Here is my view. A shock wave is on its way. The Bloc will lose 20 or more of its seats. The NDP will gain five or six or more seats mainly in Montreal. It will emerge as the killer force, inadvertently fractioning the left as left-of-centre Québécois try to find an alternative to the Bloc and deny a Conservative majority.
No new Liberals will be elected anywhere, with the Conservatives slipping through the middle in an additional 10-12 seats in the province. The English enclaves of Montreal will once again blindly try to remain on the margins of influence in Ottawa by voting Liberal, but will have enough sense, for once, to elect one, maybe two, Conservatives this time around and provide a voice for Montreal in cabinet. The rumble which will roll to a Conservative majority will come out of Quebec.
Why? In increasing numbers, Francophone Quebecers have discovered the ‘Best Before’ date of the Bloc has expired. The tired refrain of objection and damaged pride continually expressed by the Bloc has run its course. People, committed sovereigntists excluded, see little advantage in continuing to be eternally in opposition. Influencers in the media, until recently sympathetic, now question the supposed advantage of voting Bloc to protect Quebec’s interests.
Gilles Duceppe has himself hammered some of the nails in his party’s container that could very well become its coffin. He is no longer the erudite, logical champion of Quebec identity. In this campaign he has become a grumpy, condescending proselytizer. To top it off, at the provincial Parti Québécois convention last weekend, Duceppe took out a broom and swept away much of the non-sovereigntist element of his support over the years with his rallying cry that independence for Quebec is soon at hand with a PQ government in Quebec and the Bloc in Ottawa. That is not what most Quebecers have in mind for their future.
So, “Jack, on vous aime, on y va avec toi”. To the NDP good guys they are going, clearing the road for the Conservatives through the shifting pieces of the left in this province. Mark my words. If you agree or disagree, let’s hear about it.
Authored by: Tom Creary