List of Prime Ministers of Canada by longevity

This is a list of Prime Ministers of Canada by longevity. Where the Prime Minister in question is still living, the longevity is calculated up to July 21, 2019.

Two measures of the longevity are given - this is to allow for the differing number of leap days occurring within the life of each Prime Minister. The first column is the number of days between date of birth and date of death, allowing for leap days; the second column breaks this number down into years and days, with the years being the number of whole years the Prime Minister lived, and the days being the remaining number of days after his/her last birthday.

Overview

If a Prime Minister served more than one non-consecutive term, the dates listed below are for the beginning of their first term, and the end of their final term.

The median age at which a Prime Minister first takes office is roughly 54 years and 10 months, which falls between Wilfrid Laurier and John Turner. The youngest person to become Prime Minister was Joe Clark, who took office one day before his 40th birthday. The oldest person to become Prime Minister was Charles Tupper at the age of 74 years, 304 days. The oldest person ever to serve as Prime Minister was John A. Macdonald, who was still in office when he died at the age of 76 years, 146 days.

The oldest living Prime Minister is John Turner, born June 7, 1929 (aged 90 years, 44 days). The second-oldest living Prime Minister is Jean Chrétien, born January 11, 1934 (aged 85 years, 191 days). The youngest living Prime Minister is the incumbent, Justin Trudeau, born December 25, 1971 (aged 47 years, 208 days).

The longest lived Prime Minister was Charles Tupper, who died at the age of 94 years, 120 days. Mackenzie Bowell was the second-longest lived Prime Minister. Bowell died at the age of 93 years, 348 days, only 136 days short of matching Tupper. John Turner, the oldest living Prime Minister, will tie Tupper if he lives to October 4, 2023. The shortest lived Prime Minister was John S. Thompson, who died (in office) at the age of 49 years, 32 days. Macdonald and Thompson were the only 2 Prime Ministers to die in office.

In 2015, Justin Trudeau became the second-youngest person to become Prime Minister. He started his first term at the age of 43 years and 314 days. The only person to become prime minister younger than Justin Trudeau was Joe Clark.

Joe Clark has the distinction of having the longest retirement of any former prime minister, currently at 39 years, 140 days since leaving office on March 3, 1980. He surpassed the previous record, held by Arthur Meighen (33 years, 315 days) on January 12, 2014. The prime minister with the shortest retirement is John Abbott, who died on October 30, 1893, 340 days after he left office on November 24, 1892.

4 Prime Ministers have lived into their 90's. They are Sir Charles Tupper (1821–1915), Sir Mackenzie Bowell (1823–1917), Louis St. Laurent (1882–1973) and John Napier Turner (born 1929).

