Holness, Desjardins join forces under Mouvement Montréal banner ahead of municipal elections 

Click to play video: 'Holness, Desjardins team up to run against Plante and Coderre' Holness, Desjardins team up to run against Plante and Coderre
WATCH: The leaders of two Montreal municipal parties have joined forces to challenge Valérie Plante and Denis Coderre ahead of the Nov. 7 municipal elections – Sep 30, 2021

The leaders of Mouvement Montréal and Ralliement pour Montréal announced during a Thursday press conference that they are merging their parties ahead of the Nov. 7 municipal elections.

The pair believe combining resources will make the new alliance a stronger third option to Valérie Plante’s Projet Montréal and Denis Coderre’s Ensemble Montréal.

“We decided that we’re going to put our forces together for common objectives,” said Mouvement Montréal’s Balarama Holness.

Separately, both parties have been polling far behind Plante and Coderre.

Under the new alliance, Holness will run for mayor of Montreal while his new partner, Ralliement pour Montreal’s Marc-Antoine Desjardins, will run for mayor in one of the city’s 19 boroughs.

Read more: Balarama Holness, community organizer and former Alouette, will run for mayor of Montreal

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While Desjardins has bowed out of the race to unseat Plante at city hall, the duo insists they’re running on one ticket — the Holness-Desjardins ticket — under the Mouvement Montréal banner.

Although the logistics of the merger have yet to be announced, both Holness and Desjardins say candidates are on board with the new plan.

The pair said working together made sense as both parties’ policies are similar.

“The more that we analyzed what we were doing, we are saying this is the same team. We’re different parties but we’re the same team,” Holness said.

And while they admitted to having some differences, they said they were choosing to focus on unity.

“Our parties coming together symbolizes the unity that we need so desperately,” Holness said. “The division that we see with our opponents will be a thing of the past.”

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Holness insisted unity is needed to address the real needs facing Montrealers.

A combined policy platform will be unveiled shortly.

“Housing, and public safety and the economy will be paramount for us,” Desjardins said.

Coderre didn’t seem concerned by the new partnership.

“I have no reaction, I just know that now there will be two parties that are in favour of disarmament and defunding, and us,” he said, referring to his party’s promise of not defunding or disarming the police.

“We’ll see if people understand that. We have a great platform. We have a great team. And we are ready to take over the next day.”

Read more: Plante pledges $110 million to tackle gun violence as Montreal police report 2 more homicides

Plante, for her part, wished her opponents well.

“I wish them luck first. I mean, it’s a campaign, I think it’s a good time for people to hear different ideas,” she said. “That being said, I truly believe that our party is the only progressive party with a strong vision, strong values.”

Plante also said that it will be interesting to see how the parties do end up managing their differences as they move forward.


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