Monday, April 24, 2023

One Of The Reasons

Pierre Poilievre is fluently bilingual and has a French last name. But that doesn't mean he impresses Quebecers. Chantal Hebert writes:

More than six months after his election as Conservative leader, Pierre Poilievre has yet to meet Quebec Premier François Legault one on one.

That stands in stark contrast with his two immediate predecessors. Notwithstanding the pandemic, Erin O’Toole and Legault met face-to-face less than a month after the former became leader in August 2020.

Andrew Scheer showed up for a meeting with the premier two short weeks after the CAQ was first elected to government in 2018.

By the time Poilievre and Legault get around to a sit-down meeting, they will have a lot less to talk about than they would have back in September.

For by now, there is little left of the Quebec agenda that earned O’Toole the premier’s implicit endorsement in the last election.

Since Stephen Harper took over the party, the Conservatives have become a Western party and Quebec has become an annoyance. It's clear that Poilievre sees Quebec that way:

Over the course of the leadership campaign, Poilievre renounced the party’s hands-off position on Quebec’s contentious securalism law. And on health-care funding, he would stick to the terms the prime minister set out over his recent round of negotiations with the provinces.

Unlike Poilievre, Trudeau has been trying to mend fences:

The loophole in the Safe Third Country Agreement has been plugged, with Roxham Road no longer being used as the main entry point for irregular migration from the United States to Canada.

In an unlikely development, the two governments have reconciled their respective language legislation, with Legault now fully behind Trudeau’s rewritten Official Languages Act.

After years of provincial lobbying, the federal government added Quebec shipyard Chantier Davie as the third shipyard in its multibillion-dollar ship procurement plan. At the same time, the federal budget and its plan for a green economy stands to translate into generous tax breaks for Hydro Quebec.

Last month, Trudeau endorsed Legault’s pick for the role of second in command of L’organisation internationale de la Francophonie. Former Bloc MP Caroline St-Hilaire was defeated as a CAQ star candidate in last fall’s Quebec election.

The Conservatives don't understand Quebec -- and they have no desire to understand the province. That's one of the reasons the party will continue to lose elections.

Image: Le Devoir


jrkrideau said...

I wonder how long the CPCda will manage to hold that cluster of Blue ridings around Québec? I was surprised they held on in the last election.

Owen Gray said...

Me, too, jrk. It's clear that Poilievre doesn't have Quebec's interests at heart.

e.a.f. said...

How can PP have Quebec's "interests at heart", when the number one interest he has is himself and his right wing views.

Perhaps PP hasn't met with Legault because he is afraid to do so. PP sounds "good" when he has the floor and no one is oppposing him, but it is doubtful he can match Legault for the ability to argue his case.

May not agree with what Legault does, but he is firm in his commitment to what he views as what is best for Quebec. PP, not so much. Its like he likes to criticise but has no real agenda or view beyond getting rid of Trudeau and the Liberals in office so he can get the job. What he intends to do after that?????? but I'm sure it won't help many in the country

Some of the programs Quebec has are most likely too far "left" for PP and PP's ideas are most likely too "right" for Legault.

Owen Gray said...

You're right about Poilievre, e.a.f. He opposes a great many things. But he proposes nothing.