Legault and his Coalition make history as supporters bask in victory

first_imgQUEBEC CITY, Que. – Addressing Quebec for the first time as premier-designate Monday night, Francois Legault touched on a theme he returned to repeatedly during the 39-day election campaign.On the hustings he promised to make Quebec stronger and richer and to rekindle a sense of pride, and he had just been given a mandate to follow through.“We will build a stronger Quebec — a prouder Quebec!” he shouted, his voice almost cracking.Monday’s election was third time lucky for the Coalition leader as the party won 74 of the province’s 125 ridings.Seven years after creating his party and following two election attempts that fell short, Legault will become the first premier since 1966 to win a general election leading a party other than the Liberals or Parti Quebecois.Legault has positioned his party as a federalist, economically minded alternative to the Liberals, and a nationalist replacement for the Parti Quebecois.He says his government will be focused on protecting Quebec’s culture and negotiating more powers from Ottawa.But he also says his party will be federalist and “never, ever,” hold a referendum on sovereignty.During his speech, he addressed a few lines in English to the province’s anglophones.“Fellow English-speaking citizens, during this campaign you’ve been exposed to a heated debate,” he said. “The election is over now. Let’s start working together for the benefit of all Quebecers.”Legault, 61, the multimillionaire co-founder of Air Transat, chose to celebrate in the provincial capital, the centre of his political base, where his promise of lower taxes and a “business” approach to politics first gained traction.The crowd was modest for the size of the convention centre — about 300 people — but they were loud.Lorraine Simard, 65, said she has been involved in the party “since the beginning, beginning, beginning!”“Young people don’t want to separate from Canada — the wave is moving in another direction, and it’s time for something else,” she said, as images of winning Coalition candidates flashed on the jumbo screens in front of her.“I used to be a sovereigntist, but now that I see the young people, we need new ideas, new people.”Samuel Massicotte, 22, said he’s been volunteering for the Coalition for the past year and a half.He’s always been nationalist, and Legault represented “a leader I wanted to follow in a party that inspired me,” he said.“Nationalism means advocating for Quebec’s interest without wanting independence. It’s the best of both worlds.”Victorious Coalition candidates were on the floor of Quebec City’s convention centre barely 30 minutes after polls closed, smiling and confidently telling reporters they were ready to assume power.“I am not surprised, actually,” said Genevieve Guilbault, who was re-elected in her Quebec City riding. Her 2017 byelection victory — when she grabbed a Liberal seat with more than 50 per cent of the vote — was a harbinger of what was to come province-wide Monday.“Mr. Legault called for a vote of confidence and tonight we are having that,” she said. “We are seeing that Quebecers believe in us — they wanted change, and they saw us as the only possible avenue for that.”A few steps away from Guilbault was 73-year-old Emilien Caron, holding a noisemaker and celebrating with a glass of beer.“Let’s see what they can do!” he said enthusiastically of the Coalition, adding that his main concern this election was health care.“We gave a chance to (the Liberals) and look what they did — the health-care system is the same.”Legault used to be staunchly pro-independence as a key member of former PQ governments. But he quit the party and formed his own in 2011, vowing to extricate Quebec from the federalist-sovereigntist divide.The campaign was tough on Legault, who began the political race atop the polls only to see his lead decrease steadily after a series of gaffes on the issue of immigration.He had difficulty defending his policy of forcing newcomers to pass a French test or face expulsion from the province. Legault wavered and evaded questions regarding how immigrants would be removed.Despite the missteps on immigration, Legault’s party benefited from an important factor. Successive Liberal governments have been in power — except for a 2012-14 PQ minority government — since 2003. Polls consistently indicated a majority of Quebecers wanted change.In one particularly touching part of his victory speech, Legault told the crowd how “I’ve told you this before: the first quality of a premier is to love Quebecers. I will never forget that. Never!”last_img read more

