• Stephanie O’Hanley

Give us a chance, Vaudreuil PQ members urge voters

PHOTO BY STEPHANIE O'HANLEY Paul St-Pierre Plamondon, special advisor to PQ leader Jean-François Lisée, gives a speech to Parti Québécois Vaudreuil riding association members on March 25.

Discussion and debate were on the agenda as 40 members of the Parti Québécois Vaudreuil riding association met Saturday, March 25, at the Multi-Centre Saint-Charles in Vaudreuil-Dorion.

The gathering included an annual general meeting and time spent reviewing and suggesting amendments to party statutes and to the PQ’s new Proposition Principale, which once approved, will serve as the party’s platform for four years. Under PQ rules, each riding association can make up to 10 proposals to the Proposition Principale, which will be voted on at a three-day annual meeting this September.

Guest speaker Paul St-Pierre Plamondon awarded long-time members Yves Gougeon and Sylvain Bergeron plaques recognizing their more than 40 years of involvement with the PQ.

“It’s the first time I’ve ever done this,” said St-Pierre Plamondon, special advisor to PQ leader Jean-François Lisée. “At the same time I find it beautiful and emotional... I’m the voice of renewal in the Parti Québécois so I find it’s a funny and interesting situation that I have the honour of presenting these two plaques.”

Star Wars analogy

St-Pierre Plamondon, who’s heading up the party’s renewal efforts, likened the PQ’s political situation to Star Wars.

“In the first (Star Wars film), there was a small army of rebels who succeeded in (defeating) the Death Star, thanks to the Force,” he said. “At the end of the Empire Strikes Back, I think the Jedis’ morale has hit rock bottom, they wondered how they could have done all that and exploded the Death Star and yet the Empire still dominates. But happily all ends well in a third (film).

“There are cycles, there are chapters in the life of a society, especially in the history of Quebec,” St-Pierre Plamondon added. He said for the PQ, the question is can it convince the Québécois d’adoption (including anglophones, allophones, new immigrants) and younger Quebecers to empathize with the destination nationale (Quebec independence). Faced with this injustice, the “fundamental right” of Quebecers to be Maîtres chez nous, “to have an honest society, without corruption, prosperous, that’s what the PQ has wanted to bring into the world since its foundation, will we have people who empathize with this mandate?” St-Pierre Plamondon asked.

St-Pierre Plamondon said the PQ could see a new cycle where it wins the 2018 provincial election. “We can win. We have MNAs who are more competent and interesting than the Liberals and the CAQ (Coalition Avenir Québec) are running, it’s the same thing for the QS (Québec Solidaire) and we have 90,000 members.”

Uneasy history

“The PQ has never had it easy... it was always a minor miracle when we won an election,” he said. “How did we win? It wasn’t thanks to the media; it wasn’t because the institutions and economic elites were for the PQ.

“The problem isn’t the PQ, it’s that people don’t talk about politics,” St-Pierre Plamondon said. He urged members to talk politics with people they know and instead of using a hard-sell approach, ask people what they think of the current political situation and listen to their answers.

“Tell them the only party that will make a difference in 2018 is the PQ,” St-Pierre Plamondon said. “Tell them ‘I’ve decided to be part of the solution and I’m devoting time to that.’”

In a chat with Your Local Journal, one PQ member urged the paper’s readers to give the party a chance for four years. Another member said he wants to work with people of all backgrounds to build a new country

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