Regis Labeaume, the misunderstood democrat

(Quebec) CHRONICLE / There are people – who are necessarily jealous and bad losers – who say that Regis Labeaume is allergic to democracy. They collect the mayor’s crisp quotes as investigators gather clues at the scene of the crime.

They are spoiled for choice. These days, the Mayor is back on a crusade against citizen referendums on real estate projects. Like the fox who proposes the abolition of the electrified fences around the poultry houses, Monsieur exclaimed: “The referendums are antidemocratic.”

We will come back later. Meanwhile, the phrase adds to the great quotations of Mr. Labeaume. Starting with the cry of the heart, once launched in the direction of a municipal councilor. “My ostia , I’ll tie you one in the forehead.”

Okay. But that does not prove anything. Appearences are often not what they seem. The tiger has stripes. The zebra too. Does that make him a bloody killer?


He has an answer to everything, Mr. Mayor. Sometimes it looks like the wise man who says that since oil spills are inevitable, blue oil should be made.

In 2000, before the municipal mergers, more than 150 elected representatives represented the territory of the future city of Quebec. In 2007, when Mr. Labeaume became mayor, the city had 37 councilors. Since then, the number has been reduced to 27. Then to 21.

In Quebec, there is a municipal elected representative for 26,000 people. To Montreal? One for 18,500 people. On the island of Orleans? One for 200 people.

Less elected, this usually means less opposition. Less diversity also. Except in Quebec, of course, where the mayor has already explained that the opposition was useless, since his team could both exercise power and play the role of critic!

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We dream of seeing this brilliant solution implanted in hockey. The Canadian players would be the only ones allowed on the ice, in addition to the role of referees and line judges. Good princes, they would leave to their adversaries the task of playing the crowd. After all, it takes to applaud the heroes …


Calm. Is it Mr. Labeaume’s fault that no mayor of Quebec City has lost an election since … 1938? Was it his fault that his campaign had (almost) $ 100,000 more than the opposition in the last election?

Do not listen to the ugly journalists. If Régis Labeaume walked on the water, those would say that he could not swim!

These days, Mr. Labeaume is calling for the abolition of referendums on real estate projects. In his view, it matters little whether the mechanism has been used only five times in 15 years. Instead of referendums, Mr. Labeaume advocates more … consultations, a word that sounds strangely in his mouth. Has not Monsieur already opened a public consultation by exclaiming: “If you have come here to chill, it is not the place”?

Apparently, the mayor has already forgotten the farce of the recent Special Planning Program of the plateau center Sainte-Foy. For months, the City and the citizens had discussed the future of the sector. At the end, it was agreed to limit the height of the buildings to 30 floors. This did not prevent the mayor from swinging overboard, to welcome his fetish project of the Lighthouse, with its 65-story tower.

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Everyone in Quebec has the right to an opinion. Provided that it is that of Régis Labeaume, of course.


Basically, Régis Labeaume likes democracy. It is only that he considers it a useless luxury. An insurance policy that covers the fall of the roof, but not the violent contact with the ground. “Trust me,” he repeats. The tune of saying, “In terms of democracy, am I not entitled to a 403 th chance?”

Snif. Such a theatrical performance, snif! It breaks the heart.

By the way, do you know what they’re saying? To improve the atmosphere at the municipal council, the elected Labeaume team had an idea. Whenever one of them launches an insult or flouts a democratic rule, he must pay a fine.

The first blunder costs $ 50. And the price doubles each time. One hundred dollars for the second offense. Two hundred dollars for the third. And so on.

On hearing this, Mayor Labeaume became pale. He starts tapping on his calculator.

“I’m going to be ruined before the end of the year,” he stammered.

But his advisers reassured him at once.

– For you, we have a seasonal rate.

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