Parti Quebecois Leader Pauline Marois came under some unexpected fire Thursday from one of her own party's high-profile candidates.
Serge Cardin, who is running against Premier Jean Charest in the Sherbrooke riding, said Marois' gender could thwart her ambitions of becoming premier.
The former Bloc Quebecois MP said some people might not be ready for a woman premier.
He told a radio network he is ''greatly disappointed'' by such an attitude.
Marois said later that Cardin's comments were misinterpreted, while the man at the heart of the controversy issued a statement to say his remarks did not properly reflect his thoughts on the matter.
The comments echo those of Claude Pinard, who said last November that a significant portion of the electorate wouldn't vote for Marois because she is a woman. Pinard, a PQ member of the national assembly at the time, is not seeking re-election.
Jean Charest has an ominous warning for Anglos.
If you don't vote, he said, don't be surprised if the Parti Québécois wins the Sept. 4 election and a referendum on sovereignty is called.
He told The Gazette this afternoon that there are two paths to another referendum: "You either go out there and vote for Madame Marois or for Québec solidaire or for Option nationale," he said, "or you stay home and you don’t vote."
The Charest government's controversial university funding plan would be scrapped within the first 100 days of a Parti
That's the promise being made by the PQ on the first full day of the Quebec election campaign.
PQ Leader Pauline Marois says she would quickly eliminate tuition hikes, cancel the emergency protest law Bill 78, and call a summit on university funding if she won the Sept. 4 election.
She is making those promises while accompanied by one of the leaders of the student strikes who is now running for her as a candidate in Laval, near Montreal.
That promise in the company of Leo Bureau-Blouin comes just after a rowdy night-time protest in Montreal resulted in 17 arrests and some injuries.
But Marois says it's not the students who are to blame for the climate of social unrest _ she says it's the fault of Jean Charest's Liberal ...
Liberal leader Jean Charest will join Andrew Carter tomorrow morning at 8:15 a.m. for a special early campaign interview.
Corruption, sovereignty, students: Nothing will be off-limits.
Listeners can suggest questions by posting on CJAD's Facebook page.
Photo: Canadian Press
Speaking this morning at Quebec City's Palais de Justice, Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) leader François Legault took aim at Jean Charest and his "friends."
"You have not defended Quebec's interests," Legault said. "You first thought of your little friends, but Quebecers are not fooled, Mr. Charest!"
The CAQ's "Bill 1" would focus on municipal contracts as well as provincial, and crack down on the funding of political parties.