State elections | Balarama Holness will propose a new party

Former Montreal mayoral candidate Balarama Holness wants to try his luck on the provincial scene. This Wednesday he will announce the founding of a new party for the next elections, Mouvement Québec, which wants to attack liberal strongholds in the west of the metropolis.

Posted at 5:00 am

Henri Ouellette-Vezina

Henri Ouellette-Vezina
The press

“We showed last fall that we can run a campaign. If people underestimate us, they will be surprised,” says the 38-year-old in an interview The press. Six months before the election, he sees “more resources” and wants to present strong candidates in the coming weeks.

A former Alouettes player, Balarama Holness became known to the general public through his involvement at the helm of Montréal en action, an organization that forced the city to hold a public consultation on systemic racism. In the last municipal election, he won just over 7% of the vote when he ran for mayor of Montreal under the banner of the Mouvement Montréal party, which he founded.

If that municipal party’s executive branch “remains intact,” Mr. Holness now intends to focus on the formation of its provincial equivalent, Mouvement Québec. In recent months, he said he felt that “several matters in Montreal called for better provincial representation, including linguistic and cultural matters.”

I’m certainly thinking of Bill 96, which goes way too far, whether it’s CEGEPs, the judiciary or corporations, but also Bill 21, environmental issues, housing shortages, the economy. We can do better.

Balarama Holness

The main prospect, however, promises not to raise the idea of ​​a referendum on the metropolis’ linguistic status, an idea Montrealers didn’t like, he admits.

Centered in western Montreal

Eventually, if all goes according to plan, Mouvement Québec will present about thirty candidates, most of them on the island of Montreal. The troops will be primarily present in the west of the city, where Mouvement Montréal said it had its “best performance” in the local elections.

Above all, the party is striving to take over riding defended by the Liberals. He also specifically targets 10, all represented by Liberals, including those of leader Dominique Anglade, Saint-Henri-Sainte-Anne, but also Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, D’Arcy-McGee, Nelligan, Robert- Baldwin, Jacques-Cartier, Mont-Royal-Outremont, Marquette, Saint-Laurent and Westmount-Saint-Louis.

The essence of our vision will be to give voice to the issues of Montreal. For us, the regions and the entire federal state benefit greatly from the economic growth of the metropolis.

Balarama Holness

Mr Holness deplores the “lack of leadership” and “disconnected” ideas of the Liberal Party, which he says no longer meets the expectations of its constituents. “It is the local people who are asking us to start in response to all of this. It wasn’t an individual decision,” he says.

Mouvement Québec also invited lawyer Colin Standish, the task force president, to “join” the party. Unlike Bill 96, Mr Standish, who is exploring with activists the possibility of forming a provincial party, had discussed with Balarama Holness during the municipal campaign. However, there has not yet been a conversation between the two men in connection with the upcoming state elections.

Will be checked

Accompanied by The pressFor its part, the Chief Electoral Officer of Quebec (DGEQ) confirms that it is analyzing the application received on April 4 to reserve the name Mouvement Quebec. “The application is currently being reviewed. However, a name reservation is not a preliminary stage to admission; it only serves to prevent another party from obtaining authorization under the same name,” specifies the organization’s spokesman, Gabriel Sauvé-Lesiège.

As of Tuesday, about fifteen party names had been officially reserved on the DGEQ website, in addition to four whose study is still ongoing. More than 20 political parties are already registered for the election next October 3rd.


PHOTO DAVID BOILY, LA PRESSE ARCHIVE

Balarama Holness, last November, when the results of Montreal’s municipal elections hit the screens.

Last November, Balarama Holness had lost his bet on how he had hoped to elect at least 10 Mouvement Montréal candidates. None of his candidates had won. Despite his visible disappointment, he said he remained hopeful for his party’s future. “Movement Montreal is here to stay. We will be there in 2025,” he told the crowd of activists gathered in the main building in the south-west sector.

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