Path: Table of Contents > Essay on Party Politics > Party 044
Canadian Social Credit Party, 044
Variables and Codes for 1950-1962
For the concepts and variables below, use these links to Political Parties: A Cross-National Survey:
Governmental Status
Issue Orientation
Goal Orientation
Organizational Complexity
Organizational Power
Organizational Coherence
Membership Involvement
The "ac" code is for "adequacy-confidence"--a data quality measure ranging from 0 (low) to 9 (high)

Institutionalization Variables, 1.01-1.06
1.01 Year of Origin and 1.02 Name Changes
1935, ac9
9, ac9
The birth of the Social Credit Movement in Canada can be fixed at1933, when William Aberhart, dean and president of the Calgary prophetic bible institute, offered a program of instruction in social credit at the institute and promoted study groups and lectures in Alberta province (Irving, 1959--61). Soon afterwards, other groups arose in various provinces, and the Douglas credit league (named after major C.H. Douglas, the British originator of Social Credit Theory) was formed the same year with headquarters in Toronto (Irving, p.73). Aberhart's Alberta activity, however, proceeded independently of the Douglas credit league, and Social Credit study groups in Alberta were coordinated under a central council at the bible institute. The movement was proclaimed as strictly educational until January, 1935, when Aberhart's Social Credit proposals were rejected at the convention of the united farmers of Alberta, the governing party in the province (Irving, 120). Soon thereafter, the central council gave instructions for holding constituency conventions (Macpherson, 1962--147). Central conventions were held in Calgary and Edmonton in April, 1935, and the southern and northern Alberta Social Credit Leagues were formed for the purpose of contesting the next provincial elections. In the elections that august, the Social Credit Leagues won 56 of the 63 seats in the legislature. The astounding electoral success of the Social Credit Movement in Alberta encouraged the political, but not necessarily electoral, activities of Social Credit groups elsewhere in Canada. None, however. Reproduced anything like the early Alberta success. In Quebec, for example, the Alberta triumph stimulated the formation of La Ligue du Credit Social de la province du Quebec in may, 1936, by Louis even, Armand Turpin, and Louis Dugal (Stein, 1973--41). The Ligue was originally conceived as a movement rather than a political party, and its efforts in the 1940 federal elections were unrewarding. In 1944, the Union Crediste des Electeurs, which split from the Ligue, joined with the Social Credit League of Alberta and six other small provincial movements to form a Social Credit Association of Canada (Stein, p.56). This national level Social Credit organization had a shaky existence (the Union des Electeurs withdrew in 1948), but it survived throughout our time period as a weak federal expression of the more vital provincial Social Credit organizations, especially in Alberta and British Columbia. Although the Social Crediters campaigned under the New Democracy label for the 1940 federal election, the party reverted to 'social Credit" for the 1945 election and retained the label in english-speaking Canada throughout our time period. In French Canada, the Social Credit movement began as La Ligue du Credit Social de la province du Quebec. The splinter group, Union Crediste des Electeurs, evolved into the Union des Electeurs in 1945. Dissident members of the union, led by Real Caouette, then formed le Ralliement des Creditistes (Social Credit rally) in 1958. This term was favored by the Quebec Social Crediters throughout the rest of our period.
1.03 Organizational Discontinuity
8, ac9
As discussed under the variable "national participation," the social credit party at the national level was essentially a loose organization of members elected to parliament from areas which were strongly Social Credit in provincial elections. From 1950 through 1957,the Social Credit representation in parliament came exclusively from Alberta and British Columbia--mostly from Alberta. The 1958 elections, however, returned no Social Credit members to parliament. Then in 1962, the Social Credit representation spurted upwards-- due mostly to the unprecedented success of Social Credit candidates in Quebec under le Ralliement des Creditistes. The influx of French Canadian Social Crediters at the national level has been interpreted as a major merger with the previously predominantly english-speaking Canadians in the national Social Credit Party.
