The Blue Like You blog has a terrific post drawing our attention to a Hill Times column suggesting that the days when a federal party had to win Quebec in order to win the rest of the country are gone. I don’t want to steal Joanne’s thunder, but the mere thought of Quebec being relegated to a sort of political equality among provinces excites my imagination.
Joanne says, “The thought of Quebec no longer being treated as the spoiled little child is intriguing to say the least.” I’ll second that.
The Liberal Party of Canada has long had a tradition of alternating their leaders between those from Quebec and those from the rest of Canada. In other words, nine out of ten provinces (2008 population 25.5 million) must compete for representation at the head of the LPC while Quebec (2008 population 7.7 million) gets a candidate picked in every other leadership convention. Quebec with less than 25 per cent of the population is treated, in political terms, as being equal to the entire rest of the country with more than 75 percent of the population.
Ain’t democracy grand?
The Grits have owed their grip on the reins of federal power to this historic inequity for far too long. And this “gift” has made them lazy. Now with other provinces receiving greater representation and the New Democrats and the Bloc bleeding off votes in Quebec, the Grits have had to try—without much success thus far—to become truly a national party or even a party with national appeal.
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© 2009 Russell G. Campbell
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