Ruffin Diverges, Tondelier Emerges

4 July 2024

This electoral sequence certainly has not provided the “clarification” President Macron hoped for when he dissolved the National Assembly, but it has cleared up a few things on the left. Mélenchon’s purge of Corbière, Garrido, et al. set his authoritarian proclivities in relief as never before. And now François Ruffin has quit LFI. Make no mistake: he obviously had one and a half feet out the door before this month. He is in a close race to hold on to his seat, which he will probably lose, and Mélenchon makes a convenient scapegoat. I hold no brief for Ruffin, whose brand of agitprop leftism is not to my taste. But he deserves credit for exposing Mélenchon’s tactics.

The other revelation of the campaign is Marine Tondelier, the leader of the Greens, who has emerged as an effective spokesperson for the non-LFI left. After attracting attention for her deft destruction of Macroniste Aurore Bergé on the evening of the first round, she then suspended the Green boycott of Bolloré-owned CNews to sit for an interview with Laurence Ferrari. Refusing to be distracted by Ferrari’s ham-handed attempts to channel the discussion, she made her case against the RN with the aplomb of a veteran prosecutor well-equipped with a detailed bill of particulars. She will also appear this evening in a debate (of sorts: the candidates will speak serially) on France2. If the result of the second round is a coalition government including elements of the left and center, Tondelier will have earned consideration as a prospective ministrable.



  • bernard says:

    I think that you left out someone. While I don’t share his views, it appears to me that Gabriel Attal has proved himself in this campaign and will be a serious contender in some future presidential election, contrary to Edouard Philippe and others who have proved themselves unreliable where the republic is concerned by refusing to support NFP candidates of any kind such as the mildly socialist lady running in my district against an extreme right candidate sanctioned for his racist outburst in the parliament. People such as Philippe who dishonored himself will receive zero support from the left whatever the circumstance in the future as this will not be forgotten. Attal can count on votes from at least part of the left depending on circumstances: while he did not spare his criticism of the left prior to the first round of voting, he rose to the occasion in the second round and saved both his honor and his future role in politics.

  • The victory of the Left tonight owes much to the work Melenchon did putting together NUPES. But clearly Melenchon has passed his prime – that is, it is clear to anyone but Melanchon. On the other hand, when Macron dissolved the legislature, Melenchon was the only major pol, outside of the RN, who welcomed it, saying that the Left was set to win. And tonight they did. Hope you have some graciousness for the “authoritarian” Melanchon.

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