Grant Abraham, the founder of the United Party of Canada, chose the riding of Durham, where former Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole held a seat, as the political battleground to debut his new right-of-centre party.

He’s a father of four boys aged 15 to 26, a husband, a lawyer, and the author of the Battle for the Soul of Canada : Firing the Forge, which he says outlines the necessity of his newly found party.

Abraham believes the current Conservative Party of Canada betrayed social conservatives, a large contingent of the Conservative base.

“The United Party of Canada is essentially a grassroots, fiscally conservative party that seeks to properly integrate the social conservative values that the Conservative party used to hold on to, and that were brought into the party from the Reform era people,” Abraham said.

In Abraham’s book, he discusses the “pathology of dysfunction” within the modern CPC.

“They move from a Preston Manning Reform era social conservative agenda to essentially having Pierre Poilievre refer to them as ‘those embarrassing and bombastic people’ that came to typify the Reform era.’”

Abraham was referring to a comment Poilievre made in 2006, lauding then Prime Minister Stephen Harper for not “seducing the centre” as some suggested but “taming the right,” by getting the Reform era conservatives to go along with legalizing gay marriage and abortion, “while making almost no sounds at all.”

Abraham believes social conservatives have been duped, and that his party would bring back a Reform Party-style social agenda into the modern political discussion.

“I feel that it’s profoundly significant [we’re] in Durham because I think the people in Durham were radically betrayed by Erin O’Toole,” Abraham said. “He promised a true blue platform for the country, then went as far left as Justin Trudeau in terms of the election.”

The UPC differs from the CPC on some key policies.

“I would want to see us come out of the Paris Accords…stop funding abortion policy overseas. We sent $700 million a year overseas to educate or inform developing countries towards abortion. I would like to see the family really strongly strengthened in Canada and assist with development of a strong adoption infrastructure,” Abraham said.

Abraham also opposes Medical Assistance in Dying as a whole.

“I think MAID as a treatment, that kids can elect for, is an abomination and I don’t see these issues being engaged by the CPC,” he said.

Though Abraham agrees mostly with the economic policies of the CPC, he believes the conservatives are positioned highly in the political marketplace because voters just want to be rid of Trudeau’s government.

“I’m saying we have deeper issues at play other than getting rid of this man called Justin Trudeau,” he said. “If we get rid of him, do we get rid of the plan to undermine the country?” Abraham said. 

The UPC is anti-globalist and opposes Trudeau’s “post-national” vision for Canada.

“It’s something that we need to talk about because it starts the answer to the question of where has our country gone,” he said. “It’s why the United Kingdom left the European Union. Post-nationalism means we migrate our democratic sovereignty to governors that are somewhere else and someone else.”

Abraham named a few international groups he believes has too much influence in Canada, the United Nations, the World Health Organization, the World Economic Forum and philanthropist George Soros.

“This is about contending for our borders, our people, our money, our wealth, our future, our prosperity,” Abraham said.

While many believe Abraham would be a natural fit for the People’s Party of Canada, the UPC founder says he refuses to join forces with Maxime Bernier’s party.

“I can’t live in a policy house that denies the existence of God,” he said. “There’s a clear libertarian humanistic framework within the PPC. It’s undeniable.”

The PPC allows pro-life candidates into the party and if those candidates were elected, they would be able to table any bill they want, including a pro-life bill.

However, due to the absence of an explicit pro-life stance from the PPC as a whole, Abraham felt he needed to provide a pro-life populist alternative.

Abraham applauded the PPC when it formed as he agreed with Bernier that Canada needed a new voice for conservatism. But as an Albertan, he doesn’t believe the west would elect Bernier due to his “Quebecness.”

Abraham would like to bring spirituality into the national discussion and agrees with potential voters he has spoken with that Canada is entrenched in a spiritual battle as well, hence the name of his book.

‘We’ve disconnected from the value framework and the moorings that built the nation. So when you look at our Charter of Rights and Freedoms, we have the primacy of God in the rule of law,” he said.

He thinks without spirituality at the center of Canada’s political structures, Canada will lack the framework required to recognise the “encroaching darkness.”

Abraham aspired to be a candidate in the Conservatve leadership race in 2022, but was denied as a candidate by the Leadership Election Organizing Committee due to financing issues, according to the committee.

The Conservative candidate Jamil Jivani is the favourite to win in the Durham byelection set for Mar. 4.

For Abraham, while becoming an elected official would be an honour, introducing his party to Canadians is a “bigger win.” He said his party is targeting 250 seats in the next general election and his party is building.