Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Fillon Mis en Examen

It's official: François Fillon has been mis en examen:

Le candidat Les Républicains à la présidentielle François Fillon a été mis en examen ce mardi 14 mars, pour "détournement de fonds publics", "complicité et recel de détournement de fonds publics", "complicité et recel d'abus de biens sociaux", "manquements aux obligations de déclarations à la haute autorité de la vie publique", ont affirmé des sources judiciaires à l'agence Reuters.
This comes two days after the JDD revealed that some mysterious person has been signing large checks for bespoke suits from chez Arnys.

I can't think of another candidate whose image has been so totally transformed in the course of a presidential campaign. Yesterday came word that 100 young Juppéistes were deserting LR for En Marche!, so however much the Trocadéro demo, with troops turned out by Sens Commun, may have shored up Fillon's support on the catho-traditional right, it weakened him in the center. If I had to guess, that means that most of Fillon's remaining supporters will go for Le Pen in round 2. This is the hard core of the ex-governmental right, which has no problem with the FN's xenophobia but rejects its defense of welfare chauvinism in favor of a hard-right paring back of the welfare state. The cross-cutting cleavages on immigration, social spending, and relation to the EU are tearing apart the French party system.

The next few years look to be quite unstable no matter who wins the presidency. The Fifth Republic may not be formally replaced by a Sixth, but its vaunted stability seems more and more likely to evaporate in a way that will revive memories of the Fourth.

4 comments:

Tim said...

Everyone seems to be in despair about the demise of the "traditional" two party system in France and much of the world however, this has already happened long ago(45 years ago) in the Canadian province of Quebec. In Quebec the two party system has been replaced by the Liberal Party representing globalization and Canadian federalism and the Parti Quebecois representing nationalism and separation from Canada. Within both parties the traditional left-right political cleavages have now been submerged.

Liberal Party of QC = En Marche

Front Nationale+Melenchon = Parti Quebecois.

Anonymous said...

OMG I didn't expect it now.
And he's still the candidate? Has he no shame? What are the people who make up his 20% thinking?

Anonymous said...

Dear "Has he no shame?"
There is a presumption of innocence in the French, as well as the U.S. legal systems.
While being indicted does not redound to Fillon's credit, he has the same right to defend himself as an indicted murder suspect does.
Let's give him that. Political figures are not saints, and degrees of misconduct among them vary. (Think of Stalin.)
Fillon is a patriot, as I would say almost all the candidates in the French election are. (I have my doubts about Marine Le Pe, thougn.)
Until Fillon is convicted, he is not "civilly dead" and is free to continue his campaign to the bitter end.
His career is now effectively over, as the court of public opinion has already found him guilty. However, as careful and thoughtful analysts of events in France, let's see whether French jurists do, too, before we start the howling.


FrédéricLN said...


I should look as if not surprised – but indeed I am, by the suits story and also by the advanced "mise en examen".

BTW, to the readers of this blog who might have considered as spam my mentions of Jean Lassalle, I am very pleased to announce he will be qualified to run. The ony non-partisan candidate in the race. And, imho, one of the 4 who have the guts to win (with Mélenchon, Macron and Le Pen).

And none of the 4 has anything looking like a parliamentary basis.

Just look. Or listen. Or smell. Something is just happening here.