Duceppe slams Khadir; Legault promises cash for culture
Published Saturday, August 4, 2012 2:03PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, August 4, 2012 6:55PM EDT
Campaign mud is flowing between leaders of varying pedigrees of sovereignist conviction in a spat involving Gilles Duceppe and Amir Khadir.
In an interview with The Canadian Press Friday, PQ-supporting-former Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe slammed Quebec Solidaire leader Amir Khadir.
Duceppe called Khadir “a populist and an opportunist” who is “unworthy of respect.”
Duceppe also questioned Khadir’s dedication to separatism for having supported the NDP in the last federal election.
Meanwhile, on Saturday morning CAQ leader Francois Legault attempted to woo PQ supporters by promising that his party would inject $50 million into the culture industry.
Legault made the announcement as his former longtime party presented well-known political adviser and journalist Jean-Francoise Lisee as candidate for Rosemount, as CTV Montreal announced one month ago.
Lisee, considered a separatist hardliner, is known for his damning biography of former Premier Robert Bourassa and also served as advisor to several PQ leaders before quitting, apparently due to his impatience at their less-intense desire for sovereignty.
Lisee, agreed, however, that Quebec should not announce a referendum immediately, describing Quebec as an underdog in its relations with the rest of Canada, as the province remains in a position of weakness like “Asterix against Cesar.”
“If we cement our plans, we lose the advantage of reacting, which is our strength, it’s essential for Quebec to retain the advantage of seizing the initiative,” said Lisee.
Marois promised to add $120 million to the $380 million already earmarked to advancing health homecare.
Legault's cultural money
The money CAQ leader Legault is promising to the culture industry would go to funding student visits to cultural events and into developing more foreign markets for Quebec’s cultural products.
Legault’s announcement is seen as an effort to lure votes away from the Parti Quebecois, which generally attracts much support from the artistic community.
The CAQ, however, has promised not to promote separatism for 10 years.
Legault did not miss his chance to weigh in on Duceppe’s comments and said that Quebecers are tired of such quarrels within the separatist movement.
The CAQ is holding a press conference Sunday morning at 10 a.m. in St. Jerome in which they are expected to announce that Jacques Duchesneau will run for the party in St. Jerome, the riding formerly known as Prevost.
The riding, which was redrawn in the most recent electoral reform, is currently held by the PQ’s Gilles Robert, who won handily in 2008.
The seat has changed hands many times through the years and CAQ-forerunner ADQ won the vote in the 2007 election under Martin Camirand.
Charest defends eight-on-10 comment
Liberal Leader Jean Charest found himself on the defensive Saturday morning as he was accused of making a comment that convinced Jacques Duchesneau to join into the race as a candidate.
Le Devoir reported Saturday that Mr. Duchesneau decided to enter politics after hearing Charest give himself an eight on 10 for his efforts to fight corruption.
Charest denied that he blundered.
“Yes, I have no hesitation in giving our government that mark. The work we did is still substantial,” he said Saturday.
The Liberal leader also denied that the Liberals are worried about Duchesneau’s arrival in the race.
“This is an election campaign during an election campaign and there will be opponents,” said Charest.
Charest, during a campaign stop in Cremazie, said that the Liberals had respected election funding rules.
Charest continued on his theme of employment, promising measures to increase employment among youth, immigrants and working poor.
Prosper to run for Quebec Solidaire
The Quebec Solidaire party announced the candidacy of Will Prosper, who is known as the representative of a movement aimed at clarifying the circumstances around the death of Fredy Villaneuva, who was killed in an altercation with police.
“I’m very deeply rooted to the community. We organized many things with Montreal North Republic to fight for justice to fight for the community,” Prosper told CTV Montreal.
-With files from The Canadian Press