CAQ convention: Party leaders deny link between Bill 21 and Quebec mosque incident
Published Sunday, May 26, 2019 9:35AM EDT
Last Updated Sunday, May 26, 2019 6:57PM EDT
One by one, Quebec's provincial government leaders lined up to deny any correlation between Bill 21 and an assault on Saturday outside a Quebec City mosque.
They made the comments on the second day of the CAQ's Montreal summit.
They used near-identical language in their statements.
"There's no link between the 21 Bill and what happened in Quebec City," premier Francois Legault said.
"There is no link to be made between Bill 21, which is moderate and pragmatic," said Genevieve Guilbault, the province's minister for public safety.
Simon Jolin-Barrette, the 32-year-old lawyer turned immigration minister, also didn't see any relationship between the bill he championed and the mosque assault.
"There's no tension and there's no division," he said. "I'm very clear about that."
Protestors once again made their voices heard on how they feel the CAQ should do more for the environment.
Legault talked about building a tram in the east of Montreal and Longueuil that would rely on hydroelectric output and exports.
40 percent of Quebec's energy consumption is oil and gas, with most of it imported from the United States and Alberta.
"I want to reduce the consumption of oil and I have no problem saying that to [Alberta premier] Jason Kenney," he said.
Ministers downplay reported rift
Quebec premier Francois Legault made headlines on Saturday when asked about the rumoured tension between cabinet ministers Sonia LeBel, who handles the justice portfolio, and Simon Jolin-Barrette.
Legault coyly replied that he had asked the two to kiss, but specified "not on the mouth."
On Saturday evening, LeBel posted a photo of her and Jolin-Barrette embracing at Plaza Centre-Ville on the first day of the CAQ's annual convention in Montreal.
"What a pleasure it is to work with my leader Simon Jolin-Barrette and the rest of this great team," her caption read.
The convention continues on Sunday.