Relative majority or not, here is a text that was hardly discussed in the Assembly, despite the clear opposition of the three groups on the left. MPs basically approved on Tuesday a bill on programming and orientation of the Ministry of the Interior, which provides for an additional 15 billion euros over five years, a text adopted with the assistance of LR and RN despite opposition from a large part of the left.
The text submitted by Minister Gerald Darmanin was adopted on first reading by 419 votes to 116, with 35 abstentions. Elected communists, environmentalists and LFI voted unanimously against, while the socialists abstained. After the vote, the minister welcomed a “historic” text giving “police, gendarmes, firefighters and agents of the prefecture” “the means to protect the French”.
The right congratulates itself on certain victories
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The bill has already been successfully passed in the Senate (307 votes in favor, including socialists, 27 against). Deputies and senators will now try to agree on a common version of the text in a joint commission. “We welcome the increase in appropriations and the recruitment of 8,500 police positions” over a five-year term, LR MP Jan Bukar said before the solemn vote, reiterating, however, that his group considers the bill “insufficient”.
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Right-wing elected officials have nearly doubled the number of places in administrative detention centers for irregular aliens to 3,000. “It’s not enough to pour money in,” Jordan Gitton told RN, believing the text was more reflective of the minister’s “communicative ambitions” even if his group voted to “support the forces of order.”
Socialists stand apart on the left
The LFI, communist MPs and environmentalists, on the other hand, criticized the vision as being in conflict with the “local police” they defend. Also in their plans is an increase in the number of offenses for which a fixed tort fine imposed by an agent out of court can be imposed, for example, for obstructing traffic. “These are always the same old Nicolas Sarkozy recipes that you have chosen to “pump” (…) the quantity, the figure at the expense of research time,” said Ecologist Minister Sandra Regol.
“It would be foolish not to recognize the advances contained in this text, and, in particular, the budgetary efforts made,” argued the socialist Roger Vico for his part, recalling, however, the State Council’s warning about “failure to provide the budget in the coming years. Less hostile than other Nupes MPs, the MP nonetheless denounced “the extension of lump sum criminal fines to breaking into schools and blocking the roadway (which) raises a real democratic question regarding the law of manifestation.” Defending “insulting abstention”, he, like other left-wing deputies, condemned the forthcoming reform of the judicial police, as well as the lack of measures in the text in favor of the connection of the police with the population.
What are the main measures of the text?
With the increase in appropriations, 11 new units of mobile forces “specializing in operational intervention” will be created. And, to ensure security in the countryside, 200 gendarmerie brigades.
To combat cybercrime, which is constantly on the rise, the text will allow the seizure of digital assets such as cryptocurrencies. The bill also opens up the possibility for certain offenses to file a complaint via videoconferencing and increases the crackdown on sexist and sexual slurs. It also presents the ministry’s roadmap (on digital, training, Frontex’s place in national border control, etc.) with no legislative value.