Europe 2009: France

I posted a lot of this stuff on my other blog on French elections, but I thought I could re-post it here since it’s relevant. France will send 72 MEPs to the European Parliament, 6 less MEPs than in 2004. Since 2004, seats are allocated by eight multi-regional crap constituencies. Parties need to win atleast 5% of the votes in those constituencies to win seats. Even if they win less than 5% nationally. Here is the likely distribution of seats between the 8 constituencies:

Île-de-France: 13 (-1)
Sud-Est: 13 (=)
Nord-Ouest: 10 (-2)
Sud-Ouest: 10 (=)
Ouest: 9 (-1)
Est: 9 (-1)
Massif central-Centre: 5 (-1)
Outre-Mer: 3 (=)

The major parties have announced their top candidates (or, in some cases, top 3 candidates) for most constituencies. French law requires these list to alternate man/woman/man or vice-versa.

Here are the UMP top candidates. The UMP is much less “democratic” than the PS, which holds a semblance of free and fair membership votes on these things. UMP top candidates were imposed by Sarkozy himself, who is the defacto leader of the UMP.

Sud-Est: Françoise Grossetête, MEP / Gaston Franco, former RPR deputy for the Alpes-Maritimes
Nord-Ouest: Dominique Riquet , Radical Mayor of Valenciennes / Tokia Saïfi, MEP (Radical)
Île-de-France: Michel Barnier, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries / Rachida Dati, Minister of Justice and Mayor of the 7th arrondissement of Paris
Ouest: Christophe Béchu, President of the Maine-et-Loire General Council / Élisabeth Morin, MEP
Sud-Ouest: Dominique Baudis, former Mayor of Toulouse / Christine de Veyrac, MEP
Est: Joseph Daul, MEP / Véronique Mathieu, MEP (Radical)
Massif Central-Centre: Jean-Pierre Audy, MEP / Catherine Colonna, French ambassador to UNESCO

They went for some big names in Paris and the Sud-Ouest (never say that the Baudis dynasty is dead). An interesting choice in Christophe Béchu, the young UMP President of the Maine-et-Loire general council, and a rising star in the party. Élisabeth Morin, former UMP President of Poitou-Charentes, is an MEP since Roselyne Bachelot resigned. In the Nord-Ouest, Borloo and the Radicals were able to give the top two spots to Radicals. Valérie Létard, a NC cabinet member, was offered that post, but she prefers to try her hand at running in the regionals next year. In the Sud-Ouest, incumbent MEP Alain Lamassoure has dropped to third on the list, down from first in 2004. There was some controversy in the Est region over Joseph Daul and Véronique Mathieu getting the top two spots. Mathieu, now a Radical, is a former leader of the CPNT, the hunter’s party. A number of important UMP leaders from eastern France signed a petition condemning Daul’s imposition of Mathieu on his list and asking for a “renewal of political figures”. Among the signatories, Jean-Pierre Soisson, a dirty scumbag who still thinks he can give lessons on political morality, but also Henri de Raincourt, leader of the UMP in the Senate and Alain Marty, deputy and President of the UMP Moselle fed.

Now for the PS. The PS, which became a joke party following its chaotic Reims Congress last November always needs to please every little faction when doing these things, especially in this climate. The list is colour coded by motion, blue for Aubry (the current leader, left-wing), red for Royal (egocentric), green for Delanoë (moderate, allied to Aubry, kind of), purple for Hamon (party far-left).

Île-de-France

1. Harlem Désir, MEP
2. Pervenche Berès, MEP
3. Benoît Hamon, MEP (Est)

Nord-Ouest

1. Gilles Pargneaux, first secretary of the Lille federation
2. Estelle Grellier, Haute-Normandie regional councillor and defeated legislative candidate (2007)
3. Jean-Louis Cottigny, MEP

Est

1. Catherine Trautmann, MEP
2. Liem Hoang Gnoc, quasi-Trot economist of some sort
3. Aurélie Fillipetti, deputy from Moselle and spokesperson for the Socialist group in the National Assembly

Sud-Est

1. Vincent Peillon, MEP (Nord-Ouest)
2. Sylvie Guillaume, Rhône-Alpes regional councillor
3. Karim Zéribi, Marseille municipal councillor and CGT union representative (SNCF)

