Transcript: Quebec in Canada | Oct 18, 2017

Steve sits in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and spotted gray tie.

A caption on screen reads "Quebec in Canada. @spaikin, @theagenda."

Steve says THIS PAST SUMMER, AS
FESTIVITIES FOR CANADA'S 150TH
WERE RAMPING UP, THE QUEBEC
GOVERNMENT ISSUED A REMARKABLE DOCUMENT.
TITLED "QUEBECERS, OUR WAY OF
BEING CANADIAN," IT IS A
NOTEWORTHY NEW CONTRIBUTION TO
THE LONG, COMPLICATED
CONVERSATION BETWEEN THAT
PROVINCE AND THE REST OF CANADA.
JEAN-MARC FOURNIER IS QUEBEC'S
MINISTER RESPONSIBLE FOR
CANADIAN RELATIONS AND THE
CANADIAN FRANCOPHONIE.
AND WE'RE PLEASED TO WELCOME HIM
TO OUR STUDIO TONIGHT.

Jean-Marc is in his late forties, clean-shaven, with short white hair. He's wearing glasses, a gray suit, white shirt, and a striped red tie.

Steve continues BIENVENUE.

[SPEAKING IN FRENCH]

Steve says THAT'S ABOUT ALL MY
FRENCH YOU'RE GOING TO GET
TONIGHT, I'M SORRY.
I'M NOT SURE THERE HAS EVER BEEN
A MINISTER WITH YOUR TITLE BEFORE.

[SPEAKING IN FRENCH]

Jean-Marc says YOU'RE RIGHT.

Steve says HOW EXACTLY DO YOU
SEE YOUR MISSION WITH THE
GOVERNMENT OF QUEBEC?

Jean-Marc says IT'S PART OF WHAT IS ALL
ABOUT THAT POLICY.
WE DON'T INTEND TO JUST LIMIT
OUR RELATIONS FROM GOVERNMENT TO
GOVERNMENT.
WE THINK THAT WHAT QUEBEC HAS TO
DO IS TO EXPRESS ITS VIEW IN ALL
THE COUNTRY, OF COURSE IN THE
POLITICAL SPHERE, BUT NOT JUST
WITH GOVERNMENT, WITH SENATORS.
I WAS WITH QUEBEC SENATORS ON
MONDAY MORNING OF THIS WEEK, NOT
JUST WITHIN THE POLITICAL
SPHERE.
WE HAVE GOT TO PROPOSE OUR
VISION OF THE FUTURE OF THE
COUNTRY TO EVERY CITIZEN, TO
ENVIRONMENTALISTS, TO BUSINESS
PEOPLE, TO PEOPLE IN DIFFERENT GROUPS.

Steve says WHY NOW?

The caption changes to "Jean-Marc Fournier. Quebec Minister of Canadian Relations and the Canadian Francophonie."

Jean-Marc says WELL, THE QUESTION IS GOOD.
I THINK WE ARE AT A POINT AFTER
LET'S SAY THE LAST 50 YEARS
WHERE QUEBEC HAS CHANGED AND
CANADA HAS CHANGED, AND
CERTAINLY THE 150th
ANNIVERSARY WAS A MOMENT TO SAY,
WHERE ARE WE?
YOU KNOW, WHEN IT'S AN
ANNIVERSARY, IT'S A TIME TO
SAY... LOOK AT THE PAST AND LOOK
AT HISTORY AND LOOK AT WHAT WE
ARE, BUT IT'S MORE THAN THAT.
IT'S A POSSIBILITY AND AN
OPPORTUNITY TO LOOK INTO THE
FUTURE.
WHAT DO WE WANT THIS COUNTRY TO
BE?
AND WHAT IS THE PLACE OF QUEBEC
IN IT?
IT'S AN OLD DEBATE, BUT I WOULD
SAY THAT IT'S A TABOO SINCE 20
YEARS.
BUT DO WE HAVE TO STAY IN THE
TABOO IF WE WANT IS JUST TO BE
CLOSER TOGETHER, TO HAVE A
BETTER COUNTRY, AND WHAT I SAY
IS TO HAVE THE POSSIBILITY TO
MAKE CANADA A MODEL EVEN FOR THE
WORLD AS TO HOW WE CAN MANAGE TO
RESPECT DIVERSITY, INDIVIDUAL
DIVERSITY AND COLLECTIVE
DIVERSITY, AND THIS IS WHAT THIS
PLATFORM IS ABOUT.

The caption changes to "A history lesson."

Steve says LET'S READ SOME OF
THE PLATFORM SO THAT PEOPLE CAN
HAVE A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF
WHAT YOU'RE SAYING.

A quote appears on screen, under the title "Masters in our own house." The quote reads "Québec remains free to make its own choices and intends to assume its own identity as a nation and its attachment to Canada. Québec will continue to participate in building the Canadian political project, while resolute making its own specific contribution. With a strong national identity that is deeply felt, and wishing to have this identity duly recognized, Quebecers choose to build their future with other Canadians. We are Quebecers, and this is our way of being Canadian."
Quoted from Policy on Québec Affirmation and Canadian Relations, Government of Québec. June 2017.

