Wednesday's program features Jean Chrétien, Roy McMurtry, and Roy Romanow – who we've nicknamed the "three amigos" of the 1982 Constitution Act.
Chrétien, McMurtry, and Romanow hammered out the deal that broke a logjam at the negotiating table and paved the way for the Act, which turned 30 this week. The Act gave Canada control over amending its own Constitution (before that time, any changes to our Constitution needed approval from British Parliament) and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. However, the Act was also unacceptable to the Québec government, which refused to sign. Ever since, many Quebecers have seen the deal as a humiliation that demonstrates how little they matter to the rest of Canada.
Below are three questions that Steve will ask Chrétien, McMurtry and Romanow relating to the fact that Québec was not part of the historic deal. While you'll see the three present their own answers during the broadcast, I'd be interested to read how you would answer these questions yourself.
1. As you know, this night has gone down in Québec history as the night of the long knives, the night when the rest of Canada betrayed and isolated quebec. How entitled are Quebecers to think that’s what happened?
2. (To Chrétien): Would it have been better had you feds repatriated the Constitution without the Gang of Eight, in which case, Québec wouldn’t have felt so isolated?
3. Was it your view that at the end of the day, René Lévésque was a separatist and he never would have signed something that benefited or strengthened Canada?
Please share any thoughts you have by posting a comment below.