Quebec politicians are offering both messages of support and openly recounting their unease after Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservatives swept Ontario with a stunning majority.
Premier Philippe Couillard gave his congratulations to Ontario’s next premier, saying he was looking forward to working with Ford to advance the interests of both provinces.
The leaders of Quebec’s main political parties were also watching closely when after 15 years of power, the Ontario Liberal government suffered a historic election defeat as it was ousted by Ford’s Progressive Conservatives on Thursday night.
As the head of the Quebec Liberals faces his own test in a provincial election this October, Couillard was also quick to thank his counterpart Kathleen Wynne for her work.
The two have maintained a close relationship during their time in power, even if they didn’t always agree. In a post on social media, Couillard referred to what he called her “precious collaboration over the past four years.”
The leader of the Coalition Avenir Québec — the right-leaning party that has seen a surge of support in the province — was more reserved when it came to his support.
François Legault congratulated Ford while simultaneously commenting on the Washington Capitals’ Stanley Cup victory, calling it a “big night” with “big changes.”
While his political rivals were giving their best wishes to the Ontario premier-designate, the head of the Parti Québécois called the historic election night a “warning.”
Jean-François Lisée didn’t mince words, advising Quebecers to think twice about the upcoming provincial election.
“Ontario’s election is a warning,” said Lisée.
“Getting rid of the Liberals is good, but replacing them with a party that will weaken their public services, privatize and weaken the state, not worry about the environment, that’s worse.”
The leader of the sovereignist party also used the opportunity to tell Quebec voters to opt for a government that will “strengthen the state for health care, education, seniors, the nation and the environment.”
“Do not be fooled,” said Lisée.
Quebecers will head to the polls Oct. 1 for a provincial election.
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