Steve says THIS IS FASCINATING
LANGUAGE, I HAVE TO TELL YOU,
BECAUSE THIS IS OBVIOUSLY NOT
THE SOVEREIGNTY ASSOCIATION OR
THE SEPARATISM OF RENE LEVESQUE,
BUT IT IS NOT THE WAY ANY OTHER
CANADIAN PROVINCE WOULD DESCRIBE
ITS RELATIONSHIP WITHIN CANADA
AS WELL.
SO HELP US UNDERSTAND THIS: WHY
DOES QUEBEC STILL FEEL A NEED TO
REGARD ITSELF DIFFERENTLY FROM
OTHER PROVINCES WITHIN
CONFEDERATION?

Jean-Marc says BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT IT IS.
THAT'S THE ONLY ANSWER WE CAN
GIVE.
YOU KNOW, THE FEELING OR THE
SENSE OF THE FEDERALISM 150
YEARS AGO, AND YOU'VE GOT TO GO
BACK TO MACDONALD AND CARTIER,
YOU WILL SEE THAT IT WAS A
PROJECT WHERE WE WERE TALKING
ABOUT TWO FOUNDING PEOPLE OR TWO
NATIONS AND AT THAT TIME WE WERE
FORGETTING ABOUT FIRST NATIONS
AND WE SHOULD HAVE NOT, BUT IT'S
TIME TO BRING THEM NOW IN.
BUT THAT FEELING OF HAVING A
COUNTRY BUILT BY TWO NATIONS, BY
COLLECTIVE DIVERSITY, IT WAS TWO
PEOPLE THAT WERE DIFFERENT BUT
WISHING TO BUILD SOMETHING
TOGETHER.
IT'S STILL THE WAY WE SEE THAT
IN QUEBEC ALWAYS.

Steve says THE REST OF CANADA
DOES NOT?

Jean-Marc says NO.
IF YOU LOOK AT HISTORY, YOU'LL
SEE THAT AROUND 1930, WITH THE
ECONOMIC CRISIS AND THINGS LIKE
THAT IN MANY COUNTRIES, THE
INTERVENTIONIST STATE TOOK PLACE
AND OTTAWA DID THAT, AS OTHERS.
IN QUEBEC, WE HAD TO WAIT UP TO
1960 WITH...

Steve says THE QUIET REVOLUTION.

Jean-Marc says QUIET REVOLUTION.
TO GO INTO THAT KIND OF STATE,
INTERVENTIONIST.
BUT IF WE GO BACK TO '93, IT HAD
STARTED THERE INTELLECTUAL
PROPOSED THAT, YOU KNOW, CANADA,
OUR FEDERATION WAS THE RESULT OF
A LAW, LONDON LAW, AND SO
THERE'S JUST ONE NATION, BUT
IT'S NOT THE WAY QUEBEC SEES IT.
SO WHAT WE ARE SAYING IS THAT,
REALLY, WHAT'S THE PROBLEM IF A
GROUP, LET'S SAY HERE QUEBECOIS,
BUT YOU CAN SAY THAT FOR FIRST
NATIONS TOO, FEEL THAT THEY HAVE
A STRONG SENSE OF BELONGING TO
THEIR COLLECTIVE COMMUNITY, BUT
AT THE SAME TIME, BECAUSE THIS
IS THE REALITY, HAVE A SENSE OF
BELONGING TO CANADA.
SO HAVE A PARTICULAR SENSE OF
BELONGING AND A COMMON SENSE OF
BELONGING.
DO WE HAVE TO CHOOSE?
IN THE PAST THE QUESTION WAS:
YOU HAVE TO BE THAT OR THAT.
YOU CANNOT BE BOTH.

Steve says AND YOU WANT IT TO BE BOTH.

Jean-Marc says WE ARE.

Steve says YOU ARE BOTH.