Prime Ministers of Canada

#
Prime Minister
Date of birth
Start date
of (first) term
Age at beginning
of (first) term
End date
of (final) term
Total time
in office
Length of
retirement
Date of death
Lifespan
1 John A. Macdonald January 11, 1815 July 1, 1867[1] 52 years, 171 days June 6, 1891[2] 6,934 days N/A June 6, 1891 27,905 days (76 years, 146 days)
2 Alexander Mackenzie January 28, 1822 November 7, 1873 51 years, 283 days October 9, 1878 1,797 days 13 years, 191 days April 17, 1892 25,647 days (70 years, 80 days)
3 John Abbott March 12, 1821 June 16, 1891 70 years, 96 days November 24, 1892 527 days 340 days October 30, 1893 26,530 days (72 years, 232 days)
4 John Thompson November 10, 1845 December 5, 1892 47 years, 25 days December 12, 1894[2] 737 days N/A December 12, 1894 17,929 days (49 years, 32 days)
5 Mackenzie Bowell December 27, 1823 December 21, 1894 70 years, 359 days April 27, 1896 493 days 21 years, 227 days December 10, 1917 34,316 days (93 years, 348 days)
6 Charles Tupper July 2, 1821 May 1, 1896 74 years, 304 days July 8, 1896 68 days 19 years, 114 days October 30, 1915 34,452 days (94 years, 120 days)
7 Wilfrid Laurier November 20, 1841 July 11, 1896 54 years, 234 days October 5, 1911 5,563 days 7 years, 135 days February 17, 1919 28,212 days (77 years, 89 days)
8 Robert Borden June 26, 1854 October 10, 1911 57 years, 106 days July 10, 1920 3,196 days 16 years, 335 days June 10, 1937 30,299 days (82 years, 349 days)
9 Arthur Meighen June 16, 1874 July 10, 1920 46 years, 24 days September 25, 1926 625 days 33 years, 315 days August 5, 1960 31,461 days (86 years, 50 days)
10 W.L. Mackenzie King December 17, 1874 December 29, 1921 47 years, 12 days November 15, 1948 7,826 days 1 year, 249 days July 22, 1950 27,610 days (75 years, 217 days)
11 R.B. Bennett July 3, 1870 August 7, 1930 60 years, 35 days October 23, 1935 1,903 days 11 years, 246 days June 26, 1947 28,116 days (76 years, 358 days)
12 Louis St. Laurent February 1, 1882 November 15, 1948 66 years, 288 days June 21, 1957 3,140 days 16 years, 34 days July 25, 1973 33,411 days (91 years, 174 days)
13 John Diefenbaker September 18, 1895 June 21, 1957 61 years, 276 days April 22, 1963 2,131 days 16 years, 116 days August 16, 1979 30,647 days (83 years, 332 days)
14 Lester B. Pearson April 23, 1897 April 22, 1963 65 years, 364 days April 20, 1968 1,825 days 4 years, 251 days December 27, 1972 27,641 days (75 years, 248 days)
15 Pierre Trudeau October 18, 1919 April 20, 1968 48 years, 185 days June 30, 1984 5,642 days 16 years, 90 days September 28, 2000 29,566 days (80 years, 346 days)
16 Joe Clark June 5, 1939 June 4, 1979 39 years, 364 days March 3, 1980 273 days 39 years, 140 days 29,266 days (80 years, 46 days)
17 John Turner June 7, 1929 June 30, 1984 55 years, 23 days September 17, 1984 79 days 34 years, 307 days 32,916 days (90 years, 44 days)
18 Brian Mulroney March 20, 1939 September 17, 1984 45 years, 181 days June 25, 1993 3,203 days 26 years, 26 days 29,343 days (80 years, 123 days)
19 Kim Campbell March 10, 1947 June 25, 1993 46 years, 107 days November 4, 1993 132 days 25 years, 259 days 26,431 days (72 years, 133 days)
20 Jean Chrétien January 11, 1934 November 4, 1993 59 years, 297 days December 12, 2003 3,690 days 15 years, 221 days 31,237 days (85 years, 191 days)
21 Paul Martin August 28, 1938 December 12, 2003 65 years, 106 days February 6, 2006 787 days 13 years, 165 days 29,547 days (80 years, 327 days)
22 Stephen Harper April 30, 1959 February 6, 2006 46 years, 282 days November 4, 2015 3,558 days 3 years, 259 days 21,997 days (60 years, 82 days)
23 Justin Trudeau December 25, 1971 November 4, 2015 43 years, 314 days Incumbent 1,355 days Incumbent 17,375 days (47 years, 208 days)
# Prime Minister Date of birth Start date of
(first) term
Age at beginning
of (first) term
End date
of (final) term
Total time
in office
Length of
retirement
Date of death Lifespan

[3]

Oldest living Prime Ministers of Canada

Not all prime ministers live to become the oldest of their time. Of the 15 deceased prime ministers, 13 eventually became the oldest of their time, while 2 did not (William Lyon Mackenzie King and Lester B. Pearson being the only exceptions). John A. Macdonald became the oldest living prime minister when he was appointed in 1867 and remained so until his death in 1891, for a record of almost 24 years. John Thompson became the oldest living prime minister after the death of John Abbott, but he survived Abbott by only 1 year and 43 days.

