Legislative elections 2024: Jean-Luc Mélenchon, such a useful “scarecrow”, from the far right to “Macronie” ?

Legislative elections 2024: Jean-Luc Mélenchon, such a useful “scarecrow”, from the far right to “Macronie” ?

Jean-Luc Mélenchon, le 23 juin dernier, à Montpellier. Midi Libre – JEAN-MICHEL MART

Unambiguously to block the RN on Sunday evening, the leader of France Insoumise is also a foil for voters who nevertheless fight the ideas of the extreme right.

After Rima Hassan's keffiyeh, Sunday evening, at the campaign HQ of the New Popular Front, the debate with Jordan Bardella. Barely the results of the first round of legislative elections are known, Jean-Luc Mélenchon nevertheless draws his attention very quickly, and his message is unambiguous: "Our instructions are simple, direct and clear: not one vote, not one more seat for the RN. But it’s the keffiyeh of European MP Rima Hassan, present alongside the leader of LFI, which is setting social networks on fire.

And it is on X, again, that Jordan Bardella invites Jean-Luc Mélenchon to debate, and insists, a few hours later, in a new soap opera which punctuated the day on Monday. "Must I understand that you are fleeing the debate", provokes the RN, which raises the specter of a Mélechon Prime Minister. This will also be the subject of the day: "Jean-Luc Mélenchon, I tell you again, is not leader of the New Popular Front, he will not be Prime Minister& ;quot;, intervenes, among others, Pierre Jouvet, secretary general of the PS, on BFM.

Unifier on his name and foil on his name, will Jean-Luc Mélenchon be the scarecrow, agitated again Monday morning by the Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire on France Inter, which will prevent the NFP from capitalizing on its score of 28 % in the first round ? Anti-Semitism supposed for ambiguities on the conflict in the Middle East, positions considered complacent towards Vladimir Putin's Russia, "purge" frontists or even "affair" Quatennens, there is no shortage of points of tension.

René Revol : "A foil made by Macronie"

"I am amazed by the difference between an image that ended up penetrating people’s minds, and his person"< /em>, explains René Revol, the mayor (LFI) of Grabels, in Hérault, who"has known Jean-Luc Mélenchon since 1971".

"I’heard Bruno Le Maire again this morning, "LFI, it’anti-Semitism", and others "Yes, there was a slip"… which ? No complaint has been filed, it’s a noise, because’ he has been firm on the situation in Gaza. There are 30,000 dead there, it’s not anti-Semitic to say that! And the violence, but what violence ? He has character. His person is being used to break up the union of the left, deplores the elected official, who is still indignant at the declarations of Edouard Philippe on Sunday evening: "No votes for RN or LFI candidates".

“Absolute shame. We put on the same level someone who will not be able to come to power, because a tidal wave on the left will not allow them to exceed 100 seats, and the RN which can have 289. The situation is new, we are there, it is them or us, and there is nothing in between. When it was necessary to vote for Macron, we did not hesitate to do so… With the RN, it will be another France. I recall that from 1977 to 2008, until he slammed the door of the PS, Jean-Luc was a loyal socialist, always in favor of the result of the ballot boxes. On Sunday, at his HQ and then at the party organized at Place de la République, he was up to the task, insists René Revol.

The elected official agrees:"Of course Bardella has an interest in debating with Mélenchon, because he’s a foil made by Macronie".

Thomas Guénolé, political scientist committed to the left, for a time with LFI, before a shattering breakup, in 2019, the year of publication of the book "The fall of the Mélenchon house" (Albin Michel), subtitled "A dictatorial machine seen from the inside", has no state of mind.

"I have said and I will say again that my personal conflict with Jean-Luc Mélenchon no longer has any hope of importance while the extreme right is at the gates of power. I note that the lynching of Jean-Luc Mélenchon for anti-Semitism is based on hot air. I did my research, I did not find any call for hatred of Jews because they are Jews, on the other hand there are many anti-Israeli government positions. Rima Hassan may have been "limit" with comments that may resemble anti-Semitic conspiracy, but it's above all stupid! Around Mélenchon we invented a character who has nothing to do with who he is, initially a young PS apparatchik who defended social democracy. He has a lot of flaws, he is paranoid, he has enormous sensitivity and problematic egocentrism. He is capable of slipping up, without self-criticism. We are portraying him as an anti-Semitic or Islamo-leftist monster, that has nothing to do with reality, affirms Thomas Guénolé.

And he, who "had no intention of reinvesting in the political debate as a committed intellectual", y returns, with this history "of hard conflicts spent with Jean-Luc Mélenchon" : "You must not make the wrong fight".

"He should have remained a tutelary figure"

Stéphane Alliès also knows Jean-Luc Mélenchon very well. Author, with Lilian Germany, of a biography of Mélenchon, "Le Plébéien", in 2012, renamed "Mélenchon à la conquere du peuple" (ed. Robert Laffont), in 2018, the political journalist also retells the story of "fifty-six years of activism", at the PS then at the margins, until the creation of LFI, and the birth of the NFP.

His analysis joins that of Thomas Guénolé: "Jean-Luc Mélenchon is not a revolutionary! He has no historical leftist affiliation, has always been criticized by the far left, he is a man of the inner circle, a careerist, who was the youngest senator of France in 1986" , recalls Montpellier. "How, with the movement that it represents, could it be assimilated to the first anti-Semitic party in France ? There were wanderings, no doubt, guilty formulas. But never the slightest implementation of anti-Semitism, defends Stéphane Alliès.

The affair of the Keffiyeh?"It has never been as clear as Sunday evening and we reduce it to the keffiyeh affair". Mélenchon Prime Minister ? "N’anything ! But he is also responsible for that… five days after the Europeans, while the union of the left was going well, he triggered a political moment that his adversaries were waiting for by repersonalizing everything. He should have remained in his place, a tutelary figure.

For Stéphane Alliès, Jean-Luc Mélenchon above all shows the limits of the current left, after a "logic of activists without parties or parties without activists. He certainly saved the left, which was in the process of disappearing, and he can continue to support it, particularly in the cities, by succeeding in imposing LFI in the neighborhoods. But no further than where she is, it seems complicated to me. After July 7, the question will be to continue the unitary dynamic, and how.

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