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Why I Voted for the Minority Party Quebec
By Mohamed Kamel
Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, September 8, 2012
This article was written before announcing election results, which were
Quebec election results (2012)
PQ (projected winner) : 54 seats
| 54 elected | 0 leading
Liberals: 50 seats
| 49 elected | 1 leading
CAQ: 19 seats
| 19 elected | 0 leading
Québec Solidaire: 2
seats | 2 elected | 0 leading
When Jean Charest called for election, Quebeckers wondered if he
was going back to office or not? And most of us started to question if we
were going to vote and if yes, to whom? Are we waking up on September 5th to
a minority or a majority government?
We entered this election with
one question. Are we ready to accept Charest’s bill 78 that for the
first time in Canada, curbs people’s rights, curbing on freedom of speech
while raising tuition fees and introducing his conservative views?
Charest governed for 9 years, shaded with corruption that involved many
figures and he is not clean from it yet. He called the election to avoid
negotiating with the students after issuing his undemocratic bill. For me
when a party fails to listen to the new generation and their logic, they
wrote their own death certificate.
On the other hand, there is
Pauline Marois who has been trying to lead the Parti Québécois (PQ) for
years, only succeeding once the party failed in all attempts to gain power.
Marois is the leader of the opposition who shyly supported the student
movement in refusing the tuition increase and opposing bill 78.
imagined that she could govern, until she returned to the stone age and
started fighting the windmills by not recognizing today’s society.
Marois is still dreaming of creating a confrontation between the old and the
new Quebec, so she can win a separation referendum. She is re-introducing
her party’s vision of a pure white catholic society that pretends to be
secular just as a tool to refuse the others. At the same time, she
helped in shifting the party’s policy far from the left, disconnected the
movement from the labour movement.
By refusing to accept the others
and living in the past through her hard secular dream, Marois wrote her own
Even her own team fragmented into two other
parties, Option Nationale (ON) a new small party supported by one of PQ’s
old guard, Jacques Parizeau, and Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ).
Competing with both the Liberal party and the PQ came the new political
party, Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ). When François Legault exited
from the PQ, he formed his new movement representing the far right
capitalizing on the remains of Action démocratique Québec (ADQ), a party
that was born and died in less than 18 years. CAQ, similarly to the
ADQ, is a soft sovereign movement. CAQ supported the Liberal in
passing bill 78 and is calling for abolishing school boards, which will
minimize the participation and the role of taxpayers and parents in managing
the education system. Another party that I can’t support!
being able to vote for any of these parties brought me back to the basics of
democracy. Why are we voting strategically? Why don’t we go back to
the principals and vote for what we believe in?
I prefer a minority
government because it is the only way to allow people’s voice to be heard.
When a majority governs, they became a sort of dictatorship. They
don’t fear people and don’t bother with people’s needs or their point of
view. They only serve their own close circle of beneficiaries, and
that is proven by the corruption that has shaded our life for a while.
Some might vote for one of these parties based on one issue to avoid the
others. Some might vote against referendum, others might vote against
Marois’ citizen chart and some might vote against bill 78 or the corruption.
I am sure that Quebeckers are not looking for these votes. Our
children deserve better than that. We should come back to the principles. We
need a strong party that can raise our concerns and represent the general
population. Québec Solidaire (QS), as small as it is, is co-lead by
Françoise David and Amir Khadir, both long time activists for people’s
rights and community development, believe in a soft secularity of the state
that creates a state without a religion but maintains and respects people’s
right in practicing their own believes.
I voted for QS
because they support all people’s rights, because their political stand is
my political stand.
Are they going to govern? Most properly
not now, but maybe some time soon. If this vote didn’t help QS to govern, it
will help us magnifying the need to apply the proportional representation.
One day, we will be able to achieve our goal in recognizing the
proportional representation, a basic democratic principal that big parties
are afraid of applying, because it will bring power back to the people
instead of corporations.
Mohamed S. Kamel is a Freelance writer, he is a professional
engineer, a LEED Green Associate and a recognized project manager
professional, he is Member of several civil society organizations, a
co-founder of the Alternative Perspective Media (APM-RAM), , Quebec Antiwar
movement “Échec à la Guerre”, Canadian Egyptian for Democracy (CEFD),
National Association for Change in Egypt (Taghyeer – Canada), Association of
the Egyptians of Montreal (AEM). He could be reached at