UPDATED: Conservative ads succeed in moving the numbers!

Tories have fallen to fourth in Quebec, behind the NDP


harper-queNew large-sample Quebec poll, taken during the first four days of the Conservatives’ new ad campaign, shows the Conservative party has fallen to fourth in Quebec, behind the NDP. Stephen Harper’s party is now polling about as well as the sum of the performance of Stockwell Day’s Canadian Alliance and Joe Clark’s Progressive Conservatives in 2000. So it’s going pretty well, really.

UPDATE: The new ads are working with unprecedented speed. Why, it took only days for the Conservatives to drive their numbers down to the same 15% level the Liberals were at in Quebec a year ago, after months of anti-Dion ads. And that’s what Harper wanted to do, right? Drive his party support down to Dion-like levels in Quebec, right? Yes? No?

UP-IS-THE-NEW-DOWNDATE, Monday morning: Still, it’s important to keep hope alive. That’s why (both of these links are to Le Devoir articles in Conservative Party-approved Quebec-French) Chantal Hébert explains the Conservatives have hitched their wagons irrevocably to the Action Démocratique in Quebec. Super Mario’s old party “may be a shadow of what it once was,” Chantal writes, “it’s still in better shape than the federal Conservative party.” And how’s that working out? The rest of today’s poll shows the ADQ at 8%.

So cheer up, Conservatives. The boss has a master plan to cut your party’s remaining Quebec support in half! I hear Dimitri and Leo are working on it full time.


UPDATED: Conservative ads succeed in moving the numbers!

  1. Association does not mean cause.

    Suggestion: Moving numbers succeed in unleashing Conservative ads.

  2. Those are some delicious numbers in Quebec 37% LPC vs. 33% BQ means the BQ would back down from an election I'd imagine. The Conservative implosion helps that, of course.

  3. Btw, great tag Paul. Hilarious.

  4. I thought over the last couple of months or so the last few Quebec polls & regional breakdowns had Tory support in the low teen range. If so, perhaps the Tories can take comfort knowing the damage in Quebec can get no worse, and that they've hit a floor, so to speak. Of course it can't be good days over there if the whole endeavour backfires so spectacularly, that aside from giving a boost to the Liberals, who had been very close behind the Bloc in the battle for first, but they actually help the NDP gain further credibility in the province. It's making me quite interested to see a national poll to see if this is just a Quebec effect, or resonating nationwide.

  5. If Quebecers are supportive of Iggy they are stupider then I thought. Lets face it they have elected a party that doesnt want to be part of Canada so why not have a PM who doesnt either …lol

  6. I think we can file the French ad under "trying too hard."

  7. Yeah, it's that sorta attitude that will bing the Tory support right back up there…not!

  8. To paraphrase Hebert: Harper thought that his playing nice stategy wasn't workng…hence the attack adds to close the gap with the Libs. But what if it was the opposite; what if the reason the Tories had been doing quite well for the incumbents during a major recession was…goofed again… chessmaster??

  9. You mean like the guy who wanted to firewall a province from the rest of the country? Or who went crying to the Wall St Journal when his country decided it didn't want to partake in an illegal war? Or is it the guy who, when defending his choice in backing said war, chose to plagarize an Australian leader, and rode that speech to some pretty positive huzzahs? It must be the so-called leader who in his effort to buy your vote — oops, you've already traded it and your soul for a 2% gst cut, right! — has launched into the biggest deficit spending, even beginning before the economic crisis that would-have-already-been-here-by-now stuff, than any other government in Canadian HISTORY? The guy who has gone on record as calling American Republicans as his guiding light. That's some strange patriotic love god you've got there, bub.

  10. How stupid did you think we were?

  11. These are some richly deserved polling numbers in Quebec.

    Harper let his mask slip last election campaign when he mocked "rich artists who gather at galas to whine about their grants". And the mask fell again during the coalition drama when he was venomous in talking about "separatists and socialists" and "traitors". Quebecers see through him now. I have an exceedingly difficult time seeing the Cons polling numbers going back up in Quebec as long as he is leader.

