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Québec solidaire (QS; locally [ke.bɛk sɔ.li.daɛ̯ʁ]) is a democratic socialist, social-democratic[4][5] and sovereigntist[6] political party in Quebec, Canada.[7] The party and media outlets in Canada usually use the name "Québec solidaire" in both French and English, but the party's name is sometimes translated as "Solidarity Quebec" or "Quebec Solidarity" in foreign English-language media.[8][9][10]

Québec solidaire
LeaderGaétan Châteauneuf (de jure)[1]; collective leadership (de facto)
PresidentNika Deslauriers
SpokespersonManon Massé and Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois
FoundedFebruary 4, 2006 (2006-02-04)
Merger ofUnion des forces progressistes (UFP),
Option Citoyenne,
Option nationale
Headquarters533, rue Ontario Est
Suite 010
Montreal, Quebec
H2L 1N8
IdeologyDemocratic socialism
Social democracy
Alter-globalization
Quebec sovereigntism
Environmentalism
Feminism
Political positionLeft-wing[2][3]
ColoursOrange
Seats in the National Assembly
10 / 125
Website
quebecsolidaire.net

Contents

HistoryEdit

FoundationEdit

Québec solidaire was founded on February 4, 2006 in Montreal by the merger of the left-wing party Union des forces progressistes (UFP) and the alter-globalization political movement Option Citoyenne, led by Françoise David.[7] It was formed around a number of activists and politicians who had written Pour un Québec solidaire, a left-wing response to Pour un Québec lucide. Pour un Québec lucide presented a distinctly neoliberal analysis of and set of solutions to Quebec's problems, particularly criticizing the sovereignty movement as distracting from Quebec's real issues and the Quebec social model as inefficient and out-of-date. Pour un Québec solidaire presented an alternate analysis, and later its writers formed the party Quebec solidaire, taking its name from the manifesto.[11]

Françoise David and Amir Khadir were named as the two spokespersons at the party's founding.

Electoral activityEdit

 
Victory speech of Amir Khadir after his election, 8 December 2008

Québec solidaire's first political venture was to field a candidate, Manon Massé, in an April 10, 2006 by-election in Sainte-Marie–Saint-Jacques. She received 22% of the vote. Six years later, she became QS' third MNA.

Québec solidaire contested the 2007 Quebec election. It won 3.65% of the popular vote and received 144,418 votes, 0.21% behind the Green Party of Quebec. They were also endorsed by the Montreal Central Council of the Confédération des syndicats nationaux which represents 125,000 members in Quebec. According to an analysis on Canadian Dimension, this was the first time a trade union in Quebec has endorsed a party more left-wing than the Parti Québécois.[12]

On December 8, 2008, the first Quebec solidaire candidate was elected in the provincial election. Amir Khadir was elected in the Montreal riding of Mercier.[13] He won his seat for the second term in the 2012 election along with another QS candidate Françoise David in Montreal riding of Gouin. Subsequently, Khadir stepped down as co-spokesperson in accordance with QS party rules that stipulate one spokesperson must be from outside the legislature.[14] André Frappier served as interim co-spokesperson[15] until Andrés Fontecilla was chosen on May 5, 2013 to permanently fill the role.[16] David and Frontecilla lead the party into the 2014 election where Manon Massé was elected in Sainte-Marie–Saint-Jacques, becoming the party's third MNA, joining David and Khadir who were both re-elected.

On January 19, 2017, Françoise David announced her immediate retirement as both party spokesperson and as a Member of the National Assembly due to her health.[17] Massé was named the interim spokesperson, and later announced she would be a candidate for the position on a permanent basis.[18] In March, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, one of the leaders of the 2012 Quebec student protests, joined the party as its candidate for the Gouin by-election and a candidate for party co-spokesperson. On May 21, 2017, at the party's annual convention, Massé and Nadeau-Dubois were elected as the party's spokespeople.[19]

At the 2017 party convention, the party voted against co-operation with the Parti Québécois, and agreed to begin talks with the centre-left sovereignist Option nationale party.[19] On December 2, 2017, QS party members approved the merger.[20] On December 10, ON members approved the merger, which gave them "collective" status within Québec solidaire.[21]

In the 2018 election the party gained 7 more seats, bringing them to a total of 10, tying the Parti Québécois in seats.