On two occasion the oldest living prime minister lost this distinction not by his death, but due to the appointment of a prime minister who was older. Alexander Mackenzie lost this distinction when John Abbott was appointed. Mackenzie Bowell lost this distinction when Charles Tupper was appointed, but when Tupper died in 1915, Bowell regained it again until his own death in 1917 for a total period of 3 years and 182 days. Louis St. Laurent was the oldest to acquire this distinction for the first time at the age of 78 years and 186 days. Lester B. Pearson, who was 75 years and 248 days old when he died, on December 27, 1972 was the oldest and most recent prime minister to die without ever acquiring this distinction.

Prime Minister Became oldest living prime minister Ceased to be oldest living prime minister Age at start date Age at end date Duration (years, days)
John A. Macdonald July 1, 1867 June 6, 1891 52 years, 171 days 76 years, 146 days 23 years, 340 days
Alexander Mackenzie June 6, 1891 June 16, 1891 69 years, 129 days 69 years, 139 days 10 days
John Abbott June 16, 1891 October 30, 1893 70 years, 96 days 72 years, 232 days 2 years, 136 days
John Thompson October 30, 1893 December 12, 1894 47 years, 354 days 49 years, 32 days 1 year, 43 days
Mackenzie Bowell December 12, 1894 May 1, 1896 70 years, 350 days 72 years, 126 days 1 year, 141 days
Charles Tupper May 1, 1896 October 30, 1915 74 years, 304 days 94 years, 120 days 19 years, 182 days
Mackenzie Bowell October 30, 1915 December 10, 1917 91 years, 307 days 93 years, 348 days 2 years, 41 days
Wilfrid Laurier December 10, 1917 February 17, 1919 76 years, 20 days 77 years, 89 days 1 year, 69 days
Robert Borden February 17, 1919 June 10, 1937 64 years, 236 days 82 years, 349 days 18 years, 113 days
R.B. Bennett June 10, 1937 June 26, 1947 66 years, 342 days 76 years, 358 days 10 years, 16 days
Arthur Meighen June 26, 1947 August 5, 1960 73 years, 10 days 86 years, 50 days 13 years, 40 days
Louis St. Laurent August 5, 1960 July 25, 1973 78 years, 186 days 91 years, 174 days 12 years, 354 days
John Diefenbaker July 25, 1973 August 16, 1979 77 years, 310 days 83 years, 332 days 6 years, 22 days
Pierre Trudeau August 16, 1979 September 28, 2000 59 years, 302 days 80 years, 346 days 21 years, 43 days
John Turner September 28, 2000 Current oldest living prime minister 71 years, 113 days Current oldest living prime minister 18 years, 296 days
Prime Minister Became oldest living prime minister Ceased to be oldest living prime minister Age at start date Age at end date Duration (years, days)

[4]

Trivia

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Date of Canadian Confederation.
  2. ^ a b Died in office on this date.
  3. ^ Updated daily according to UTC.
  4. ^ Updated daily according to UTC.

Sources

Prime Minister of Canada

The prime minister of Canada (French: Premier ministre du Canada) is the primary minister of the Crown, chairman of the Cabinet, and Canada's head of government. The current, and 23rd, prime minister of Canada is the Liberal Party's Justin Trudeau, following the 2015 Canadian federal election. Canadian prime ministers are styled as The Right Honourable (French: Le Très Honorable), a privilege maintained for life.

The prime minister of Canada is in charge of the Prime Minister's Office. The prime minister also chooses the ministers that make up the Cabinet. The two groups, with the authority of the Parliament of Canada, manage the Government of Canada and the Canadian Armed Forces. The Cabinet and the prime minister also appoint members of the Senate of Canada, the judges of the Supreme Court of Canada and other federal courts, and the leaders and boards, as required under law, of various Crown Corporations, and selects the Governor General of Canada. Under the Canadian constitution, all of the power to exercise these activities is actually vested in the Monarchy of Canada, but in practice the Canadian monarch (who is the head of state) or their representative, the governor general of Canada approves them routinely, and their role is largely ceremonial, and their powers are only exercised under the advice of the Prime Minister.Not outlined in any constitutional document, the office exists only as per long-established convention (originating in Canada's former colonial power, the United Kingdom) that stipulates the monarch's representative, the governor general, must select as prime minister the person most likely to command the confidence of the elected House of Commons; this individual is typically the leader of the political party that holds the largest number of seats in that chamber.

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