The case of the new Minister of Defense Gordon O'Connor is illustrative. A veteran of the Canadian Forces, he was a tank squadron commander and is now a retired Brigadier-General who spent eight years as a lobbyist for some of Canada's largest military contractors. In his words, he was "helping defense companies navigate complicated government procurement rules." He ended his career as a lobbyist only to run for public office. He won a seat and became a Member of Parliament in June 2004. He then became the Conservative Party's Critic for National Defense and was a member of the Standing Committee on National Defense and Veterans Affairs.
When he was new to the House of Commons in November 2004, O'Connor's lobbyist past was scrutinized by journalists. At the time he flatly denied that his work as a military lobbyist could pose a potential conflict of interest in his role as defense critic. "I don't decide who wins and loses contracts," said O'Connor at the time. Now that's he's Minister of Defense, he will decide who wins and loses contracts.
Taken from Canada's Military Media Complex