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Peter MacKay and Nazanin Afshin-Jam expecting their first child

Nazanin Afshin-Jam and her husband Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, at the 2012 Garrison Ball in Toronto.

JJ Thompson/The Globe and Mail

He waited until he was 47 to finally tie the knot, having served for more than a decade as one of Parliament Hill's most eligible bachelors and renowned ladies' men, but Defence Minister Peter MacKay has wasted no time in producing his first offspring.

Just eight months into marriage to Nazanin Afshin-Jam, an activist former beauty queen and sometime pop singer, Mr. MacKay made public the news Friday that he and his bride are expecting a baby.

"Last night, Nazanin and I announced to a group of friends our happy news that the MacKay family is growing. We are expecting our first child this spring." the minister said in a Facebook post. "I am excited by the prospects of raising a child with my loving wife, along with the support of family and friends in the greatest country on earth."

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Mr. MacKay and Ms. Afshin-Jam were married last January at a small ceremony in Mexico that was attended by close family and friends. Before tying the knot, the minister had been engaged to a director of programming at CTV news and also had a much-publicized romance with Belinda Stronach, the auto parts heiress who crossed the floor of the House of Commons to become a Liberal cabinet minister.

Ms. Afshin-Jam created headlines in July when she told the Charlottetown Guardian that Ottawa should immediately repatriate Omar Khadr, a 25-year-old Canadian who has been a prisoner in Guantanamo Bay since his arrest in Afghanistan in 2002. Mr. MacKay's Conservative government has been less than enthused about bringing Mr. Khadr home and Ms. Afshin-Jam later said her words had been distorted.

But if the controversy caused any friction on the MacKay-Afshin-Jam household, it has apparently been defused.

"We are simply overjoyed and wish to share our happiness with all of you," Mr. MacKay wrote in his post. "We greatly appreciate the kindness extended to us since our marriage. We look forward to introducing you to the new member of the family in the new year."

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About the Author
Parliamentary reporter

Gloria Galloway has been a journalist for almost 30 years. She worked at the Windsor Star, the Hamilton Spectator, the National Post, the Canadian Press and a number of small newspapers before being hired by The Globe and Mail as deputy national editor in 2001. Gloria returned to reporting two years later and joined the Ottawa bureau in 2004. More

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