Stephen Harper celebrates birthday with cards sent to, mailed back from party supporters

Canada Politics
Photos of birthday card for Stephen Harper via Tumblr user richardlazarusisgo.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper is celebrating his 56th birthday today, April 30, and he'll be receiving well-wishes from many of his party supporters thanks to his wife, Laureen.

Members of the Conservative Party of Canada received a letter last week from Laureen Harper, asking for donations ahead of the October 19 election. The mailout also included a card for the prime minister's birthday, which was shared on Tumblr. It reads, "Happy Birthday, Prime Minister! Wishing you another Happy Birthday on April 30th... and another Conservative Majority victory for Canada this October!"

Stephen Harper birthday card, via richardlazarusisgo/Tumblr

The Tumblr post showing the card was reblogged hundreds of times, and was spotted by leftist political news site Press Progress, who didn't think much of the gesture:

"While it's not uncommon for political parties to use the birthdays of leaders as an opportunity to collect information from supporters, in this case, it's hard not to wonder if the Conservatives are worried no one will wish the Prime Minister 'happy birthday' without a nudge?"

But party members, like Robert Hume of Ottawa, say that the letter from Laureen was a nice gesture, and he found the whole thing to be quite thoughtful.

"It was a nice, sweet, letter.," Hume told Yahoo Canada in an exchange via Reddit. "Written from Laureen Harper ... something along the lines of how she and her kids are proud of Stephen, how hard he works and the good job he does. The letter asked for a campaign donation, and also that since Stephen's birthday was approaching (April 30), she thought it would be a nice surprise for supporters to sign a birthday card (included) for him and mail it in."

In the past, the Conservative Party of Canada has set up a site where you can send birthday greetings to the prime minister. This appears to be the first year when party members have been sent actual cards to mail back.

UPDATE: The Conservative Party of Canada and Laureen Harper has set up a link where you can wish Stephen Harper a happy birthday this year, too, on a page titled "Happy Birthday Prime Minister Harper!" Supporters received an email yesterday from Laureen, asking them to sign a card for the prime minister, and adding that it would be a big surprise (so apologies to the Prime Minister and his wife if we've blown it).

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