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From left, Quebec Solidaire Leader Francoise David, Coalition Avenir du Quebec Leader Francois Legault, Parti Quebecois leader Pauline Marois, and Liberal leader Philippe Couillard pose for a photograph prior to the leaders' debate Thursday, Thursday, March 20, 2014 in Montreal.
From left, Quebec Solidaire Leader Francoise David, Coalition Avenir du Quebec Leader Francois Legault, Parti Quebecois leader Pauline Marois, and Liberal leader Philippe Couillard pose for a photograph prior to the leaders' debate Thursday, Thursday, March 20, 2014 in Montreal.
(Paul Chiasson/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

How vote-splitting could deny Quebec parties a majority

As the election campaign in Quebec becomes polarized between the Parti Québécois and the Liberal Party, both Pauline Marois and Philippe Couillard are looking to poach the supporters of their two smaller rivals, the Coalition Avenir Québec and Québec Solidaire.

Much was made in the aftermath of the 2012 election about the division of the left-of-centre, sovereigntist vote between the PQ and QS (in addition to Option Nationale, another sovereigntist party that is less of a factor in this campaign). It may have very well cost the PQ a majority victory in 2012, the objective that Ms. Marois set for herself when she launched the current election campaign.