Anti-Immigration Party Favored to Win Quebec Election, Plans 'Values Tests' For Newcomers

Chris Menahan
Sep. 14, 2018

Are we finally witnessing a turning of the tide?

From Bloomberg:
With less than three weeks to go before the Oct. 1 election, an upstart alliance that's pledging to reduce immigration is favored to oust the Liberal Party that's governed the French-speaking Canadian province for all but two of the past 15 years.

Coalition Avenir Quebec, the eight-year-old party led by former airline executive and education minister Francois Legault, is leading in the polls -- though recent surveys show it may lack the support required to win a majority.

The CAQ, which is also pledging to make government more efficient, has the support of 35 percent of voters compared to 29 percent for Philippe Couillard's Liberals, according to weighted polling averages compiled by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. Ominously for the incumbent premier, 62 percent of voters surveyed by polling company Leger this month said they were dissatisfied with Couillard's government.

[...]With Quebec facing labor shortages in several regions and immigration now capped at about 50,000 people a year, the CAQ wants to cut the limit to 40,000 to better integrate newcomers. It's also vowing to give immigrants three years to learn French or face the risk of being expelled from the province -- a pledge criticized by Couillard, who says immigration will be the true "ballot box question" on Oct. 1.

The Parti Quebecois, meanwhile, insists immigrants must be better integrated and wants to make knowledge of French a condition for settling in the province.
They want to give newcomers "values tests," the Times Colonists reports:
The Coalition has promised to impose a values test and a French test on new arrivals after three years if it is elected on Oct. 1.

Those who fail would see their selection certificates revoked, leaving the federal government free to remove them from the country.

[...]The Coalition leader also explained the values portion of the test, which would quiz immigrants about the Quebec Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

"Do you think women and men are equal? Do you recognize a secular state and laws come before religion? Do you recognize we have a democratic, non-violent, respectful society? Do you recognize homosexuals have the same rights as others in our society?," Legault said, listing some examples.
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