1.04 Leadership Competition
12, ac6
William Aberhart is widely recognized as the founder of the social credit party in Canada. In the same year as its founding in 1935, Aberhart's party won 89 percent of the seats in the Alberta provincial legislative assembly. His efforts to export Social Credit electoral victories outside of Alberta were discouraged, however, by a relatively poor showing in the 1938 saskatchewan provincial elections, and Aberhart remained primarily provincially oriented (Mallory, 1954--108). Upon Aberhart's death in 1943, E.C. Manning replaced him as Social Credit leader and premier in Alberta--positions he held throughout our time period. Neither Aberhart nor Manning ever served in the federal parliament, where the Social Credit leader in the house of commons was John H. Blackmore from 1935 to 1944. While the colorul and charismatic Aberhart was alive, there was little room for national leadership to be exercised outside of his person. After his death, a Social Credit association of Canada was founded in Toronto in 1944, and solon low, treasurer of the Alberta government under Manning, was elected president (Stein, 1973--46). Low was elected to parliament in the 1945 federal elections and became national leader of the party both in and out of parliament. But note that the party's parliamentary delegation at this time consisted entirely of Alberta representatives. This was true until 1953, when British Columbia returned four Social Credit representatives to temper the Alberta character of the delegation. Low remained as leader until his resignation in 1958, when Diefenbaker's stunning victory in the prairies wiped out all social credit representation in parliament. The national leadership of the party for the next few years is unclear, but Robert N. Thompson of Alberta was elected president of the Social Credit association of Canada in Ottawa in 1960 and was elected national party leader in 1961 in a close vote over Real Caouette of Quebec (Stein, p.80-82). Thompson assumed leadership of the Social Credit delegation in parliament after the 1962 elections, despite the fact that Quebec furnished 26 of the 30 members . After the end of our time period, leadership of the social Social Credit Party eventually passed to Real Caouette as the fortunes of the Social Credit Party remained low in the western provinces. Thompson himself resigned and became a progressive conservative (Stein, p.104). Caouette was named leader of the Ralliement Creditiste-Social Credit rally at a convention in Hull in 1971. By this time, the parliamentary delegation of Social Creditmembers was entirely from Quebec.
1.05 Legislative Instability
Instability is .62, ac9
Social Credit representation in parliament has been primarily a reflection of provincial politics and varied greatly during our time period. At the beginning of the period, all 10 Social Credit members came from Alberta. In 1953, four Social Credit members were returned from British Columbia to join now 11 from Alberta. In 1957, British Columbia sent 6 to bolster a group of 13 from Alberta. But in 1958, all Social Credit candidates fell before Diefenbaker's progressive conservative sweep through the west. The party had no representation in parliament until 1962, when Alberta and British Columbia barely recovered two seats each while Quebec, never before a stronghold of Social Credit strength, voted in an astounding 26 members.
1.06 Electoral Instability
Instability is .46, ac9
The Social Credit Movement had relatively strong followings throughout the west and scattered followings in other parts of Canada, so it always had some appeal outside Alberta and did better at the polls than its provincial basis might suggest. Still, it never received more than 12 percent of the vote during our period and dropped to as low as 2 percent in 1958.

Governmental Status Variables, 2.01-2.07
 2.01 Government Discrimination
0, ac9
There is no evidence that the Social Credit Party suffered any discrimination in its attempt to participate in politics. Indeed, the introduction of a single alternative ballot in British Columbia seems to have led to a Social Credit government in British Columbia in 1953 (Mallory, 1954--168). It is true that the federal government invalidated a number of provincial monetary policies enacted by the Alberta government, but this is judged to be a matter of constitutional interpretation and not interference with the party's right to participate in politics.
2.02 Governmental Leadership
0 out of 7 for 1950-56, ac9
0 out of 6 for 1957-62, ac9
The Social Credit Party never came close to forming a federal government, but it did constitute the government in Alberta from 1935 throughout the end of our period and also governed in British Columbia from 1953 through the end of the period.
2.03 Cabinet Participation
0 out of 7 for 1950-56, ac9
0 out of 6 for 1957-62, ac9
No member of the Social Credit Party was invited into the federal cabinet.
2.04 National Participation
4, ac9
The Social Credit was not only a regional party, it was primarily a provincial party, holding most of its parliamentary seats during the first part of our period by virtue of its strength in Alberta. Its only other seats during the same time were in British Columbia. In the second part of our period, the picture shifted abruptly, with Quebec furnishing 26 out of 30 seats won by Social Credit candidates in the 1962 elections. But throughout this period, Social Credit candidates sought election in other provinces as well. In 1953, 72 Social Credit candidates were fielded in six provinces. In 1957, it was 115 candidates in 8 provinces, and 82 candidates in 7 provinces in 1958. Finally in 1962, 230 candidates contested seats in every province of Canada (Beck, 1968--286, 308, 326, 348). So social credit did not lack for trying. It just was not very successful outside its special area of appeal in the west (and later, Quebec).
