Quebeckers were very clear with their votes Monday: many of them don’t see Canada as ONE country from coast to coast to coast, represented by Canada’s political parties with differing ideologies … but only Quebec as a regional Bloc that can demand, push, pressure and yes, even blackmail the federal government to get things THEIR way … or else!
Well, if that’s the way Quebeckers want to play the game … the WEST has news for them: OUR BLOCK is bigger than their Bloc!
In Alberta alone, the Conservatives hold 33 seats … all but one seat in the entire province … more seats than the Bloc Quebecois!
In Saskatchewan, another 14 Conservative seats; in BC, another 17 Conservative seats; and, in Manitoba another 7 Conservative seats!
Now, THAT is 71 Conservative seats … ALL out West …. SOME VOTING BLOCK … if that’s the way Quebeckers wants the federal government to work!!!
C’est domage! Too bad!
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau would be well advised … and warned … that if he intends to placate and pander to buy off the BLOC in Quebec to prop up his government, he’ll face a backlash from even a large BLOCK out West that will not take such preferential treatment and provocation lightly.
And the long-term consequences for Trudeau/Liberals … and Canada’s nation-wide political system … will be much more serious than the pressure-politics plans of the Bloc.
That’s because everyone knows the votes for the Bloc in Quebec had ZERO to do with separatism or sovereignty: it was a push for even more regional power … beyond Quebec’s already-existing preferential treatment … nothing more.
Many Canadians already see Quebec as the spoiled child of Confederation, pulling way above its FAIR weight in terms of federal power, Cabinet seats, contract spending, billions in equalization grants and even extreme tolerance for its “pure laine”-based racism and discriminatory laws and practices.
And the West is fed up!
Western Canadians feel: Underpowered in Cabinet; under-appointed in top bureaucratic positions; under-involved in policy development; under-listened to in federal decision-making; under protected in trade deals (softwood lumber!!!); and under-represented on federal boards, committees, agencies, federal power structures.
There is a danger now facing Canada … but it is NOT about “Wexit” or any silly talk about the West leaving Canada: that will NOT happen.
But it IS about the risk of Canada fragmenting into “block”-based regions, each pushing parochial agendas, rather than a cohesive but compassionate country … looking out for one another.
Quebec has started this … again.
But this time, Westerners are not in such a nice, magnanimous mood to soothe, spoil and bribe.
Trudeau Wednesday acknowledged there are serious issues simmering among Westerners.
“I will be reaching out specifically to westerners to hear from them … to talk about how we can make sure that the concerns, the very real concerns of Albertans, are being addressed and reflected by this government,” Trudeau said.
Talk is cheap.
If the government gives in and panders to Quebec’s isolationists and separatists … represented by the Bloc … it will send the WRONG message to the rest of the country about what it will take from now on to succeed in Canada.
And Trudeau/Liberals should remember: OUR BLOCK is BIGGER than THEIR Bloc.
PS. For those interested, I was interviewed on this topic on the following Podcast: https://www.howestreet.com/2019/10/28/will-trudeau-listen-to-a-conservative-west/
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