picture shows Stephen Harper smiling.

JDM continues THEY DIDN'T HAVE DOGS.
THEY HAD CHINCHILLAS.
THERE WAS ACTUALLY BATS ON
SUSSEX DRIVE'S PROPERTY AS WELL
TOWARDS THE END OF THE HARPER
TIME IN OFFICE.
THEY SET UP A BAT HOUSE IN THE
BACKYARD.
SO THE CHINCHILLA, WHOSE NAME
WAS... I DON'T KNOW IF IT WAS
CHARLEY OR... I DON'T REMEMBER,
BUT THEY DID HAVE A CHINCHILLA.

Steve says OKAY, QUESTION FIVE:
WHICH PRIME MINISTER USED TO
ENCLOSE 5 dollar BILLS WHEN RETURNING
LETTERS FROM POORER PEOPLE.

The caption changes to "In a giving mood."

JDM says RIGHT, SO THIS WAS PRIME
MINISTER R.B. BENNETT, PRIME
MINISTER FROM 1930 TO 1935,
WHICH IS DURING THE GREAT
DEPRESSION.
MANY CANADIANS WERE DESTITUTE.
THERE WAS NO SUCH THING AS
EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE OR OTHER
GOVERNMENT BENEFITS, SO
DESPERATE PEOPLE WOULD WRITE TO
THE PRIME MINISTER, AND BENNETT
WAS A WEALTHY MAN INDIVIDUALLY
ON HIS OWN, SO HE WOULD SLIP $5
BILLS INTO SOME OF HIS ANSWERS
AND SAY I HOPE THIS HELPS YOU
WITH YOUR CERTAIN... WITH YOUR
SITUATION AND THERE WAS EVEN A
BOY WHO WROTE TO HIM AND SAID I
WANT TO GET A RED WAGON, AND SO
HE SLIPPED SOME MONEY INTO THAT
ENVELOPE AS WELL.

Steve says QUESTION SIX: NOT VERY
MANY OF THE 23 CANADIAN PRIME
MINISTERS LIVED INTO THEIR 90S.
CAN YOU NAME THE ONES THAT DID?

The caption changes to "Long lives lived."

JDM says THAT SOUNDS LIKE MCKENZIE
BOWL, LOUIS ST. LAURENT, CHARLES
TUPPER.
AM I MISSING A FOURTH ONE?

JDM says NO, NOT AS WE SIT HERE TODAY.

JDM says RIGHT.

Steve says JOHN TURNER IS 89, SO
NEXT JUNE HE'LL TURN 90.

JDM says IT'S INTERESTING, SOME OF THE
OLDER PRIME MINISTERS WERE THE
ONES THAT... PEOPLE BORN IN THE
1800S LIVED INTO THEIR 90S.

Steve says QUESTION SEVEN: ONLY
TWO OF OUR 23 PRIME MINISTERS
DIED IN OFFICE.
WHICH ONES?

The caption changes to "Till death do they part."

JDM says JOHN A. MACDONALD AND JOHN
THOMPSON FIVE YEARS LATER DIED
IN OFFICE.
RIGHT WITHIN FIVE YEARS OF EACH
OTHER.
IN MacDONALD'S CASE, WHICH WAS
PROBABLY AN EXPECTED DEATH.
IT CAME AFTER THE RIGORS OF THE
1891 ELECTION WHERE HE TOOK ILL,
AND THE NATION WAS IN MOURNING,
AND LAURIER SAID IT FEELS AS
THOUGH PART OF THE NATION HAS
GIVEN WAY WITH JOHN A. MACDONALD
DYING.
AND THE NEXT ONE DIED AT WINDSOR
CASTLE OVER A HEART ATTACK AND
WAS SENT BACK HOME ON A SHIP.

Steve says I THINK HE'S BURIED
OVER THERE, ISN'T HE?

JDM says NO, ONLY BENNETT.

Steve says QUESTION EIGHT, AND
THERE'S NO CORRECT ANSWER TO THIS.
WHATEVER YOUR...