Jean-Marc says AND WE ARE NOT THE ONLY ONES
IN THE WORLD.
AND THE QUESTION IS, HOW CAN WE
SEE THE FUTURE?
IS THERE A PLACE IN THIS TYPE OF
WORLD, YOU KNOW, WHERE MIGRATION
IN EVERY COUNTRY IS HIGHER AND
THERE'S NO MORE FRENCH HERE.
HOW WILL WE MANAGE.
[SPEAKING IN FRENCH]
BEING TOGETHER.
WE CAN GIVE A PLACE TO PEOPLE
THAT ARE DIFFERENT BUT WISH TO
BE PART OF THE ADVENTURE, AND I
THINK AND WE THINK, AND IT'S NOT
JUST FOR QUEBEC AND CANADA,
THERE ARE MANY IN THE WORLD,
MANY PEOPLE PROPOSE THAT KIND OF
FEDERATION, BUT A WAY TO GIVE A
PLACE... JUST ACCEPT THE FACT
THAT WE CAN ADAPT, WAYS OF GOING
TO COMMON OBJECTIVES.
WE ARE NOT SAYING THAT WE DON'T
WANT TO GO TO A COMMON
OBJECTIVE.
WE HAVE TO GO TO IT WITH OUR
WAYS OF DOING IT.
IT IS SOMETHING WE CALL
ASYMMETRY.
WHEN WE TALK ABOUT ASYMMETRICAL
SOLUTIONS.
SOMETIMES IT IS SEEN AS A WAY TO
GET OUT.
IN FACT IT'S A WAY TO GET IN.
IT'S A WAY TO SAY, WE HAVE A
COMMON OBJECTIVE.
WE AGREE.
BUT THERE'S A WAY WE WANT TO
TAKE, A ROUTE TO FOLLOW, THAT IS
NOT THE SAME.
ONE, OF COURSE, IS THE FACT THAT
THE MAJORITY OF FRANCOPHONES IN
QUEBEC THAT WE CANNOT FIND IN
THE REST OF THE COUNTRY, IN THE
REST OF NORTH AMERICA, AND
BECAUSE OF THAT, BECAUSE WE WANT
TO MAINTAIN THAT, WELL, WE WILL
USE OTHER TOOLS.
THAT IS NOT SAYING THAT WE DON'T
HAVE A COMMON OBJECTIVE.
WE'VE GOT THE SAME.
SO ASYMMETRICAL SOLUTIONS ARE A
WAY TO BE CLOSER TOGETHER, TO
HAVE REAL EQUALITY.

The caption changes to "Quebec's unique place in federalism."

Steve says I DO WANT TO GET A
BETTER UNDERSTANDING, THOUGH,
AND I THINK I'M RIGHT TO SAY
THIS, SEPARATISM FEELS LIKE IT'S
AT A VERY LOW EBB RIGHT NOW, THE
FORCES OF SEPARATISM, THE BLOC
QUEBECOIS IS NO LONGER THE FORCE
IN PARLIAMENT IT ONCE WAS, THE
PARTI QUEBECOIS IS NO LONGER THE
PARTY IN QUEBEC, THE LIBERAL
PARTY IS.
DOES STEPHEN HARPER GET CREDIT
FOR THE FACT THAT SEPARATION
APPEARS TO BE A NON-ISSUE IN
QUEBEC TODAY?

Jean-Marc says I'M A POLITICIAN.
I WILL MAYBE SURPRISE YOU, BUT
IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT POLITICIANS.
YOU WANT TO TRY ONE POLITICIAN
OR ANOTHER OR A GROUP OF POLITICIANS.
IT'S IN FACT A CHANGE IN SOCIETY...

Steve says HOW MUCH CREDIT IS
HE ENTITLED TO?

Jean-Marc says I THINK IF YOU WANT TO GO TO THE NUMBERS IN FAVOUR OF
SEPARATION, YOU'LL HAVE TO GO TO
THE CHANGES THAT QUEBEC AND
CANADA HAVE KNOWN SINCE 50
YEARS.
GO BACK TO 1960.
YOU KNOW, YOU WERE SPEAKING
FRENCH, YOU WERE A SECOND CLASS
WORKER.
WE DIDN'T HAVE A POSSIBILITY TO
SEE THE FUTURE.
OUR AMBITION WAS NOT POSSIBLE TO
ACHIEVE.
SO CHANGES WERE MADE AND LAWS
WERE PASSED.
SO THAT NOW WE ARE 95... 94.5 percent
SPEAK FRENCH IN QUEBEC.
YEARS AGO, 92.4.
THE THERE'S CONFIDENCE NOW.
IT'S A BIG CHANGE SINCE THE
'60s, AND THAT MEANS SOMETHING
ABOUT THE WISHES FOR SEPARATION
AND IT'S STILL THERE.

Steve says I UNDERSTAND.
I WANT TO BRING YOU IN ON THE
HARPER ANGLE HERE.

Jean-Marc says I KNOW THAT.

Steve says HE LEFT YOU ALONE.
I MEAN, THE CONSERVATIVES UNDER
STEPHEN HARPER HAD VERY FEW
SEATS IN THE PROVINCE OF QUEBEC,
AND HE KIND OF LEFT YOU ALONE TO
DO YOUR OWN THING, AND I WONDER
WHETHER QUEBEC, AS A NATION,
APPRECIATED THAT, AND HE'S
ENTITLED TO SOME CREDIT ON THAT?

The caption changes to "Jean-Marc Fournier, @JeanMFournier_."

Jean-Marc says AND IF YOU WANT TO LOOK AT
IT, BECAUSE I JUST WANT NOT TO
SAY JUST THAT.
BUT IF WE WANT TO CONCENTRATE ON
THAT ASPECT, I WOULD SAY THAT
YOU ARE RIGHT ON THE POINT THAT
THE CONSERVATIVES AND MR. HARPER
WERE IN A POSITION TO SAY, WELL,
WE'LL HAVE LESS INTERVENTION,
AND CERTAINLY THEY WERE NOT
GOING IN AN ASPECT OF CONFLICT.

Steve says AND THAT FOUND
FAVOUR IN QUEBEC.

The caption changes to "Connect with us: @theagenda, TVO.org, Facebook, YouTube, Periscope, Instagram."

