Saturday, February 25, 2017

Trump's comments about France can be viewed as inflammatory politics in the USA, but, it could equate to be more or less a battle in Europe.

December 6, 2016
By Peter Allen and Linda Willgress

France's far-right (click here) National Front topped the country's regional election vote on Sunday in a breakthrough that shakes up the country's political landscape. Above, National Front leader leader Marine Le Pen casts her vote at a polling station during the first round of votes on Sunday in Henin-Beaumont, northern France

February 25, 2017
By Rebecca Flood

Marine Le Pen, (click here) the leader of France's National Front (FN), is fighting to achieve a similar earthquake in France in the presidential elections in 2017.

But with her increasing appeal to the centre and the left of French politics, how much can she really be characterised as far-right?

Voters' perceptions and a toxic past

Marine Le Pen is the youngest daughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen, former leader of the FN and a convicted racist, who last year repeated an old anti-Semitic slur that the Nazi gas chambers were "a detail of history".

Having grown up in a political home, accompanying him to meetings from the age of 13, Marine Le Pen was always going to struggle to shake off the far-right labell.

But she did denounce her father's comments in 2015, and effectively expelled him from the party. While her father was leader, the FN was the party that wanted to deport three million foreigners, the party of Holocaust denial and xenophobia. But under Marine Le Pen the FN began to distance itself from such controversial issues.