The president of the FTQ surprised everyone Monday by announcing he will not seek a third term as president at a union convention at the end of this month.
In a statement, he says he served the FTQ, the FTQ Solidarity Fund, and Quebec's workers to the best of his ability since he was first elected to the job in 2007, and added, "I can't remake the past."
Arsenault is due to appear Tuesday before the National Assembly public finance committee in Quebec City, on the subject of the governance of the FTQ's Solidarity Fund.
There had been considerable opposition building to his leadership of the union, particularly as his leadership recently became a subject of discussion at the Charbonneau Commission's hearings.
Earlier, Radio-Canada had reported that Arsenault had held private meetings with Parti Quebecois leader Pauline Marois, before she became premier and was still the leader of the opposition. At the time, the FTQ Solidarity Fund had been investing in a company run by her husband Claude Blanchet.
Claude Généreux, the former national secretary-treasurer of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, announced last week he'd be running for the job.
Généreux will run against Daniel Boyer, the FTQ's secretary-general.