2.05 Legislative Strength
Strength is .05 for 1950-56, ac9 and .03 for 1957-62, ac9
Social Credit representation in parliament has been primarily a reflection of provincial politics and varied greatly during our time period. At the beginning of the period, all 10 Social Credit members came from Alberta. In 1953, four Social Credit members were returned from British Columbia to join now 11 from Alberta. In 1957, British Columbia sent 6 to bolster a group of 13 from Alberta. But in 1958, all Social Credit candidates fell before Diefenbaker's progressive conservative sweep through the west. The party had no representation in parliament until 1962, when Alberta and British Columbia barely recovered two seats each while Quebec, never before a stronghold of Social Credit strength, voted in an astounding 26 members.
2.06 Electoral Strength
Strength is .05 for 1950-56, ac9 and .07 for 1957-62, ac9
The Social Credit Movement had relatively strong followings throughout the west and scattered followings in other parts of Canada, so it always had some appeal outside Alberta and did better at the polls than its provincial basis might suggest. Still, it never received more than 12 percent of the vote during our period and dropped to as low as 2 percent in 1958.
2.07 Outside Origin
8, ac9
The Social Credit Party was founded by William Aberhart, principal of crescent heights high school from 1915 to 1935, when he founded the party. Aberhart also was president and dean of the Calgary prophetic bible institute and won fame throughout the prairie provinces for his religious broadcasts over radio station CFCN beginning in 1925 (Irving, 1959--31). His spellbinding appeal over the radio created a following which he readily converted into voters after he became involved in Social Credit and plunged into politics.

Issue Orientation Variables, 5.01-5.15
 5.01 Ownership of Means of Production
-2, ac9
Social Credit never advocated government ownership in its program of economic reform, even in its early days when it identified the financiers and moneyed interests as the enemy. By world war ii, socialism was specifically attacked by major Douglas himself--the originator of Social Credit theory--as he developed his conspiracy theory linking together the Nazis, Jews, Communists , and Socialists in a world plot against freedom (Macpherson, 1962--206). After the war, Social Credit spokesmen in Canada became explicitly Anti-Socialist. W.A.C. Bennett, the Social Credit premier of British Columbia, defined his party's philosophy simply as "the opposite of socialism" (Robin, 1967--208). E.C. Manning, Social Credit premier of Alberta, linked Social Credit philosophy with "the proven merits of private ownership and competitive individual enterprise as the keystones of a free and efficient economy" (Manning, 1967--73). During our period, the party's platforms regularly supported free enterprise (Carrigan, 1968--233, 287). Nevertheless, the social credit party accepted the existing degree of government ownership and did not advocate returning government activities to private operation.
5.02 Government Role in Economic Planning
1, ac9
Social Credit theory, being based on ideas of broad purchasing power, was opposed to restricted credit and "tight" money policies. Thus, while opposed to government ownership, Social Credit theory required government regulation of financial institutions--meaning some degree of government intervention in the economy. Attempts to license and control the banks in Alberta in accordance with Social Credit Theory met with invalidation by the federal government (Macpherson, 1962--209). Apart from its commitment to certain aspects of monetary policy, the Social Credit Party opposed widespread government intervention in the economy.
5.03 Redistribution of Wealth
0, ac7
The Social Credit position is confusing on redistribution of wealth. On the one hand, the party was founded during the depression with promises of improving the lot of the masses by providing purchasing power and curtailing the profits of financiers, and the widespread distribution of purchasing power remained a platform plank during our period. On the other hand, the party consistently called for reduction of taxes, such as those "which unduly retard development and penalize individual enterprise" (Carrigan, 1968--287). So redistribution of wealth was not to be accomplished through taxation.
5.04 Social Welfare
1, ac5
Social welfare proposals received only modest attention in social credit platforms during our period. Only the 1957 platform was specific in advocating an increase in old age pension payments to $100 per month (Carrigan, 1968--233), although platforms proposed home ownership for all. But these ideas were not stressed.
