Photo: Archives Élections Québec Le député caquiste Louis-Charles Thouin, qu’on voit ici en 2018, aurait solicité des maires de la circonscription de Rousseau pour des contributions financières à la CAQ.
Targeted by an ethics investigation because of his financial requests from mayors in his constituency, CAQ MP Louis-Charles Thouin postponed the event where he invited them to meet the Minister of Transport Geneviève Guilbault.
The Ethics Commissioner of the National Assembly, Ariane Mignolet, announced Monday the opening of an investigation into the invitation made by Mr. Thouin to municipal elected officials from his constituency of Rousseau .
Ms. Mignolet will have to determine whether Mr. Thouin placed himself in a conflict of interest by soliciting elected officials from his constituency to whom he could then be accountable and whether this approach could have favored his personal interests, indicates a press release sent by his office.
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“The MP concerned was informed in writing of the opening of an investigation into him”, specifies the press release.
The director of the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ), Brigitte Legault, said Monday that Mr. Thouin decided to postpone the fundraising activity where he wanted to invite mayors to meet Ms. Guilbault, scheduled for February 8.
“Personally, he doesn’t spin,” she told Devoir.
Ms. Legault affirmed that this decision is not linked to the opening of the investigation but to the place that the allegations took in the media.
“It affects the morale of the deputy,” she said. Her children are being bullied at school. »
The opening of this investigation follows a request from Québec solidaire MP Vincent Marissal, made last week.
Ms. Mignolet, who will conduct her investigation behind closed doors as usual, refrained from making further comments.
“The alleged facts concern a message sent by the MP to the mayors of the MRC of Montcalm inviting them to participate in a Coalition Avenir Québec fundraising activity in exchange for a meeting with a minister” , indicates its press release.
In a text message sent to all the mayors of his constituency of Rousseau, about ten days ago, Mr. Thouin presented them with a new financing formula.
“Each MP must, each year, raise funds for the next elections, however this year I have decided to propose a new formula to you,” he wrote. I would like to combine business with pleasure by inviting you to a planned cocktail party, at a cost of $100. »
Mr. Thouin added that by paying this amount, the mayors would be making a contribution to the CAQ for this year.
“Geneviève and I will be delighted to welcome you and to be able to discuss with you on various subjects that concern you, including road and public transport issues. »
Last week, Ms. Mignolet announced the opening of another investigation into the financing activities of a CAQ member, Sylvain Lévesque, who is second vice-president of the National Assembly.
Questioned on the subject of political financing last Thursday, Prime Minister François Legault affirmed that mayors did not have to pay to meet ministers of his government.
“I have been in politics for a long time, whether it is the Liberal Party, the Parti Québécois, whether there are ministers who are invited as speakers at cocktail parties, it has existed since politics exists,” he said.