Rhéal Fortin

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Rhéal Fortin

Rhéal Fortin BQ.jpg
Spokesperson of Québec debout
Groupe parlementaire québécois (March — June)
In office
March 21, 2018 – September 17, 2018
Preceded byCaucus founded
Succeeded byCaucus dissolved
Leader of the Bloc Québécois
In office
October 22, 2015 – March 18, 2017
Preceded byGilles Duceppe
Succeeded byMartine Ouellet
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Rivière-du-Nord
Assumed office
October 19, 2015
Preceded byPierre Dionne Labelle
Personal details
Rhéal Éloi Fortin

Laval-des-Rapides, Quebec, Canada
Political partyBloc Québécois
Other political
Québec debout (2018)

Rhéal Éloi Fortin MP (French: [ʁeal fɔʁtɛ̃]) is a Canadian lawyer and politician.

A lawyer by profession, he is the president of Bissonnette Fortin Giroux, a law firm in Saint-Jérôme. He studied law at University of Sherbrooke. He was elected to the House of Commons of Canada in the 2015 election in Rivière-du-Nord as a member of the Bloc Québécois,[1] and served as interim leader of the party after the resignation of leader Gilles Duceppe until the next leader, Martine Ouellet was named on March 18, 2017. He, along with six other Bloc MPs, resigned from the Bloc's caucus to sit as an independent MP on February 28, 2018 citing conflicts with Ouellet's leadership,[2] and subsequently served as leader of Québec debout.[3] He rejoined the Bloc Québécois caucus on September 17, 2018.[4]

Fortin was named interim leader of the Bloc Québécois on October 22, 2015 following the resignation of Gilles Duceppe as leader after Duceppe was unable to win his seat in the October 19, 2015 federal election.[5]


Fortin was born in Laval-des-Rapides, Quebec. He started working when he was 18. He completed a CEGEP electrician's diploma, equivalent to junior college. He was a worker in a factory in Laval from 1977 to 1985, then left to attend university to study law. After completing his legal education, he began practising law in Saint-Jérôme in 1992.[citation needed]

Political career[edit]

He has been politically active ever since high school, when he volunteered to put up lawn signs for the Parti Québécois. He ran for the Parti Québécois nomination for the election for the National Assembly of Quebec for Prévost, but lost to Gilles Robert. In 2015 he ran for the Bloc Québécois in the riding Rivière-du-Nord and won. He became the interim leader of Bloc Québécois on October 22, 2015.[6] On December 7, 2016, he announced that he would not be seeking the permanent leadership of the party at its leadership election in 2017.

He served as the BQ's critic for intergovernmental affairs, human rights, justice, and access to information in the House of Commons until February 2018, when he and six other Bloc MPs quit the caucus and formed the Groupe parlementaire québécois in protest of Martine Ouellet's leadership style. Fortin was named the group's spokesperson on March 21, 2018.[7]

Electoral record[edit]

2015 Canadian federal election: Rivière-du-Nord
Party Candidate Votes % ±% Expenditures
Bloc Québécois Rhéal Fortin 18,157 32.05 +3.85
New Democratic Pierre Dionne Labelle 17,077 30.14 -24.98
Liberal Janice Bélair Rolland 14,933 26.36 +19.91
Conservative Romain Vignol 4,793 8.46 +0.03
Green Joey Leckman 1,436 2.53 +0.74
Rhinoceros Fobozof A. Côté 261 0.46
Total valid votes/Expense limit 56,657 100.0   $229,198.01
Total rejected ballots 1,044
Turnout 57,701 65.13
Eligible voters 88,586
Bloc Québécois gain from New Democratic Swing +14.42
Source: Elections Canada[8][9]


  1. ^ "Rhéal Fortin, nouveau député de Rivière-du-Nord". Louis-Xavier Michaud. TopoLocal Saint-Jérôme. 20 October 2015. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  2. ^ Allard, Clement (February 28, 2018). "Seven of 10 Bloc Quebecois MPs quit over Martine Ouellet's leadership". The Globe and Mail. The Canadian Press. Retrieved February 28, 2018.
  3. ^ http://www.elections.ca/content.aspx?dir=par&document=index&lang=e&section=pol#QD
  4. ^ "5 Bloc Québécois MPs who quit party returning to the fold". CBC News. September 17, 2018. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
  5. ^ "Gilles Duceppe Stepping Down, Will Be Replaced By Rheal Fortin". Huffington Post. Canadian Press. October 22, 2015. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  6. ^ http://stjerome.topolocal.ca/2015/10/10/conversation-rheal-fortin/
  7. ^ "Ex-Bloc MPs name spokesperson, no leader - The Hill Times". The Hill Times. 2018-03-21. Retrieved 2018-03-31.
  8. ^ Elections Canada – Confirmed candidates for Rivière-du-Nord, 30 September 2015
  9. ^ Elections Canada – Preliminary Election Expenses Limits for Candidates