A sovereigntist Bloc Québécois Member of Parliament, Maria Mourani, has been kicked out of the party for speaking out against the Quebec government’s plan to ban several symbolic signs of religious faith from public workplaces. Mourani was one of the total five Bloc MPs expelled by the party on Thursday. Previously on Wednesday, Ms. Mourani labeled the Parti Québécois plan as discriminatory, probably illegal and strategically disastrous for a sovereignty movement that has struggled to convince Quebec minorities of the allure of national independence.
Meanwhile, reaction of the Bloc is seemingly becoming more and more confused. In a press release issued earlier this week, it seemed as if it was opposing the provincial party and adopting its 2007 position alleging that only people in positions of state authority shall be barred from wearing religious symbols. However, Bloc Leader Daniel Paillé seems to have dodged the position of the block, asserting on Wednesday that he welcomed the PQ move.
Mr. Paillé mentioned that his tiny remaining caucus was unanimous in its decision to expel Ms. Mourani, alleging that her position “in no way reflects the position of the Bloc Québécois.” She added that “far from being electioneering, a grave strategic error of the sovereignty movement, or a demonstration of ethnic nationalism, it is, on the contrary, a necessary and fundamental process for the Québécois nation.” The Bloc leader said Quebeckers have the right to expect all federal parties to “respect their debate, their will to define themselves and to defend their values.”
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