Monday, June 13, 2005

The Cowardly Lion

Jean Lapierre has come out and announced that Gilles Duceppe is a "coward" for not jumping to provincial politics. While it is true that leader of the BQ is a much safer job, as TDH has commented, trying to goad Gilles Duceppe into jumping to provincial politics is a very odd strategy, to put it mildly. I can come up with three theories to explain Lapierre's new tactics:

1. He genuinely feels Duceppe is a coward. After all, Lapierre considers the BQ nothing more than a "temporary ad hoc rainbow coalition" so it must be baffling to him how anyone could turn down a chance to be Premier of Quebec for that job.

2. Jean Lapierre is absolutely devastated that Duceppe didn't jump provincially. This is the theory I subscribe to. Here's what I wrote about Jean Lapierre's speech at the LPCA convention this January:
He mentioned that Stephen Harper would not be able to break into Quebec (wow! shocker!) and that Gilles Duceppe will leave to become leader of PQ (I believe Lapierre said "Premier of Quebec" which is not how I'd be wording it if I were a Jean Charest supporter). It sounds to me like the Liberal's Quebec strategy consists of hoping Gilles Duceppe leaves federal politics and I'm not sure if this is really the best way to win back the province. But, then again, Jean Lapierre is a political genius and I'm not, so maybe it's not such a bad idea.

Lapierre has been basing his entire strategy on the departure of Gilles Duceppe and now he realizes this isn't going to happen. This is also going to make the Liberal line about "The Conservatives in Bloc are in bed" a lot harder to push, because that entire theory was based on the premise that an early election would allow Duceppe to jump to Quebec City and win a referendum.

3. Maybe Jean Lapierre was hoping to throw his hat into the ring should the job of BQ leader open up ;-)


  • I vote for option 3!!

    Nothing would be better for Canadian federalism than Jean Lapierre becoming the leader of the Bloc and therefore destroying that party's fortunes in Quebec.

    In all seriousness though, I think option 2 is quite accurate.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:31 p.m.  

  • When Jean Lapierre stated last week that he believe that Duceppe couldn't pass up the chance to be Premier of Quebec, I thought then and there that he was practically baiting Duceppe into going into provincial politics.

    Ultimately, I wished he had left. Jean Charest is finished anyhow, Duceppe would simply make the Liberal defeat worse than it would have been otherwise. Of course once you get a majority, the number over is virtually irrelevant and I think the PQ could win a majority this time around.

    Duceppe leaving would have been a blow to the Bloc. That, coupled with the fact that in the month of July, politics is the furthest thing from people's minds (yes that is why Lapierre's offensive isn't starting until August), due to vacations, festivals, etc., would have meant in all likely hood that the Bloc support could drop. Let us remember, many soft federalists have switched their support to the Bloc. The sponsorship news dying down, summer vacation, and the lack of a strong Quebec rebel-rouser in Quebec could only help the Liberals. Now factor in the August offensive and the Liberals had a huge chance to gain back much of their support.

    Alas, we could debate what ifs all day. Ultimately, Duceppe didn't leave and I am disappointed.

    By Blogger Progressive Maritimer, at 6:00 p.m.  

  • Can I vote for option 4? That Lapierre doesn't want an election and wants to reduce the opposition benches as much as possible?

    By Blogger Paul, at 7:19 p.m.  

  • Option two is correct. Jean Lapierre is a disaster for federalism in Québec. Quebeckers can't stand him, with good reason. He always comes up with stupid quotes that make pretty amusing sound bites on the news.

    Stéphane Dion was a much better Québec lieutenant, agree or disagree with him.

    By Blogger Alex B., at 10:20 p.m.  

  • please someone lock Jean Lapierre in a closet.

    Seriously, though, the whole Quebec wing of the Liberal party will have to be reconstructed and Lapierre is not the man to do it.

    From a far, I would say the Quebec wing will probably have to get a lot younger.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:03 a.m.  

  • Gilles Duceppe was screwed either way. When Golden Bowl marois wins the leadership, Charest will win a second term...this is quebec...everybody gets two chances.

    Duceppe is a coward for staying cuz all he knows how to do is complain. He was given a potential chance to govern but Gilles is known to crack under pressure. He was dynamite last year cuz he had nothing to lose. Plus, history is now against him.

    It is rare for me to come to the defence of Jean Lapierre, but in this case. The federal Liberals are ECSTATIC that duceppe stayed.