Sud-Ouest

1. Kader Arif, first secretary of the Haute-Garonne federation
2. François Castex, MEP
3. Eric Andrieu, mayor of Villerouge-Termenès (pop. 158)

Ouest

1. Bernadette Vergnaud, MEP
2. Stéphane Le Foll, MEP
3. Isabelle Thomas, Bretagne regional councillor and Saint-Malo municipal councillor

Centre (list rejected by PS membership)

1. Henri Weber, MEP (Nord Ouest)
2. Cécile Jonathan
3. Alain Calmette, Cantal general councillor and Mayor of Aurillac

When you thought they couldn’t do any worse, well, they did. Not only did they move a lot of MEPs around from their original constituencies, their second and third candidate choices are downright awful. It’s scary. I mean, unknown people like Estelle Grellier (defeated 2007 candidate), Liem Hoang Gnoc (quasi-Trot economist), Sylvie Guillaume (some regional councillor), Cécile Jonathan (even Google doesn’t know her!), Stéphane Le Foll (spinmaster). Their third choices aren’t any better. Eric Andrieu, mayor of a village with 158 peopleand Isabelle Thomas, a former student unions clown and perennial loser who can’t win any direct elections. Now, the mayor of some tiny village could end up as an MEP.

These lists have not been without issues. A number of candidates placed lower on the lists have refused their spots, citing disagreements with the top candidates or claiming their poor little egos were hurt since they were too low on the lists.

PS members approved with around 82% in favour these lists. However, the list in the Massif Central-Centre has been killed since the Limousin region (a Socialist stronghold) dislikes the list which has no local figures on it. Ille-et-Vilaine (wow, Isabelle Thomas is an even bigger loser than I thought! Even her local fed doesn’t like her!) and Côte-d’Or have also voted against the lists, though the PS lists in the Ouest and Est have passed.

The MoDem candidates now:

Sud-Est: Jean-Luc Bennahmias, MEP and former Green / Fabienne Faure
Nord-Ouest: Corinne Lepage, leader of CAP21 greenies / Olivier Henno, MoDem mayor of Saint-André-lez-Lille
Île-de-France: Marielle de Sarnez, MEP / Bernard Lehideux, MEP
Ouest: Sylvie Goulard, leader of Mouvement européen France (a federalist thing) / Bruno Joncour, MoDem mayor of Saint-Brieuc
Sud-Ouest: Robert Rochefort, researcher /  Anne Laperrouze, MEP
Est: Jean-François Kahn, former editor of Marianne and writer / Nathalie Griesbeck, MEP
Massif Central-Centre: Jean-Marie Beaupuy, MEP /  Cherifa Adaissi, former local councillor thingee in Blois (rofl)

Here are the top candidates for Europe Ecologie, a rally of Greenies, antiglobalization people, regionalists (the sell-out UDB and Partit Occitan) and so forth.

Nord-Ouest: Hélène Flautre, MEP / François Dufour, antiglobalization thingee leader
Est: Sandrine Bélier, ecologist jurist / Jacques Muller, Green Senator for the Haut-Rhin
Ouest: Yannick Jadot, leader of a ecologist organization / Nicole Kiil-Nielsen, Green candidate in Rennes (2008)
Île de France: Daniel Cohn-Bendit, MEP / Eva Joly, former magistrate
Massif Central-Centre: Jean-Paul Besset, close to Nicolas Hulot / G. Jeannot-Pages
Sud-Ouest: José Bové, Astérix / Catherine Grèze, Green Party
Sud-Est: Michèle Rivasi, former Green deputy and deputy-mayor of Valence / François Alfonsi, Corsican regionalist

Here are the top candidates for the Front de gauche, an electoral alliance composed, for now, of the Communist Party (PCF) and the new Die Linke-like Left Party (PG). The far-left NPA, led by Olivier Besancenot has refused to join.