On November 22, 2018, Québec solidaire, along with Parti Québécois, were granted official party status in the legislature.[22][23] On March 20, 2019, the QS was officially recognized as the second opposition party, behind the Liberals and ahead of the Parti Québécois, after a PQ MNA left the party.[24]

Current and former Members of the National AssemblyEdit

MNA District Region Years of Service
Within Caucus
Background
Amir Khadir Mercier Montreal 2008–2018 Physician
Bloc Québécois candidate in 2000
UFP activist and 2003 candidate
Alter-globalization activist
Françoise David Gouin Montreal 2012-2017 Community organizer
Women's rights activist
Option citoyenne founder and activist
Manon Massé Sainte-Marie–Saint-Jacques Montreal 2014–present Community centre worker
LGBT and women's rights activist
Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois Gouin Montreal 2017–present Co-spokesperson for Coalition large de l'Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante (CLASSE) during 2012 Quebec student protests
Sociologist
Catherine Dorion Taschereau Capitale-Nationale 2018–present Writer & artist
Progressive & Quebec sovereignty movement activist
Option nationale member
The first openly polyamorous person elected in Canada.
Andrés Fontecilla Laurier-Dorion Montreal 2018–present Anthropologist
Parc-Extension / Villeray community organizer
UFP activist & Québec Solidaire spokesperson in 2013-2017
Ruba Ghazal Mercier Montreal 2018–present Certified accountant
Workplace safety advocate
Environmentalist
Christine Labrie Sherbrooke Estrie 2018–present Université de Sherbrooke lecturer
Local historical society leader
Environmentalist
Feminist Studies PhD graduate
Alexandre Leduc Hochelaga-Maisonneuve Montreal 2018–present UQAM Student body government member
Historian
Labor union representative
Émilise Lessard-Therrien Rouyn-Noranda–Témiscamingue Abitibi-Témiscamingue 2018–present Duhamel-Ouest Town Council Member

Organic farmer[25]

Vincent Marissal Rosemont Montreal 2018–present Journalist & newspaper columnist
Sol Zanetti Jean-Lesage Capitale-Nationale 2018–present Leader of Option nationale in 2013-2018
Philosophy teacher
Labor activist

IdeologyEdit

The aim of QS's foundation was to unify the sovereigntist left of the political spectrum in Quebec by merging the Union des forces progressistes (UFP) party with the Option citoyenne social movement.[26][27] In addition to advocating the independence of Quebec from Canada, the party's platform identifies with the concepts of environmentalism, feminism, social justice, proportional representation and participatory democracy, pacifism, aboriginal rights, and alter-globalism.[28] The party favours aboriginal rights, immigration, and human dignity, and opposes discrimination including racism, sexism and homophobia.[28] QS describes itself as a sovereigntist, green, alter-globalizationist, and feminist party.[29] It is the left-most of the four parties presently represented in the National Assembly.

At the party's founding, the congress unanimously adopted a document called the Déclaration de principes (declaration of principles) which laid out the principles and values that led the two organizations to merge. The declaration of principles does not specifically endorse social democracy, socialism or communism, although it includes certain activists and tendencies that do.[30][31][32] The document declared:[28]

  • "Nous sommes écologistes" ("We are environmentalists")
  • "Nous sommes de gauche" ("We are on the Left")
  • "Nous sommes démocrates" ("We are democrats")
  • "Nous sommes féministes" ("We are feminists")
  • "Nous sommes altermondialistes" ("We are alter-globalists")
  • "Nous sommes d'un Québec pluriel" ("We are from a plural Quebec")
  • "Nous sommes d'un Québec souverain et solidaire" ("We are from a sovereign and united Quebec")
  • "Un autre parti, pour un autre Québec!" ("Another party, for another Quebec!")

StructureEdit

As with its predecessors, Québec solidaire has no "party leader". Instead, the party practices collective leadership. The party's statutes call for it to be represented by a male and female co-spokesperson, one of whom serves in the dual role of party president. If one of the spokespeople is a member of the National Assembly, the other spokesperson remains outside of the legislature and holds the party presidency.[14] They are sometimes referred to in the media as the de facto co-leaders of the party.[33]

The duties generally entrusted to the leader in most other Canadian federal and provincial parties are instead divided among the president, secretary general and male and female spokespeople. The party leadership is assumed by the National Coordinating Committee, composed of 16 persons elected by the founding congress. A person from the team of volunteers will always have a seat. However, as Quebec's election laws requires the appointment of a leader, the party's secretary general, currently Gaétan Châteauneuf,[1] is the de jure party leader recognized by the Chief Electoral Officer of Quebec.[34]

Françoise David and Amir Khadir were the two spokespersons at the party's founding. After the 2012 election where Françoise David won a seat for the first time and Amir Khadir was re-elected, Khadir stepped down as co-spokesperson so a new one could be chosen from outside the legislature.[14] André Frappier served as interim co-spokesperson[15] until Andrés Fontecilla was chosen on May 5, 2013 to permanently fill the role.[16] Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois and Manon Massé became the current co-spokespersons of the party on May 21, 2017. Alexa Conradi was president from the foundation of the party until June 2009 after which Françoise David was named president-spokeswoman.[citation needed]

The national spokespersons of Québec solidaire have greater visibility than the secretary general and are best known. David has been named Personality of the Year by Le Point and Khadir is known for becoming the first elected member of the party, winning the provincial riding of Mercier in 2008.

