Resignation of Éric Lefebvre | A “race” for the post of whip at the CAQ

(Quebec) Prime Minister François Legault is in no hurry to appoint a new chief whip after the departure of his MP Éric Lefebvre who is moving to the conservative camp at the federal level. A decision which will provoke a “race” among the CAQ members to obtain this position which allows the lucky one to participate in meetings of the Council of Ministers.

Caquistes expect their leader to choose Nancy Guillemette (Roberval) or Claude Reid (Beauharnois). They have been deputy whips since the re-election of the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) in 2022, just like Geneviève Hébert (Saint-François). The name of Donald Martel (Nicolet-Bécancour) is also circulating.

Some mention Samuel Poulin (Beauce-Sud), who is suspected of also being likely to jump the fence and go federal under the conservative banner.

Mr. Legault’s entourage has indicated that the Prime Minister will take the necessary time to choose a chief whip, prefect of discipline for the caucus. We should not expect a short-term appointment, it was insisted.

Could François Legault be so patient as to fill this position as part of a formal ministerial reshuffle? This is unlikely, we suggest.

On social networks, the leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, Pierre Poilievre, said he was “very proud” of his CAQ take, the former government whip Éric Lefebvre, who will be candidate for his party in Arthabaska-Richmond. Mr. Lefebvre first tried his luck under the Conservative banner in this riding in 2008.

“Very proud that Éric Lefebvre is part of the common sense Conservative team to help us cut taxes, build housing, repair the budget and stop crime,” Mr. Poilievre wrote on Wednesday. He will hold a rally on Sunday in Victoriaville.

Éric Lefebvre has decided to continue to sit in the National Assembly as an independent deputy, until the federal elections are called in the fall of 2025, a choice which has raised criticism from the opposition to the National Assembly Wednesday morning.

QS and PQ discomfort

Québec solidaire (QS) and the Parti Québécois (PQ) expressed their discomfort with Eric Lefebvre’s decision to continue to sit as an independent MP in Quebec while having admitted wanting to make the jump to the federal government.

Solidarity MP Vincent Marissal invited his colleague to reflect and make a decision with respect for his constituents.

According to PQ MP Pascal Bérubé, Mr. Lefebvre must explain his departure shortly after the last provincial election, especially since as government whip, he sat on the Council of Ministers.

The interim Liberal leader, Marc Tanguay, remained more circumspect about the decision of the former CAQ whip, affirming that he took for granted that he would continue to do his job as an MP 100%.

He still indicated that it hurt François Legault that Mr. Lefebvre saw more of a future with Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre.

Thomas Laberge, The Canadian Press

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