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PQ leader unapologetic about comments made regarding Canada

PQ Leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon speaks at the opening of the party's national council meeting, Saturday, April 13, 2024 in Drummondville, Quebec. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot) PQ Leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon speaks at the opening of the party's national council meeting, Saturday, April 13, 2024 in Drummondville, Quebec. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot)
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Parti Québécois (PQ) Leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon isn't shying away from criticism that comments he made referencing Canada's colonial past were an inappropriate way to push his party's sovereignty agenda.

"We need to be considering the whole history of Canada in interpreting what's happening," he told CJAD 800's Aaron Rand.

This comes just days after St-Pierre Plamondon assured that Quebecers "will definitely be living through a third referendum" on sovereignty before the end of the decade if his party is elected.

His reasoning: the federal government poses an "existential threat" to Quebecers.

"What will become of us as Quebecers if we don't even have a fifth of the votes in a government that decides for us? We're finished. Canada has a bleak future in store for us," he told party members at a two-day national council on housing. "It's a regime that only wants to crush those who refuse to assimilate."

In speaking with Rand on Wednesday about backlash to his comments, St-Pierre Plamondon pointed out, "I'm not always soft-spoken but I always try to be as thoughtful as possible."

Nevertheless, he doubled down on his argument, saying the federal government was "disrespecting" the provinces when it comes to issues like immigration.

"That doesn't give us any hopes of integration, and housing, and of providing services for these people under the federal power of immigration," he said.

Plamondon stated that there are currently 560,000 temporary immigrants in Quebec, and if the federal government continues on this path, "there is no viable future for Quebec."

LISTEN ON CJAD 800 RADIO: PQ leader accuses Canada of 'disrespecting the competencies of provinces'

He also refused to apologize for referencing Canada's history, saying the country shouldn't shy away from its past.

"Talking about history is not being radical even though the [Quebec Liberal Party] PLQ or Éric Duhaime tries to distort what I said to make me a radical politician," he said. "I don't think people will buy that because I've been constant for the past years, and talking about history shouldn't be radical in my view."

He points out that his criticisms aren't specifically aimed at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau or his Liberal Party but at the federal government in general.

"He's continuing the mission of his father. He has the exact same approach toward Quebec, and that's fair to do," St-Pierre Plamondon said. "If we live in a world where the past never happened, it's difficult to have an appropriate reading of what's actually happening right now if we have no notion of what happened before."

He says his beliefs will not change no matter who is in power.

The next federal election is slated to take place on or before Oct. 20, 2025.

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