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Federal agency mistakenly brands country ‘Harper Canada’

Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill on March 19, 2013.

CHRIS WATTIE/REUTERS

Oh Harper Canada, our home and native land?

It could have been a post-budget typo, or a cut-and-paste accident, but one government agency briefly rebranded the country "Harper Canada."

A news release from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency that was posted online carried the all-caps headline: "HARPER CANADA INVESTS IN INFRASTRUCTURE FOR MUNICIPALITY OF ARGYLE."

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Agency spokesman Alex Smith said it was simply an editing error, and was promptly corrected – to read "Harper government."

Since 2010, rebranded government news releases have popped up with the controversial title "Harper government" instead of "Government of Canada."

Some public servants have expressed discomfort with the term, and critics said the Conservatives were breaking rules that dictate government communications should be non-partisan.

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