COVID-19 protocol at the debates: chefs can be replaced if they are too sick

If infected with COVID-19 and too ill to participate in televised campaign debates virtually, party leaders would replace themselves with a designated person. Solidarity Manon Massé and conservative Karim Elayoubi have already been chosen as substitute debaters.

The five parties have agreed on a health protocol when they cross swords on the airwaves of TVA and Radio-Canada. Chefs who have contracted the virus will be able to participate in the exercise remotely. If they are too ill, a replacement will be appointed.

The Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ), the Parti Québécois (PQ) and the Liberals (PLQ) want to keep their game plan secret if the leader of their political party catches COVID-19 and is unable to participate in the clashes.

Among the solidarity, the decision has already been made and it will not surprise anyone. It is Manon Massé, co-spokesperson for Québec solidaire, who will take the heat if Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois finds himself unable to participate in the debates.

If Éric Duhaime was too affected by the virus, it is his candidate in Argenteuil who would defend the colors of the Conservative Party. The Dr Karim Elayoubi is the Chief’s Health Advisor. Note that, if he defends free choice, a value dear to conservatives, the emergency physician recently admitted to having encouraged the population to be vaccinated during the pandemic.

François Legault during the “Face-à-face Québec 2018” on TVA.

Who would be Legault’s replacement?

Who would take the place of François Legault to hold the strong caquiste? The Deputy Prime Minister, Geneviève Guilbault, the Minister of Health, Christian Dubé, or even the star candidate of Lévis, former host and ex-PQ, Bernard Drainville? The bets have been made.

“We have a lot of depth. So we have plenty of candidates who could be able to replace the Prime Minister at a moment’s notice. Candidates or candidates”, is limited to commenting on the director of communications of the head caquiste.

Among the PQ, “nobody is officially designated for the moment, we are having discussions on it at the moment”, they say. Of course, the PQ strategists have their own idea, but want to “keep it in-house” for the time being. “We have plenty of good candidates who could do it,” we insist.

What we know about Paul St-Pierre Plamondon’s preparation for the debates is that incumbent Pascal Bérubé took part.


Nothing has yet been decided in Dominique Anglade’s team, if we are to believe his director of communications. “We’ll see if that happens, but for now, it’s the chef and no one else. It’s a great team work, we’ll see if it happens, ”we plead. Clearly, the PLQ will designate the replacement if ever the leader catches COVID-19, not before.

It should be noted that outgoing Liberal MP André Fortin is helping prepare the leader for the exercise. Mr. Fortin has already advised Justin Trudeau in the past for the televised clashes between the aspirants to the post of Prime Minister of Canada.

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