Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

Deputy Orford also in embarrassment for his mistakes financing methods

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The CAQ MP for Orford, Gilles Bélanger. (Archive photo)


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Like others elected representatives of the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ), the MP for Orford, Gilles Bélanger, finds himself in embarrassment due to solicitation messages.

The Canadian Presslearned Tuesday that the MP for Orford, Gilles Bélanger, is in hot water, like his colleague from René-Lévesque, Yves Montigny, while two investigations by the Commissioner of #x27;ethics are already underway on the financing practices of other members of the Caucus caucus, Sylvain Lévesque and Louis-Charles Thouin.

The Canadian Press revealed Monday that nearly half of Quebec's mayors have funded the CAQ since 2021, for a total of nearly $100,000.

The opposition sees it as a system, but the CAQ defended itself on Tuesday of having set up a fundraising system which undermines #x27;access to its ministers.

Remember that elected officials have the right like any citizen to contribute to the financing of a party, but that #x27;it is illegal to pay money into a party fund to obtain compensation.

In a message obtained by The Canadian Press Tuesday afternoon, Mr. Bélanger invited the mayors of the MRC of Memphrémagog last November to meet the Minister of Transport, Geneviève Guilbault, in exchange for a contribution of $100.

Mr. Gilles Bélanger will receive for his annual funding the Minister responsible for Transport and Sustainable Mobility, Geneviève Guilbault, at her request I am sending you this invitation, he would be honored (sic) with your presence, we can read.

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You will have the opportunity to discuss current topics such as connectivity, innovation and artificial intelligence, in a relaxed atmosphere.

The municipal elected official of the region who transmitted the message to The Canadian Press expressed his discomfort at this type of solicitation and indicated that he did not want to respond to this request. had not participated in the activity.

In addition, according to a screenshot obtained by Québec solidaire (QS), the MP for René-Lévesque, Yves Montigny, invited an entrepreneur from his region to meet the Minister of Agriculture, André Lamontagne, in a cocktail in exchange for a $100 contribution to the party fund.

I know we don't always have do what you wanted, but it's a great opportunity to talk to a minister, we can read.

PQ leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon suspects the CAQ of using a modus operandi to collect donations, i.e. dangling access to a decision-maker in exchange for $100.

Are Quebecers right to be concerned about seeing the CAQ monetizing access to its ministers?, asked MP Vincent Marissal, from Quebec solidarity (QS), during the question period.

The CAQ has set up a solicitation system based on access to its ministers, he was indignant, causing the irritation of elected government officials.

This is not a practice I know of, assured the leader of the government and Minister of Justice, Simon Jolin-Barrette, in the press scrum, while refusing to respond to the question of why almost half of the mayors pay funds into the CAQ fund.

Mr. [François] Legault pleads coincidence, I find that there are starting to be a lot of coincidences, for his part said with irony the parliamentary leader of QS, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, at a press briefing Tuesday morning. p>

Shortly after, the Parti Québécois (PQ) passed a motion unanimously, including the elected representatives of the CAQ, to prohibit ministers from soliciting political contributions from suppliers and recipients of financial assistance from their ministry. – a recommendation from the Charbonneau commission.

The PQ has indicated that a possible PQ government would prohibit its ministers from participating in activities of partisan funding.

Political financing should not place elected officials in a conflict of interest, argued Mr. St-Pierre Plamondon in the press scrum.

Un member should not send messages to municipal elected officials saying: "what a great opportunity to advance your file, what a great opportunity to meet the minister that you never managed to meet if you offer us $100 and you are participating in our fundraising cocktail."

Mr. Jolin-Barrette affirmed that both the PQ and the Liberal Party had also previously, when they formed the government, organized fundraising activities by inviting ministers.

He recalled in particular that the QS MP for Sherbrooke, Christine Labrie, had received a contribution from the mayor of Sherbrooke.

Even the general director of the CAQ, Brigitte Legault, published an open letter on Tuesday to defend the integrity of the party and its fundraising methods.

The electoral law stipulates that the donor to a political party must certify that his contribution is made from his own property, voluntarily, without compensation or consideration, and that he has not done nor will do so. #x27;subject to any reimbursement.

With information from The Canadian Press

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