Assets of politicians: misplaced curiosity?

Politicians' holdings: misplaced curiosity?


The heritage of political party leaders is none of our business.

How are the assets of our politicians in the public interest? Or to know that Dominique Anglade, François Legault and Éric Duhaime have valuable assets? Who would agree to strip naked as the candidates do when we know in advance that there will only be one winner? 

It would be absolutely useless, if not to satisfy our voyeuristic instinct. The wealth of a party leader conveys no relevant information to the voter. It is unclear whether these assets are the result of hard work, inheritance or winning the lottery. What would be relevant to know, however, is the source of the politicians' income. Do they have a duplication? Do they receive income from a private business where conflict of interest issues might arise, perhaps? And again. 

  • Listen to the Yasmine Abdelfadel and Marc-André Leclerc meeting broadcast live every day at 6 a.m. via QUB radio:

We have a problem with the 'money

The truth is that in Quebec, we are always suspicious of those who succeed financially. A millionaire politician? It must be crooked. Worse: a wealthy female politician? It must be thanks to her husband.

At the same time, we have sympathy for those who struggle financially, as if it were a pledge of probity and integrity. As if that gives the right to ask the rich to contribute more, as if they don't contribute enough.

  • Listen to the meeting Marie Montpetit and Patrick Déry with Yasmine Abdelfadel broadcast live every day at 2 p.m. via QUB radio:

Little politics 

It is this argument that has been used by Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois since the publication of the list of assets of the heads of parties: he used an exaggerated transparency exercise to demand that millionaire chefs contribute more. If that's doing politics differently, if that's “changing the era”, it's a complete failure. 

There should be a distinction between the private and intimate lives of politicians and the responsibilities for which they wish to run. A family's assets are part of the private life, until the context requires it. 

Holdings of politicians: misplaced curiosity?