    He is a coward, chicken, happy with doing nothing even when given the chance to do something, the newest Bougon.

    The BQ has finally shown their true colours, destined to complain and never meant to accompish anything...I welcome the Bloc Bougon....they wont be cheating the system for long


    By Blogger Anthony, at 10:35 a.m.  

  • What is with all the anti-LaP?? LaP means federalism, LaP means Canada. When I think of a strong, unified Canada, I think of LaP. LaP is the only person who will ever save the Liberal party in Quebec. He has the leadership, intellect, and cunning way with words to pull this party back up to greatness. There may be doubters out there, but those in the know realize that it was because of LaP that we won 21 seats last time, what would we have won without him?? That is the question to ask yourself.

    By Blogger iloveLaP, at 11:30 a.m.  

  • I think Lapierre is disappointed that Duceppe didn't go because he doesn't want anything to help Charest; he may be gunning for the PLQ job after Charest either gets booted out during an election, or a coup. Lapierre is the choice of the Montreal elites in the business community.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:53 a.m.  

  • IloveLap:

    Are you on crack or something? It's precisely because of "Lap" that the Bloc is going to win 60+ seats in the next election.

    By Blogger Alex B., at 12:44 p.m.  

  • Antonio; I do agree that Duceppe is far from the great politician he's often made out to be, but you have to admit he's very popular in Quebec. For the FEDERAL Liberals, surely they'd be better off with Pierre Paquette or someone leading the BQ instead of Duceppe next election.

    Anonymous; I wouldn't be at all surprised if Lapierre throws his hat into the ring for the PLQ job after Charest leaves. If that doesn't scare Canadian federalists from coast to coast, I don't know what will.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 2:52 p.m.  

  • If Lapierre ever becomes PLQ leader, Canada might as well kiss Québec goodbye. You thought Charest was impopular? Try Lapierre.

    By Blogger Alex B., at 3:04 p.m.  

  • Alex, I think you have severe case of "I hate LaP" syndrome, and you can not see the forest for the trees. LaP is doing a great job, just go outside of montreal and the gatineau region and you soon will realize this. He has a firm grasp of what it means to be a Canadian, a true Canadian, through and through, always steady. He passed through bill c-4, which had to do with airline insurance, without this bill, air canada might have gone under, and that would have done irreparable harm to national unity.

    Name three things, that you Alex, can objectively say are wrong with the great LaP??? I challenge you, and await your response with bated breath.

    By Blogger iloveLaP, at 4:09 p.m.  

  • And as for his possible position as PLQ leader, he would be as staunch a federalist as one could get in a possible referendum, i can see now, Duceppe, Bouchard and LaP going head to head to head to see who comes out on top, and whose position wins.

    By Blogger iloveLaP, at 4:12 p.m.  

  • ILoveLap:

    You don't seem to recall that Lap was a founding member of the Bloc Québécois.

    As for going outside of Montréal or Gatineau.. I live in Québec City and I can assure you that he is ridiculed every single time he visits the region to announce a spending measure. The Québec City region (usually very federalist) voted Bloc in an overwhelming fashion in the last election and will probably do the same in the next one. Thanks Lap?

    Three things that are wrong with Lap:

    1. His arrogance doesn't go down well with Quebeckers, and he doesn't have the intellect to back up his arrogance (like Trudeau might have had).
    2. The language he uses is always slightly too much. He's a master of the overstatement.
    3. He's all image, no substance. And when image is all you have, you better be a good speaker. And, sorry, he's not.

    By Blogger Alex B., at 5:48 p.m.  

  • You do not seem to recall that the Bloc was an "ad hoc rainbow coalition" at the time when LaP formed it. That statement speaks for itself and does not need further clarification.

    LaP arrogant, have you seen the man speak, he is very down to earth, he exudes that "salt of the earth" mentality. He is the type of guy you want as your neighbor. He also has a cunning intellect, he is the master of complex problems, his only competition on that file in the Liberal party right now is Belinda

    Overstatement?? you seem to forget about his many understatements, like wearing the black armband when Meech died, or comparing Gomery to chinese water torture.... there are many more, clearly this guy uses concise language and is to the point.

    He can not be all image when he is at least as much of an intellect, if not more of one, than Belinda, who is like the Ignatieff of the party right now. We just need one more intelligent operative (I am thinking Efford) and then we can recreate the three wise people of marchand, trudeau, and pelletier.

    By Blogger iloveLaP, at 11:33 a.m.  

  • Right.

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