Valérie Plante steers clear of 'tricky' 1995 referendum question

Projet Montréal's mayoral candidate, Valérie Plante, said although she doesn’t identify as a Quebec sovereignist, she believes in the importance of “auto-determination” as a democratic right.

In interview with CBC Montreal's Daybreak, mayoral candidate avoids directly answering independence question

When asked how she voted in the 1995 sovereignty referendum, Valérie Plante refrained from responding. (Radio-Canada)

Montreal mayoral candidate Valérie Plante isn't saying which way she voted in Quebec's 1995 sovereignty referendum.

"Listen, if I would have liked to put those issues forward, I think I would have been at the provincial or federal level," Valérie Plante, leader of opposition Projet Montréal, said in an interview on CBC Montreal's Daybreak.

I'm really open to work with everybody, whatever language, wherever they come from.- Projet Montréal mayoral candidate Valérie Plante

Plante, 43, told Daybreak host Mike Finnerty that although she doesn't identify as a separatist, she believes in the importance of "auto-determination" as a democratic right.

Her opponent, incumbent Mayor Denis Coderre, is a former federal Liberal cabinet minister and an avowed federalist.

Coderre, however, has admitted in the past that he would have voted for separation in the 1980 referendum (he was only 17 at the time). A number of sovereigntists are either running for his party or are part of his campaign team.

When asked on Daybreak why she refrained from responding, Plante said it was a "tricky question" on an all-round sensitive topic.

"I'm so proud to speak French and English," she said. "I'm really open to work with everybody, whatever language, wherever they come from."

For Plante, the fact that Montreal is a French city is an asset — but she said she still believes it's important to be conscious of the city's anglophone population.

"We should be able to get some services in the language that we need," she said.

Make a date with CBC for election night this Sunday, Nov. 5:

Online: Get breaking news and live results at after polls close at 8 p.m.

On Facebook: Join host Debra Arbec for a 90-minute Facebook Live starting at 10 p.m. with results, analysis and reports from across Quebec.

On TV: Watch our live results show at 11-11:30 p.m. on CBC Television.

On Radio: Listen to CBC Radio One starting at 8 p.m. for a province-wide show hosted by Mike Finnerty in Montreal and Susan Campbell in Quebec City.

With files from CBC Montreal's Daybreak


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