    And those low QC numbers will trouble people in Ontario and Atlantic Canada who are sensitive to national unity and uncomfortable with a federal govt that does not have at least some measure of support in Quebec.

  12. Actually a lot of people in Ontario and points west are fed up with blackmailing Quebec whiners. Please, Quebec, just leave. Oh, I forgot, Quebec won't leave because it would lose all those goodies that taxpayers from the rest of Canada shower on la belle province. I long for the day when the rest of Canada elects a government that leaves Quebec on the outside looking in. Then it will be time for Quebecois to put up or shut up. As population and the country's economic centre of gravity shifts westward, that day is coming.

  13. See, what the polls say now doesn't matter. When the writ drops, a meme shall rise in the brains of the masses (planted there by the attack ads): Iggy drinks at Starbucks, he's elite…he's not ONE OF DER VOLK.

    What happens between now and then is irrelevant. Harper is playing chess, Wells an off-kay kazoo.

  14. "Off-key" that is. Once more I am foiled by poor spelling.

  15. Another article worth noting from the same poll in the same paper (though you won't read these numbers in the Gazette)

    The francophone vote would bring the PQ to power

    PQ 48 %, Liberals 31 %, ADQ à 9 %. 58 % dissatisfied with the government, 37 satisfied.

  16. Hit a nerve JMD? You can just taste that sweet sweet day when Quebec will finally eat it eh? You're like a carbon copy of the hardcore Péquistes here..with a little soupçon of Rush Limbaugh thrown in there too. So full of resentment. So uninterested in what we have in common, as opposed to what divides us.

  17. Norman is having some trouble hauling his website back up to Stone Age levels of quality today, so I'll jump in to point out that the party-preference numbers he cites are the subsample for francophone voters. Top-line voting intentions among all respondents were PLQ 40%, PQ 40%, ADQ 8%. The Charest Liberals' decline "appears to have stopped," the Le Devoir article reads. If you read it.

  18. I might be slightly worried if I was Jean Charest, but I'd be freakin' terrified if I was Stephen Harper.

  19. Methought I had made clear that this was the franco breakout (The francophone vote would bring the PQ to power). And here's what's on my website today.

    Quebec favours federal Liberals (Gaz)

    Meanwhile, in Quebec City, Premier Jean Charest's Liberals are neck and neck with Pauline Marois's Parti Québécois. The Léger poll puts them both at 40 per cent. The Action démocratique du Québec is an also-ran at only eight per cent.

    –Some important numbers the Gaz for some reason leaves out of its report

    The francophone vote would bring the PQ to power

    PQ 48 %, Liberals 31 %, ADQ 9 %. 58 % dissatisfied with the government, 37 satisfied.

  20. Not sure how much Quebec and the rest of Canada have in common, Jean. Quebec is the only region of the country that has, since the 1990s, sent a sizeable delegation of MPs to Ottawa whose stated purpose is to destroy the country.

  21. I can't be the only one who is wildly impatient to see the next round of national numbers. A question, though: Does anyone recall how long it took for the Liberal numbers to start falling after the notaleader.ca launch? Or was it not until the Permanent Tax on Everything that the downward slide became official?

  22. "So cheer up, Conservatives. The boss has a master plan to cut your party%E2%80%99s remaining Quebec support in half!"

    If the numbers are cut in half because Harper stopped pandering to Quebec I don't think that many Cons outside the prov would be all that bothered. Cons have done poorly in Quebec for a hundred years, not sure why Harper or journos expect that to turn around on a dime.

    However, someone wrote last week, I forget who, that Harper appears to be trying traditional way of appealing to Quebecers: having dinners and highlighting all the MPs and Senators who bring all this wonderful pork spending to the prov.

    Harper will a revolt on his hands from the Con base if he continues to pander to Quebec while having his support cut in half.

  23. "So cheer up, Conservatives. The boss has a master plan to cut your party's remaining Quebec support in half!"

