Marine Le Pen and Gérald Darmanin face each other this Thursday in a long-awaited televised debate between a far-right candidate in search of credibility and a heavyweight of the accused majority who will smell like presidential tournament 15 months before the election will go to the RN field.
Nobody wants to divulge their cartridges, but the two politicians are preparing for this exchange in France’s 2 “You Have the Word” political program, which should last 45 minutes and cover sovereign issues, secularism / Islamism, immigration and security.
The presidential candidate, who, according to the latest polls against Emmanuel Macron in the second round, is sharpening her arguments with the mysterious group of high-ranking officials of the Horatii, her second largest Jordan Bardella, her advisor Philippe Olivier or even the MEP Jean-Paul Garraud, lead author of his counter-proposal to separatism, and its communicators.
In the wake of the interior minister, we don’t want to reveal “what happens in the locker room” before the game. It is stressed, however, that Gérald Darmanin is “fully in his missions” that “touch the issues of the debate” on whether to defend the separatism bill (“to strengthen respect for the principles of the republic”) currently under discussion will be held at the meeting or to encourage the “Beauvau de la sécurité”, an unprecedented consultation on the police.
This personal interview is a test run for the candidate for the Elysee, who admits that she “missed” her debate against Emmanuel Macron in the two rounds of the 2017 presidential election – because she was “too offensive”.
This time Marine Le Pen comes up with a counter-proposal to separatism in which she specifically targets the “Islamist ideologies” which she sees as “everywhere” and which she wants to banish from all areas of society, starting with the sail.
The far-right leader criticizes the “semantic concession” of a government that “renounces the” Islamist enemy “and accepts the” brutality “of its bill, considering the need to fight Islamism -” totalitarian ideology “for the RN – “in the same way” as against National Socialism.
Immigration, “the breeding ground for communitarianism”
And it does not matter whether his counter-proposal is “unconstitutional or inapplicable in the current system,” as Marine Le Pen proposes to change the system, “notes right-wing specialist Jean-Yves Camus.
Marine Le Pen will also attack the government for immigration, which she considers “the breeding ground for communitarianism, which is itself the breeding ground for Islamist fundamentalism”.
For Gérald Darmanin, “we would be lying if we told the French that we would stop terrorism if we stopped immigration”, since “three quarters” of the perpetrators of the attacks in France are “French”.
With that, the minister Marine Le Pen said a “gift” for his debate, his niece Marion Maréchal said on CNews on Tuesday.
Marine Le Pen and Gérald Darmanin, who had already debated on television in October 2017, also responded to the meeting. When the member for Pas-de-Calais denounced the government’s “withdrawal” in the face of the “Islamist hydra”, Gérald Darmanin criticized the “great bad vagueness” of his proposals.
On Thursday, the minister wants to argue that “strong republican reactions can be achieved at the royal level without disregarding the rule of law proposed by Marine Le Pen”.
Gérald Darmanin dreams of the system from Bernard Tapie
The debate is also a test for the majority preparing for 2022, torn between proponents of “combat secularism” and those who do not want to stigmatize Islam.
The former mayor of Tourcoing (North) denies walking on the flower beds on the far right. “His whole political life was built up in struggle on the National Front,” (now RN), emphasizes his entourage.
Government spokesman Gabriel Attal assures us that Gérald Darmanin “will know how to dispel the fantasies, the lies of Marine Le Pen”. For a minister, this game is “the most popular against populism”. “Gérald Darmanin dreams of the system from Bernard Tapie,” he says.