Quebec 2022 Elections | Éric Duhaime welcome to Beauce
Despite his popularity in the region, Éric Duhaime went to Beauce for the first time on Tuesday morning, the time to see how popular his message is there. Two weeks before the election, his party would be neck and neck with the Coalition avenir Québec (CAQ).
In the streets of Saint-Georges-de-Beauce, enthusiasm for the Conservative Party of Quebec (PCQ) was palpable on Tuesday. At the sight of his campaign bus, motorists honked at him or opened their car windows to shout “freedom” at the top of their voices.
As they exit the local radio station, three young men wearing construction boots stop the chief to shake his hand and take their picture with him. “Don’t give up,” said one. Immediately afterwards, a woman takes her arm, telling her that she is a “long-time conservative”.
« The Beaucerons, you are good and you take charge, » said Éric Duhaime earlier in a radio interview. “The Beaucerons are entrepreneurs, they are people who have rolled up their sleeves, who work hard. These are very, very conservative values. […] A region which depends very little on governments, which is very autonomous. I think it goes very well with our conservative values. »
Radio-Beauce host Gaston Cloutier had previously asked him to explain why, in his opinion, « the great political commentators in the big village of Montreal [ne] don’t understand how it is that Beauce joined or joined the Conservative Party so quickly ».
Éric Duhaime then retorted by scratching the recent text of a columnist who came on site to meet supporters as if it were a “safari”. “They do this to do well and to explain democracy, but at the same time, there is something a little contemptuous and condescending towards the Beaucerons. As if because we think differently, the same because we are from the center right, we are a little weird and we have to go and see what it is, ”he said.
Shoulder to shoulder in Beauce-Sud
The Conservative leader unveiled a series of measures on Tuesday to « restore confidence » to victims of crime. In particular, he wants to allow people who fear being victims of domestic violence to contact the police to check the criminal record of their partner. Legislation to this effect has already been passed in Saskatchewan and Alberta.
The PCQ also wishes to put pressure on Ottawa so that the electronic bracelet can be imposed on the authors of serious crimes managed by the federal prison system (the bracelet only applies for the moment to the authors of minor crimes – the only ones on whom Quebec authorities have a hold).
Mr. Duhaime was accompanied for this announcement by his candidate in Beauce-Sud, Jonathan Poulin, a young lawyer. According to the poll aggregator Qc125, the latter is tied with the outgoing CAQ deputy, Samuel Poulin (the two would collect 41% of the support).
In Beauce-Nord, only four percentage points would separate the conservative candidate, Olivier Dumais (39%), from the leader, the caquiste Luc Provençal (43%).
The Conservative leader also took advantage of his visit to Beauce to visit the mayor of Saint-Georges, Claude Morin, a former member of the Action Démocratique du Québec (ADQ), whom he has known since he worked in Mario Dumont’s team.
In front of the media, Mr. Morin did not support him officially and said that he intended to remain “neutral” within the framework of the campaign. The mayor of Saint-Georges, however, hinted that the Beaucerons no longer wanted the CAQ. “Of course there is a wind that is different from other elections. Above all [par rapport à] the last. […] I think people want change. You know that we have been through difficult times with the pandemic. »
Even if it is fertile ground for him, it was the first time that Éric Duhaime went to Beauce since the start of the campaign. However, he walks regularly on the South Shore of the greater Quebec City region and must also hold a “large gathering” Friday in Lévis.
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