CALGARY, October 13, 2005 ( – Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper said he’s not fazed by the negative press that he and all conservative politicians seem to get from Canadian media sources.

“It doesn’t matter who the Conservative leader is – Joe Clark, Brian Mulroney, Kim Campbell, Preston Manning, Stockwell Day – you name the Conservative leader, the media doesn’t like them,” Harper said in an interview with the Calgary Sun. “I don’t expect any [sic]Âdifferent, to be honest.”

“Remember the predictions,” Harper said, outlining how mainstream media sources had consistently predicted his failure. “I was never supposed to be elected to parliament in the first place,” he said, talking about the 1993 election when he not only won his Calgary West seat but the Reform Party also won 52 seats despite negative media predictions.

Harper continued ,“I was never supposed to be the elected leader of the opposition, it was never supposed to have been possible for me and Peter (MacKay) to unite the parties, I was never supposed to knock Paul Martin from forming a majority government and so now they will say there’s no way I can ever win the next election…So negative predictions don’t really faze me.”

“The biggest of all inaccurate media stories are divisions in the Conservative Party,” Harper added. “I don’t think any Conservative leader in my lifetime has experienced a more united party in opposition as I have. I think it’s unprecedented.”

Commenting about the supposed “rift” between himself and fellow Conservative Peter MacKay, Harper said, “it’s just more fiction. Those in the Liberal media would like there to be strife between me and Peter MacKay and there isn’t. It doesn’t exist.”

“I remember listening for four years how the Liberals were going to win the largest majority in Canadian history and then they won a minority,” Harper said. “So, I’m very optimistic about the next election.”

Harper has been pushing for a fall election.

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