Key moments in Pierre Karl Péladeau's short political life
As the Parti Québécois head steps down, we look back at defining moments in his short leadership
It lasted only 14 months, but Pierre Karl Péladeau's political career is coloured with plenty of controversy, gaffes and surprises. Here are a few of them.
March 9, 2014: The fist
Péladeau announced his candidacy for election as a star candidate for the Parti Québécois in the riding of St-Jérôme.
But his announcement was overshadowed by a simple gesture that would define him: he thrust his right fist in the air, vowing to make Quebec a country. It became a viral meme, even getting remixed into music videos.
March 13, 2014: The shove
During a press conference with former PQ leader Pauline Marois, Példeau was asked a question about a possible conflict of interest around one of his companies doing IT work for the government.
Hoping to regain control of the message in an increasingly chaotic campaign, Marois gently pushed Péladeau away from the podium to answer the question herself. The gesture won its own Frenglish moniker: "le shove".
April 7, 2014: The election
Péladeau wins the riding of St-Jerôme one month after announcing his candidacy. At the same time, Marois announces she's stepping down as leader. Speculations of his eventual ascendancy to the PQ head begin immediately.
Oct. 8, 2014: The blind trust
Péladeau says he will put his shares of Quebecor in a blind trust if he becomes party leader. This was a change from one week prior, when he said he would not choose between being a politician and a businessman.
He finally named the trustees on September 2015.
March 19, 2015: Echoes of Parizeau
At a debate at Université de Laval, Peladeau hinted that immigration could hurt the sovereignist cause.
"We won't have 25 years ahead of us to achieve this. With demographics, with immigration, it's clear that we're losing one riding a year," Péladeau said. These remarks spread like wildfire in the National Assembly and local press. Comparisons to Jacques Parizeau, who blamed the "ethnic vote" for the defeat of the separatist referendum, were quick to come by.
He later apologized for the remarks.
May 15, 2015: The leadership
Péladeau become the new leader of the PQ with 58 per cent of the vote.
Aug.15, 2015: The wedding
After 15 years as a couple, and with two chidren, Péladeau and Julie Snyder get married in Quebec City.
Jan. 1, 2016: The surprise anglo ally
After English school boards were shut out of consultations on a bill that would abolish school board elections, Péladeau came to their defense.
"If [the government] wants to reform school board governance, they must respect the anglophone community's rights. They should participate in the commission and all other consultations," Péladeau said at the National Assembly.
Jan. 25, 2016: The separation
Péladeau and Julie Snyder announce that they are separating less than six months after a lavish wedding ceremony. This would have a direct impact on his resignation three months later.
Feb. 24, 2016: The think tank
A new think that that will study independence is announced. The Institut de recherche sur l'autodétermination des peuples et des indépendences nationales (IRAI) was Péladeau's brainchild, its director, Daniel Turp, said it won't be influenced by the PQ.
May 2, 2016: The resignation
Péladeau steps down as leader of the PQ and as MNA for St-Jerôme.
"I make this decision for the well-being of my children," he said. "I must, for them, remain a good example."