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Marine Le Pen’s speech is more polite, but its program just as radical in substance, according to the Jean Jaurès Foundation

Wandering of the candidate of the National Rally (extreme right), Marine Le Pen, on the Hénin-Beaumont market (Pas-de-Calais), March 22, 2022.

A polite speech on the form but which remains, on the bottom, just as radical as in recent years. This is the conclusion of a study by the Jean Jaurès Foundation on the ideology, image and electorate of Marine Le Pen, published Monday, April 4, six days before the first round of the presidential election.

The far-right presidential candidate has endeavored, since her arrival in 2011 at the head of the National Front (which became the National Rally in 2018), to“adopt much smoother communication”but its positioning is “just as radical”particularly on cultural and migratory issues, writes this center of reflection classified on the left.

In form, this “demonization” was favored by the “harder rhetoric” of his far-right rival, Eric Zemmour, as well as a “stricter line” of the so-called moderate right (Les Républicains, LR) and of the presidential party, La République en Marche, in a context of “transformation of the media landscape” favoring a “normalization of radical right ideas”. The authors of the report recall in particular the episode during which the Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, had accused, in February 2021, on France 2 Mme Le Pen d’être “a little soft, a little wobbly” against Islamism. While on the side of LR, Eric Ciotti notably pleaded, during the congress campaign, for “a French-style Guantanamo” and Valérie Pécresse established a link between terrorism and “the most recent immigration”.

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But, according to the authors of the report, Marine Le Pen still offers “strong measures to promote law and order”. In February, in Brest, she promised to put an end to “to the reign of terror of the drug mafias, whose crimes are equaled only by the Islamizing ideology with which they are so often associated”, and to establish a self-defense for law enforcement. She regularly rejects “multiculturalism”considering that “Massive immigration prevents assimilation”. On the migratory level, its program has been “hardened” since 2010, according to the foundation. It plans for 2022 to enshrine in the Constitution the “national priority”, which would deprive foreigners of several benefits. She also wants, like Eric Zemmour, to expel illegal immigrants, foreign criminals and delinquents, foreign “S files”, as well as foreigners who have been unemployed for more than a year.

” Rebellion “

Mme Le Pen has also warned: the first step she will take if she reaches the Elysée Palace will be to submit by referendum a bill, already drafted, on immigration and identity, and from which her policy stems. It intends, through this referendum, to empty part of the preamble to the 1946 Constitution of its content and to modify at least six articles of the 1958 Constitution. To do this, it intends to rely on Article 11 of the Constitution, which does not, however, target constitutional revisions. “What Marine Le Pen is proposing is a kind of coup d’etat! » the constitutionalist Dominique Rousseau was recently indignant in an article in the World devoted to the program of the candidate of the RN.

Read our analysis on Marine Le Pen: Article reserved for our subscribers a fundamentally far-right program behind a softened image

Economically, the FN moved in the 2000s from neoliberalism to “social-populism”from the anti-tax party to a “financial wealth tax” and measures in favor of purchasing power, underlines the report of the Jean Jaurès Foundation. It is moreover on this theme of purchasing power that Mme Le Pen has built his campaign for the upcoming presidential election. The authors of the report also note “the even clearer evolution” on his positions “taken about the redistribution of wealth”. The far-right party “has greatly amended its position, going from a very clearly anti-redistribution line in the 2000s to an approach rather in favor of redistributive mechanisms at the present time”. “This relatively redistributive positioning is moreover part of a distancing strategy” from with Eric Zemmour, notes the Foundation.

“National Unity”

In terms of his image, Mme Le Pen still arouses the concern of a majority of French people (51%, against 53% in 2017), but now 39% of French people (against 21%) consider that she has the makings of a president of the Republic, and 46% that it “understands the problems of people like us” (compared to 22%), according to the results of an Ipsos-Sopra Steria survey in partnership with Cevipof and the Jean Jaurès Foundation for The world.

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On the form, the candidate has tried in recent weeks to appear as the “president of civil peace”of “national unity”. Claiming to have learned the lessons of his defeat in 2017, Mme Le Pen left his protest posture to show himself with a more smiling face, as if “better sleep the Republican front”or speak comfortably seated in sofas, a “universe of softness” which allows “to forget the harshness of his program”considers, finally, the foundation.

Read also: Marine Le Pen’s program for the 2022 presidential election

The World with AFP

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