Pacific scandal, 1873, a major event in Canadian political history. Charges were made in Parliament that the Conservative administration of Sir John A. Macdonald had accepted campaign funds from Sir Hugh Allan in return for a promise to award Allan's syndicate the contract to build the Canadian Pacific Railway. Macdonald's statement that the contract and the contributions were unconnected was received with skepticism. Donald A. Smith (later Lord Strathcona) broke with Macdonald over the crisis and through his publicly expressed lack of confidence in Macdonald was partly responsible for the Conservative administration's downfall. The government was forced to resign because of the scandal, and the Conservative party was badly defeated in the ensuing elections.
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