Sat. Mar 2nd, 2024

Four days before the election of a new co-spokesperson, an email from Ruba Ghazal creates internal turmoil.

Behind the scenes, the competition is getting tougher at Québec solidaire

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Ruba Ghazal is a candidate for the position of female co-spokesperson for Québec solidaire.

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“We're careful that it doesn't circulate too much. » An argument for the end of the race written by the candidate for the position of co-spokesperson for Québec solidaire Ruba Ghazal had to remain within the circle of volunteers on her team. The email, obtained by Radio-Canada, gives them ammunition against the candidacy of Émilise Lessard-Therrien. A strategy that is not unanimous.

Communication lines have been provided to volunteers who make “flip” calls to try to convince party members to support their candidate for the vote which will be held from Friday to Sunday, at the Quebec Solidaire Congress, in Gatineau.

In the 19 arguments put forward by Ruba Ghazal, we find almost no ideas or content proposals. Most of the lines rather target the candidate Émilise Lessard-Therrien.

She will fall into oblivion, writes Ruba Ghazal about her opponent, who was defeated in the last general election after a mandate as an MP. An extra-parliamentary spokesperson would be evacuated from the media space.

The place of women in our party is at stake. This is a feminist issue. This would leave plenty of room for Gabriel.

A quote from Ruba Ghazal, in the argument sent to his team

Arguments are also proposed against the platform of Émilise Lessard-Therrien and in relation to her age, 31 years: We must move away from our image as a youth party and Émilise would push us further into this image. Ruba Ghazal is 46 years old.

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Emilise Lessard-Therrien and Ruba Ghazal, during a debate

There will be no division, warned Ruba Ghazal in an interview with Radio-Canada on August 24. I am certain that we have the maturity at Québec Solidaire to carry out this race in a respectful manner. […] I will do everything to keep our caucus united. I take it as a personal responsibility.

It's quite the opposite that is happening with the candidate's instructions to her members, according to several sources within the party, who had access to the email.

Émilise Lessard-Therrien did not respond to our requests to comment on the content of the argument in question, but among her supporters, the document is disturbing. It’s a real negative campaign, concludes a person close to him. The team of the former member for Rouyn-Noranda–Témiscamingue ensures that its arguments put forward ideas in favor of their candidate rather than against others.

There is nothing like that on our side, assures Christine Labrie, the third candidate in the race. People who make calls for me have been asked to explain why they are supporting me, not to mention other candidates.

For me, running a positive, constructive campaign, respectful of others, means talking about what I have to offer […] and I expect the same thing from the from my colleagues.

A quote from Christine Labrie, MP for Sherbrooke and candidate for the position of co-spokesperson for Québec solidaire

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Christine Labrie, Émilise Lessard-Therrien and Ruba Ghazal hope to succeed Manon Massé as door – female spokesperson for Québec solidaire.

I am not ashamed of anything that is written in there, replies Ruba Ghazal, interviewed by Radio-Canada. She asserts that her written arguments are comparative advantages that she has already mentioned publicly.

The candidate maintains that this type of thing also exists in the other teams and that his team has documents that prove it. However, she refuses to share them, because it serves no one to do that.

It's a race, and a race is a debate. […] I am convinced that I am leading a clean campaign.

A quote from Ruba Ghazal, MP for Mercier and candidate for the position of co-spokesperson for Québec solidaire

Christine and Émilise are my friends, I love them, she says, and I never denigrate them. She reminds us that we will all have to work together afterwards.

Why do his arguments almost exclusively target Émilise Lessard-Therrien? It’s a coincidence, replies Ruba Ghazal. I haven't calculated. It gave this, based on the discussions and debates that exist.

For her, it's a fact that a co -unelected spokesperson will cost the party more, because the other candidates already have their salary and travel paid by the National Assembly.

An extra-parliamentary, that worries me, she said, because the finances of Québec solidaire are not going very well and it will be an additional challenge to have to release an amount of money.

We had fewer votes, so we had less money. We have the challenge of seeking more donations, recalls Ruba Ghazal.

Radio-Canada has also learned that the party will lay off three employees from its office in December. The announcement has already been made internally.

Sunday, at Congress, the co-spokesperson still in office, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois will face a chair, since he has no opponent. Within the party, the event is seen as a vote of confidence in a tormented period, a few days after the publication of a very critical book by former MP Catherine Dorion.

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