Tuesday, May 8, 2007

André Boisclair Steps Down

André Boisclair, the former leader of the Parti Québécois (PQ).
Today, André Boisclair, the leader of the Parti Québécois (PQ), was supposed to meet his party's caucus led by Agnès Maltais. However, according to my classmates from college, an article of The Globe and Mail and another one from La Presse, Boisclair resigned from his post as leader of the Parti Québécois (PQ). Who will be the next leader of this party that seeks the separation of Quebec from Canada?

Obviously, this young politician is not fully responsible of his downfall; we must also consider what his predecessors did. For example, you can think about the SPQ Libre - definitely the best ingredient for internal division! - created by Bernard Landry to please the PQ's leftist wing. That being said, André Boisclair certainly inherited his predecessors' problems. Still, one of the main reasons of his downfall remains his lack of political judgement.

After all, many people wasn't convinced that he could be Quebec's Premier. In fact, on the night of the leaders' debate, he spent most of his time criticizing and insulting the other candidates without exposing his ideas. Most of us didn't anticipate his surprising resignation. Nevertheless, he really has been displaying many signs of weakness since last weeks.

The PQ’s supporters were asking for a provincial convention as soon as possible to make a confidence vote on Boisclair’s leadership. The convention in question was initially supposed to be held in 2009, but the leader of Quebec’s major separatist party decided that it would finally be held on September 2008.

Simply put, he wanted to give himself a decent window of time to be a new type of leader. That really was a despicable display of arrogance. Does he really think that members of the PQ will give him a second chance? Many people don’t expect his leadership style to change.

If Boisclair was trying to courageously talk the talk like Mario Dumont, the leader of the Action Démocratique du Québec (ADQ), that wouldn’t look convincing at all. In fact, in 18 months at the helm of the PQ, Boisclair was never able to clearly express his thoughts on various issues.

Thus, if he miraculously became as good as Nicolas Sarkozy in oral communication, people would just start wondering who the hell does Boisclair think he is. In short, people are just so used to see Boisclair stumble into political correctness whenever journalists press him to give his opinions.

On Sunday, why did he verbally attack the leader of the Bloc Québécois (BQ) Gilles Duceppe in an interview? At the first look, such an intervention was not a good idea at all.

Indeed, last week, we could learn in the newspaper Le Devoir that Louise Harel, a deputy of the PQ, was trying to make Gilles Duceppe become the leader of the PQ. Rumours will always be rumours, right? Although both Harel and Duceppe are old friends, she declared that she was still following André Boisclair.

Let’s grant to Harel the benefit of doubts. Given her support to Pauline Marois during the leadership race of the PQ in 2005, one might say that she probably made another discourse to hide her real feelings… Anyway, by accusing Duceppe of perverting Quebecker separatists’ interests, Boisclair really turned many separatists against him.

In his resignation speech, he said that the “ordeals [that he went through as the head of the PQ] were […] occasions to learn and grow up”. Moreover, he added that “the current conditions no longer allow [him to be the leader of the PQ]”.

Had it not been because of his arrogance, André Boisclair would have fixed his mistakes in order “to learn and grow up”. After all, before Boisclair became the leader of the PQ, this pathetic political party just never learned and grew up.

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