Parti Québécois

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The Parti Québécois (PQ) is a centre, centre-left political party that advocates national sovereignty for the province of Quebec and secession from Canada. The Party has traditionally support from the labour movement. Unlike many other social democratic parties, its ties with the labour movement are informal. Members and supporters of the PQ are called "péquistes" ([peˈkist]  ( listen)), a French word derived from the pronunciation of the party's initials.

Since June 2007, the party is headed by Pauline Marois.



The PQ is the result of the 1968 merger between René Lévesque's Mouvement Souveraineté-Association and the Ralliement national. Following the creation of the PQ, the Rassemblement pour l'indépendance nationale held a general assembly that voted to dissolve the RIN. Its former members were invited to join the new Parti Québécois.

PQ's primary goals were and still are to obtain the political, economic and social independence for the province of Quebec. In the 1976 provincial election, the Parti Québécois was elected for the first time to form the government of Québec. The party's leader, René Lévesque, became the Premier of Quebec. This provided cause for celebration among many French-speaking Quebecers, while it resulted in an acceleration of the migration of the province's Anglophone population and related economic activity toward Toronto.

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