    If the numbers are cut in half because Harper stopped pandering to Quebec I don't think that many Cons outside the prov would be all that bothered. Cons have done poorly in Quebec for a hundred years, not sure why Harper or journos expect that to turn around on a dime.

    However, someone wrote last week, I forget who, that Harper appears to be trying traditional way of appealing to Quebecers: having dinners and highlighting all the MPs and Senators who bring all this wonderful pork spending to the prov.

    Harper will a revolt on his hands from the Con base if he continues to pander to Quebec while having his support cut in half.

  24. Won't this have an impact on the Bloc numbers should there be a federal election? In other words, the Conservative collapse could help the Bloc in the francophone ridings, could it not?

  25. I don't think Dion was ever ahead of the Bloc in Quebec. He may have been tied with the Conservatives province-wide, but he was always close to last among francophone voters, was he not?

    Even in Ontario, I don't remember a poll where he was better than tied with the Tories, or within the margin of error, at best.

  26. The Liberal numbers peaked during their leadership convention and started falling before the notaleader ads but the herd gave the ads credit for the decline even though they had no discernible effect on the pre-writ numbers.

  27. Dion's leadership numbers surely fell, but I don't know that the horse-race/party pref. numbers ever really changed much until the actual election call.

  28. The attack ads were a convenient way to explain away an unpopular leader. Attack ads cannot move numbers like we saw with the Dion collapse. They are primarily useful in voter suppression, which convinces people to either stay home or cast a protest vote. Rarely can an attack ad convert a Liberal into a Tory. – that is not their function.

  29. Be careful, even with these numbers the Bloc will still win a majority of the seats in Quebec because of their even distribution of votes. The Liberals win huge majorities in the Montreal region, and these results skew the bigger picture.

  30. There is no "floor" in Canadian politics.

    Ask the Socreds, if you can find any.

  31. The ads work partly because they win over the media more effectively than the average voter. This changes the agenda and news coverage and swings voters that way. It's not immediate

    The Conservatives use the ads to swing the agenda away from their own weaknesses, to the opposition's weaknesses. Is Dion a leader? What about that accent? Can he communicate?

    Is Ignatieff a real Canadian? Is he an out of touch elitist etc.? Is he here to stay?

    The Iggy outsider, not a real Canadian, issue was off the radar until the ads began. Now it's front and centre and eating up the newsprint and flooding the airwaves. He had, after all, won two local elections, conducted a losing leadership campaign, captured the leadership and crossed the country making speeches many times. Now it's "just visiting" and the media loves it. The PMO is very happy with these results.

  32. I haven't seen a Socred since I had a black & white TV in my basement.

  33. Why don't we just kick you out of Canada? That would probably solve the other problems.

  34. Gee, who would have thought an ad about how its bad to be different from pre-conceived notions of "Canadian" would play poorly in Quebec? :)

  35. Wow, what a mean spirited jab at Harper. I guess this is gotcha journalism.

    Not too insightful really, I mean, Harper just won an election without much support from Quebec. And 'Iggy' is vulnerable on being a Yank. 'Har-vard' looks good on your CV if you're 'upper crust' – that's not 99% of Canadians, so good luck to Iggy with that.

  36. You can find all the socreds in BC. They call themselves liberals now. Give me a break.

  37. Um, that day is still pretty far away. The population in Western Canada isnt close to Central Canada and if you take out BC, then you're even further away. Populations just don't move as fast as you'd like nor will they believe what you want. Sorry JMD, but the dictatorship in your mind will probably never happen. BTW I live in the west and dont share your small minded anger.

  38. 1996 Called, they want their web designer back.

  39. Are you kidding. BC is all socreds in liberal clothing. Lol

  40. Or under "what were you trying to do, exactly?"

  41. Imagine that? Canadians want a cultured, well educated person to run the country! Who wouldnt after three years of having a bunch of juvinile career political hacks running amok in our nations capitol.

