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Aspiring to the leadership, Denis Coderre is not a member of the PLQ

Photo: Guillaume Levasseur Archives Le Devoir The former mayor has not been a member of the PLQ since 2010. But “I have the form in front of me, I will be from tomorrow,” he said. We see him here during an editorial table in the offices of “Devoir” on the occasion of the 2021 municipal elections.

Marie-Michèle Sioui in Thetford Mines

4:39 p.m.

  • Quebec

The candidate for leadership of the Liberal Party of Quebec (PLQ) Denis Coderre has not been a member of the party since 2010.

However, anyone who aspires to lead the PLQ must be a “member in good standing” of the political party, declared Thursday the president of the PLQ, Rafael P. Ferraro, on the sidelines of the liberal caucus.

“It’s certain: the person who is officially going to be a leadership candidate, who is going to want to become leader, must be a member in good standing of the party,” he said. “It’s very easy to become a member. So yes, I am taking this opportunity to extend this invitation to [him]. »

Mr. Coderre subsequently confirmed to Devoir that he is not a member of the PLQ. “I have the form in front of me, I will be from tomorrow [Friday],” he assured, sharing a photo of the party membership form.

Mr. Ferraro said he “understands” that a former mayor could have given up being a member of the PLQ, in particular to ensure good relations with representatives of various political parties. “Mr. Coderre, like other people, has had other professional occupations in recent years,” he stressed. The president of the PLQ also explained that it was not necessary for a candidate to have been a member of the party for a certain number of months or years before jumping into the race.

The PLQ says it has between 15,000 and 20,000 members. Mr Ferraro wants to “gather as many members as possible” in the leadership race. “The number of candidates will undoubtedly have an effect,” he stressed.

To be in the race, aspiring candidates will need to obtain the support of 750 members from 70 constituencies, in 12 regions of Quebec. Among the 750 members, 350 must be new members of the PLQ.

All welcome, except the separatists

Earlier in the day, the interim leader of the PLQ, Marc Tanguay, declared that any candidate for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Quebec could be in the running for the race in 2025, as long as they consult the book of the ex-leader Claude Ryan on the values ​​of the party — and that he is not a separatist.

“It’s open to all [those] who adhere to the values ​​of the Liberal Party of Quebec,” he declared on the third day of his party’s caucus, meeting before the resumption of parliamentary work . “There are rules in place by the party which ensure that any citizen, any voter can submit their candidacy, take their membership card, submit their candidacy. »

Claude Ryan's 2004 book, Liberal Values ​​and Modern Quebec, “this is the basis” for becoming a candidate, agreed Mr. Tanguay. For the rest, and in particular for the constitutional position of the party, the liberal positions are to be defined.

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“Could there be a candidate who proposes a new round of constitutional negotiations ? One “Meech Lake”, take two ?” a reporter asked the interim leader. “It’s a hypothetical question, but clearly, it could be part of the debates,” replied Mr. Tanguay.

President Ferraro, for his part, declared that “anyone who would like to have an interest in the leadership race and a legitimate chance to be our next leader” should draw inspiration from the work of the PLQ revival committee, which notably proposed the creation of a constitution for Quebec.

“It is not an obligation to agree 100% on all ideas,” he then qualified, emphasizing that liberals are “completely open” to debates .

Code in complete freedom

So far, two people have indicated their interest in the race: MP Frédéric Beauchemin and former Montreal mayor Denis Coderre. Although absent from Thetford Mines, the latter has attracted attention in recent days, notably because his record at town hall sparked laughter among the liberal troops.

At his own caucus on Thursday, Quebec solidaire co-spokesperson Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, who lives in Montreal, also couldn't help but smile when asked about the candidacy by Mr. Coderre. “I shouldn’t laugh,” he joked, before letting out a nervous laugh. “There, I’m laughing at my joke! », he justified.

“I think that Montrealers have spoken about Mr. Coderre’s record. Personally, I don't have very good memories of it. Lots of communication; “not much progress in housing and public transportation”, he simply said, while specifying that he did not want to position himself in the race for the leadership of another political party.

On Thursday, Mr. Tanguay declared that Mr. Coderre had not distracted the caucus, and that he was free of his interventions. “I’m going to let Denis Coderre complete his thoughts and that’s up to him. We are in the Liberal Party of Quebec, we are the party of individual freedoms. So I am not asking anything from Mr. Coderre regarding his interventions,” he declared. In his opinion, the ex-mayor's reflection testifies to the fact that there will be “more than one quality candidate for the leadership race”.

Chief Tanguay also described as “good news” the fact that Quebec has crossed the bar of 9 million inhabitants. “We are going to leave the vision of Quebec’s decline to François Legault, Paul St-Pierre Plamondon and Québec solidaire,” he declared. “Our services will require increased growth. To address the labor shortage, immigration is required. »

Mr. Tanguay said Wednesday that Quebec had “no choice” to welcome more immigrants for economic reasons. “We are going to let others propose to shrink Quebec, to close the borders, to ensure that we must view others with a certain distrust,” he added on Thursday.

With François Carabin

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116