The basic unit of the party is the local association. There is a local association for each of the 125 ridings in Quebec. These local associations are grouped into 19 regional associations, whose primary mandate to support the establishment of local associations.[citation needed] In March 2007, Québec solidaire has 61 local associations organized. Students and staff at institutions of higher education are grouped in campus associations that also participate in the democratic life of the party.[citation needed] Two national commissions are also part of the structure of Québec solidaire: the Political Committee and the National Commission for Women. The first is composed of 14 thematic committees and is responsible for proposing a program to members. It was responsible for drafting the electoral platform of the party in general elections of 2007. The National Commission for Women is composed of delegates from each region and is responsible for ensuring that feminism is a value which transverses the party.[citation needed]

Québec solidaire also includes a number of collectives, made up of members in good standing who may, in compliance with requirements, promote their respective political views within Québec solidaire. Unlike the UFP, these groups do not have formal representation in the Congress, the National Council or other bodies of the party.[35] Current collectives include:

The Parti Communiste du Québec – Parti Communiste du Canada (PCQ-PCC), left QS following its merger with Option nationale in 2017.[40]

LeadersEdit

Secretary generalsEdit

  • Danielle Maire (February 2006 – June 2006)
  • Régent Séguin (June 2006 – July 2010)
  • Bernard Larivière (July 2010 – February 2011)
  • Thérèse Hurteau (February 2011 – March 2011)
  • Régent Séguin (March 2011 – May 2013)
  • Pierre-Paul St-Onge (May 2013 – June 2016)
  • Gaétan Châteauneuf (June 2016 – present)[41]

Female co-spokespersonsEdit

Male co-spokespersonsEdit

General election resultsEdit

Election # of candidates # of seats won Votes Change +/- % of popular vote Position
2007 123
0 / 125
144,418   0 3.64% Extra-parliamentary
2008 122
1 / 125
122,618   1 3.78% No status
2012 124
2 / 125
263,111   1 6.03% No status
2014 124
3 / 125
323,367   1 7.63% No status
2018 125
10 / 125
648,406   7 16.08% Fourth Party

