After 39 days of campaigning a new premier has been elected.
The results are in and Quebec’s new premier is Coalition Avenir Québec’s (CAQ) François Legault. After four million votes were casted on Monday Oct. 1, the CAQ will be in office until 2022. Legault was also elected in L’Assomption, his riding. The Liberals have been ousted from power.
The CAQ will hold 74 seats in Quebec’s National Assembly. The Quebec Liberal Party (QLP) will hold 32 seats, while Quebec Solidaire (QS) and the Parti Quebecois (PQ) will hold 10 and 9 seats respectively, with no seats for independent parties.
The new CAQ government won more seats in the province’s National Assembly than the departing Liberal government, who was elected with 70 seats in 2014.
The CAQ has positioned itself as a centre-right party. It has promised to decrease immigration in Quebec from 50,000 to 40,000 people per year. The party also promised to raise the legal age for marijuana consumption to 21 years old rather than the current minimum of 18. A $10-billion plan is suggested by the CAQ to invest in public transit and better infrastructure in Quebec, beginning this summer. Within his first year of office, Legault will also put in place a secularism charter, among other promises.
Out of the 6 million people eligible to vote 67 per cent voted. According to Quebec’s Chief Electoral Officers, 1.1 million people voted in the advance polls between Sept. 21 and 27. Quebec’s four main parties had 125 candidates across the province.
The elections included two French debates and a debate in English, a historical first. Sovereignty wasn’t a central issue throughout the elections, although Quebec culture and identity were widely discussed.
According to CBC’s poll tracker, CAQ was in the lead followed by the Liberal party, the Parti Quebecois and Quebec Solidaire, respectively.
The party was put in the lead quickly after polls closed. While Laval is usually a Liberal island, this election’s results show Laval residents widely elected the CAQ. Montreal widely voted for the liberal party
The former PQ cabinet minister, Legault, founded the CAQ in 2011 and it’s the first new party to take power since 1976. Third time’s the charm for the winning party, as they previously ran in the 2012 and 2014 elections.
Graphic by @spooky_soda.