Quebec Liberals want quick race to replace Charest

The Quebec Liberal Party is planning a quick leadership race that would have a successor to Jean Charest in place during the winter, in time for the PQ's first budget in the spring.
Outgoing Quebec Premier Jean Charest announced last week he's resigning as Liberal Party leader. His replacement could be in place by winter. (Jacques Boissinot/Canadian Press)

The Quebec Liberal Party is planning a quick leadership race that would have a successor to Jean Charest in place during the winter.

The party is expected to meet in early October to set the rules for a leadership contest for a successor to Charest, who resigned the day after being defeated in the Sept. 4 provincial election. He also lost his own seat the legislature.

Labour Minister Lise Thériault is among those considering a bid for the leadership. (Jacques Boissinot/Canadian Press)

The Liberals' executive committee proposed on Tuesday that outgoing Justice Minister Jean-Marc Fournier be named interim leader.

The Liberal caucus is expected to confirm the choice Wednesday.

Party brass want a new leader in time to deal with Premier-designate Pauline Marois's first budget, which will likely be brought down in March.

Several members of Charest's exiting government are considering a leadership bid, as well as a few former ministers.

Among those from the government who are mulling a run are Finance Minister Raymond Bachand, Transport Minister Pierre Moreau, Health Minister Yves Bolduc, Labour Minister Lise Thériault and Economic Development Minister Sam Hamad.

Others outside the caucus include former health minister Philippe Couillard and onetime intergovernmental affairs minister Benoit Pelletier.