  42. What are you talking about? This has hardly been eating up the newsprint and flooding the airwaves. If anything, its been met with media criticism for what it is; a bigoted argument so weak it took the Conservatives two retakes to explain it and then it didnt have the takeaway message they hoped? The only people convinced by this are rubes who never wanted to do anything with their lives and now feel justified in criticizing everyone else. What's next from the Conservative party? Is it going to be anti-Canadian to be literate? Maybe you'll be less Canadian if you wear green on a Wednesday? Please!

  43. Are they running these ads in Quebec to any extent? I would have thought that the ads were more directed at Ontario and the west.

  44. Semantics Bert. That's like saying that Mats Sundin is still a Leaf but it's just laundry day.

  45. Hey do you still keep your banjo in the back of that old abandoned truck on your property?

  46. I am not kidding Bert. I did used to have a black and white TV in my basement years ago.

  47. If there's one thing I understand about politics, it's that a conservative can never fail, except by not being conservative enough.

    These numbers are a sign that Harper needs to do more of the same but HARDER. I recommend an endless string off attacks ads targeting Ignatieff – increasingly shrill and personal. They should make things up if they have to.

    Somebody get Doug Finley on the phone!

  48. That's funny.

    Because February's Fiscal Monitor has $81B of social credit written all over it.

  49. Your numers are all wrong. You are only breaking down the 40% that vote. The other 60% vote " non of the above" and thats not only in Quebec but the rest of the country.

  50. I love how when I took the Hebert article into google translate, it turned "L' ADQ" into "The BBQ"

  51. Hey lets not equate politics with hockey. Gives hockey a bad name.

    Comparisions to used car salesmen of the 1950s would be more in line. Lol

  52. A harp I say a harp. Lol

  53. They don't care if the media hates it and criticizes it, as long as they talk about it and play it for free which they have been doing at lot.

    In case you didn't notice, it's been eating up a lot blog space on Macleans'.ca. And "rubes" vote.

    But as I said, they have changed the topics of discussion everywhere.

    Sure EI still top story, but a lot of little nagging issues, even the reactor going down have been pushed aside a bit.

  54. Good luck in trying to find that person. Maybe if we still had insane asylums. mmmmmmmmmmm.

  55. Well, that would explain it, if the attack ad in French about Ignatieff speaking French with an accent 'de France' was really meant for an audience in the west.

  56. Actually, Harper insults Ontario in the ads – he's making it a negative to like Algonquin Park in Northern Ontario.

    What's wrong with liking a beautiful park, wildlife, rugged nature, family camping, etc.? What's wrong with it for Harper is that Ignatieff likes a park in Ontario.

  57. JMD,

    If Quebec sovereignty is going to "destroy the country" as you imply, why are you cheering for it to happen?

  58. The problem for Harper is that Ignatieff didn't say "What I really miss is the tar sands."

  59. It doesn't much matter, given that Charest has 42 months or so to govern.

  60. If there%E2%80%99s one thing I understand about politics, it%E2%80%99s that a conservative can never fail, except by not being conservative enough.

    Gerry Nicholls?

  61. If there's one thing I understand about politics, it's that a conservative can never fail, except by not being conservative enough.

    Gerry Nicholls?

  62. Quebec is just a cancer to the rest of the country!

  63. That's because the French ad is totally different, and mocks his French (from France) accent in French.

  64. If it wasn't for Quebec, you'd have a majority Harper government. Sound like something you'd like to have? If yes, why don't you separate.

    Funny that the Quebec bashers haven't made much noise about Quebec's economy doing better than the Canadian average for the past year.

  65. Is Harper "pandering" to Ontario by trying to save the auto industry? Is he "pandering" to Alberta by resisting pressure to set up either a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade scheme? Why is "pandering" reserved for Quebec?

    Why is it always the language of confrontation? Of either "standing up" or "backing down"? Why this mentality that policies that benefit one part of the country necessarily come at the expense of other parts of the country? Is there any reason that Canadian politics always has to be so small and provincial? We really REALLY need a change of attitude in this country, and start rooting for each other instead of engaging in these petty little fits of jealousy and resentment.

