France’s François Hollande is beset by rivals from inside his left-wing coalition. On the far left, former economy minister Arnaud Montebourg is mulling a presidential bid. On the right of the Socialist Party, Montebourg’s successor, Emmanuel Macron, just launched a “movement” that seems to serve no purpose other than to advance the former investment banker’s political ambitions.
French economy minister Emmanuel Macron launched a political movement on Wednesday that he says aims to unite people from the left and the right around a program of reform.
Macron, nominally a Socialist, denied that the movement is meant to propel him into a presidential candidacy for 2017, but French presidential hopefuls do have a tendency to launch political “movements” one of two years out from an election.
Macron’s announcement comes only days after former conservative party secretary Jean-François Copé launched his own bid for the presidency. The rightwinger fell out with his former boss and current party leader, Nicolas Sarkozy, in 2014 over a financial scandal and would now seek to deny him the Republicans’ presidential nomination.
Neither Copé nor Macron is likely to end up as a presidential candidate, let alone president of France. But the noise they’re making speaks volumes about the perceived timidity of their respective party leaders: Sarkozy and his successor, François Hollande. Read more “Copé, Macron Highlight Timidity of French Parties”
French president François Hollande reshuffled his cabinet on Thursday in an attempt to unite the left ahead of parliamentary and presidential elections next year.
The Greens, who left Hollande’s coalition in 2014 when he appointed a relative centrist, Manuel Valls, as prime minister, are back. Three of their members got cabinet posts, including party leader Emmanuelle Cossé.
Jean-Marc Ayrault, Valls’ predecessor, also returns. He replaces Laurent Fabius as foreign minister whom Hollande nominated to the job of president of the al Council.
Manuel Valls, the French prime minister, is attempting to unify his party, but the very reforms that make him a divisive figure on the left are still likely to stop him from seeking the Socialists’ presidential nomination.
There is little doubt that Valls would be a stronger contender in 2017 than the incumbent, François Hollande. Polls show he would decisively beat the Front national‘s Marine Le Pen in a theoretical runoff and would come close to defeating Nicolas Sarkozy, the conservative former president.
Hollande, by contrast, would lose against both, if he even managed to qualify for the second voting round.
Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy won a political victory this weekend when conservative party members overwhelmingly backed his proposal to rebrand themselves as Les Républicains. A more difficult battle lies ahead: to beat Alain Juppé in the party’s presidential primaries.
83 percent of party members supported the name change; a much higher figure than the 64.5 percent that backed Sarkozy’s leadership bid in November. The former president, who narrowly lost reelection against the Socialist Party’s François Hollande in 2012, looks to be staging an impressive political comeback. Read more “After Party Name Change, Sarkozy Sets Sights on Rival”
Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy has launched his political comeback, standing for the leadership of his conservative party in what is almost certainly a stepping stone to another presidential bid in 2017.
Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy announced his return to politics on Friday, saying he would stand for the leadership of his conservative Union pour un mouvement populaire. The position could be a stepping stone to another presidential bid in 2017.