André Boisclair | Canada | News | Quebec

Gay Former Parti Quebecois leader Andre Boisclair Quitting Politics

Former Parti Quebecois leader Andre Boisclair, who resigned as leader in May after elections in which his party had the worst showing in decades, has announced that he is quitting politics, effective November 15th. On that date, he'll give up his seat as Member of the National Assembly for Pointe-aux-Trembles.

BoisclairCTV reports: "A career politician, first getting elected at age 23, Boisclair had been a cabinet minister in the PQ governments of Lucien Bouchard and Bernard Landry. After the 2003 provincial election, Boisclair studied at the prestigious John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He was going to take a job in the corporate sector in Toronto when Landry quit as party leader in 2005. Boisclair bested Marois to take the leadership."

Boisclair's tenure was marked by several controversies which included his appearance in a Brokeback Mountain sketch on Canadian TV.

The sketch featured George Bush and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper shirtless inside a pup tent. George Bush fondled his nipples before throwing two cherries at Harper. The cherries then appeared strategically placed atop two mounds of whipped cream on Harper's chest. The tent unzipped and Boisclair, peeking his head through, said "Quebec won't get mixed up in something like that." The sketch, of course, was immediately broadcast over Canadian news networks, prompting criticism from those who felt that Boisclair's participation was not fitting of a statesman.

Boisclair also made news in the run-up to his election, when he acknowledged that he used cocaine. Rather than dampening his efforts, however, the confession caused his numbers to soar in the polls. At that time, a former cabinet member said, "We Quebecers fancy our heroes a little bit cheeky, defeatist, hesitant, unsure of themselves, alcoholic, a little or even a lot unreliable, a little bit fraudulent or even a little drugged. We like to say they are like us."

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Comments

  1. Don't know much about him, but I love love love Quebec. Would move there in a second.

    Posted by: Brian | Oct 15, 2007 11:51:52 AM


  2. I love Canada in general and wish I could figure out a way to emigrate. Boisclair certainly is handsome.

    Posted by: sam | Oct 15, 2007 11:58:17 AM


  3. High quality of life. Low crime rates. Progressive social policies. A strong economy. There’s a lot to love about Canada. Here are just some of the reasons why you might want to join us:

    http://www.canadianalternative.com/gettoknow/whycanada.cfm

    Posted by: vinny | Oct 15, 2007 12:10:43 PM


  4. Hey, you don't have to convince me... I've been a fan of the Canadian way of life for a long time. And Montreal and Quebec City... guys if you haven't visited, put it on your list of places to spend a vacation.

    Posted by: Brian | Oct 15, 2007 12:42:04 PM


  5. Yes, Canada is an amazing country to live in. Some of our politicians are insane but politicians usually are (no matter where you are). This Boisclair character made a comment about asians that simply was out of place and he had the nerves to stand by it and not correct himself. Handsome or not, I'm glad he's out of the public eye. Good riddance!

    Posted by: Shabaka | Oct 15, 2007 1:24:17 PM


  6. I hope he takes up a career as a model. Or maybe a porn star. Damn, is he HOT! (though I'm disappointed to hear he made a racist comment.)

    Posted by: peterparker | Oct 15, 2007 1:30:20 PM


  7. Yeah he did and once asked about it, he said something along the lines of:"....well, here in Québéc,that's not racist, it's common practice." We were like WTF?! Oh and québécois men are amazingly hot. When you're in Montréal and just walking down the street, it's unbelievable to see that a whole city would have gorgeous men left,right and center. Just amazing.

    Posted by: Shabaka | Oct 15, 2007 1:38:06 PM


  8. SHABAKA you are misinformed and misinforming the people on this forum about what exactly took place.

    He had once mentioned how Asians have slanted eyes. This is not a racist remark; it is a facial characteristic. Afterwards some Asian-Canadian heard this remark and started pointing the racist finger at Boisclair.

    If an Asian person told me that I had light skin, I would not take offense and call him a racist. I know that ethnic communities and visible minorities have suffered and still are suffering in todays society, but I do believe that they tend to blow things out of proportion occasionally by pointing the racist finger at individuals who have just made a simple, perhaps not politically correct remark about an ethnic community i.e. if I say "blacks" I will be called a racist by some people in that community since I didn't use the correct terminology "African-American".

    Jamie in Quebec City...a beautiful place but damn cold!

    Posted by: JCarbonneau | Oct 16, 2007 7:32:14 AM


  9. To follow up on what Jamie said, Boisclair made the remarks in French ("les yeux bridés"), which is a neutral physionomic description in French, for which we don't have an everyday equivalent in non-scientific English that people readily understand. The term was TRANSLATED by a emotionally charged term in English, which doesn't reflect the French. Boisclair was certainly not racist.

    Semantics aside, I don't think Boisclair had the instincts of a leader. He had an uncanny ability for leaving people cold. I have no doubt the man is impressively intelligent and the fact he consumed cocaine years ago does not phase me, Boisclair just didn't seem to have the ability to speak to the average Quebecer and in the end, that was the end of him.

    People couldn't identify with him, not because he was gay or enjoyed a few "bumps" at an afterhours, but because he couldn't speak plainly to the hearts of voters. In my view, Qubecers vote with their hearts more than with their minds. Boisclair was cold and spoke like a bureaucrat, and it just didn't fly in Quebec. And I don't blame my fellow Quebecers for not supporting him. Even though I admittedly still have a soft sport for him, despite all his weaknesses (or maybe because of his weaknesses, but that's another story).

    Posted by: Ian | Oct 16, 2007 9:46:38 AM


  10. Monsieur JCARBONNEAU, here's an excerpt of what he said:

    "When I was at Harvard, where I spent a year, I was surprised to see that on campus, about a third of the undergraduate students had slanted eyes...They're not going to work in sweatshops. They're people who will later work as engineers, managers, and will create wealth. They're people who will innovate in their countries. There is ferocious competition in the world today."

    If this isn't out of place,I don't know what is. French is my first language and I, of all people should know how harsh the language can be but he didn't just mention the "slanted eyes", he also said it was remarkable to find so many of them "not working in sweatshops" but rather working towards higher positions in society. Why did he need to say that? No one ever mentions the pale skin of my fellow "white" folks in public and/or in such a manner so again why say it about other races? Just out place if you ask me. I do agree though that in this crazed, PC-speak world that we live in, his comments weren't nearly as hurtfull as the "N" word, so to speak, but a political figure ALWAYS should be on the look-out and not use verbiage that may be perceived as pejorative as "slanted eyes". Can you imagine if someone used the term "hook noses" about Jews in this day and age?

    Posted by: Shabaka | Oct 16, 2007 1:24:28 PM


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