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French Far Right in Electoral Set Back.

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France far right Marine Le Pen falls short in regional election

Le Pen, Macron parties falter as conservatives surge in French regional polls France 24.

French President Emmanuel Macron and far-right leader Marine Le Pen saw their respective parties stumble on Sunday as incumbent conservatives surged ahead in the first round of regional elections marred by record-low turnout. 

Sunday’s regional polls had been billed as a dress rehearsal for next year’s presidential election – but by 8 pm, the putative protagonists of the Elysée contest had witnessed their respective parties falter at the polls. Low turnout among younger voters and over-35s in France’s regional elections.

Elections régionales et départementales : un premier tour marqué par une  abstention record, à un niveau «particulièrement préoccupant» - Le Parisien

Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally (RN) was hoping to lead in as many as six of mainland France’s 13 regions, putting it on course to win its first-ever region – or more – in the June 27 runoff.

Instead, the party topped just one contest, in the southern Provence-Alpes-Côtes d’Azur region, securing only a wafer-thin lead in a race it had hoped to run away with. With a national vote share of around 19 percent, according to projections, support for RN was nine points lower than the last regional polls in 2015.Far right’s Thierry Mariani receives less support than expected in France’s PACA region.

A bitter Le Pen promptly blamed the setback on the record level of abstention, so often her best ally. She called the low turnout “a civic disaster that deformed the electoral reality of the country”, urging her supporters to show up for the second round.

Meanwhile, President Emmanuel Macron saw his fledgling party suffer another humbling at the polls, a year after its dismal performance in municipal elections. 

LREM performed poorly across the country, with a national vote share of just over 10 percent, according to projections. The debacle underlined how it has failed to convert five years in power at the national level into grassroots support. 

Party spokeswoman Aurore Bergé called the results a “democratic slap in the face” – surely a more stinging blow than the smack Macron received at a public event earlier in the month.

French far right irked by election results, southern region in play Reuters.

I can only but regret this civic disaster, which has very largely deformed the electoral reality of the country and given a misleading idea of the political forces at play,” Le Pen said.

“If you want things to change, get out and vote.”

An IPSOS exit poll showed the centre-right Les Republicains winning 27.2% of the national vote, ahead of the far right on 19.3%, followed by the Green party, the Socialist Party and Macron’s La Republique en Marche on 11.2%.

For Le Pen’s far-right, that is a drop of more than 7 percentage points nationwide compared to the last election in 2015, which came on the back of the Paris Islamist attacks,

……

An IPSOS exit poll showed the centre-right Les Republicains winning 27.2% of the national vote, ahead of the far right on 19.3%, followed by the Green party, the Socialist Party and Macron’s La Republique en Marche on 11.2%.

For Le Pen’s far-right, that is a drop of more than 7 percentage points nationwide compared to the last election in 2015, which came on the back of the Paris Islamist attacks.

The winners of the first round in each region

Auvergne Rhône-Alpes: Laurent Wauquiez (Les Républicains-L’Union des démocrates et indépendants)

Brittany: Loïg Chesnais-Girard (Parti Socialiste-Parti communiste français)

Bourgogne Franche-Comté: Marie-Guite Dufay (Parti Socialiste-Parti communiste français-Parti radical de gauche)

Centre Val de Loire: François Bonneau (Parti Socialiste-Parti communiste français-Parti radical de gauche)

Corse: Gilles Simeoni (Régionalistes)

Grand Est: Jean Rottner (Les Républicains)

Hauts-de-France: Xavier Bertrand (Les Républicains)

Ile-de-France: Valérie Pécresse (Libres-Les Républicains-L’Union des démocrates et indépendants)

Normandy: Hervé Morin (Les Républicains-L’Union des démocrates et indépendants-Mouvement Démocrate)

Nouvelle-Aquitaine: Alain Rousset (Parti Socialiste/Parti communiste français)

Occitanie: Carole Delga (Parti Socialiste/Parti communiste français) 

Pays de la Loire: Christelle Morançais (Les Républicains)

Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur: Thierry Mariani (Rassemblement National)

The second and decisive round of voting will take place next Sunday June the 27th

Comment.

Anybody on the left dislikes Les Républicaines but that fades into insignificance compared to our loathing of Marine le Pen.

A major point is that these results show the enduring presence of parties with local implantation, as President Macron’s virtual ‘start up’ party La République en Marche failed to make headway. Having national ‘stars’ is not the same as presence on the ground.

The main danger was that, if the RN had done well, they would build a momentum for next year’s presidential election and they would present a real contender to be France’s president.

The French left is incredibly fragmented, in at least five main blocs/parties EELV, (Greens), Green left, (Génération.s.) Parti Socialiste (and its close allies such as the Parti radical de gauche), Parti Communiste Français, and Mélenchon’s rally, La France Insoumise and their own allies. There are also a few remnants of the far left, such as Lutte Ouvrière and the Nouveau Parti anticapitaliste (NPA). All had people running, or alliances with others or divisions, which it would take pages to describe and explain. There was some unity, but not everywhere. The above results show what united lists can bring.

The idea that their decline in support over recent years is because of dropping class politics in favour of progressivism – you can have any variety of left politics campings them – could only be advanced by those, such as the European Editor of the US Jacobin who have little experience of politics. The most glaring cause is an inability to unite, electorally or in a sustained manner, in social struggles.

This is also good news, a union of the left in the region around Paris:

May be a Twitter screenshot of 2 people and text that says "Clémentine Autain @Clem_... ・1h rassemblé.es pour l'emporter face à la droite de @vpecresse Le 27 juin, nous devons et nous pouvons changer le cap de 'Île-de-France. Julien Bayou @julienbay... 1h Ça yest nous sommes uni-es avec @AudreyPulvar @Clem_Autain pour l'écologie et la solidarité en #IledeFrance!"

Update, another call for unity from Benoît Hamon’s organisation.

Written by Andrew Coates

June 21, 2021 at 1:00 pm

One Response

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  1. Another sign of unity in the Ile-de-France:

    Andrew Coates

    June 21, 2021 at 5:13 pm


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