Jean-Marc says AND CERTAINLY WE DON'T WANT CONFLICT.
WE WANT AN AGREEMENT.
WE DON'T WANT TO FIGHT.
BUT I CAN ALSO SAY THAT
SOMETIMES WE HAD TO FIGHT EVEN
THEN, AND TODAY, WE ARE NOT
ALWAYS FIGHTING, BUT SOMETIMES
WE FIGHT.
LET'S GO TO ONE ASPECT.
LET'S TALK ABOUT HEALTH.
IN THE HEALTH DISCUSSION WITH
OTTAWA, WE DIDN'T AGREE ABOUT
THE AMOUNT OF MONEY OTTAWA WAS
GIVING.
OTHER PROVINCES WERE IN THE SAME
POSITION AS US.
BUT ON THE ASYMMETRICAL
POSITION, OTTAWA DIDN'T ACCEPT
IT.
AT THE BEGINNING OF THE PROCESS,
WE DIDN'T HAVE TO FIGHT FOR
THAT.
SO WHAT I'M SAYING HERE IS THAT
THINGS HAVE CHANGED.
IN QUEBEC, THINGS HAVE CHANGED
THAT CREATE A NEW KIND OF SPIRIT
ABOUT, LET'S SAY, SEPARATION,
AND THE WAY WE SEE OURSELVES IN
CANADA.
AND IN CANADA, THINGS HAVE
CHANGED.
WE JUST LOOK AT THE DISCUSSION
WE HAD NOW ABOUT OUR RELATION
WITH THE UNITED STATES AND
MEXICO WITH THE FREE TRADE.
WELL, 20 YEARS AGO, WHEN THE
DEAL WAS MADE, PROVINCES AND
QUEBEC WERE NOT PART OF THE
DEAL.
WE WERE NOT NEGOTIATING.
BUT SINCE THEN, WE HAD THE FREE
TRADE WITH EUROPE, AND AT THAT
TIME, PROVINCES AND QUEBEC WERE
AROUND THE TABLE.
AND NOW WE ARE WITH OUR FEDERAL
COUNTERPARTS ON NEGOTIATING.
SO PROVINCES ARE PARTS OF... SO
IN THAT ASPECT, COLLABORATIVE
FEDERALISM IS PLAYING A ROLE RIGHT NOW.

Steve says LET ME ASK YOU
ABOUT... THIS IS A TERRIBLE
EXPRESSION, ASYMMETRICAL
FEDERALISM, BUT IT BASICALLY
MEANS ALL THE PROVINCES ARE
EQUAL BUT IT DOESN'T MEAN
THEY'RE TREATED THE SAME.
THEY CAN BE TREATED DIFFERENTLY.

Jean-Marc says SO IT'S THE WAY... ABOUT
TREATMENT.
IT'S THE TOOLS THEY CAN USE TO
ACHIEVE THE SAME GOALS.

Steve says SO LET ME ASK YOU
ABOUT THAT.
FOR EXAMPLE, QUEBEC WOULD LIKE
IT ASSURED THAT YOU GET THREE
JUDGES ON THE SUPREME COURT.
EVERY PROVINCE HAS CONTROL OVER
HEALTH AND EDUCATION, BUT QUEBEC
WOULD LIKE TO HAVE SOME CONTROL
OVER IMMIGRATION AS WELL AND,
ETC.
EXPLAIN TO A MOSTLY ENGLISH
AUDIENCE WHY IT'S IMPORTANT FOR
QUEBEC TO HAVE ADDITIONAL OR
ASYMMETRICAL POWERS COMPARED TO
OTHER PROVINCES.

Jean-Marc says LET'S START WITH THE THREE JUDGES.
IT'S NOT NEW, IN FACT.
IT'S BEEN THERE SINCE THE
BEGINNING, 150 YEARS AGO.
AND WHY?
BECAUSE IN 1774... NOT
YESTERDAY... BEFORE 1867, IT WAS
RECOGNIZED, OUR CIVIL LAW WAS
RECOGNIZED AND WE ARE THE ONLY
PROVINCE WITH A CIVIL LAW COMING
FROM FRANCE, IN FACT.
AND THAT WAS ACCEPTED,
RECOGNIZED AT THAT TIME, AND
STILL IS.
AND THAT'S THE REASON WHY WE'VE
GOT TO HAVE ON THE BENCH A BENCH
THAT CAN JUDGE LAWS THAT THEY
KNOW.
SO THAT'S THE REASON.
SO YOU'LL FIND THAT WHEN YOU
WILL LOOK AT THE SITUATION OF
QUEBEC, YOU GO BACK TO THE
BEGINNING, THE FACT THAT AT THAT
TIME THERE WERE TWO FOUNDING
PEOPLE.
AND IT'S NOT JUST TWO FOUNDING.
IT'S BECAUSE IT WAS CONTRARY
DIFFERENT JUDICIAL INSTRUMENTS
AND WE HAD TO ADAPT THE
CONSTITUTION TO THAT AND ADAPT
OUR WAY OF SEEING THE
FEDERATION...

