OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper said despite feeling betrayed by some of his associates, he has no intention of stepping down before the 2015 election.
In a year-end interview with QMI Agency's French-language station TVA, the PM said reaching a free-trade agreement with the European Union was a highlight of the past year, and the Lac-Megantic tragedy was Canada's darkest hour.
But the Senate scandal affected him personally.
"I felt betrayed, disappointed, angry... Yes, all these emotions. And much more," Harper said, as translated from the French.
Nigel Wright, who until the spring was Harper's chief of staff, is now under investigation by the RCMP for fraud and breach of trust.
Harper said in September that Wright was "fired" but in May, in a statement, he said he'd accepted Wright's "resignation" with great regret.
Which was it?
"I decided that Mr. Wright was not going to work for me," he said in the interview.
The Mounties are also investigating four senators - three of them Conservative - over alleged improper housing claims totalling about $500,000. Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau been benched without pay for the remainder of the session.
Still, the Prime Minister said he is not in favour of abolishing the Senate.
About Canada Post, which last week announced it would end door-to-door mail delivery in cities over the next five years, Harper said he did not see a problem with community mailboxes.
"Many neighbourhoods already have such services," he said. "This is the case in my neighbourhood in Calgary. It's not a problem for people."
And he showed confidence for his political future, saying he intends to lead the Conservative Party in the next election.