The Parti Québécois (PQ) says it’s going to change its tone.
Outgoing party president, Gabrielle Lemieux, said the party’s tone has been spiteful and negative in the past.
“We will break from our more negative tone, our more negative approach, because fundamentally independence and the interests of the Quebec nation is a positive project,” Lemieux told reporters at the PQ’s pre-session caucus meeting Wednesday in Valleyfield.
There are still no candidates for leader of the party. Former minister and one-time interim leader Sylvain Gaudreault is the only possible contender so far.
“I’m thinking about my own candidature and I’m thinking very actively,” he said.
Véronique Hivon, who was co-leader with Jean-François Lisée in the last election, announced last month that she would not throw her name in the hat.
“Right now, it’s not something that is compatible with my family’s priorities,” she said again on Wednesday.
The PQ had its worst election result in history last October, going from 30 seats in the National Assembly to just nine, but PQ MNAs say the party is far from collapsing.
“I think we’re going to have some good candidates that are going to run, but not now, because we decided to make sure that it’s the ‘what’ before ‘who’,” said PQ interim leader Pascal Bérubé.
The PQ says it’s not concentrating on the leadership race until it defines a new direction for the party, which will refocus its priorities on independence. It wants to get Quebecers excited about the independence movement again.
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Hivon said Quebec sovereignty is more relevant now than its ever been.
“With the context, you know, of international exchanges, with voices from states that have to be heard at an international level, I think that Quebec’s voice has to be heard,” she said.
Bérubé said the PQ can win back nationalist votes that went to the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) once the new government’s lustre wears off.
“The CAQ was brand new as cherry coke was brand new back in the days,” he said. “It was not that good. You should stick to the original. The original nationalists, this is us, the good ol’ Parti Québécois.”
The PQ will elect a new leader in 2020.