5.05 Secularization of Society
-2, ac9
The Social Credit Party was, at the very least, benevolent to religion. Founded by a Baptist minister operating out of the Calgary Prophetic Bible Institute, the early Social Credit Movement had distinct fundamentalist overtones, complete with hymns sung before, during, and after campaign rallies (Irving, 1959--291). William Aberhart wove together his evangelical religious doctrine with the arcane principles of Social Credit theory, asking his followers to accept his economic theory on faith (Macpherson, 1962--145). Given the protestant, fundamentalist originsof Social Credit in the western prairies, it is somewhat ironic that the resurgence of Social Credit representation in parliament in 1962 came from Catholic French Canada, where its Quebec originators stressed the affinity of Social Credit theory and catholic social doctrine (Stein, 1973--47). In any event, the party's 1958 platform promised that 'social Credit will establish Christian Democracy," while in 1962 it recognized the individual "as a divinely-created being with both spiritual and physical potentials and needs" and regarded "the sanctity of the home as fundamental to the preservation of Christian civilization" (Carrigan, 1968--257, 287).
5.06 Support of the Military
1 for 1st half, ac5
-1 for 2nd half, ac5
The Social Credit platforms did not discuss defense policy at any length. The 1949 platforms recognized a need to keep Canada prepared. In 1957, the party cautioned against inefficiency and waste in the military. By 1962, the party proposed to "re-design Canada's defence strategy and military forces to eliminate useless expenditures on forms of defence obsolete in the light of modern circumstances" (Carrigan, 1968--195, 234, 289). So the party appeared to become less supportive of the military over time.
5.07 Alignment with East-West Blocs
-5 for 1st half, ac9
-3 for 2nd half, ac7
The party began our period by promising full support to nato in its 1949 platform. It ended our period in 1962 by urging participation in the U.N. "in the role of an independent nation dedicated to the cause of world peace rather than as a member nation of any of the several world power blocs," although it also promised to work to strengthen Nato only for the defense of non-aggressor nations (Carrigan, 1968--195, 289). So the party shifted its position noticeably during the time period.
5.08 Anti-Colonialism
No information
5.09 Supranational Integration
1, ac9
Social Credit platforms during the first part of our period specifically endorsed membership in the commonwealth. Although no reference was made to the commonwealth during the second part, there is no evidence to suggest that the party's position changed significantly.
5.10 National Integration
-3, ac7
Early Social Credit governments in Alberta were continually frustrated by federal invalidation of their financial programs due to dominion authority in the monetary field. Aberhart's 'strident provincial autonomist stance" fit easily with the French Canadian nationalism of the Quebec Social Credit Movement (Stein, 1973--52). But during our time period, neither the western english wing of the party nor the French Canadian wing was separationist. In the context of Canadian politics, the party urged a clearer recognition of provincial powers, which has been interpreted here as confederationist.
5.11 Electoral Participation
5, ac9
The party platform of 1962 even urged the right to vote at 18 (Carrigan, 1968--290).
5.12 Protection of Civil rights
0, ac5
Social Credit platforms generally avoided blanket endorsements of civil rights, and they usually called for 'selective immigration." party spokesmen for a time also embraced a conspiracy theory of world domination which curiously linked Jews and Masons (Irving, 1959--7).
5.13 Interference with Civil Liberties
-3, ac5
There is no evidence that the party sought to limit the exercise of civil liberties. Indeed, freedom of the individual was cited as a cornerstone of its philosophy.
5.14 / 5.15 US--Soviet Experts Left-Right Ratings
US Says nothing
Soviets say 1, the most reactionary party. Relies for its support on the upper bourgeoisie of Canada and the monopolistic circles of the U.S.A. Which have tremendous capital holdings in Alberta and British Columbia. In the manner of Goldwater reactionaries and birchers, the party comes forth with extreme Anti-Communist and Anti-Soviet positions with respect to international tensions and strengthening friendly ties with socialist countries .

Goal Orientation Variables, 6.01-6.55
 6.00 Open Competition in the Electoral Process
4, ac9
The Social Credit Party relied exclusively on open competition in elections to win government office.
6.01-6.05--2, ac9. The party commonly advertised its candidates through mass media and selected appeals, promoted candidates through direct contact, held rallies, and facilitated its supporters " voting in elections.
6.10 Restricting Party Competition
0, ac9
The Social Credit Party did not engage in restricting electoral competition. Despite Social Credit's control of the Alberta government from 1935 through the end of our time period, its candidates were frequently contested by other parties in both provincial and federal elections and never received a majority of the total votes cast in the federal elections from 1953 to 1962.