  66. Oh for crying out loud.

  67. logic fail

  68. And what part of Quebec is doing best? Quebec City and its environs!

  69. Hi Paul,

    Stephen Harper is no Bryan Mulroney – how the CPC fairs post-him matters to him.

    We have to build up the ADQ and the CPC alliance. The LPQ is not reliable (la donna e mobile!)

    Also, with your ADQ at 8% comment, I'll just add that the CPC moves up from the ADQ because it has a higher floor among anglophones. So the top line comparison is a little misleading unless you argue that the ADQ should be doing better outreach into anglo communiities. (It would if it became a federalist party which at least one contender to replace Mario has been arguing).

  70. Mmm, just the smell of those char-broiled conservatives makes my mouth water…who's got the sauce?

  71. Seemingly no. In most cases, the Conservatives' growth in support has been met vote-for-vote with a decrease in Liberal fortunes, suggesting that most of the Conservatives' (formerly) new-found support is essentially just a reshuffling of federalists (who may very well just flip back to the Liberals at this point). Only the Conservatives' gains in Quebec City buckle this trend.

  72. Might want to google Ignatieff Bush Iraq War.

  73. Harper cannot fulfil his ambition of a majority government without winning in Quebec, and clearly that isn't going to happen any time soon, so why does he bother ? More importantly, why do the rest of Conservative MP's continue to follow him like lemmings over a political cliff ?

  74. The Tories can probably hang on to Beauce and a few other Quebec ridings. Harper's many missteps in Quebec will probably cause the Conservatives to lose six or seven seats in the province, but it won't be enough to change the outcome of the next federal election.

  75. Not by themselves they won't, but you may have noticed that Con numbers are also down in Ontario and Atlantic Canada, and show signs of softening in parts of B.C.

    Also Harper might conceivably win another election with these horrific QC numbers, but any dreams of a majority are decisively crushed.

  76. You know, it occurs to me that, pol for pol, our pols have to work a hell of a lot harder than the Americans', say, or the Brits'. One strategy for Quebec, one for the West, possibly a separate one for BC, an eye on the Ontario sensibility (whatever that is exactly), and many a blown kiss to Atlantic Canada, God knows.

    I'm trying to remember the last time a party appealed to all regions of the country simultaneously, without profiting from some gimmick like vote-splitting. Mulroney 1984 or 1988?

  77. I assume the Bloc will now be aiming most of their heavy artillery at the Liberals. I wonder if the Bloc will succeed where the Tories failed.

  78. You're right – Mulroney was the last PM who experienced strong voter support from every region (particularly in 1984).

  79. I have yet to see one of the ads on tv other than news shows talking about it. I would think it's premature of Well's to put the Quebec numbers into the perspective of being affected by the ads.

  80. 21 or 25 years ago. That's 15% or 18% of the lifespan of the country.

  81. – The sponsorship scandal has passed its expiration date.

    – Ignatieff is not associated with the Trudeau-Chrétien-Dion hardline federalist wing of the Liberals.

    – Quebecers don't have a problem with his cosmopolitanism.

    Not sure what kind of ammunition the BQ has. And they essentially remain a powerless protest party that always have to justify their continued existence..

    I predict that Ignatieff will do at least as well as Chrétien did in 2000 when the Liberals beat the Bloc in the popular vote and essentially tied with them in number of seats.

  82. Two possible visions could serve such a strategy : pan-Canadianism and regionalism. Every leader since Diefenbaker has kept more or less with a pan-Canadian vision except for a brief period under Clark and, of course, Harper, who is trying to define a post-Trudeau federation. He is failing – no, he has already failed given these Quebec poll numbers. Iggy represents a return to a pan-Canadian vision of our federation.

  83. This poll was conducted May 13 -17, the first ads started rolling out may 16. Wow, why would the ads have any effect on this poll?

