Reports and Campaigns

spotAbout the Socialist Party

spotAnti-capitalism

spotAnti-privatisation

spotAnti-war

spotElection campaigns

spotEnvironment

spotHealth

spotSocialist women

spotWorkplace

spotYouth and Students

All keywords


Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Election campaigns keywords:

Candidates (47)

Council elections (45)

Councillors (294)

Election (1106)

Elections (437)

Elections 2015 (3)

General election (116)

No2EU (80)

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (485)

TUSC (993)


Reports and campaigns:

Anti-capitalism (1195)

Anti-fascist (548)

Anti-racism (681)

Anti-war (1467)

Asylum (205)

Black and Asian (378)

Children (357)

CNWP (108)

Corporate crime (2)

Disability (198)

Education (3805)

Election campaigns (2398)

Environment (590)

EU (435)

Finance (95)

Food (262)

Health and safety (31)

Health and welfare (298)

Housing (992)

Human Rights (368)

LGBT Pride (138)

Local government (2112)

Local services (3591)

Low pay (486)

Migration (52)

Nationalisation (137)

New workers party (460)

NHS (1781)

Pensions (687)

Post Office (214)

Poverty (543)

Privatisation (993)

Public Services (1087)

Socialism (834)

Socialist (37)

Sport (193)

Stop the slaughter of Tamils (88)

Students (1760)

The state (1329)

Transport (526)

TUSC (993)

Welfare rights (698)

Women (726)

Workplace and TU campaigns (8077)

Youth (1904)

Related websites

Youth Fight For Jobs

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

National Shop Stewards Network

Tamil Solidarity


Highlight keywords  |Print this articlePrint this article
From: The Socialist issue 945, 19 April 2017: Tories out!

Search site for keywords: France - Election - Candidates - Marine Le Pen - Anti-austerity

French presidential election

Mélenchon campaign gains momentum

The huge crowd at Melenchon's rally in Toulouse photo Terry Adams

The huge crowd at Melenchon's rally in Toulouse photo Terry Adams   (Click to enlarge)

Terry Adams, Tarn, France

European capitalism is in crisis. It is failing to deliver the basic requirements for the working class on jobs, pay, pensions, housing, health and education. In this situation choices emerge on the right and left. Such is the case in France today.

The presidential election first round ballot takes place on 23 April. There are eleven candidates which in practice narrows down to four, two of whom will go through to a second ballot on 7 May.

The four are Marine Le Pen (Front Nationale - far-right) François Fillon (Républicains - conservative right), Emmanuel Macron (En Marche! - neoliberal) and Jean-Luc Mélenchon (La France Insoumise - 'France Unbowed' - left).

Le Pen is almost certain to go through to the next round. Fillon has faltered, engulfed by a sea of financial scandals. Macron, who until a few weeks ago looked like a shoe-in, has been exposed as programmatically weak and he too has stalled. This leaves Mélenchon who, with a week to go, has developed momentum.

Enthusiasm for Mélenchon and his anti-austerity programme was evident at his rally in Toulouse, Prairie des Filtres, on 16 April. The 70,000-strong crowd included a large number of young people. There are parallels here with the Sanders and Corbyn campaigns.

Rally

Mélenchon's hour-long speech was punctuated throughout with cries from the crowd of "résistance" and, addressed to the liberal elite political class, "dégagez" (make way!)

Any mention of Le Pen, Fillon or Macron was greeted with a loud chorus of boos.

The rally concluded with a huge rendition of the French national anthem, La Marseillaise, accompanied by much waving of the tricolour.

This seemed to be a conscious act of reclamation of the symbols of the French Republic from Le Pen ("La reine de l'extrème droite" - queen of the far right) who has sought to appropriate these symbols as her own.

Mélenchon's social programme is a solid set of radical reforms. But there is a weakness in his overall programme and that is the economy. Proposed measures like 100% tax on annual earnings of over €400,000 will, if implemented, go some way towards financing his reforms, eg increased minimum wage and a retirement age of 60 with pension of €1,000 a month.

But bringing down the scandalously high unemployment levels, especially among the youth, will require the planned use of resources, which in turn poses issues of control and ownership of capital.

Moves in this direction, even his limited bank nationalisation programme, will bring Mélenchon into direct conflict with French business interests. Is he really prepared to take the French capitalist class head on?

It's anybody's guess which of the four principal candidates will go through to the second ballot. But Mélenchon is in with a good chance - the momentum is with him.






Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Related links:

France:

triangleFrench elections: Macron's win

triangleFrench elections: time to build a fighting left alternative

triangleFrance - Huge voter abstention belies Macron's 'landslide' election

triangleFrance: Macron won't solve economic & social crises

triangleCardiff East Socialist Party: France after the presidential election

Election:

triangleRight wing attempts to use single market against Corbyn

triangleAbolish tuition fees and student debt!

triangleCorbyn visits Southampton on marginal seat tour

triangleBlairite EU rebellion: no to the bosses' Single Market

Candidates:

triangleTories escape election fraud charges

triangleTUSC confirms no candidates in June

triangleTUSC's anti-cuts message finds positive response

Marine Le Pen:

triangleMélenchon result shows potential for building a mass left force

triangleFrance: Groundswell of support for left candidate

Anti-austerity:

triangleHow much reserves have councils got?