6.11-6.16--0, ac9. There were no reports in the literature concerning Social Credit use of restrictive tactics such as harassing opposition workers or falsifying vote reports.
6.20 Subverting the Political System
0, ac9
The Social Credit Party did not employ a subversive strategy.
6.21-6 .26--0, ac9. It also did not employ any subversive tactics, such as boycotting elections, leading strikes, or sabotaging government facilities.
6.30 Propagandizing Ideas and Program
6.31--1, ac8. Propagandization of Social Credit doctrine was key to its early success in Alberta, as Aberhart used his regular radio broadcasts creatively in this manner. Later, Real Caouette made effective use of television to win supporters (Engelmann and Schwartz, 1975--134-135). But the party did not own and operate these media facilities. In Quebec, however, the party operated the important newspaper, "Vers Demain," and later the periodical "regards" (Stein, 1973--78).
6.32--1, ac9. The party did not, strictly speaking, operate party schools, but it sponsored numerous study groups on Social Credit theory.
6.33 --1, ac5. The Social Credit Party did not regularly assemble to pass resolutions and formulate platforms, although some campaign documents were issued in the name of the national organization.
6.34--1, ac5. In the initial phase of the party in Alberta, there was a flood of publications about Social Credit theory, many authored by Aberhart. But the publication program in the west declined along with the importance of Social Credit theory in the Alberta and British Columbia parties. In Quebec, where the popularity of Social Credit principles peaked later, the publication program was more important in the second half of our period.
6.50 Providing for Welfare of Party Members
6.51-6.55--0, ac3. There is no evidence of the Social Credit Party itself performing social welfare functions during our period. But at the height of Social Credit enthusiasm in Alberta during the depression, the party fulfilled social needs for its supporters. Local talent, for example, frequently provided theatrical and musical entertainment at its meetings.

Autonomy Variables, 7.01-7.05
 7.01 Sources of Funds
1 (sector 04) for 1st half, ac5
7 for 2nd half, ac5
The score for the first half of the period is based on the party's experience in Alberta and British Columbia, where most of its funds were said to come from business and industry (Paltiel, 1970--66, 69). The score for the second half is based on the Quebec experience, where most of the funds appear to have been raised through membership subscriptions (Paltiel, 71).
7.02 Source of Members
5, ac9
Membership in the Social Credit Party was taken out directly. It did not automatically come through membership in some other social organization.
7.03 Sources of Leaders
3 (sector 04) for 1st half, ac6
2 (sectors 03, 04) for 2nd half, ac6
More attention has been given to the social composition of the liberals and conservatives in parliament than the composition of the minor parties. One source contends that about half of the social credit MLA's in the western provinces were businessmen (Robin, 1967--206). According to a survey of Social Credit leaders in Quebec, about 40 percent were professionals and 30 percent businessmen (Stein, 1973--127).
7.04 Relations with Domestic Parties
7, ac9
The Social Credit Party did not enter into coalitions in the national parliament. In the 1956 Quebec provincial elections, however, the Social Credit Union des Electeurs entered into an agreement to join with the liberal party in an effort to unseat the union nationale. Solon low, the leader of the national Social Credit Party criticized the agreement, which proved ineffective anyway. None of the Creditistes were elected, and the Union Nationale was overwhelmingly re-elected. In the 1957 federal election, low organized a Quebec wing of his Social Credit Party to contest four seats. The Union des Electeurs did not participate in the election, and it disintegrated thereafter (Stein, 1973--72-74).
7.05 Relations with Foreign Organizations
5, ac7
There was a Social Credit secretariat in London which promoted the theories of Major C.H. Douglas, the originator of Social Credit. Aberhart's Alberta movement did not affiliate with the London secretariat, was harassed by orthodox Douglasites who did, and was disowned by the secretariat before the 1935 election (Irving, 1959--167). The Quebec wing of the party was closer to the London group and orthodox Douglas thought, even receiving an endorsement from Douglas himself before the 1948 election (Stein, 1973--68). Although the London secretariat continued after Douglas" death and throughout our time period, there is no evidence of organizational relationships between the Canadian and British movements during our period.

Organizational Complexity Variables, 8.01-8.07
 8.01 Structural Articulation
3, ac4
Information about the structure of the national Social Credit Party is very sketchy. There was a national Social Credit association of Canada which met in convention from time to time to select a president and a national leader . But beyond this, there seems to have been in the way of national organization apart from the caucus of Social Credit members in parliament.
