Quebec leader wins third term, increases power

| 12/10/2008

Quebec Liberal Party Leader Jean Charest won a third term as premier and increased his party’s power in provincial government on Monday, Dec. 8.

The Quebec Liberal Party held 48 parliamentary seats as one of three major parties in the Quebec National Assembly. But Monday’s election increased the number of Liberal seats to 66 seats.

Charest’s party now controls more than half the 125 seats in the provincial Assembly, constituting a majority government. That makes it easier to pass laws without asking for help from other parties.

The Parti Quebecois led by Pauline Marois came in second in the election by winning 51 seats, an increase of 15 seats over the 36 they held before the election.

Action Democratique du Quebec, also known as the ADQ, won just seven seats on Monday, a far cry from the 41 seats they had held before the election.

A party called Quebec Solidaire earned one seat in the Assembly.

Charest and the Liberals campaigned on economic issues, something that analysts and Canadian media view as helping their cause.

Of note to truckers, Assemblywoman Julie Boulet, the province’s minister of transportation, was re-elected Monday to another term.

Boulet was instrumental in getting a law passed to require speed limiters on all heavy trucks doing business in Quebec, a divisive issue in the trucking industry.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association opposes a government mandate for speed limiters.

The Quebec Liberal Party is not affiliated with the Liberal Party of Canada, which came in second in the federal election held in October.

– By David Tanner, staff writer