Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Trudeau, PQ bury the hatchet

  • Print

QUEBEC -- The Parti Québécois couldn't wait to confront its newest nemesis -- Justin Trudeau, the freshly appointed federal Liberal leader and first-born son of traditional foe Pierre Elliott Trudeau.

Things did not go as planned.

By the end of the day, in fact, they were offering to buy Trudeau a beer. That invitation to quaff suds was the final twist in a bizarre string of events Thursday during Trudeau's first visit to meet with Quebec politicians since winning the leadership.

It all began with a provincial cabinet minister delivering a lengthy denunciation at a news conference. The source of his frustration: an alleged scheduling slight.

Jean-Francois Lisee told the assembled reporters Trudeau was behaving like some "young prince" because he had, supposedly, demanded to meet the leaders of all parties at the same time.

However, it turned out that information was wrong. People from various quarters, including the Quebec premier's office, disputed the basis for the cabinet minister's attack.

Lisee had been expressing disbelief that Trudeau would expect to meet the leaders of Quebec's three biggest parties at one single gathering.

"He's not even the leader of the official Opposition in Ottawa -- he's the leader of the second opposition party -- and he thinks he can meet the three party leaders at the same time?" Lisee told a morning news scrum.

"Like some young prince, descending from Ottawa, to meet those who could become his subjects.

"He wanted the three party leaders of Quebec to organize their schedules to meet him at the same time. That gives you an idea of the gap between the reality of the Quebecois nation and its institutions, its political parties, and the incomprehension of the new Liberal leader of Quebec democracy."

Almost immediately, that version of events was disputed. Not only by Trudeau's office, and by Quebec's opposition parties, but also by Lisee's own boss.

"It was a communication error. And that error was transmitted to Mr. Lisee and Mr. Lisee 'scrummed' on bad information," said a spokesman for PQ Premier Pauline Marois. "The request was to meet the three leaders -- but individually."

Lisee wound up sounding a more conciliatory note. "Well, it seems Justin and I were victims of a communication error between his office and that of my PM. It happens," Lisee tweeted later. "I'm offering to buy him a beer in Montreal. I'll take a Tremblay (beer) but would be prepared to buy him a (Molson) Canadian... Or vice-versa."

Trudeau did meet Thursday with the leaders of Quebec's two biggest oppostion parties, the Liberals and the Coalition for Quebec's Future.

He did not see Marois; a spokeswoman for the premier said Marois wasn't available Thursday, but that she would welcome suggestions for a future meeting date.

-- The Canadian Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 19, 2013 A17

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Winnipeg Cheapskate: Cheap summer weekends

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Bright sunflowers lift their heads toward the south east skies in a  large sunflower field on Hwy 206 and #1 Thursday Standup photo. July 31,  2012 (Ruth Bonneville/Winnipeg Free Press)
  • Someone or thing is taking advantage of the inactivity at Kapyong Barracks,hundreds of Canada Geese-See Joe Bryksa’s goose a day for 30 days challenge- Day 15- May 22, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What should the city do with the 102-year-old Arlington Street bridge?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google