The Parti libéral du Québec (PLQ) has launched a petition against "Quebec-bashing" following the September 9 English-language federal leaders' debate, where a question by moderator Shachi Kurl provoked fury among the province's political class.
"You deny that Quebec has problems with racism yet you defend legislation such as Bills 96 and 21, which marginalize religious minorities, Anglophones, and Allophones [...] for those outside the province, please help them understand why your party [...] supports these discriminatory laws," Kurl said to Bloc Québécois leader Yves-François Blanchet.
Le Québec bashing, ça va faire!
Joignez-vous à nous pour dénoncer ces propos en signant la pétition.
"The premier did his best impression of Maurice Duplessis," Nadeau-Dubois said at the National Assembly on Wednesday evening, "by proclaiming himself the 'Father of the Quebec Nation.'"
What happened at the National Assembly?
Nadeau-Dubois said that Legault shouldn't assume that he can speak for all Quebecers.
"There are millions of Quebecers who are against Bill 21 [...] who don't support him or his government," said Nadeau-Dubois. "There are millions of us who are tired of him pretending to be our 'saviour and 'redeemer' [...] we are fed up of his sermons."
Legault angrily retorted that "there is a large majority of Quebecers who support Bill 21 and there are two multicultural parties [...] who are against Bill 21."
"The leader of Quebec Solidaire talks about Maurice Duplessis [...] the man had his faults but he defended the Quebec nation and wasn't 'woke' like the Quebec Solidaire leader."
Nadeau-Dubois then clapped back that "if the premier wants to bring the level of this discussion into the gutter, I won't follow him there."
"The premier doesn't have the right to expel Quebecers from the nation just because they disagree with him. He's a premier, not a monarch."
But who exactly was Maurice Duplessis?
Duplessis was twice elected Quebec premier from 1936 to 1939 and from 1944 to 1959.
Duplessis was against mandatory conscription for Quebecers during World War II but lost his premiership after calling a snap election. At the time, he was a heavy drinker and womanizer according to the Canadian Encyclopedia but quit drinking after a life-threatening bout with pneumonia and diabetes.
His second, 15-year long term as Quebec premier was more successful than his first. His government undertook enormous public works projects.
He was, however, especially harsh against workers' unions, according to the Encyclopedia, which also states corruption reached "legendary proportions" under his government
Quebecers who grew up during his reign took to calling this era in Quebec history "La Grande Noirceur," or "The Great Darkness."
According to the Canadian Encylopedia, Duplessis "had disdain for most contemporary concepts of civil liberties."
Nadeau-Dubois took to social media to poke fun at Legault's use of "woke," writing, "I don't know what François Legault has against woks," alongside a picture of himself with the cooking pot.
Legault doubled-down on using the term at a press conference on Thursday morning and even went on to define what he meant by "woke."
"For me, 'a woke' is someone who wants to make us feel guilty about defending the Quebec nation and its values," the premier said.
"I don't mind him calling me Duplessis but he is really on the other extreme [...] defending Quebec values doesn't interest him [...] that's why I called him 'woke.'"
Around 80 housing advocates gathered in front of Justin Trudeau's campaign office in Montreal on Tuesday to protest on behalf of social housing and against inadequate housing and what they say is Trudeau's "lack of commitment" on the issue.*
"The health crisis exposed the serious physical and mental health consequences for tenants in Mr. Trudeau's riding living in substandard overcrowded housing, and in particular for the development of children and the safety of abused women. One would hope that this would lead to greater interest on his part, but it didn't," Comité d'Action de Parc-Extension coordinator Amy Darwish said in a press release.
Crise du logement: @JustinTrudeau interpellé sur les besoins urgents de logements sociaux dans sa circonscription
FRAPRU and other housing advocate groups in Montreal have called on the government to "commit to a recurring investment of $3 billion per year to fund new social housing."
The investment would allow Quebec to build around 7,000 social housing units per year, according to FRAPRU.
Montreal's Villeray–Saint-Michel–Parc-Extension borough has been at the centre of the social housing debate for quite some time.
Advocates claim thousands lived in unaffordable housing or housing that was too small before the pandemic.
"We already cannot rely on the private rental market to take care of low-income households, the response must be political, the State must take this on. This response requires social housing and we want clear commitments from Mr. Trudeau," Charles Castonguay, community organizer at the Association des Locataires de Villeray, said.
A motion passed at the National Assembly Tuesday demands a formal apology from the Debate Broadcasting Group for what it calls "hostile" language targetting the Quebec nation at the English-language federal leaders' debate on September 9.
The motion, from Joël Arseneau, leader of the Parti Québécois in the National Assembly, passed with the support of the CAQ, Parti libéral du Québec (PLQ) and Québec Solidaire.
The apology demand comes after much of Quebec's political class condemned the framing of a question from debate moderator Shachi Kurl for Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet.
"You deny that Quebec has problems with racism yet you defend legislation such as Bills 96 and 21, which marginalize religious minorities, Anglophones, and Allophones," Kurl said.
"For those outside the province, please help them understand why your party [...] supports these discriminatory laws."
Blanchet later accused Kurl of calling Quebecers "racists." Quebec Premier François Legault called the question an "attack" on the Quebec nation.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau added his voice to the calls for an apology, saying the "premise of the question was unacceptable."