UK Blairites support French rightist Sarkozy against Ségolène Royal

This video is called French president Nicolas Sarkozy drunk at G8.

By Martin Kettle in British daily The Guardian:

In the Blair government there are no nuances or doubts about the French presidential run-off.

We are rooting for Nicolas Sarkozy, they say, and they mean it. …

This approach sticks in the craw of large parts of the British centre-left.

There, different priorities and a gut loyalty to the socialist tribe dominate.

In progressive Britain, Sarkozy is often simply the man who called the rioters scum, the man who welcomes comparison with Margaret Thatcher.

Seen from the centre-left, Sarkozy is overwhelmingly the man who blames the migrants, the students and the poor for France’s ills; indeed, in some ways he is barely distinguishable from the loathed Le Pen.

Progressives see the prospect of a Socialist woman defeating such a man – which Ségolène Royal may yet do – as inspiring, even wonderful, despite the fact that she comes across a bit stiffly and not much is known about her views.

As such, therefore, the French election seems to embody one of the most striking ways in which the Labour government has lost the support of its voters. …

As it is, Iraq and George Bush have warped everything.

In France next weekend, Labour will be backing the party of the right, of economic liberalism and of Atlanticism, exactly as it did in recent elections in Germany, Spain and Italy.

By supporting Sarko while his own voters back Ségo, Blair promotes an approach that encapsulates why the left needs him to go, and that will now change.

That the Blairites support the French crony of Italian neo-fascist Fini is not that surprising, knowing about Blair’s links to Berlusconi, ally of Fini; and to the Spanish Partido Popular, heirs of the Franco dictatorship.

That Blairites prefer such a candidate to his opponent (Royal), not by any means a far Leftist, rather a sort of Blairite herself, minus the support for Bush’s Iraq war, says something about how low Blair can go.

Update 8 May 2007: here.

Kouchner, Sarkozy’s foreign minister: here.

Blairism and the French left: here.

6 thoughts on “UK Blairites support French rightist Sarkozy against Ségolène Royal

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