The House of Commons

An election brochure from O'Sullivan's campaign

At just 20 years of age, Sean was the youngest Member of Parliament elected to the House of Commons.   While working as an MP, he continued his studies at Brock University part-time, graduating with distinction.  He was re-elected two years later in 1974.  

He rose to greater prominence in 1975 when he took up the cause of giving the beaver official status as a Canadian symbol.  This was motivated by New York Senator Bernard Smith's introduction of a bill in January 1975 to make the beaver a state symbol.  O'Sullivan drafted a simple, one-sentence bill to recognize the beaver as a symbol of the sovereignty of the Dominion of Canada.  The bill received extensive media coverage and public support. 

O'Sullivan spoke during the Bill's second reading in the House of Commons.  He said that "there must be more to life than just financial facts and figures.  There must be things to touch one's soul, heart and emotions if we are to be complete persons and a whole nation.  That is the importance of symbols".  The Bill was officially passed on March 24, 1975.


Petition to "keep the beaver Canadian"

The Beaver Bill:  an Act to recognize the beaver as a national symbol of Canada