    You would have to really be reaching to come to the conclusion that these ads had any effect on this poll one way or the other. I am not saying the numbers are good for the CPC, but WTF would the tory ads have on this poll negatiive or positive?

    Your hate is showing Wells.

  84. Again we see one of these polls, big deal. These same polling companies were predicting that former PM Paul Martin would win the largest majority in Canadian history and they had also predicted that Stephane Dion would at the very least win a minority government. Didn't exactly turn out that way did it?

    You know what dogs do to poles?

    There is only one poll that counts and that is on election day.

  85. I thought the TV ads started rolling out on May 13. I could be wrong, though.

  86. Aww, spoken like a true Harper 'I-believe-in-the-power-of-negativity' fan club member. Yes, there's only one poll that picks our parliament. Right now, Bruce, your team has stopped peeing on it and they aer now peeing on themselves.

  87. So wayne is now bert? And what happened to Ernie and the whining baby? Time to call in Sheila Fraser…

  88. The leak was May 13, I think(I just checked Wells post on the ads it looks like May 14 was the first day of roll out). Either way the ads would have no effect on this poll.

    It looks like this was more of a post to bash Dimitri and Leo, with a lame jokes. It just hard to take Paul seriously when the guy could not even get right how many times Harper had been to afghanistan.

  89. Ya, I went back and read your post when the ads first came out, I was wrong, fair is fair.

    I still don't believe the ads would effect these numbers. As to being "none too bright", what can I say, I am what I am.

  90. That's not true. Large sample polling is usually right (give or take a few percentage points). The important thing to remember is that this is a snapshot of the past few days. The trend indicates that it doesn't look good for Harper and that's why he's been fighting for his political life lately. If there's no election in the immediate future, this poll means nothing anyway.

  91. I wish they'd stop calling themselves Liberals in BC. At least when it was Socreds you knew what you were getting.

  92. It's not totally different. The main message is the same but it also says he speaks French with a French accent.

  93. Paul Wells, is that Martin Van Buren on your avatar?

  94. It could almost be, couldn't it? But it's George Brown, appropriately enough on this day.

  95. If you dared have an American on your avatar, you couldn't write for Maclean's ever again.

  96. Let's face it, the current and temporary occupant of the PMO is just not a 'people person' – in fact, I'd go so far to say that he's much more comfortable in a room by himself surrounded by all of his cherished photos of himself. Canadians are shaking off the doom and gloom this little twerp dragged into our lives a few years back when he was toadying up to the Cheney/Bush administration and now we're ready to lighten up and feel Canadian again. It's back to the broom closet for little Steve – he's had his kick at the Canuck.

  97. "Comparisions to used car salesmen of the 1950s would be more in line."

    don't disrespect used car salesmen. canadian pols are more like aluminum siding salesman ;-)

  98. classical liberals; like australia. very pro-business, however the last term illustrated that Gordo discovered other tenets of liberalism.

  99. i call dibs on Van Loan; he's well marbled ;-)

  100. Just like the polls in December (during what Kady calls "The Madness") didn't mean anything either? Because I recall a lot of people like you pointing to those as proof that Canadians were rejecting the Socialist-Separatist coup…

  101. "Iggy represents a return to a pan-Canadian vision of our federation." Now that he has a book to flog ;-)

  102. Yes, there are no juvenile political hacks in the Liberal Party, that's fer sure . . . (uncomfortable silence while we clear our throat and hope nobody mentions Warren Kinsella)

  103. I agree. Everyone must now assimilate into the Liberal Party collective. RESISTANCE IS FUTILE.

  104. For you Kady:

    Tories hold slim poll lead as Liberal support falls back

    By Janice Tibbetts,

    Canwest News Service

    May 25, 2009


    Ipsos Reid poll

    Cons 35, Libs 33

    Cons came from down 10 points to 2 points up in Ontario

    ''He attributed the Conservative climb in Canada's most populous province — where the party captured 39 per cent support to the Liberals' 37 per cent — to a slightly improving economy.''

