Friday, September 26, 2008

Nationalism Card Isn't The Ace It Once Was

From The Toronto Star:

MONTREAL—With Gilles Duceppe in attendance, with members of the most articulate sovereignist constituency in Quebec on stage, the artists participating in a concert held in Montreal earlier this week to protest the recent Conservative cuts to culture pointedly abstained from issuing a collective call to support the Bloc Québécois.

Since then, two large Quebec federations, representing women and nurses respectively, have called on their members to vote against the Conservatives on Oct. 14. Like the artists, both refrained from throwing their support to a specific party.

That is not to say that the Bloc will not be the main beneficiary of rising anti-Conservative sentiment in Quebec.

Over the past week, overnight polls have picked up a steady increase in its support.

But the party is benefiting from being the default opposition option in most of the province's ridings rather than from renewed enthusiasm over its existence and its sovereignist message.

It is a message that is increasingly voiced as an afterthought and a central position that is increasingly being challenged, from the right and the left.

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