Île de France: Patrick Le Hyaric (PCF), PCF leader in the Morbihan and director of L’Humanité. Led the PCF list in the Ouest in 2004.
Nord-Ouest: Jacky Hénin (PCF), MEP for the Nord-Ouest, former Mayor of Calais.
Sud-Ouest: Jean-Luc Mélenchon (PG), whiny sod. PG leader and PG Senator for Essonne.
Ouest: Jacques Généreux (PG), anti-liberal leftie economist.
Massif Central-Centre: Marie-France Beaufils (PCF). PCF Senator for Indre-et-Loire and Mayor of Saint-Pierre-des-Corps, industrial suburb of Tours

Philippe de Villiers’ Movement for France (MPF) will run with the hunter’s party (CPNT, which won 6 seats outright in 1999) under the etiquette of the Irish Libertas political party. The MPF will get 6 top candidates, and the CPNT will get 2. For now, Philippe de Villiers (Ouest) and Patrick Louis (Sud-Est), the two incumbent MPF MEPs will run for re-election in their respective constituencies. Former CPNT leader Jean Saint-Josse will run in the Sud-Ouest, while current CPNT leader Frédéric Nihous will run in Nord-Ouest.

A bunch of nobodies for Besancenot’s NPA.

Sud-Est: Raoul Marc Jennar
Nord-Ouest: Christine Poupin
Île-de-France: Omar Slaouti. Besancenot is third on the NPA list.
Sud-Ouest: Myriam Martin
Massif Central-Centre: Christian N’Guyen

Finally, here are the official FN candidates.

Nord-Ouest: Marine Le Pen, MEP (Île de France) *
Est: Bruno Gollnisch, MEP
Ouest: Brigitte Neveux, FN candidate in the 2004 regional elections in Bretagne
Île de France: Jean-Michel Dubois, Île de France regional councillor
Massif Central-Centre: Patrick Bourson
Sud-Ouest: Louis Aliot *
Sud-Est: Jean-Marie Le Pen, MEP

* Carl Lang, FN MEP for the Nord-Ouest will run a dissident FN list called “Parti de la France” (PDF) and Jean-Claude Martinez, FN MEP for the Sud-Ouest will run a dissident FN list supported by the PDF.

The Workers’ Struggle (LO) has also nominated its candidate, like Nicolas Dupont-Aignan’s Gaullist “Arise the Republic” (DLR) thing. Bunch of nobodies. Dupont-Aignan is number 2 on the DLR list Île de France.

Here is the last IFOP poll from February 19. It is their second poll since November 2008, not counting that poll the PG commissioned for their wet dream. The change is compared to November 2008, but the UMP change is compared to the total UMP+NC polled separately, and the Libertas change is compared to the the total MPF+CPNT polled separately.

UMP 26% (+2)
PS 23% (+1)
MoDem 14.5% (+2.5)
Greens 7% (-4)
NPA 9% (+1)
FN 6% (-1)
PCF-PG 4% (n/c)
LO 3% (-1)
Libertas (MPF-CPNT) 5% (-2)
DLR 2% (+1)
FNd 0.5% (+0.5) (only polled in NW and SW)

Demographic and political breakdowns are interesting.

Left-wingers and Trots break 46% PS, 17% NPA, 14% Greenie, 9% PCF, 6% LO. The LO breakdown is interesting, but to take with a grain of salt: 50% would vote for an LO list, 21% for the PS, 13% for the Greens, only 5% for the NPA and surprising 8% for Libertas. Not a lot of other interesting stuff there, except that 12% of Greenies vote MoDem.
Royal voters in April 2007 break 69 PS, 10 NPA, 9 Greenies.
Sarkozy voters in April 2007 break 62 UMP, 8 Libertas, 8 MoDem, 6 FN.
OUI voters in 2005 break heavily for the right: 41 UMP, 23 MoDem, 21 PS. NON voters in 2005 are more divided: 24 PS, 16 UMP, 14 NPA, 11 MoDem, 11 Libertas, 8 PCF.
The PS keeps 70% of its 2004 EU voters, with 10% voting NPA, 6% PCF, and 6% MoDem. The Greens keep only 59% of its 2004 voters, bleeding equally to the PS and the MoDem. The UMP keeps a full 84% of its 2004 voters, with 10% of those voting MoDem. Interestingly, only 54% of the UDF voters in 2004 plan on voting MoDem, with 34% going UMP.
Manual Workers (Ouvriers) go 23% PS, 19% NPA, 17% UMP, 16% FN.

That’s all for now. More later, maybe.

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Posted on March 14, 2009, in Election Preview, EU Parliament, France. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. cecile jonathan

    I’m sorry but Google know me!
    i’m Deputy Major of Tours in France.

  2. OMG, what an important political figure !
    This comment was absolutely needed…

    L’amour-propre et le petit orgueil n’ont pas de frontière !

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