Marcel Côté is both a thinker and a doer, a relatively rare combination. But beyond the fact that we are talking about a remarkable individual with an impressive resume, it is the meeting of his personality and skills with the current political context that makes me believe he is ideally suited to lead the City of Montreal over the next four years.
1- Marcel Côté’s bridge-building leadership: Montreal is going through an unprecedented period of turbulence. To restore Montreal’s confidence and pride, we need a collective effort that mobilises all montrealers, from east and west, no matter what our origins, mother tongue or political affiliations. Montrealers appreciate the current coalition that is leading our City, and we need that collaborative spirit to continue over the next four years. Marcel Côté is a bridge-builder leading a coalition of people coming from different communities, who all wish to work together for the benefit of Montreal.
2- His expertise in governance and economic development: Yes: Marcel Côté is a curious mind who is knowledgeable about a variety of subjects, but he is mostly known as an expert in two particular fields: governance (especially of the City of Montreal), and economic development. Of all the challenges Montreal is currently facing, I would rank both governance and economic development as top priorities. In order to improve the way the City works and to give our economy a much-needed spark, I know of no better person to lead the way than Marcel Côté.
3- His ability to speak for Montreal vis-à-vis the government of Quebec: In order to reform its structures, regain long-term financial flexibility, diversify its revenue sources and give priority to the best public transit projects, the City of Montreal will need to be heard loud and clear by the government of Quebec. Hard-fought negociations will certainly take place between the two on a number of issues, and Montreal needs a Mayor who knows the government well, and a Mayor with enough credibility and diplomatic skills to lead the way. Marcel Côté has demonstrated many times in his career that he knows how to deal successfully with the government of Quebec.
There is a saying in politics that good government is usually the result of a meeting between a particular political context, and the personality and skills of a leader who comes to power in that context. Marcel Côté is the right leader at the right time for Montreal in 2013. This is why I support him for Mayor of Montreal.