The sovereignty movement in Quebec has two political wings, the provincial Parti Québécois and the federal Bloc Québécois. As I see it, a vote for either is a vote for Quebec sovereignty and a vote to break up Canada.
I know many will disagree, pointing out that Quebecers who have voted for sovereigntist parties are not necessarily sovereigntists, but just voters who want what they believe is the best governance for their province—and get the best deal from Ottawa—while remaining in the federation.
Well, sovereigntists or not, such voters further the aims of the sovereignist/separatist movement.
Federally, their votes have added to the coffers of the Bloc Québécois for years (through the old federal vote subsidy program) and has given that separatist party a national platform from which to broadcast its anti-Canada propaganda.
Provincially, voter support emboldens the sovereigntists, providing “fuel” to power their movement, and will almost certainly lead to another referendum with its attendant turmoil and uncertainty.
A vote for a party that has as its raison d'être the breakup of Canada is equivalent to thumbing ones nose at the rest of Canadians—an outward show of disrespect that’s not lost on those living outside the province of Quebec.
Additionally, the rhetoric we’re hearing from Quebec in the early stages of its general election leaves little doubt PQ Leader Pauline Marois intends to call another sovereignty referendum should her party win a majority.
Marois’s musings on the issue and media baron Pierre Karl Péladeau emergence as a separatist PQ candidate while declaring his eagerness to achieve Quebec independence reinforces my view. Sovereignty seeps from every pore of that woman’s body.
Quebec voters, however, cannot continue to feed Marois’s fantasy and not expect to suffer unpleasant consequences. Sooner or later Canadians will call them on their folly.
In the wake of a PQ majority win, there may very well be strong pressure from the federal and other provincial governments—along with separatist hardliners—to hold an early referendum to end what would probably be a period of fear and uncertainty. How would Canadians feel about a new PQ government bargaining over equalization and other transfer payments with a referendum hanging over their heads?
In other words, a vote for Marois’s party will lead directly to a referendum and following which perhaps Quebecers will be seeing the rest of us form the outside looking in, for Quebecers should not expect Canadians to converge on the province to tell Quebecers how much they want them to stay in Canada.
This time around, I think the prevailing sentiment outside Quebec will be: Decide now then let’s get on with it—whatever “it” is—or shut up for the next generation, at least. Enough is enough!