Expectations of Eric Duhaime are low
It might seem strange to the average bear to see that Eric Duhaime's setbacks regarding his unpaid tax bills are more controversial than his political proposals . Those, for example, of reviving the GNL Québec project, eventually eliminating public funding for daycare centers, or building a highway on Île d'Orléans.
Worse: we put under Eric Duhaime's nose his unpaid tax bills, but we ignore his many embarrassing statements from the past. Those of Éric Duhaime who sees no problem in sending a bloody pig's head to an Islamic center. The Éric Duhaime who compares rape to stealing a car whose doors have been left unlocked. The Éric Duhaime who wanted to modulate voting rights according to income. Éric Duhaime has no skeletons in his closet: he has an open-air ossuary exposed for all to see.
However, the conservative party of Éric Duhaime is hot on the heels of the CAQ in several ridings. Does that mean that the people of the region of Quebec where the PCQ has possibilities of gain are insensitive to the contemptuous remarks of Éric Duhaime towards the poor, women or immigrants? Or are we just more used to hearing shocking words from him?
Our expectations of the leader of the Conservative Party are not the same as of other smoother politicians who try to rally more by avoiding outrageous remarks. A character like Duhaime is expected to be provocative. It's his trademark. This is what allowed an individual like Donald Trump to be completely controversial. Trump said he could kill people on 5th Avenue without losing a vote and he was practically right. He denigrated a disabled journalist, made racist and misogynistic remarks and bragged about grabbing women by the pussy without ever paying the price. Conversely, our expectations are disproportionately high of politicians who present themselves as virtuous. We questioned the use of the expression “corn of India” by Manon Massé and criticized Catherine Dorion for using a small SUV. We would have done it even if the whole deputation had traveled in pick-ups. This is what I call the expectation gap.
This gap is all to Éric Duhaime’s advantage. Not only is it expected to be shocking, among a certain segment of the population who feel judged when they say such things or adhere to so-called unpopular opinions, people like Éric Duhaime say this out loud that they think to themselves. “He tells it like it is,” they said of Trump. Our expectations are also low in terms of results. To date, the Conservative Party of Quebec has never won a seat in the National Assembly or climbed to more than 2% in the popular vote. If he won only one seat on October 3, Éric Duhaime would boast. With 17% of voting intentions according to the aggregator Québec125, Éric Duhaime has already won his elections. Hard to lose, when expectations are so low.