Canadian Anti-Hate Network
Over 50 years after its initial demise, a Québécois political party known for its markedly antisemitic stances is on the verge of making a comeback.
Sylvain Marcoux, a québécois neo-Nazi with ties to the White Lives Matter movement, first raised the possibility of starting his own political party in November 2021. Marcoux stated his intention to name this party the Parti nationaliste chrétien, the same name as that of a long-defunct political outfit.
In a video posted to YouTube, Marcoux discusses the threats of “kosher messianism” and race-mixing, which he argues are promoted by the World Economic Forum and the United Nations in a “full-frontal attack on the white race.” He later says his political party would act as a “political vehicle” to combat these threats.
According to documents found on Élection Québec’s website, Marcoux moved to secure the party’s name in March 2022.
On May 29, Marcoux posted a picture of a proposed logo for the 2022 version of the PNC, along with the caption “It’s coming…”
A proposed logo for the Parti nationaliste chrétien, posted by Sylvain Marcoux. Source: Facebook.
Founded in 1967, the original PNC courted rural voters and clergy members with its theocratic platform for a period of nearly three years. Its founder, Léo Tremblay, was a sovereigntist and socially conservative regional television host, who previously assumed the leadership of La Phalange, described in a 1963 edition of the Québec weekly La Patrie as a secret fascist society.
A detailed platform published by Tremblay in 1969 decried the existence of “satanic propaganda” promoted by the media and foreign agents, which he argued was pushing Québec towards “national suicide.” In interviews, Tremblay also described Jews as the “mortal enemies” of the Québec independence movement, saying that “it is impossible to talk about independence without raising the question of Jewish control over [Québec’s] economy.”
However, Tremblay asserted in his platform that “other minorities” would have nothing to fear about his party’s policies, “as long as they respect our culture and learn our language.”
The PNC was unsuccessful in ever getting one of its candidates elected to office, though a sitting MNA briefly crossed the aisle and represented them in the National Assembly, before once again switching parties. It ultimately folded after Tremblay was arrested, found guilty, and later acquitted on appeal, of participating in a scheme to steal art pieces in order to fund his political aspirations.
Reached for comments by the Canadian Anti-Hate Network, Sylvain Marcoux explained he was not initially aware of the history of the Parti nationaliste chrétien, but that he read its platform and “was comfortable with it.” He added that his party was “very close” to being approved by Élections Québec, but would not share specific information about the approval process.
A Neo-Nazi With Political Ambitions
This is not Marcoux’s first foray in elected politics. The ex-city councillor for the town of Saint-Majorique de Grantham ran for provincial and federal office in the 2018 and 2021 elections respectively as an independent candidate. He received less than 1% of all votes cast in both instances.
Sylvain Marcoux in 2018. Source: Facebook.
In an interview published by a local newspaper during his 2018 run, Marcoux proposed prohibiting the practice of Islam in Québec, calling the religion “incompatible with parliamentary democracy.” When pushed as to whether he would support the idea of deporting people who practice Islam in their homes, he responded, “we have psychiatric asylums. They can get cured, there’s treatments for it.”
In the same interview, Marcoux denounced the “devaluation’ of families, notably through the promotion of the ‘LGBT program,” which he said pushes “12-year-old men to wonder whether they are men because of gender theory.”
At the time, Marcoux’s support for neo-Nazi politics was already well-documented. From 2012 onward, he participated in rallies and entertained close ties with hard-line far-right groups like Bannière Noire, Légion nationale, and the Fédération des Québécois de souche.
In the last five years, however, he has attempted to make inroads with less extreme groups, participating in a number of anti-refugee demonstrations alongside La Meute and Storm Alliance.
According to social media posts archived by Montréal Antifasciste, Marcoux’s accounts - many of which have been taken down due to the nature of their content - often displayed neo-Nazi symbols. In one Facebook post, he even goes as far as saying that “Hitler was the most beautiful soul to have walked this earth.”
Source: Montreal Antifasciste
In a more recent post, Marcoux defended Hitler from allegations coming from pro-gun activists to the effect that the latter seized the guns of the German population after gaining power.
“We can criticize Hitler’s government of having kept some of the previous government’s restrictions, but in any case, the national-socialists had no intention to stop honest Germans from owning or bearing arms.”
In 2021, Marcoux was arrested for publishing the address of then-Québec Public Health director Horacio Arruda in a post calling on protesters to surround the official’s home. While Marcoux was originally charged with three counts of criminal harassment and intimidation, a peace bond was instead issued after Marcoux issued an apology to Arruda.
In conversation with the Canadian Anti-Hate Network, Marcoux stated that he rejects the label of “far-right,” pointing at the fact that Hitler never described himself as such. His only qualm with the qualifier of “neo-Nazi” is that it implies support for socialism - Marcoux explained he prefers social credit policies.
Your Data in the Hands of Neo-Nazis
Should Marcoux's application for authorized party status be successful, the Parti nationaliste chrétien and its employees would receive access to the personal information - including the names, addresses and phone numbers - of all registered voters in Québec.
The party would also receive an allowance of public funds proportional to the number of votes they receive.
This issue was also raised after the Canadian Nationalist Party, an openly neo-Nazi federal party, received official party status from Elections Canada in 2019. The CNP was deregistered in March 2022 after failing to comply with the requirement that the party maintain 250 members at all times, a requirement under the Canada Elections Act.
“We have no legal recourse to refuse an authorized party application from a political party, or to remove authorization from a political party on the basis of their political program or the ideas they vehiculate, even if they happen to be hate speech, or if they incite violence, or even if the party is tied to criminal groups,” Elections Quebec told the Canadian Anti-Hate Network.
Adding that they "remain vigilant with regards to the phenomenons of extremism and hate speech.”
An earlier version of this article claimed donations to authorized provincial political parties were tax-deductible. The article has been updated to reflect that that is not the case.