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Martine Ouellet loses Bloc Quebecois leadership confidence vote

Martine Ouellet has agreed to have a confidence vote on her Bloc Quebecois leadership brought forward. Newly acclaimed Bloc Quebecois leader Martine Ouellet salutes supporters during a rally Saturday, March 18, 2017 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson

Bloc Quebecois leader Martine Ouellet has lost a confidence vote

Sixty-seven per cent of the Bloc Quebecois has voted against Martine Ouellet's leadership

MONTREAL – Martine Ouellet has lost a confidence vote on her leadership of the Bloc Quebecois.

The party says 32 per cent voted in favour of her leadership, whereas 67 per cent voted against.

Ouellet had said she believed getting the support of 50 per cent plus one will give her the legitimacy to stay on as head of the party.

The Bloc has been in disarray since late February when seven of its 10 members of Parliament quit over Ouellet’s leadership style.

The Bloc’s youth wing and one of the three remaining MPs also withdrew their support of Ouellet, who has been criticized for being uncompromising and for focusing too sharply on Quebec independence instead of defending the province’s interests on the federal scene.

Bloc members voted in favour on a question on whether the party should focus on promoting Quebec independence on a daily basis.