Crushed PQ Pick Stephane Bedard as Interim Leadear

The fairly crushed Parti Quebecois members have picked Stephane Bedard as their interim leader without any contest. The recently re-elected Chicoutimi MP, Bedard, received unanimous support on Thursday night from the entire PQ caucus. He previously served as the treasury board president under former premier Pauline Marois.

Upon his selection, Bedard stated that “the election results did not meet our expectations.” He stated that “nevertheless, we offer Quebecers a strong team of men and women who have the public’s best interest at heart.” However, on the other hand, separatists have made several speculations about the future of the party and the movement. A blog post by Jean-Francois Lisee said that “the elephant is now very much in the room, a significant section of the francophone electorate is repulsed by the referendum hypothesis.” Lisee was among the very few PQ cabinet ministers who managed to survive Monday’s defeat at the hands of the Quebec Liberal Party.

According to Lisee, adding media mogul Pierre Karl Peladeau to the PQ team just before the election worked as a double-edged sword. In his first news conference, Peladeau declared “I am a sovereigntist,” which Lisee claims gained support of all sovereigntists but withdrew support of those confused and not in favor. The PQ caucus was cut short from 70 seats to 30 on election night, in a move being labeled as their worst showing in decades. According to several analysts, support for separatism is declining in Quebec since 2009, when former PQ cabinet minister Francois Legault quit the PQ and renounced independence.

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