  105. Perhaps an upper-update for this first national poll since the truth ads PW?

    Conservatives lead with 35/33

    Cons up 2, Libs down 3

    Cons lead in Ontario ( where all of the seats go to federalists)


  106. Ha, I noticed this too. Polls are worth taking seriously, until they tell us something we don't want to hear.

  107. Wouldn't it be nice if a FEDERAL GOVERNMENT would actually work at just plain governing the entire country, instead of engaging in all this ridiculous regional tinkering.

  108. Interesting — although I'd love to see the MoE for the regional breakdowns.

  109. no more discussion that the peoples are now dying lolz

  110. yep, good comments. as lackluster and sometimes disipiriting as the execution has been in the last 12 months, this pool of blue votes exists in Quebec and it's worth it for Harper and the Adequistes to persevere and find the messages that resonate, if only in the Quebec City region. Housakos organized a pretty successful fundraiser, with twice as much attendance as predicted. Quebec will never be the core Tory vote it was under Mulroney but that doesn't mean that a bleu tribe couldn't be built over time, not unlike the Maritimes where the Tories get a third of the seats.

  111. The ads were different in quebec, different in content but not approach. Harper has a foundation of support in ROC, negative ads work there because the choice in people's mind is different than the choice in Quebec.

    At one point he was in the choice set but is out now. Just like dumont was, and no longer is. But quebec being Quebec you can always come back. Charest is a good example, as was Bourassa. But it starts with Quebecers deciding you arent such a bad person after all….I dont know enough about what quality formed the foundation in either of those two cases….and native sons are different than outsiders.

    I don't know if Negative ads, as an approach, works for Cons in Quebec. They need to get themselves back into the chocie set before they can get any effect of knocking others down.

    Ontario is completely different story, where I woudl expect to see the approach work, and BC is third narrative where the con enemy is more the NDP…but dumping on Ignatieff helps prevent vote splitting.

    Paul, who was the architect of the 2006 Quebec breakout? Are they still around?

  112. Has enough time now passed that Maxime Bernier can re-enter cabinet? It strikes me that the Conservatives need a strong, articulate voice full time in the province, a voice that none of current Quebec caucus can provide. Bernier was well on his way to becoming that voice until his a) misguided shuffling out of Industry, and b) that other little incident. That's old news now, so perhaps the Prime Minister can put him back in cabinet, a la Charest after his brief timeout in 1990. Judging by the current numbers, it can't possibly hurt, and it may well help.

  113. this would probably be imminent.. but chantal hebert reminds me that the RCMP investigation on l'affaire couillard is still active, so that has to complicate things. you'd have to assume that ends first. Interesting, as wells pointed out earlier, that Mad Max started his bilingual video blog 2 weeks ago, staking out a a more libertarian message than the party has.

  114. Good for him. Bernier is definitely a strong libertarian on fiscal issues, and is no doubt appalled at the tax and spend, interventionalist mood that has taken hold in government. (It is simultaneously sad and amusing to see governments embracing deficits and heavy government economic intervention like it is something new and different that has never been tried before.) Max is a guy who could give Quebeckers the fiscal facts of life and not be dismissed as just some stuffy Anglo.

    As for the RCMP investigation, do they ever formally close those things? They seem to be loathe to ever publicly declare that a given investigation is closed. After all this time, it is hard to imagine what they could be investigating, and what they could find on the Couillard affair that hasn't already been reported on publicly.

  115. All I am going to say is I have no time for Bloc, and the many Quebecers who want to destory this country! I could careless about the whole who's province is better than the other. Why the hell should any party have to but Quebec above any other province!

  116. not really

  117. Hear hear!

  118. Please leave the country, Allions. Go. Canadians would be better off without Quebec.

  119. random / irreverent thought.. what do we make of the two most important backroom quebec tories / adq linked guys being greek? has that ethnic community gone particularly libertarian / away from the libs in the last decade?

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