Suspect wanted for credit card and identity theft in Santee

first_img Categories: Local San Diego News Tags: Crime FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom, KUSI Newsroom December 29, 2017 Suspect wanted for credit card and identity theft in Santee Posted: December 29, 2017 SANTEE (KUSI) — San Diego County Crime Stoppers and investigators from the Santee Sheriff’s Station are asking for the public’s help to locate a suspect wanted in connection with using a stolen credit card and identity theft.On October 31st, an unknown suspect used a stolen credit card at several businesses in the city of Santee, including the Walmart located at Parkway Plaza, the 7-11 located at 375 W. Madison Avenue and the Target store located at 250 Broadway. The suspect used the stolen credit card to purchase food, electronics and other high priced items. The total amount charged to the stolen credit card was around $800.The suspect is known to frequent the Santee area and usually purchases Bugler brand tobacco and rolling papers. He also uses a skateboard for transportation.Suspect Description: The suspect is described as a white or hispanic man between 25 and 35-years-old. He was last seen wearing a black or navy hooded sweatshirt, black fitted hat, black pants, black Chuck Taylor tennis shoes and a black and white lanyard around his neck.If you recognize the suspect call the Santee Sheriff’s Station at (619) 956-4000 or the Crime Stoppers anonymous tip line at (888) 580-8477. Crime Stoppers is offering up to a $1,000 reward to anyone with information that leads to an arrest in this case. Information on how to send anonymous emails and mobile app tips can be found on our website www.sdcrimestoppers.org. last_img read more

Judge blocks Trumps asylum policy but delays enforcement

first_img Posted: April 9, 2019 A U.S. judge decided Monday to block the Trump administration’s policy of returning asylum seekers to Mexico as they wait for an immigration court to hear their cases, but the ruling is on hold for several days.Judge Richard Seeborg in San Francisco granted a request on behalf of 11 asylum seekers from Central America and legal advocacy groups to halt the practice while their lawsuit moves forward, but he held off on enforcing his decision until Friday to give the government a chance to ask an appeals court for a review.The policy lacks sufficient protections to ensure migrants don’t face “undue risk to their lives or freedom” in Mexico, the judge said. Seeborg also said a law that President Donald Trump’s administration cited as its authority to send back migrants does not apply to asylum seekers such as those who sued.It was not immediately clear whether the administration would ask an appeals court to put the ruling on hold. The U.S. Department of Justice declined to comment. Trump tweeted that the ruling was “unfair to the U.S.”The launch of the policy in January at the nation’s busiest border crossing — in San Diego — marked an unprecedented change to the U.S. asylum system, government officials and asylum experts said. Families seeking asylum typically have been released in the U.S. with notices to appear in court.The Trump administration says the policy responds to a crisis at the southern border that has overwhelmed the ability of immigration officials to detain migrants. Growing numbers of families are fleeing poverty and gang violence in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.The ruling came a day after Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen resigned and as the administration faces repeated court setbacks on strict anti-immigration measures that were a signature campaign promise for Trump, including losses on such policies as separating families at the border and ending protections for young immigrants.The lawsuit says the Trump administration is violating U.S. law by failing to adequately evaluate the dangers that migrants face in Mexico.Under the new policy, asylum seekers are not guaranteed interpreters or lawyers and don’t get to argue to a judge that they face the potential of persecution or torture if they are sent back to Mexico, Judy Rabinovitz, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, said at a March court hearing.Seeborg said in his ruling that “further procedural protections would be required to conform to the government’s acknowledged obligation to ensure aliens are not returned to unduly dangerous circumstances.”The ACLU and other groups also argue in the lawsuit that a law allowing the return of some immigrants to Mexico does not apply to asylum seekers who cross the border illegally or arrive at a border crossing without proper documents.Seeborg agreed, saying the “plain language” of the law supported that interpretation.“Try as it may, the Trump administration cannot simply ignore our laws in order to accomplish its goal of preventing people from seeking asylum in the United States,” Rabinovitz said in a statement after the ruling.The administration hopes that making asylum seekers wait in Mexico will discourage weak claims and help reduce an immigration court backlog of more than 800,000 cases.Justice Department attorney Scott Stewart said at the March hearing that there was a process to protect immigrants who could face harm in Mexico. All 11 plaintiffs in the lawsuit are represented by attorneys, and 10 already have appeared for court proceedings, he said.Border Patrol arrests, the most widely used gauge of illegal crossings, have risen sharply over the last year but are relatively low in historical terms after hitting a 46-year low in 2017.The launch of the policy followed months of delicate talks between the U.S. and Mexico. Mexicans and children traveling alone are exempt from it.___ AP, AP Judge blocks Trump’s asylum policy but delays enforcement April 9, 2019 Categories: California News, Local San Diego News, National & International News Tags: Immigration FacebookTwitterlast_img read more