8.02 Intensiveness of Organization
5, ac4
Social Credit study groups, assiduously sown and cultivated throughout Alberta during the early days of the movement, constituted the basic unit of structure when the party was founded. It is likely that the significance of these small groups faded along with the importance of Social Credit doctrine, and the basic unit of structure seems to have risen to the level of the poll, which correspondsroughly to the precinct in the US
8.03 Extensiveness of Organization
3, ac5
With the exception of 1962, when Social Credit candidates contested over 80 percent of the federal seats, Social Credit candidates were absent in about 60 to 70 percent of the federal constituencies (Beck, 1968).
8.04 Frequency of Local Meetings
No information
8.05 Frequency of National Meetings
No information
8.06 Maintaining Records
1, ac4
No discussion was found of the national party's maintenance of a research division or extensive membership lists, and it seems likely that the party did neither to any extent. There is evidence of some effort in a publishing program.
8.07 Pervasiveness of Organization
0, ac5
It appears that the Social Credit Party did not organize any socio- economic groups to advance its cause nor had it penetrated any such existing groups to serve the same ends.

Organizational Power Variables, 9.01-9.08
 9.01 Nationalization of Structure
2, ac5
One source notes that the 1960 Social Credit conference in Ottawa " formalized the de facto decentralization of the national movement" (Stein, 1973 --79). Another describes the national party as a "paper organization" even at its peak (Engelmann and Schwartz, 1975--311). Although a national organ did exist, this assessment of its importance accounts for the low code on this variable. (see also Van Loon and Whittington, 1976--263.)
9.02 Selecting the National Leader
3, ac9
William Aberhart was acclaimed leader of the Social Credit Leagues in convention in 1935 (Irving, 1959--128). Solon low was elected president of the Social Credit association of Canada in a Toronto convention in 1944 and apparently was re-elected in 1946 at Regina. Some time after low's resignation in 1958, Robert Thompson was elected leader in a close vote over Real Caouette at the 1961 social credit leadership convention.
9.03 Selecting Parliamentary Candidates
3, ac5
In the early days of the Social Credit Party in Alberta, the selection of parliamentary candidates was firmly controlled by the party leader, William Aberhart, who was given the power to select the candidate for each constituency from a list of three or four nominated by the constituency association (Irving, 1959--130, 143). No explanation was found of this practice during our time period, but it is clear that selection of federal candidates was entirely a provincial matter (Stein, 1973--79), and the presumption is that other provincial leaders did not command Aberhart's power of selection. Original research into the identities of Social Credit M.P.S across parliaments ("Canada yearbooks," 1935 to 1964) reveals that there was considerable continuity of members across time, suggesting that federal candidacy was not simply an honor to be extended and withdrawn by the party leadership. From 1940 to 1957, about 70 to 80 percent of the Social Credit M.P.S. elected to parliament had served in the previous parliament.
9.04 Allocating Funds
4, ac8
Two sources note that the provincial organizations played the major role in raising and dispensing funds, and they supplied the national organization with its relatively small operating budget (Stein, 1973--84, and Paltiel, 1970--67, 69).
9.05 Formulating policy
No information
9.06 controlling communications
4, ac6
Provincially controlled newspapers had an important place in the development of the Social Credit Movement. In Alberta, the weekly 'social Credit chronicle" diffused information and doctrine (Irving, 1959--100-101). In Quebec, "Vers Demain" played much the same role for a longer period (Stein, 1973--44), while the journal "regards" was important for the Ralliement des Creditistes in the second half of our period (Stein, 1973--44, 78). But there was also a national newspaper, "Canadian Social Crediter" (Stein, 1973--44, 78, 84).
9.07 Administering Discipline
2, ac5
It appears that disciplinary action was exercised mainly at the provincial level rather than the national level.
9.08 Leadership Concentration
2, ac5Due to the provincial orientations within the Social Credit Party, the national leader had rivals for the role of party spokesman. These would certainly include E.C. Manning, Social Credit Premier of Alberta throughout our period, and W.A.C. Bennett, Social Credit Premier of British Columbia from 1953 through the end of our period. At the very end, this group would also include Real Caouette, deputy leader of the party and head of the Quebec delegation of Social Credit M.P.S, by far the largest group within the party.