Steve says DO YOU THINK THERE'S
A RECOGNITION OF THE FACT THAT
QUEBEC NEEDS DIFFERENT TREATMENT
THAN THE REST OF CANADA?

Jean-Marc says THE FACT IS THAT QUEBEC IS DIFFERENT, BUT IN SOME ASPECTS,
YOU KNOW... AND I HEARD THAT
VERY OFTEN.
YOU KNOW, NEWFOUNDLAND WILL SAY,
WELL, FOR ME, I'M IN A DIFFERENT
SITUATION.
AND WE NEED A FEDERALISM THAT IS
ABLE TO LOOK AT THE SITUATION ON
EVERYONE AND TRY TO ADAPT.
FOR QUEBEC, THE SPECIFIC ASPECT
OF QUEBEC CERTAINLY IS ONE
DIFFERENCE THAT YOU DON'T FIND
ELSEWHERE IS THE MAJORITY
SPEAKING FRENCH IN A NORTH
AMERICAN CONTINENT WHERE IT'S
ENGLISH.
AND WE'VE GOT TO USE TOOLS FOR
THAT.
WHEN WE BUILD THE STATE... LET'S
SAY THE INSTRUMENT THAT WE'VE
GOT TO GOVERN QUEBEC, AN
ECONOMY, TO CHANGE THE SITUATION
WHERE WE WERE SECOND CLASS
WORKERS, OUR JURISDICTION IS THE
JURISDICTION OF PROVINCE.
IT'S JUST NORMAL THAT OVER THE
YEARS, BECAUSE SINCE THE
BEGINNING WE HAVE THAT
JURISDICTION, WE HAVE DEVELOPED
DIFFERENTLY THAN OTHERS.
SO WHEN WE SAY THIS IS THE WAY
WE ARE, WE NEED TO BE ABLE TO
USE THOSE TOOLS.
BUT, YOU KNOW, ABOUT THAT
DISCUSSION IN HEALTH, WE WERE
ALL TALKING ABOUT SERVICES TO
GIVE TO THE ELDERLY.
WELL, EVERYBODY HAD THE COMMON
OBJECTIVE.
WE CAN TALK ABOUT ASYMMETRY.
BUT IT'S NOT ABOUT BEING APART,
IT'S ABOUT BEING CLOSER TOGETHER
BY THE TOOLS WE HAVE.

Steve says WHAT'S NOT WORKING
IN THE FEDERATION TODAY THAT YOU
WISHED WORKED BETTER?

Jean-Marc says I'LL GIVE YOU A NUMBER.
YOU REFERRED TO THE TITLE,
QUEBECOIS, HOW QUEBECERS ARE
AWARE OF BEING CANADIAN.
WE FEEL STRONGLY BEING QUEBECERS.
THE FEELING OF BEING A QUEBECER
IS VERY STRONG.
75 percent SAID AT THE SAME TIME I'VE
GOT THE SENSE OF BELONGING TO
CANADA.
SO IT'S BOTH.
LOOK AT THAT NUMBER.
YOU CAN SAY, WHOA, IT'S HIGH, OR
IT'S LOW.
BECAUSE WE WISH THAT IT'S 100 percent.
IN THE 75 percent, YOU'VE GOT A
DIFFERENT LEVEL.
IT'S NOT EVERYBODY WHO FEELS A
STRONG SENSE OF BELONGING BUT A
CERTAIN SENSE OF BELONGING.
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
THAT MEANS THAT IF WE WANT THE
COUNTRY TO BE BETTER AND EVERY
CITIZEN TO FIND HIS PLACE, WHAT
IS THE THING WE'VE GOT TO DO TO
ADDRESS THE THING THAT QUEBECERS
WANT TO BE RECEIVED AND BE SEEN
AS QUEBECERS, AS BEING MEMBERS
OF WHAT THEY CALL AN INCLUSIVE
NATION.
WE'RE IN THAT NATION.
IN THAT NATION THEY SEE MEMBERS
OF THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING
COMMUNITY.
IN THAT NATION THEY SEE
NEWCOMERS COMING TO QUEBEC.
THEY WANT... AND IT'S NOT THERE
YET, WE HAVE TO WORK ON IT TO BE
MORE INCLUSIVE... BUT WE WANT
QUEBEC TO BE INCLUSIVE AS WE
WANT CANADA TO BE INCLUSIVE.
WE THINK THE FUTURE IS WHERE
DIVERSITY IS A BIG VALUE.
INDIVIDUAL DIVERSITY, COLLECTIVE
DIVERSITY.
WE DON'T HAVE TO OPPOSE IT, WE
HAVE TO MERGE IT, TO RECOGNIZE
IT THAT PEOPLE SEE IN CANADA,
THERE'S A PLACE FOR ME.
LET ME GIVE YOU ONE EXAMPLE.
WHEN WE CAN SPEAK FRENCH IN
VANCOUVER OR IN TORONTO, WHEN WE
HEAR FRENCH, WHERE WE SEE THE
NUMBERS OF YOUNGSTERS GOING IN
IMMERSION CLASSES, THAT MEANS
SOMETHING.
THAT MEANS THAT CANADA WANTS TO
OPEN THE DOOR TO FRENCH, NOT TO
SHUT IT DOWN.

