Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Sarkozy Mis en Examen

The question now becomes political: Can Sarkozy recapture the UMP, as he had been preparing to do, now that he has been mis en examen by a juge d'instruction (a position he had notoriously tried to destroy as president)? A rational person might view this second phase of the judicial procedure as a stroke of good fortune for the UMP if it sidelines Sarko permanently. Room may now exist for an untainted candidate, perhaps Juppé or Fillon. (Of course Juppé is untainted only if we agree to forget his conviction for corruption back in the day, but he is of course a new man, having been purged by hard Canadian winters).

The current affair is only one of several in which Sarkozy is enmeshed. If the bribery charge is proved, it lends credence to the charge of illegal financing of Sarkozy's 2007 campaign by Muammar Gaddafi--a flabbergasting allegation in light of Sarkozy's role in Gaddafi's ignominious fate.

The Woerth and Karachigate affairs also involve campaign financing, as does the more recent Bygmalion case. In view of the apparent corruption of French politics by the current system of campaign financing, it's remarkable that there has been so little discussion of reforming it.