Friday, December 16, 2005

Gilles Duceppe: Sovereignty's steadfast soldier. Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe is living every politician's dream. His party is so popular in Quebec right now, he can do no wrong. The Bloc already controls 54 of the province's 75 seats, and according to the polls, this election could bring him even more seats. Of course, little of it has to do with Duceppe himself. Instead, he has the sponsorship scandal to thank. Known as "le scandale des commandites" in Quebec, the scandal was front and centre in the minds of Quebec voters during the June 2004 election, when they punished the Liberals and handed the Bloc 16 new seats. This year, with much of the scandal fully exposed through the Gomery inquiry, anger and resentment with the Liberals has only intensified. And that's great news for the Bloc. Duceppe believes that Bloc supporters are looking to continue punishing the Liberals -- not only because their tax dollars were wasted with the sponsorship program, but because the federal government tried so hard to crush Quebec's aspirations for separatism.

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