Steve says DO QUEBECERS CARE ABOUT THAT?

Jean-Marc says THEY'VE GOT TO LEARN ABOUT IT.
THAT'S PART OF THE DIFFICULTIES.
BEING ON A SHOW TO TALK ABOUT IT
IS VERY DIFFICULT.
THIS IS NOT THE TOPIC IN QUEBEC.

Steve says I HAVE OFTEN BEEN
TOLD, MINISTER, THAT QUEBECERS
CARE A LOT ABOUT THE STATUS OF
FRENCH INSIDE QUEBEC.
BUT IN THE REST OF CANADA, THEY
DON'T GIVE A DAMN.

Jean-Marc says I'LL GIVE YOU THE REAL
PICTURE.
FRENCH FOR QUEBEC, FRENCH IN THE
WORLD.
I'M NOT SURE THERE'S FRENCH IN
THE REST OF THE COUNTRY.
THAT IS THE WAY PEOPLE SEE IT.
SO WE HAVE TO MAKE THEM DISCOVER
THAT THERE'S FRENCH AND NOT JUST
THERE'S FRENCH OUTSIDE OF QUEBEC
BUT THERE'S A NEW KIND OF
LEGITIMACY GIVEN TO FRENCH BY
THE REST OF CANADIANS.
I'LL GIVE YOU ONE EXAMPLE.
NOT LAST YEAR BUT THE YEAR
BEFORE, WE WERE AT THE
CONFEDERATION FRANCOPHONE IN THE
YUKON.
ALL THE MINISTERS WERE THERE.
FIRST THEY TALK ABOUT FRENCH
IMMIGRATION.
FIRST THEY TALK.
IT'S SOMETHING NEW.
AND AFTER THE DISCUSSION, THEY
ACCEPT TO HAVE A TARGET OF 5 percent OF
FRENCH IMMIGRATION IN THE REST
OF THE COUNTRY... NOT IN QUEBEC,
5 percent.
IT'S MORE THAN THE
[INDISCERNIBLE]
THAT MEANS SOMETHING.
WE'RE NOT THERE YET.
WE HAVE TO DEVELOP TOOLS TO GO
THERE.
BUT THAT MEANS THAT IT'S OKAY.
IT'S OKAY TO SPEAK FRENCH.
AND I THINK THAT THERE'S A
REASON FOR THAT.
THERE'S 200 MILLION PEOPLE WHO
SPEAK FRENCH IN THE WORLD.
IN 2050 THERE'S GOING TO BE
700 MILLION.
CANADA IS PROBABLY ONE OF NOT SO
MANY COUNTRIES WHO HAVE TWO
WINDOWS, ONE WINDOW ON THE
ENGLISH WORLD AND ONE WINDOW ON
THE FRENCH WORLD.
IF WE OPEN BOTH WINDOWS, LOOK AT
THE ADVANTAGE WE'RE GOING TO
HAVE IN THE ECONOMIC FIELD,
CULTURAL FIELD, ENVIRONMENTAL,
SOCIAL FIELD, DIPLOMATIC WORLD.
LOOK AT THE ADVANTAGE CANADA HAS
IF THEY DISCOVER THE ADVANTAGE
CANADA HAS THAT OTHER COUNTRIES
DON'T HAVE.

Steve says THAT LEADS ME TO
THIS: 36 YEARS AGO, WE
REPATRIATED OUR CONSTITUTION
WITH A CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND
FREEDOMS, AND QUEBEC,
ADMITTEDLY, WITH A SEPARATIST
PREMIER AT THE TIME, RENE
LEVESQUE, DID NOT SIGN ON.
IN ORDER FOR QUEBEC TO ACHIEVE
THE ASPIRATIONS IT HAS, DOES IT
EVENTUALLY HAVE TO FORMALLY,
OFFICIALLY, PUT ITS SIGNATURE ON
THAT CONSTITUTION, AND IF SO,
HOW DO WE DO THAT?

The caption changes to "What does Quebec want?"

Jean-Marc says LET'S START WITH THE FIRST QUESTION.
WAS IT IMPORTANT FOR ALL THE
OTHER PREMIERS AND THE PRIME
MINISTER AT THAT TIME TO SIGN
THE CONSTITUTION?
WAS IT IMPORTANT?

Steve says YES.

