The Quebec Liberal Party will hold its platform convention this weekend in Quebec City.
The three-day event will set the tone and agenda for the upcoming provincial elections. Leader Dominique Anglade promises that he will be “daring” and focus on combating climate change.
Anglade hopes his first party convention as Liberal leader will be an opportunity to redefine the party after a rocky start.
He recently handed over high-ranking liberal MNA Marie Montpetit after allegations of harassment. His party has been slipping in the polls even lagging behind the second opposition, Quebec Solidaire.
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However, on Friday night, in front of 800 party delegates, Anglade announced a new plan to differentiate the liberals and make the fight against climate change his top priority.
She calls it Project Eco. It is a plan to nationalize the production of green hydrogen, a clean alternative to fossil fuels that can be used for ships and airplanes.
“We are talking about a liberal government commitment of almost $ 100 billion by 2050 to actively confront the climate crisis,” Anglade explained.
“I have always believed that we needed a vision for society. We have not had a big project for a society in a long time and I think it is about time we proposed something, “Anglade told reporters before his speech.
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The Avenir Quebec Coalition (CAQ) government has also included green hydrogen in its Green Economy Plan 2030, but has not made large investments.
The shift to an environmentally conscious Liberal Party stands in direct contrast, he says, to the government, which on Thursday announced $ 11 billion of new spending but made no mention of climate change.
“I was in Glasgow,” said liberal MNA Carlos Leitao, referring to the COP26 conference in Scotland earlier this month.
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“Just like the prime minister and the environment minister, but obviously it seems we didn’t go to the same conferences, because that same sense of urgency doesn’t seem to be there with the current government.”
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Anglade said Quebecers can only depend on the Liberal Party to find practical solutions to the climate crisis.
“I’m certainly not going to count on the CAQ to find the solution. This is a government stagnant in the last century, a government whose idea of progress is to put more cars on the roads with more highways leading to an already congested downtown, “he said.
Anglade also criticized the environment-friendly Quebec Solidaire for not caring about the economy as well.
“For them, life is simple: Does it have a motor? Do you have a fireplace? Do you put people to work? Get rid of it, ”he said.
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The party is betting that its ambitious plan will attract voters who feel the same about protecting the environment.
Anglade also included a portion of his speech for English-speaking Quebecers in light of recent comments made by Prime Minister François Legault.
“I have a message for him and for all English-speaking Quebecers: yes, you are part of our history, but much more than that,” he said.
She continued: “Yes, I hear your concern and, yes, your suspicion, when you see that the Prime Minister chooses the word ‘historical’ to describe his place here. Well, that you understand, here, now and always: you are Quebecers, à part entière, and you expect to be recognized in words, in actions, in the law, today and every day ”.
On the first day of the convention, liberal MNAs also openly embraced the labels “federalist” and “progressive”, after the caucus raised the idea of becoming more nationalistic to attract more Francophone voters.
“We have a responsibility as a liberal Quebec party to find a balance. And there is between promoting, obtaining our French language in Quebec, a pride of health for that language, which is expressed as nationalism and securing and recognizing the place of English-speaking Quebec, ”said David Birnbaum, liberal relations critic. with English-speaking Quebecers.
Global News recently covered the Coalition Avenir Quebec convention. Click here for more details.
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