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Denis Coderre introduces himself as “Captain Canada”

Photo: Paul Chiasson The Canadian Press According to a Léger poll, a PLQ led by Denis Coderre would obtain 21% of voting intentions, compared to 15% if it were led by the interim leader, Marc Tanguay.

With a poll showing that he would allow the Liberal Party of Quebec (PLQ) to regain ground, Denis Coderre presents himself as “Captain Canada” who could avoid the PQ's “chicanes” a new referendum on sovereignty.

Mr. Coderre said Wednesday that he welcomed with “humility” the results of a Léger poll which credited him with 21% support if he were Liberal leader, compared to 15% for the current interim leader, Marc Tanguay. According to him, “the regions have spoken”.

“What is increasingly clear is that people don’t want to know anything about a referendum,” he declared in an interview with Devoir .

The one who will decide in June whether he will officially be a candidate for leadership of the PLQ explained that his political party should reconnect with the federalist-sovereignist axis, put aside by the Coalition Avenir Québec. He opposed his federalist convictions to those of Prime Minister François Legault.

“Asking me if I’m liberal is like asking if the pope is Catholic,” he said. Between “Captain Canada” Legault then “Captain Canada” Coderre, if I go there, I think that asking the question is answering it. »

He also shot an arrow at the PQ leader, Paul St-Pierre Plamondon. “Mr. Plamondon, he says that there are going to be referendum squabbles, that if he is elected, he will hold a referendum right away,” he noted.

Affirming that the PLQ is the only federalist party in Quebec, Mr. Coderre intends to work for “a strong Quebec in an effective Canada.” “A country, I have one, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be improved. »

Immigration, Constitution, exemption

On the front of Quebec-Ottawa relations, Denis Coderre considered the request for new powers in matters of immigration made by Mr. Legault unnecessary. “We don’t need that. The agreement works wonderfully. This is one of the finest agreements between Quebec and Canada. »

While the PLQ is currently demanding federal powers linked to the reception of temporary workers, Mr. Coderre concedes that this question will be debated during the leadership race in 2025. “We will talk about it if I’m a candidate,” he said.

Mr. Coderre showed little eagerness to take up the initiative of the last Liberal Prime Minister, Philippe Couillard, who wanted Quebec to finally sign the Canadian Constitution. However, he raises the hypothesis of administrative agreements. “There are some who like that, talking about the constitution. I want to work to get homeless people off the streets, I want to find ways for them to have jobs and for them to have housing. »

Affirming that the override provision is part of the agreement which signified the patriation of the Canadian Constitution in 1982, Mr. Coderre said he was ready to assume its renewal in order to protect certain aspects of the Secularism Act of the State against appeals to the courts. “The escape clause is part of the deal. There is a political price to pay, we accept it. I won't touch it. »

In a recent interview with Devoir, Mr. Coderre had nevertheless presented the opposite position, taking up that of his predecessor Dominique Anglade, who would have kept the law without renewing the provision. “We’re keeping it. No clause,” he said.

In the polls

In a survey conducted for Le Journal de Montréal and TVA published Wednesday, the Léger firm noted that Mr. Coderre, if he were leader, would have more support than the other people whose name is circulating. In addition to Mr. Tanguay, Marwah Rizqy would obtain 16% of the voting intentions, while Fred Beauchemin would receive 13%.

This Léger poll once again places the Parti Québécois in the lead, with 32% support, while the Coalition Avenir Québec remains in second position with a result of 25%. The support of the two parties has remained stable since Léger's last measure, in December, as has that of the PLQ, at 15%, and Québec solidaire, at 16%.

On Wednesday, the PQ leader was not worried that a quarter of voters who would support him were opposed to a referendum on sovereignty. He repeated that the Parti Québécois intends to hold a referendum on sovereignty in a first mandate, but he evaded questions about maintaining this objective in the event that it forms a minority government. “You are making me make hypothetical politics based on facts that I do not know,” said Paul St-Pierre Plamondon.

Léger's survey was conducted among 1032 Quebecers from February 2 to 5, 2024. Its margin of error is estimated at ±3.05%, 19 times out of 20.

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