Jean-Marc says OKAY.
SO THAT ANSWERS YOUR FIRST
QUESTION.
IF IT WAS IMPORTANT FOR THEM, IT
IS IMPORTANT ALSO FOR QUEBEC.
THAT ANSWERS THAT.
NOW, WHAT DO WE HAVE TO DO?
WE DON'T HAVE TO GO BACK TO THE
WAY WE DID IT AT THAT TIME AND
WHAT WE TRY WITH MEECH, I THINK
ALL THE PREMIERS AND THE PRIME
MINISTER WERE IN A ROOM FOR A
WEEK NEGOTIATING SOMETHING...
PEOPLE DON'T WANT NEGOTIATION,
THEY WANT CONSULTATION, THEY
WANT AN AGREEMENT.
THEY WANT PEOPLE TO ACCEPT, NOT
TO FORCE IT.
SO WHAT WE'VE GOT TO DO NOW,
IT'S NOT GOING IN THE SAME
DIRECTION.
WE'VE GOT TO LEARN FROM THAT.
AND WHAT WE HAVE TO DO IS LOOK
AT WHAT'S HAPPENING.
CANADA HAS CHANGED.
QUEBEC HAS CHANGED.
WE ARE NOW ABLE TO START A NEW
DIALOGUE, A NEW CONVERSATION
ABOUT HOW WE SEE THE FUTURE OF
CANADA.
WE ARE READY TO TALK ABOUT THE
FUTURE OF CANADA.

Steve says IS THE REST OF
CANADA READY TO LISTEN?

Jean-Marc says WELL, WE HOPE THAT THEY WILL NOT JUST LISTEN, THAT THEY WILL TALK.
WHAT WE'VE GOT TO DO IS A
DIALOGUE, NOT A MONOLOGUE.
WE WANT TO BE, AS QUEBECERS,
BEING CANADIAN.
SO THAT MEANS THAT ALL CANADIANS
CAN TALK ABOUT THE FUTURE OF THE
COUNTRY.
WHAT'S THEIR PLACE?
WHAT DO THEY SEE?
YOU KNOW WHAT?
WHEN WE'VE GOT A MEETING WITH
OUR COLLEAGUE CABINETS FROM THE
GOVERNMENT, WHEN MADAME WYNNE
CAME TO THE ASSEMBLY LAST WEEK,
IN 150 YEARS, NEVER A PREMIER, A
PRIME MINISTER CAME TO THE
CENTRE BLEU.
THAT MEANS SOMETHING ABOUT THE
ACCEPTANCE, ABOUT THE WILL OF
TALKING TO OTHERS, NOT JUST US.
YOU HAVE THE AGREEMENT OF TWO
SEPARATIST PARTIES WHO ARE IN
THE ASSEMBLY.
THEY ACCEPT.

Steve says JUST CURIOUS: HOW
MUCH OF HER SPEECH WAS IN FRENCH?

Jean-Marc says I WOULD SAY 40, 40 percent.

Steve says 40 percent?

Jean-Marc says NOT TO SAY 50-50, BUT NEAR THAT.

Steve says WAS THAT OKAY FOR
THE MEMBERS OF THE NATIONAL
ASSEMBLY THAT MOST OF THE SPEECH
WAS IN ENGLISH?

Jean-Marc says YES, OF COURSE.

Steve says IT WAS OKAY.

Jean-Marc says OF COURSE.
APPLAUD BY EVERYBODY.

Steve says LET ME READ ONE MORE
EXCERPT.
WE'RE DOWN TO OUR LAST COUPLE OF
MINUTES.
I WANT TO DO ONE MORE EXCERPT
FROM HERE.

A quote appears on screen, under the title "Power play." The quote reads "Québec intends to increase its presence on the Canadian stage to make its voice heard and ensure that its concerns are better understood.
This will be achieved through active involvement in the university sector, with business and social groups, on traditional and social media, and everywhere Québec's voice must be heard to project the vision and goals of its government."
Quoted from Policy on Québec Affirmation and Canadian Relations, Government of Québec. June 2017.

Steve says I WANT TO ASK YOU
ONE LAST QUESTION: A FORMER
LIBERAL POLITICIAN IN THE
PROVINCE OF ONTARIO ONCE SAID ON
THIS PROGRAM THAT QUEBEC HAD
BECOME SO MUCH [SPEAKING IN
FRENCH] THEY WERE SO MUCH
MASTERS OF THEIR OWN DESTINY
RIGHT NOW, IT HAS BECOME SUCH A
DISTINCT SOCIETY WITHIN CANADA,
THAT IF IT ACTUALLY SEPARATED
FROM CANADA, WOULD ANYBODY
ACTUALLY NOTICE?
WHAT'S YOUR VIEW ON THAT?

Jean-Marc says WELL, IT'S VERY OPPOSITE.
IT'S GOING BACK TO THE
UNDERSTANDING THAT SOME PEOPLE
HAVE ABOUT THE TWO SOLITUDES,
YOU KNOW THE EXPRESSION... IT'S
AN OLD EXPRESSION, AND SOMETIMES
WE TRY TO DEFINE OUR RELATION,
QUEBEC WITH THE REST OF THE
COUNTRY, AS TWO SOLITUDES.
IN FACT, THERE'S MANY
SOLIDARITIES BETWEEN US.
WE JUST DON'T LOOK AT IT.
WE JUST DON'T SEE IT.
JUST LOOK AT THE RELATION OF
ONTARIO AND QUEBEC.
IT'S BEEN SOME YEARS NOW.
TRADE IN HYDRO ELECTRICITY, THE
NEW DEAL WE HAVE ABOUT
ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE, THE
FACT THAT BOTH PROVINCES ARE
WITH CALIFORNIA ON THE CAP AND
TRADE AGREEMENT.