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Québec solidaire". Directeur général des élections du Québec. Retrieved September 30, 2018.
  2. ^ Dr Marc Guinjoan (2014). Parties, Elections and Electoral Contests: Competition and Contamination Effects. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. p. 68. ISBN 978-1-4724-3910-9.
  3. ^ Tom Lansford, ed. (2015). Political Handbook of the World 2015. SAGE Publications. p. 1061. ISBN 978-1-4833-7155-9.
  4. ^ Pascale Dufour; Christophe Traisnel (2014). "Nationalism and Protest: the Sovereignty Movement in Quebec". In Miriam Smith (ed.). Group Politics and Social Movements in Canada: Second Edition. University of Toronto Press. p. 262. ISBN 978-1-4426-0695-1.
  5. ^ Peter Graefe (2015). "Quebec Nationalism and Quebec Politics". In Bryan M. Evans; Charles W. Smith (eds.). Transforming Provincial Politics: The Political Economy of Canada's Provinces and Territories in the Neoliberal Era. University of Toronto Press. p. 155. ISBN 978-1-4426-1179-5.
  6. ^ David Mutimer, ed. (2014). Canadian Annual Review of Politics and Public Affairs 2007. University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division. p. 197. ISBN 978-1-4426-1724-7.
  7. ^ a b "Historique" (in French). Québec Solidaire. Archived from the original on July 25, 2011. Retrieved January 20, 2012.
  8. ^ "Québec solidaire: Quebec's "left" party in the orbit of the big business PQ". World Socialist Web Site. International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI). December 8, 2008. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  9. ^ "A Day of Protest and Teargas at Prosperity and Security Summit". Translation from Le Devoir. Watching America. August 21, 2007. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  10. ^ "Northern Lights: Socialism 2007 a Big Success". Labor Standard. Socialist Action. June 2007. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  11. ^ "Analysis from the 2007 Quebec general election mentioning the role of the manifesto". Thetyee.ca. Retrieved January 20, 2012.
  12. ^ Richard Fidler (March 27, 2007). "Some Notes on the Results of the Quebec Election". Canadian Dimension magazine.
  13. ^ "QS's Amir Khadir prevails over PQ in Montreal's Mercier riding". CBC News. December 8, 2008.
  14. ^ a b c Simard, Mathieu (November 4, 2012). "Khadir steps down as Québec solidaire co-leader". The Canadian Press. Retrieved November 25, 2012.
  15. ^ a b Simard, Mathieu (December 2, 2012). "Québec Solidaire elects interim co-spokesman". CBC News. Retrieved December 2, 2012.
  16. ^ a b "Québec solidaire choisit Andrés Fontecilla comme porte-parole". La Presse. May 5, 2013. Retrieved May 5, 2013.
  17. ^ Press, The Canadian (January 19, 2017). "Quebec solidaire's Francoise David quits politics immediately". Maclean's. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  18. ^ "Manon Massé wants to become new face of Québec Solidaire". CBC News. March 5, 2019. Retrieved April 18, 2019.
  19. ^ a b "Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois and Manon Massé elected spokespeople for Quebec Solidaire". CTV News. May 21, 2017. Retrieved April 18, 2019.
  20. ^ "Quebec solidaire votes to merge with Option nationale ahead of 2018 election". CTV News. December 2, 2017.
  21. ^ "Option Nationale members vote in favour of merger with Quebec Solidaire". CTV News. December 10, 2017.
  22. ^ Presse Canadienne (November 22, 2018). "PQ and QS to get official party status in National Assembly". Monteral Gazette. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  23. ^ "Parties reach agreement in principle to give PQ and QS official party status". CTV news Monteral. November 22, 2018. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  24. ^ "Québec Solidaire replaces PQ as second opposition party". March 20, 2019. Retrieved April 18, 2019.
  25. ^ Page, Julia (October 8, 2018). "Québec Solidaire's youngest MNA credits grasp of region for unseating Liberal minister". CBC News. Retrieved April 24, 2019.
  26. ^ Francesca Bargiela-Chiappini (2009). The Handbook of Business Discourse. Edinburgh University Press. p. 58. ISBN 978-0-7486-2801-8.
  27. ^ Daniel Robichaud; Francois Cooren (May 2, 2013). Organization and Organizing: Materiality, Agency and Discourse. Routledge. p. 179. ISBN 978-1-136-20733-4.
  28. ^ a b c "Qui sommes-nous?" (in French). Québec Solidaire. Archived from the original on July 13, 2011. Retrieved August 8, 2012.
  29. ^ Linda Trimble; Jane Arscott; Manon Tremblay (May 31, 2013). Stalled: The Representation of Women in Canadian Governments. UBC Press. p. 208. ISBN 978-0-7748-2522-1.
  30. ^ "Parti Communiste du Québec" (in French). October 29, 2008. Retrieved October 29, 2008.
  31. ^ "Manifeste de la Gauche Socialiste" (in French). Gauche socialiste. Retrieved October 29, 2008.
  32. ^ "Notre Programme". La Riposte (in French). June 2009.
  33. ^ Robert Dutrisac (December 18, 2008). "Khadir prête serment d'allégeance aux "mal pris"". Le Devoir (in French). Retrieved June 8, 2016.
  34. ^ "Quebec party leaders back on election campaign trail after visiting tornado victims". The Canadian Press. September 23, 2018. Retrieved October 5, 2018.
  35. ^ "Statuts provisoires" (PDF) (in French). Magog: Québec Solidaire. p. 12. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 25, 2011.
  36. ^ "Alternative Socialiste. "Qui sommes nous?"" (in French). Mpsquebec.org. Retrieved January 20, 2012.
  37. ^ "Gauche socialiste" (in French). Gauche socialiste.
  38. ^ "RÉSISTANCE. Des luttes anticapitalistes à la révolution". Socialisme International/International Socialists (in French).
  39. ^ "La TMI s'affilie à Québec solidaire". La Riposte (in French). September 2009.
  40. ^ PCQ (September 25, 2018). "Parti communiste du Québec (PCQ-PCC) - SUR QUÉBEC SOLIDAIRE". Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  41. ^ Bélair-Cirino, Marco; Noël, Dave (March 15, 2017). "Les co-porte-parole, un léger avantage pour Québec solidaire". Le Devoir. Retrieved October 5, 2018.

External linksEdit