Thursday, April 7, 2011
Jean-Louis Borloo has--predictably--quit the UMP to explore the possibility of a federation in the center of the political spectrum. He has competitors with similar dreams: Bayrou, of course, a perennial in this space; Hervé Morin; Jean Arthuis. This is a pretty small slice of the electorate for four contenders, so something will have to give. And nothing will work if the Socialists nominate Strauss-Kahn, who already encroaches on the center's space. If, however, DSK doesn't run and the PS moves left, there might be an opening here. It's a dangerous game, which could splinter the right to smithereens and open a highway for Marine Le Pen, but if Sarkozy sinks further, temptation may get the better of all those brave UMP folks who ran under independent labels in the cantonals. A centrist cover might do nicely. And then of course there's always the Villepin wild card: he floats above the center-right divide, in a space all his own: the Napoleonic stratosphere.