A heckled visit, without meeting, which ends with a middle finger. The far-right polemicist Eric Zemmour, who could announce his presidential candidacy in the coming days, continues his media tour in the midst of turmoil.
An AFP photo caused a stir this Saturday at the end of Eric Zemmour’s eventful visit to Marseille. At the exit of a restaurant where the polemicist had just had lunch, a passer-by gave him a middle finger. The polemicist responded with the same gesture by affirming “and very deep”, under the amused gaze of his advisor Sarah Knafo, noted an AFP photographer.
A “cash” gesture assumed
An “instinctive gesture” that Eric Zemmour “assumes”, defends his entourage who compares this gesture to the “break yourself poor con” launched in February 2008 by President Nicolas Sarkozy to a farmer who refused his handshake.
But Eric Zemmour’s entourage did not wish to answer the question of whether this gesture was presidential. “Certainly that makes someone real,” we insisted. “He told us’ they insult me, they give me a finger, I answer cash” “.
In 2018, commenting on RTL on the photo of a young man making a middle finger alongside President Emmanuel Macron, Eric Zemmour estimated that it was “a symbolic guillotine”. Emmanuel Macron “was humiliated (…) and therefore France was humiliated”, he had estimated.
For the MEP RN Gilbert Collard, Éric Zemmour “should have avoided this middle finger, which is discourteous, out of place” but “we should not reverse the charge of the first action”. “It is not up to violent small groups to hinder the road” of Eric Zemmour, added the candidate for the LR nomination for the presidential election Eric Ciotti on BFMTV, who had said he was ready in September to vote Zemmour s ‘he found himself in the second round against Macron.
SOS Racisme believes that this gesture “reveals in an image a” very deep “truth: its pre-campaign, which ends in sausage water, is a permanent finger of honor to our country France, to its history and to its inhabitants” .
The Secretary of State for European Affairs Clément Beaune sees in it a “finger of dishonor” which shows, according to him, “the true face” of Eric Zemmour and of the extreme right: “It is the lack of respect, c ‘is division, it is hatred, it is violence ”.
“The problem of living well together in our country is not a problem of first name. It’s a problem of behavior and good manners, ”responded Hugues Renson, LREM vice-president of the National Assembly. For the Communist candidate Fabien Roussel, this gesture “reveals his personality and his misogyny which is matched only by his hatred of people of color and more generally of mankind”.
Set of setbacks
This episode comes on top of the difficulties encountered by Éric Zemmour at the end of his campaign-like tour, which began with a series of conferences resembling meetings and a survey boom which now seems to be marking time. In addition to polls that stagnate or fall (12% and 17% in the first round), rooms that have refused it as in London or Geneva, and a fragile organization criticized internally, the polemicist has failed to win. in his travels.
On Friday, he got off the train in Aix-en-Provence instead of Marseille where demonstrators were waiting for him. In the afternoon, he strolled for less than 15 minutes, in the Panier district, under the cries of demonstrators: “Zemmour break, anti-racist Marseille”. His stroll on the Old Port on Saturday was canceled.
Another setback, the polemicist lost this week the support of financier Charles Gave. “He has never been in the team,” Eric Zemmour defended on Friday. As for his friend Philippe de Villiers, he will not come to the Zénith in Paris on December 5 for his first campaign meeting. “He is a friend who does not keep his word,” lamented the polemicist. His lawyers have also announced their intention to sue the magazine Closer, which claims in its Friday edition that his close advisor Sarah Knafo is pregnant with him.
Despite these setbacks, there is no “micro doubt” about his candidacy, “we wait for him to press the button”, assures his entourage. The person, questioned on the hypothesis of a non-candidacy, considered this Saturday that it was “a big, almost metaphysical question”.