JDM says THAT'S THE KIND OF QUIZ MY
STUDENTS LIKE.

Steve says IT'S WHATEVER YOUR
SUBJECTIVE OPINION TELLS YOU.
WHICH PRIME MINISTER OF OURS HAS
THE BEST NICKNAME?

The caption changes to "A rose by any other name."

JDM says THAT'S A GOOD QUESTION.
I DON'T KNOW THAT ANY ONE COMES
OUT OFF THE TOP OF MY HEAD, BUT
I KNEW JOHN A. MACDONALD AND HIS
NICKNAME OLD TOMORROW BECAUSE
IT'S NOT A DERIVATIVE OF HIS
NAME, LIKE DIEF THE CHIEF, UNCLE
LOUIS FOR LOUIS ST. LAURENT, SO
I'M GOING TO GO WITH OLD
TOMORROW AS THE MOST CREATIVE
ONE.

Steve says QUESTION NINE: WHICH
OF OUR PRIME MINISTERS WAS THE
BEST GOLFER?

The caption changes to "Fore!"

JDM says THAT WOULD BE... WELL, IT'S
GOING TO BE BETWEEN ROBERT
BORDEN, WHO WE HAVEN'T MENTIONED
ON THE SHOW TODAY.
AND JEAN CHRETIEN.
BOTH INVETERATE GOLFERS.
BORDEN WOULD GOLF ANYWHERE AT
ANY TIME.
IF IT SHOWED HE WOULD SET UP A
COURSE SOMEHOW.
HE GOLFED ON-BOARD SHIP BY
TAKING SWINGS IN A LITTLE GOLF
CABIN.
SO IT WOULD BE CHRETIEN AND
BORDEN WOULD HAVE TO VIE FOR
THAT.

Steve says AND AS LONG AS WE'RE
TALKING ABOUT CHRETIEN, LET'S
FINISH THERE, WITH QUESTION 10:
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN ON THE
RECEIVING END OF A SHAWINIGAN
HANDSHAKE.

The caption changes to "Greetings from Chrétien."

JDM says NO, BUT FORTUNATELY ON THE
REGULAR HANDSHAKE.
CHRETIEN WAS THE ONLY PRIME
MINISTER I MET WHILE IN OFFICE,
1999, SO HE'S BEEN GRACIOUS WITH
HIS TIME TO MEET ME.

A painting of Jean Chrétien posing pops up.

Steve says DO YOU WANT TO REMIND
EVERYBODY WHAT THE SHAWINIGAN
HANDSHAKE IS?

JDM says IN 1995, THERE WAS A PROTEST
NOT LONG AFTER... IT WAS ON FLAG
DAY OF 1995, AND SOMEONE WAS
GETTING IN HIS GRILL.
CHRETIEN, STRESS LEVELS RUNNING
PRETTY HIGH, HE DOESN'T NEED
SOMEONE IN HIS FACE, SO HE
GRABBED HIM BY THE NECK AND
THREW HIM ASIDE AND INJURED HIS
TEETH.
I THINK MOST PEOPLE SAID GOOD ON
CHRETIEN FOR GETTING THAT GUY
OUT OF HIS FACE.

Steve says HE HAD SUNGLASSES ON TOO, SO
HE LOOKED A BIT LIKE A MONSTER.

JDM says HE LOOKED A BIT MENACING.
THE BEHIND THE SCENES STORY SAID
THE ADVANCE PEOPLE SAID THE
PRIME MINISTER IS GOING TO HAVE
TO WEAR SUNGLASSES.
YOU'VE KIND OF SCREWED THAT UP.
IT'S NOT GOING TO LOOK GOOD.
IT WAS FOR NO OTHER REASON THAN
POOR ADVANCE THAT DAY.

The caption changes to "Producer: Harrison Lowman, @HarrisonLowman."

Steve says PERFECT THESE STORIES
AND MORE IN JAMES' LATEST.
THANKS, JAMES.

JDM says THANK YOU.

Watch: 10 Questions on Canada's Prime Ministers