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Le Monde with AFP August 1, 2012
The Québec liberal prime minister Jean Charest will ask on Wednesday, 1 August for the dissolution of Quebec’s provincial Parliament and the holding of early parliamentary elections, announced his cabinet in a press release. This ballot, although the official date has not yet been made public, will likely be held on 4 September, and could bring to political power the separatists of Canada’s francophone province.
Mr. Charest’s Cabinet has indicated that he will soon be visiting the office of the lieutenant governor, the representative of the British Crown, “for the signing of the decree to dissolve the National Assembly and to hold an election in all districts of Quebec”
THE CONFLICT OVER TUITION FEES IS AT THE HEART OF THE CAMPAIGN
In addition to the issue of independence, the conflict on the tuition fees, which is still not settled, should mark the campaign. The separatists of the Parti Québecois support the student strikers, while the tuition increase proposed by the outgoing federalist liberal government has the support of a majority of Québecers.
The two factions are neck and neck in the polls, which means a great feeling of uncertainty on the outcome of the vote. If he were to win the election, Mr. Charest would get a fourth term as the head of the government, which came to power in 2003. Mr. Charest is the first Premier of Québec in half a century to have exercised three terms.
However, it is a tired opinion to hold Charest in high regard, and the suspicions of corruption advance against his government. The Parti Québecois of Mrs. Pauline Marois and the third important Party in the running, Coalition future Québec (CAQ) will look to capitalize on the situation. This is evident by François Legault’s campaign slogan, unveiled last Sunday, which is “That is enough, it’s got to change”.
The polls show the CAQ significantly behind the Liberals as well as the PQ, but Legault’s campaign may have a decisive impact on the final result, depending whether it attracts votes more on the side of the liberal electorate or the separatist PQ.
Translated from the original French by Translating the printemps érable.
*Translating the printemps érable is a volunteer collective attempting to balance the English media’s extremely poor coverage of the student conflict in Québec by translating media that has been published in French into English. These are amateur translations; we have done our best to translate these pieces fairly and coherently, but the final texts may still leave something to be desired. If you find any important errors in any of these texts, we would be very grateful if you would share them with us at email@example.com. Please read and distribute these texts in the spirit in which they were intended; that of solidarity and the sharing of information.