Thursday, November 22, 2012
A Juppé-Fillon Axis?
Alain Juppé has stepped into the Fillon-Copé dogfight. He will lead an "independent commission" charged with sorting out the mess created by the 50-50 vote split and allegations of errors and irregularities in any number of bureaux de vote. Juppé, one of the founders of the UMP, is unhappy with la droitisation of the party, first under Sarkozy and his advisor Patrick Buisson and now under Copé. Although Fillon, despite having "renounced" the presidency of the UMP, leapt eagerly on Juppé's announcement, Copé was understandably reluctant. But Juppé then issued an ultimatum, and Copé, whose position seemed increasingly untenable, finally gave in, although he will presumably fight tooth and nail to have any recount supervised by the Cocoe, where his supporters are numerous. But Juppé is too canny to accept such a one-sided deal and will undoubtedly press for a compromise, because, as he says, it is no longer the presidency but the existence of the UMP that is in question. All in all, one of the most incredible spectacles of recent French political history.