It is the obsession of back to school. He is not yet a presidential candidate – will he really be? – that Eric Zemmour is already forcing LR and the RN to adapt their copy for 2022. Credited with 6 to 8% of voting intentions, according to the latest polls, the columnist manages to create a certain emulation to the right of the political chessboard. Especially since his book to be published on September 16, France has not said its last word (Rubempre editions), is already number one in sales on Amazon in the “News, politics and society” category.
“No one, whether within the Republicans or the National Rally, wants to give him these votes. So everyone wants to appear more to the right than Eric Zemmour “, analyzes Jean-Yves Camus, French political scientist specializing in the extreme right, for whom the polemicist represents” a sacred stone in the shoes of both parties “.
Latest examples to date? The recent interview with Valérie Pécresse at Sunday newspaper devoted to the fight against Islamism. Or the future acting president of the RN, Jordan Bardella, who took over, a few days ago on BFMTV, the racist and conspiratorial theory – so often defended by Eric Zemmour – of the “great replacement”. “Yes, there is a demographic shift which could raise fears that France will change its face in a few years, and it is already happening”, felt the RN framework, according to which the theory points to a reality “which is right”.
“If we can agree on the finding, let’s find solutions together”
Should we see the possibility of a rapprochement between Eric Zemmour and the RN? “If we can agree on the finding, let’s find the solutions together! “, Invites Sébastien Chenu, spokesperson for the RN. A position shared by Marine Le Pen, who accepted the idea of a dinner with Eric Zemmour to discuss their points of convergence. Refusal of the CNews polemicist: “No to the political back kitchen. Yes to public democratic debate, ”declares those around him to BFMTV. The tone is set.
On the side of the Republicans, we feign indifference. “Yes, he can grab a few voters from us. Yes, he is trying to orient the terms of the debate… But Eric Zemmour, unlike us, has no experience of managing the state, ”sweeps away Agnès Evren, spokesperson for the party, who nevertheless acknowledges that the columnist constitutes “The biggest disruptor of this election”. For her, Zemmour does not belong “to [sa] political family ”.
Within the party, others have a less clear-cut position, like Eric Ciotti, who created the embarrassment by declaring that he would vote for Eric Zemmour in the event of a second round against Emmanuel Macron. Words quickly defused by the President of the Republicans, Christian Jacob, who felt with RTL that it was not “the question of the moment” … before specifying that Eric Zemmour was “absolutely not infrequent”.
“Ciotti’s words are definitely the start of something. It is the emerged part of the Iceberg ”, rejoices Antoine Diers, spokesperson for the Friends of Eric Zemmour, an association which campaigns for the candidacy of the controversial presidential candidate. “The reality is that part of the Republicans trust neither Xavier Bertrand, nor Valérie Pécresse, and would recognize themselves much more in Zemmour, because without him, we repeat the history of 2017.” According to the spokesperson, it is this positioning “at the junction of the two parties” which makes the strength of his personality: “Not only does he speak to their two electorates, but he can also bring back abstainers, so obviously that makes them fear. “
Sponsorships that can be hard to find
Still, to be a candidate, Eric Zemmour must first bring together the 500 sponsorships of elected officials. If Antoine Diers recognizes that the task is complex for a candidate outside a traditional party. “We are starting to collect pledges of sponsorship, support… And 250 volunteers have already left to meet the mayors. “” Except that without the support of Robert Ménard [maire de Béziers apparenté RN], he will never have them, his sponsorships! We are a lot to think that it will flop… ”, tackles a framework of the Republicans. An observation shared by LR deputy Guillaume Larrivé, who had nevertheless invited him to debate at the party’s headquarters in 2019: “Zemmour is an agitator of ideas, but he is not a statesman. I believe him to be as apt to become President of the Republic as to be elected Pope ”.
Before the Elysee or the Vatican, Eric Zemmour has in any case an appointment at the Paris judicial court, this Wednesday, for “provocation to discrimination” and “racial insults” after comments on unaccompanied minor migrants in September 2020. In view of the risks of postponing the hearing, the trial could be held,
according to Marianne… In the heart of the electoral campaign.