This situation is dramatic […], very serious, has said Mr. Blanchet, who confided that he has anxiety about it. It must be a single culture, a single nation, with all its diversity. That’s Quebec. And we're escaping that.
For Jean-François Daoust, a professor of political science at the University of Sherbrooke who specializes in public opinion polls and nationalism, from an electoral point of view, it's It is obvious that Montreal stands out from the rest of Quebec.
In the same breath, he considers this dichotomy simplistic since there are at least [. ..] two Montreals as the variations are enormous. The east of the island has a discourse much closer to that of the rest of Quebec than the west of the island, he says.
This is explained in particular by socio-demographic divisions. Language, for example, is one of the most important predictors of the Bloc vote.
Mr. Daoust nevertheless affirms that overall, Montrealers are distinguished from the rest of Quebec by values and opinions said to be more progressive or liberal. When you are more liberal, you vote more for a party that is in line with these values, he mentioned.
One of his colleagues from Laval University, Éric Montigny, qualifies by saying that the Bloc is not renowned for being a party of a certain moral right. It is a party that positions itself rather to the left on a social level.
The Bloc does not belong to the economic right either, so that a Montreal electorate more to the left or center left does not constitute hostile territory. Not to mention that this training talks a lot about environmental issues, which resonate well in the metropolis.
As for reflections on multiculturalism and interculturalism, Professor Montigny judges that one of the challenges of a political leader is not to play the anthropologist or the sociologist, it is to try to bring people together through a political discourse.
The Bloc leader rightly believes that it is in Montreal that his training has the most work to do. We will not give up on Montreal, he insisted.
The Bloc currently holds 32 of the 78 federal seats in Quebec. However, there is only one in the metropolis, more precisely in the very French-speaking riding of La Pointe-de-l'Île, which essentially overlaps Pointe-aux-Trembles and Montréal-Est. .
Of the 17 other federal ridings on the island, 16 are Liberal and one – Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie – is New Democratic.
Mario Beaulieu is the only Bloc Québécois MP on the island of Montreal. (File photo)
As he prepares to mark his five years as leader on Wednesday, Mr. Blanchet was delighted to have relieved a party given for dead. He would now like to make it without nuance the voice of Quebec in Ottawa.
Indeed, Justin Trudeau's troops have 35 MPs in the province, three more than the Bloc, who nevertheless received more votes in the last federal election.
Becoming the first party in number of seats involves making gains and offsetting possible losses at the hands of the Conservatives, who are hunting on Bloc lands outside Montreal, explains Professor Montigny.
The Bloc must therefore, according to him, target constituencies where it has had a history, a presence. And this is the case on the island of Montreal: from the east of Montreal to the heart of Montreal, he insists.
Former Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe was elected in Laurier–Sainte-Marie, in Montreal. (File photo)
Among previous breakthroughs, he notes that of former Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe, who was elected in Laurier–Sainte-Marie, a riding made up of portions of Plateau-Mont-Royal. And even in cultural communities, Osvaldo Núñez, a candidate of Chilean origin, was elected in 1993 in Bourassa, which notably includes Montréal-Nord.
Professor Jean-François Daoust warns, however, that the territory where the Bloc can hope to make gains is moving further and further east. It would certainly not extend further west than during the best years of this political formation, when it held up to seven constituencies at the end of general elections.< /p>
Historically, the Bloc Québécois has also held, sometimes very briefly, certain ridings such as Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie, Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, Ahuntsic, Papineau, Anjou –Rivière-des-Prairies and Jeanne-Leber.