PQ candidates struggle to explain their defeat

PQ 2014 spring caucus (archive)
Angelica Montgomery/CJAD

Defeated candidate Émelien Pelletier did not hold back his bitterness when he ran into reporters on his way into what would almost certainly be his last ever PQ caucus meeting.

"What's the deal you had with [premier-designate] Couillard?" he asked the journalists who tried to talk to him. He told them squarely that they were responsible for his party's disastrous results.

"You were pretty much the artisans."

He said media concentrated their criticism on the Parti Quebecois, while not asking about a "deal" between Couillard and Arthur Porter (the idea of an agreement had been mentioned by either party during the campaign).

Daniel Breton lost Sainte-Marie-Saint-Jacques, a seat that had been held by the PQ for the past 25 years. He says his party was powerless against the Liberal's referendum "boogieman."

"How can we manage that when people never stop repeating that there will be a referendum? We repeated that we wouldn't have one...We had said so for three weeks. If people perpetuate those lies, well..."

Breton said his party's pledge to not hold a referendum unless Quebecers were ready was "clear enough."

Another defeated candidate, Dominique Payette, tells the media they need to spend more time discussing issues. "On the referendum story, I think you were manipulated by the Liberal party," she says.

But the man who failed to win Trois-Rivieres, Alexis Deschênes, says people in the riding wanted a straight answer about whether or not his party would call a vote to separate, and he wasn't able to give them one.

"We have to be clearer on what we aim to do," he said.

integrity and the charter

No candidates directly blamed the charter. When asked, many said there were a number of elements that contributed to their defeat.

Out-going minister Pierre Duchesne, who failed to keep his seat in Bordua, said public cynicism was a "enormous monster" in the campaign.

"We have to be conscious that we are also responsible as elected officials to have fed the kind of beast that is cynicism."

He would not say whether the Parti Quebecois' focus on UPAC and illegal financing may have fed that cynicism. The party had themselves been visited by UPAC and had benefited from disguised funds.

"That, we will see. There was the problem of integrity and people want honest representatives," he said.

Payette, however, said the apparent contradiction in the PQ's integrity stance should not have been an issue. "It's not the same scale. For the media, at the certain point, (they) just compare what is not comparable."

Outgoing premier Pauline Marois entered her party's caucus meeting through the kitchen of the hotel where it was being held, avoiding the media.

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  1. Alex posted on 04/10/2014 05:32 PM
    "Breton said his party's pledge to not hold a referendum unless Quebecers were ready was "clear enough." Yeah, like the PQ has a reputation for not lying and for keeping its promises!
  2. Barcham posted on 04/10/2014 05:54 PM
    Are these people really that blind? Are they really that delusional? How can such otherwise intelligent people be so ignorant of why they lost? Do they live in a void? In a time warp that is stuck back in the 1960's? OPEN YOUR EYES!!! Take a walk outside and talk to some real people who actually live in the province you want to lead! Learn what is happening in the world of today! Accept that just because you are stuck in the past it does not mean that the rest of us are as well. The year is 2014, it is the 21st Century. Please take a step into it and leave the past behind along with your hate and your dreams of a separate Quebec. Join us in building a strong and vibrant society so we can all move into the future together.
  3. CrocTears posted on 04/10/2014 06:13 PM
    Ah yes. Blame everyone but themselves. Somewhat reminiscent of something touted in 95. The PQ need to face the facts. No one wants a referendum, and all though Quebecers support the separation of church and state, no one wants to see someone lose their job over what they wear.

    So many incompetent PQ ministers, was thrilled to see them lose their jobs over the Charter.
  4. Markymark posted on 04/10/2014 07:32 PM
    So last time it was the ethnic vote and money, this time it was the journalists. The PQ is damn lucky it even survived this election. If it wasn't for its loyalists who would give them the vote with a tickle me Elmo as it's leader, they would be dead. You want to know why you lost Mr Pelletier?.......at your final caucus, take a look at each and every face around that table. Focus hard on Drainville, Lisee, Decourcy, and Marois.......now....that is why you lost.
    1. Nica posted on 04/11/2014 08:50 AM
      @Markymark Agreed! Besides their hateful policies based on lies, deceit and non-issues (that thankfully people saw right through!) this lot has to be the most unlikable bunch around town.
  5. Mike d posted on 04/10/2014 08:18 PM
    Always blaming others. Take a look in the mirror. Too bad the PQ won any seats.
  6. George Grummett posted on 04/10/2014 08:50 PM
    Well, to me it all boils down to the same old question :

    "What part of "NO" don't they understand ?"
  7. JohH- posted on 04/11/2014 03:44 AM
    I have read all your comments and I agree with all of you. However, I would like to bring to your attention a new modus operandi that has never been used in a Canadian election until now. IDENTITY POLITICS! It has been used in other countries with deadly results. Off the top of my head countries such as, Bosnia, Rwanda, Syria and the Sudan, just to name a few. When a government targets a segment of its population and places restrictions on their human rights such as: freedom of speech, freedom to practice their religion, freedom of assembly you have the ingredients for tyranny and civil war. That was how desperate they were. But, we are smarter then they are. Bravo, Quebec!!! "GO HABS GO"
    1. Derek posted on 04/12/2014 10:13 PM
      @JohH- Every political party needs a common enemy. It is one of the most practical ways to rally support behind a cause. It is unfortunate that the PQ thought they felt the need to use the secularism as that vehicle. Somewhere along the way they forgot the message - the separation of church and state does not mean that all other religions other than Christianity take a back seat - it means that the state will remain neutral rather than favour any religion over another. JohH is 100% right when he compares the PQ mentality to what has happened around the world and throughout history. Any government willing to protect the majority and it's supporters by oppressing the rights of the minority is not a govt worth having. It's starts As a murmur, and grows louder until it is screamed with hatred and we are ripping hijabs and kippas off of people's heads. Not in my Quebec! Not in my Canada!!
  8. ric posted on 04/11/2014 08:47 AM
    They can blame the English, the minorities, the federalists and now the media. How about blaming their own STUPIDITY.
  9. George73 posted on 04/11/2014 02:59 PM
    "PQ struggle to explain their defeat"

    It's amusing that a party of so-called intellectuals such as Lisee cannot explain what is so obvious to the less educated minions.

    And just how much taxpayer money was spent on their education? Obviously it was a waste. I wouldn't trust these "intellectuals" to walk my dog. If they dropped the leash and the dog ran out into traffic and got killed, they would blame the owner for giving them the contract rather than their own incompetance.

    Remember, unlike Couillard, Drainville, Lisee and PKP are not brain surgeons. Thank God.
  10. More BS posted on 04/13/2014 01:42 PM
    These geniuses would struggle to explain how an outhouse works.
    Look in the mirror for your answer.
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