Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Copé and les Pieds-Nickelés

For those with a Mediapart subscription, this may be amusing. But of course the "deal" brokered by Sarkozy to hold a referendum on whether there should be a new leadership election (really? is nothing too absurd to propose any more?) has already been scotched by Copé, who agreed to it, on the grounds that Fillon's formation of a separate parliamentary group and filing of a lawsuit are incompatible with the comity necessary to hold a pre-vote referendum. Yes, indeed, if Copé is good at anything, it is turning low politics, ballot-box stuffing, manipulation of party rules, and strong-arm tactics into high rhetorical principle.

Look, the bottom line here is that both sides cheated. Both sides always cheat in party elections. There would have been no problem if the cheating hadn't resulted in a dead heat. Now Copé is worried, probably because he cheated more than Fillon (see Bernard Girard, who really should correct his inaccurate spelling of Copé's name--perhaps he is confusing JFC with Benjamin Constant and the Coppet group, although that would be a stretch). But if Copé could not win even when he was in control and thought nobody was looking too closely at his tactics, he is undoubtedly afraid that he will lose outright in a fair (well, fairer) election. So he will do what he can to prevent it, especially since he has suffered more in polling than Fillon (who has also lost ground and tarnished his reputation, however). The longer this drags on, the more likely becomes a coup de théâtre such as a Sarko comeback, at least as interim leader.

The spectacle is riveting, though far from edifying.

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