Steve says IS THAT BECAUSE
YOU'RE A LIBERAL AND WE HAVE A
LIBERAL GOVERNMENT IN ONTARIO?

Jean-Marc says NO, NO, NO.

Steve says IT'S BEYOND PARTISANSHIP.

Jean-Marc says IT'S BEYOND THAT.
TAKE ANOTHER THING.
WE ARE TWO SOLITUDES.
HOW COME THERE ARE SO MANY
BUSINESSES IN QUEBEC THAT SELL
AUTOMOBILE PARTS TO ONTARIO WHO
ARE SUPPOSED TO BE THE ONLY
PROVINCE ABOUT CARS?
HOW COME IN ONTARIO THERE ARE
MANY PEOPLE WHO ARE WORKING IN
THE FIELD PRODUCING TOOLS OR
EQUIPMENT FOR OUR AIRPLANES
BUILT IN MONTREAL?
OUR ECONOMY IS LIKE THAT.
WE SELL MORE TO NEW BRUNSWICK
THAN TO FRANCE.
WE SELL MORE TO B.C. THAN TO
CHINA.
THAT MEANS SOMETHING ABOUT
SOLIDARITY.
MADAME NOTLEY IN ALBERTA MADE A
PRESS CONFERENCE TWO YEARS AGO
ABOUT THE NEW ENVIRONMENTAL
POLICY IN ENERGY, AND ON THE
SCENE WITH HER, YOU KNEW WHO
WERE THERE?
STEVEN GUILBEAU, SOMEBODY VERY
IMPORTANT IN THE ENVIRONMENTAL
LOBBY IN QUEBEC.
WHY WAS HE ON A STAGE WITH THE
PREMIER OF ALBERTA?
THE REASON IS BECAUSE PEOPLE
TALK... BECAUSE THERE IS
SOLIDARITY.
TOGETHER THEY HAVE BUILT A
PUBLIC POLICY MADE BY THE
GOVERNMENT OF ALBERTA.
DO WE HAVE TO CLOSE OUR EYES TO
THE FACT THAT WE ARE CLOSER?
WE JUST WANT TO BE CLOSER
TOGETHER IN THE FACT THAT JUST
RESPECT WHO EVERYBODY IS.
WHAT IS THE TALKING THAT WE'VE
GOT WITH FIRST NATIONS?
WE JUST SAY, WELL, THEY ARE WHAT
THEY ARE.
WE WANT THEM TO BECOME MORE
CANADIAN, FEEL THAT THEY ARE
ACCEPTED IN THE COUNTRY AND WE
WANT THEM TO BUILD A SENSE OF
BELONGING TO CANADA, RIGHT?
THIS IS THE SAME THING WITH
QUEBEC, WITH THE COLLECTIVE
DIVERSITY AS FIRST NATIONS, THEY
WANT TO BE CANADIAN?
WHY NOT ACCEPT IT... WHY NOT
ACCEPT THE FACT THAT IT IS THE
SAME THING.
DIFFERENT TOOLS, DIFFERENT
SOLUTION FOR ONE AND THE OTHERS,
OF COURSE, DIFFERENT SITUATION.
BUT PHILOSOPHICALLY, WHAT WE'RE
TALKING ABOUT, WE'RE TALKING
ABOUT DIVERSITY.
THAT IS THE VALUE OF CANADA.
WELL, INDIVIDUAL DIVERSITY IS
RECOGNIZED.
LET'S OPEN THE DOOR TO
COLLECTIVE DIVERSITY.
WE WILL WELCOME MORE INDIVIDUAL
DIVERSITY OF THAT GROUP, HAVING
MORE A SENSE OF... A COMMON
SENSE OF BELONGING TO CANADA.
THE COUNTRY WILL BE STRONGER,
AND IF WE DO THAT, LOOK AT OTHER
COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD.
LOOK AT SPAIN.
MAYBE THERE'S A WAY FOR US TO
BRING OUR SENSE OF BELONGING CLOSER...

Steve says BE AN EXAMPLE FOR OTHERS?

Jean-Marc says I THINK CANADA CAN BE THAT.
WHY NOT?

The caption changes to "Producer: Liane Kotler, @LianeKotler."

Steve says I SHOULD SAY THERE
ARE NOT MANY ENGLISH POLITICIANS
WHO COULD GO TO QUEBEC AND DO AN
INTERVIEW IN FRENCH ON A QUEBEC
TELEVISION STATION, SO WE ARE
GRATEFUL THAT A QUEBEC
POLITICIAN CAME TO THE PROVINCE
OF ONTARIO TO DO AN INTERVIEW IN
ENGLISH.

[SPEAKING IN FRENCH]

Jean-Marc speaks IN FRENCH.

He says THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

Steve speaks IN FRENCH.

He says JEAN-MARC FOURNIER, QUEBEC'S
MINISTER FOR FRANCOPHONE
RELATIONS WITHIN CANADA.

Watch: Quebec in Canada