Manon Massé, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois become new voices of Québec Solidaire
Party members voted against a potential alliance with the Parti Québécois
Québec Solidaire officially has a new voice.
Manon Massé and Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois received the most votes from party members to become the next co-spokespeople of the party.
The announcement was made on Sunday at their annual convention, which is being held this weekend in Montreal.
"It's a beautiful and great moment for our party, for the left in Quebec and for democracy in Quebec," said Nadeau-Dubois, who added it was the start of a new era for the party.
Québec Solidaire, a pro-sovereignist, left-wing party, does not have a traditional political leadership structure; rather, it appoints a male and female spokesperson to articulate the views of its members.
Massé, one of the two remaining Québec Solidaire members with a seat in the National Assembly, ran for the position unopposed.
She has been interim co-spokesperson for Québec Solidaire since January, when longtime leader and party co-founder Françoise David stepped away from political life.
"I think me and Gabriel with Québec Solidaire will do some great work these next few years and, of course, eventually govern," said Massé.
Nadeau-Dubois, a former student leader who emerged as a household name during the so-called Maple Spring student protests in 2012, ran against Sylvain Lafrenière, a community worker.
'Mistrust' towards the PQ
Québec Solidaire members also shot down a potential alliance with the Parti Québécois.
Nadeau-Dubois described forming a possible allegiance as a "difficult and a tense discussion," but added that he was open to at least starting a dialogue with the PQ, despite some hesitation from party faithful.
Massé, for her part, told reporters that the vote's result was a sign of "mistrust" towards the PQ, referencing the divisive Charter of Values and saying that Quebec's future could not be built by excluding people.
Parti Québécois justice critic Véronique Hivon gave a response Sunday evening, saying that Québec Solidaire had turned its back on their offer and that voters were owed an explanation.
"Of course, we're disappointed," she said. "Today they have to explain why they are shutting the door to the will of the people."
Party members also voted to give the go ahead to open a discussion with pro-sovereignty party Option Nationale about a possible merger.
Québec Solidaire finished fourth in the 2014 provincial election, with only eight per cent of the popular vote.