There has been a significant change in government in the province of Quebec.
On Sept. 4, the PQ (Parti Quebecois) won the provincial election.
They will take over from the Liberals, who have been in power there for nine years.
The PQ leader is Pauline Marois. She will become Quebec’s first female premier.
She takes over the job from Liberal leader Jean Charest.
The PQ wants “sovereignty” for Quebec. That means they believe Quebec should be a separate country from the rest of Canada because they say it is unique in terms of culture and language. Most people in Quebec speak French.
In Tuesday’s election, the PQ won a minority government. That means they have fewer votes than the other political parties combined. So while they believe Quebec should have sovereignty, they probably wouldn’t be able to pass a law for separation because they would need the other parties to vote their way. The other parties are against separation.
Even though Marois wants to separate and concentrate on French culture, she said in her victory speech that she will work with the other parties in Quebec to serve Quebecers. Speaking in English, she told Anglophone Quebecers that, “your rights will be fully protected; I want to shape together our common future.”
Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Quebecers are more concerned about building a stronger economy than in separating from Canada.
In the election, the PQ won 54 of the provincial legislature’s 125 seats. (They would have needed 63 seats to form a majority government.)
The Liberals came second with 50 seats, the newly formed Coalition Avenir Quebec came in third with 19 seats and Quebec Solidaire won two seats.
By Jonathan Tilly
If you were a voter in Quebec, would you support Quebec becoming its own country? Why or why not?
Reading Prompt: Making Inferences/Interpreting Texts
How might Pauline Marois and the Parti Quebecois be affected by their minority government status?
Use stated and implied ideas in texts to make inferences and construct meaning (OME, Reading: 1.5).
Develop and explain interpretations of increasingly complex or difficult texts using stated and implied ideas from the texts to support their interpretations (OME, Reading: 1.5).
Grammar Feature: Italics
Italics are a font style that have a lean, like this. There are many reasons why a writer chooses to italicize their words. For example, a writer will often italicize titles. However, today’s article includes italics to show non-English words and to emphasize words.
Review today’s article and underline all of the italicized words. How does changing the font style, like italicizing, help someone understand the text they are reading?
(Some edits, mainly for clarification, were made to this article shortly after it was posted.)