Coherence Variables, 10.01-10.06
 10.01 Legislative Cohesion
No information
10.02 Ideological Factionalism
4 for 1st half, ac9
6 for 2nd half, ac9
The Social Credit Party in Alberta began on an ideological crusade to implement Social Credit theory in the provincial government. Prohibited by the federal government from introducing their desired bank controls and monetary reforms, the Alberta Social Credit Party leaders contented themselves with other rewards from holding government office. By 1947, some orthodox Social Crediters on the Alberta Social Credit board attempted to rekindle interest in the movement and to criticize the party 's organization (Macpherson, 1962--210-212). Premier Manning purged these orthodox Douglasites from the board, government, and party, and the party in Alberta became essentially "a traditional conservative political party" while the Quebec Social Crediters were themselves becoming more orthodox (Stein, 1973 --63). During our period, the Quebec wing was clearly more ideological than the Alberta and British Columbia groups (Engelmann and Schwartz, 1975--217), and the importance of the difference increased within the party as the Quebec group grew in size.
10.03 Issue Factionalism
No information
10.04 Leadership Factionalism
0 for 1st half, ac5
6 for 2nd half, ac9
There seemed to be no contest to Solon Low's national leadership during the first part of our period. But after his resignation in 1958, the leadership of the party resolved mainly into a contest between Robert Thompson of Alberta and the english-speaking west and Real Caouette of Quebec and French Canada. In fact, this struggle culminated in the expulsion of the Ralliement des Creditistes from the Social Credit association in 1963, after the end of our time period (Stein, 1973--96-97).
10.05 Strategic or Tactical Factionalism
3 for 1st half, ac5
6 for 2nd half, ac9
This scoring applies mainly to the Quebec wing of the party, for the western wing settled on a strategy of contesting both provincial and federal elections much earlier. In Quebec, however, electoral action was a matter of controversy as was the proper level of involvement. Le Ralliement des Creditistes split from the Union des Electeurs in 1958 over the proper political strategy (Stein, 1973--73-77).
10.06 Party Purges
0, ac5
Premier Manning had carried out a purge of orthodox Douglasites among Alberta Social Credit officials in 1947 (Stein, 1973--63), but this was before our time period. Caouette also expelled some activists from the party in 1963, just after our period (Stein, 1973--95-96). During our period, no large scale expulsions of party members or leaders appear to have occurred.

Involvement Variables, 11.01-11.06
11.01 Membership Requirements
3 for 1st half, ac5
3 for 2nd half, ac8
Information found for the western wing of the party is not very explicit about party membership, but the Social Credit Party began as a membership party and seems to have continued as one (Engelmann and Schwartz, 1975--181). Certainly formal membership and dues were part of La Ligue du Credit Social de la province du Quebec (Stein, 1973--43), were integral to the Union des Electeurs, and were employed by the Ralliement des Creditistes (Paltiel, 1970--70-71).
11.02 Membership Participation
Insufficient information
11.03 Material Incentives
1, ac3
No explicit information was found on this variable, but it would appear that some form of material incentives attracted party militants in the west, where Social Credit government had long held power. Material incentives were clearly less available in Quebec, where the party had enjoyed little success during most of our period.
11.04 Purposive Incentives
2, ac3
No explicit information is available for Social Credit militants in the west, where the attraction of Social Credit theory had waned considerably in the late 1940s. There, Social Credit ideology seems to have been replaced at least in part by a conservative philosophy. In Quebec, however, Social Credit was a motivating force well into our time period. A study of Creditiste leaders in 1967 found that two-thirds said they joined the party for ideological and economic reasons (Stein, 1973--133).
11.05 Doctrinism
1, ac7
At the beginning of the Social Credit Party in Alberta, the writings of William Aberhart on Social Credit were regarded almost as political and economic scripture, as befits the religious character of his movement (Irving, 1959--183). As Social Credit theory waned in the west, it increased in importance in Quebec, where the writings of major C.H. Douglas, the originator of the theory, were important, but Social Credit doctrine was not slavishly pursued.
11.06 Personalism
0, ac4
William Aberhart certainly qualified as a charismatic leader in the founding of the Social Credit Party (Irving, 1959--258). Although E.C. Manning, his successor and long-time leader of the Alberta Social Credit Party, was respected and well-entrenched, his leadership was probably more instrumentally political rather than personal. Real Caouette also seems not to have motivated many Creditiste militants by the force of his person (Stein, 1973--133, 137).