Letter From Quebec: Talking About Culture

The Action Démocratique du Québec (ADQ) is a conservative party—at least by Quebec standards.  It is led by 35-year-old political wunderkind Mario Dumont.  In the recent elections for the National Assembly, the ADQ shattered Quebec’s two-party system (the federalist and centrist Liberals and left-wing sovereigntist Parti Québécois), winning 31 percent of the vote (up from 18 percent in 2003) and gaining 41 seats (up from 5).  The Liberals were reduced to 48 seats (from 72), and the PQ was utterly routed, being reduced to 36 seats (from 45) and garnering only 28 percent of the vote.  Thus, the ADQ has formed Quebec’s first minority government since 1878.  More than that, the Liberals have basically been reduced to Anglophone Montreal and its surrounding suburbs, while the PQ maintained its traditional strongholds.  The ADQ, however, won across the breadth of Quebec—rural, urban, and suburban.

M. Dumont won because he asked the questions that no one has had the courage to pose since Maurice Duplessis’ old Union Nationale: What good is sovereignty when there is no culture to go with it?  What good is independence when there are no people to enjoy liberty?  As immigration to the province increased, the PQ sold out the Québécois by trying to compete with the Liberals for Montreal’s immigrant vote while drifting further toward cultural Marxism. ...

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