Thursday, February 29, 2024

Poilievre v. Charest, important duel

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Maria Gill
Maria Gill
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The most important race for Federalist leadership in decades has taken an unexpected turn.

Posted at 5:00 a.m

Yes, we are talking about the leadership race for the Conservative Party of Canada. The one who opposed – and even excluded – Pierre Poilevry and Jean Charest last week – Patrick Brown.

Less attention is paid to federal politics in Quebec. Even less so for federal conservatives, who have never had more than a dozen deputies in Quebec since the 1988 election under Brian Mulroney.

But it would be a mistake to ignore what is currently happening among federal conservatives.

Because sooner or later it will end up affecting us tangibly, Conservatives and Liberals have been swapping power in Ottawa since the 1940s.

And because the longer the race continues, the more it wants to materialize a scenario that is barely reassuring for the health of our democracy: Pierre Boulevard, a populist ruling the party’s radical wing and opponents of health measures, could become the next leader of the Conservatives.

Pierre Boliever was already seen as the leader of that race before the party disqualified Patrick Brown from the race on Tuesday over allegations that the election was illegally funded.

Faced with a situation as dangerous as it is so rare (we don’t remember situations of this kind in recent Canadian political history), we don’t expect the party aspiring to lead Canada to be so transparent. He clearly explains to the audience and its members what Patrick Brown is to blame for making such a tough decision.

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Instead, the race commission did the opposite: it spoke generally of “serious allegations of wrongdoing.” […] which seems to be violated […] The election law I researched the media and learned that one of the organizers of Camp Brown was allegedly employed by a company to do work on the candidate’s campaign. If so, it would be illegal, because the company cannot contribute to an election campaign in Canada. Patrick Brown’s campaign rejects these allegations .

We don’t know what happened in Patrick Brown’s campaign. We’re not defending Patrick Brown here.

Any party has the right to exclude a candidate for a serious reason. Failure to comply with electoral laws may constitute gross misconduct, depending on the nature of the facts involved. However, the evidence must be strong, the candidate must have had a real chance to explain himself, and the decision-making process must be perfect. Finally, explain to the audience specifically why the candidate was disqualified!

We do not have the information to judge whether the party made the right decision. But in a public explanation, the Conservative Party completely missed the ball. It’s embarrassing.

The party claims that it cannot provide detailed explanations because of canadian election law, in order not to interfere with an investigation by Elections Canada (to which the file was sent). However, nothing in election law The party is not prevented from giving more details about the content of the allegations. Party leaders also say they want to reduce the risk of prosecution. We have news for them: This case will end in court anyway.

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When you make a decision with such serious consequences, you take responsibility and clearly communicate the reasons. Especially since the removal of Patrick Brown changes the dynamics of the race that will be decided by preferential voting.

This race pits candidates with two very different visions of politics against each other.

On the other hand, there is Pierre Boulevard, the economic liberal who applies the recipe for Trumpism and the Tea Party in Canada, who attacks our institutions, and wants to dismiss the Governor of the Bank of Canada, who opposes health measures. which backed the “Freedom Caravan” in Ottawa last winter, which mixes the idea of ​​“freedom” with the concept of individualism in times of crisis and which flirts with fall 2020 economic conspiracy theories related to the World Economic Forum.

On the other side we find Jean Charest and Patrick Brown, classic conservatives not likely to be confused with Maxime Bernier.

With preferential voting, if Pierre Poilevry is not elected in the first round with 50% of the vote, he could theoretically lose during the following rounds if Patrick Brown’s supporters overwhelmingly support Jean Charest, or vice versa; 675,000 members will be able to choose the next Conservative leader.

If Mr Brown remains excluded from the race, some of the 150,000 new members he has appointed may not vote. This narrows the path to victory (already narrow) for Jean Charest in a difficult duel against Pierre Boiliver.

Several years ago, it was believed that a populist like Donald Trump or Boris Johnson could not be elected in Canada. It hurts to see it, but it is now possible at the helm of the Conservative Party.

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Canadian society is increasingly divided. Pierre Boiliver feeds on this division. plant it. It embodies this partisan politics at its worst.

Yes, other Tory leaders such as Erin O’Toole adopted a rhetoric to appease the radical wing during the leadership race, only to refocus afterward. But they did not go further than Pierre Poilevry.

Brian Mulroney recently said that he does not match the current version of the Conservative Party of Canada. If Pierre Boiliver wins, the former prime minister will admit himself to a lesser degree – if that is possible.

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