Civic Party of Montreal

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Civic Party of Montreal
Parti civique de Montréal
Leader Jean Drapeau
Founded 1960 (1960)
Dissolved 1994 (1994)
Ideology Quebecer federalism,
Conservatism,
Populism
Political position Centre-right
Colours Green
Politics of Montreal
Political parties

The Civic Party of Montreal (French: Parti Civique de Montréal) was a municipal political party in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. It existed from 1960 to 1994. Throughout its history the Civic Party was dominated by the personality of its leader Jean Drapeau.

Origins[edit]

It was established in September 1960 when 17 out of the 33 Civic Action League (French: Ligue d'Action Civique or LAC) Councillors, led by Jean Drapeau, crossed the floor to create a new party.

Achievements[edit]

The Civic Party won two thirds of the City Council's seats as well as the office of Mayor in 1960 and remained in power until 1986. It is credited with:

It also helped bringing Major League Baseball to Montreal with the creation of the Montreal Expos.

Decline[edit]

In the 1980s the party steadily lost support to the Montreal Citizens' Movement (RCM). It was voted out of office after Mayor Jean Drapeau retired from politics. Only one of its candidates, Germain Prégent, was elected in 1986. Prégent sat as an Independent by 1988.

The party survived for a few years. It even managed to win a by-election in 1989 and another one in 1992. It regained the status of Official Opposition by merging with the Parti Municipal (Municipal Party) in July 1992. However, in 1993, it lost further ground when Jérôme Choquette left the party to form the Parti des Montréalais. Choquette had been defeated by Clément Bluteau for the party leadership.[1]

Shortly afterward, the once-mighty party collapsed with dramatic speed. Bluteau resigned as party leader after less than a year, and in August 1994, the rump of the party merged into Choquette's Parti des Montréalais. [2] Choquette ran for Mayor in 1994 and finished third with 13% of the vote. Only two of his candidates were elected to City Hall.

Mayoral Candidates[edit]

  Election Mayoral Candidate Popular Vote for Mayor Number of Councillors
     1960 Jean Drapeau 53% 44/66
     1962 Jean Drapeau 88% 39/45
     1966 Jean Drapeau 94% 45/48
     1970 Jean Drapeau 92% 52/52
     1974 Jean Drapeau 55% 37/55
     1978 Jean Drapeau 61% 52/54
     1982 Jean Drapeau 48% 39/57
     1986 Claude Dupras [3] 29% 1/58
     1990 Nicole Gagnon-Larocque [4] 21% 1/50

Victories are indicated with bold fonts.

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Elizabeth Thompson, "Choquette bolts from troubled Civic Party; Former Outremont mayor follows Gagnier, Auf der Maur out door," Montreal Gazette, 13 October 1993, A3.
  2. ^ Michelle Lalonde, "Civic Party planning to team up with Choquette," Montreal Gazette, 29 July 1994, A3; Graeme Hamilton, "Tattered remnant of party founded by Drapeau dies Monday," Montreal Gazette, 6 August 1994, A3.
  3. ^ Claude Dupras ran as the Progressive Conservative candidate in the district of Saint-Henri—Westmount against Liberal incumbent Don Johnston in 1980. He finished second with 18% of the vote.
  4. ^ Nicole Gagnon-Larocque was the Civic City Councillor for the district of Octave-Crémazie from 1978 to 1986.