In a speech obtained by The Canadian Press and to be delivered to Bloc members on Saturday, Leader Gilles Duceppe outlines five conditions the Conservative government will find almost impossible to accept.
And Duceppe reiterates several times in the speech he is ready to adopt a hardline position that could send Canadians to the polls before the holidays.
Get your winter boots out.
"For Stephen Harper's Conservatives, who have so far survived with half-truths and half-met promises, the next throne speech will be a real test," Duceppe says in notes for his speech, which will be delivered in Rimouski, Que.
"Quebecers will see whether the openness of the Conservatives is real or just a facade."
The Bloc's five conditions for supporting the throne speech are major with the party calling for:
- The elimination of all federal spending powers in provincial jurisdictions.
- The Conservative government to respect the Kyoto Protocol.
-The continuation of supply management in the agriculture sector.
-Promises from the Tories to help Quebec's battered forestry industry.
-And a clear commitment from the government that Canadian soldiers will leave Afghanistan when the current mission ends in February 2009.
Duceppe's conditions indicate the Bloc has decided it no longer wants to be seen as an ally of the government on critical issues. Since the Tories were elected in January 2006, the Bloc has helped them survive three confidence votes, including two on federal budgets.
Well, it's about bloody time Gilles got a clue.
Now, the question is: what will the Liberal and NDP parties do?