Politicians battle to the end
Published Tuesday, September 4, 2012 6:45PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, September 4, 2012 7:27PM EDT
Recent polls suggest that Pauline Marois will be elected the first female premier of Quebec Tuesday evening, but the race is very close.
Many Quebecers, anywhere from 10 to 20 percent depending on the poll, were undecided until the end of the campaign, and with only a handful of percentage points separating first from second from third place, their votes could easily shift the anticipated outcome.
Marois will be at the Metropolis in Montreal on Tuesday evening where she hopes her campaign has been successful.
Throughout the past five weeks she has fought to keep her base, hoping hardline separatists would not veer toward the Quebec Solidaire or Option Nationale, and that soft separatists would not favour the Coalition Avenir Quebec.
The key issue for her party, an independent Quebec, is also something that is not favoured by nearly 70 percent of Quebecers.
Marois is, however, confident that she will become the first female premier of Quebec.
"It could be a historic day because we may elect, for the first time, a female as head of government of Quebec," said Marois.
"Evidently I am not hiding anything when I say that I hope that is what happens tonight.
When asked, Marois said she has been preparing to be premier for 30 years.
Charest refusing to contemplate not winning
Meanwhile Premier Jean Charest is confident he can win a fourth mandate for his Liberal party.
On Tuesday as Charest staged rallies in several ridings the Liberal team was unwilling to even entertain the possibility of anything other than victory.
Indeed what seemed most important to Charest was having Quebecers take part in the election.
"We invite all Quebecers today to go out and vote and express their choice," said Charest at one stop, "including those who speak loud" he quipped, referring to people chanting anti-Charest slogans at one stop.
The premier is facing a tough battle against former Bloc MP Serge Cardin in his own riding of Sherbrooke.
However, despite being counted out before, Charest has come back from defeat to win on multiple occasions.
Coalition gunning for second
Coalition Avenir Quebec leader Francois Legault voted Tuesday morning at a school, in his riding of L'Assomption.
Legault was elected under the PQ banner four times in the riding of Rousseau, but as leader of the CAQ he is running in a redrawn riding and facing a stiff challenge from incumbent PQ MNA Scott McKay
He is confident he will win.
"I think it's a part of history, it's an important day. I hope that we'll finally have a major change in Quebec," said Legault.
Quebec Solidaire hopeful
Finally, Quebec Solidaire expects to make breakthroughs in the election.
Amir Khadir hopes to be re-elected, and joined by his co-leader Francoise David.
The party is also hopeful that their MNAs will take Laurier-Dorion and Sainte-Marie-Saint-Jacques despite stiff opposition.