CRIF, the umbrella representative body of Jewish organizations in France, welcomed the results of Sunday’s French regional runoff elections in which the extreme right Front National of Marine Le Pen failing to win any regional presidency.
CRIF had called on voters to block the party after it won the first round nationally and claimed victories in six of the country’s 13 regions, the European Jewish Press (EJP) reported Monday.
EJP quoted a CRIF statement:
CRIF welcomes with satisfaction the citizen’s reaction which blocked the road of regions to the Front National. The strong citizen mobilization around the Republican values should be for the government and the entire political class an opportunity to effectively address the causes of growth of extremes.
The center-right Republican party of former President Nicolas Sarkozy won more regional presidencies seats than the ruling Socialist party of President Francois Hollande.
The Socialists contributed to the defeat of the National Front by withdrawing from the election contest in the northern region of Nord-Pas-de-Calais-Picardie and in the South’s Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur, where Le Pen’s niece was on the ballot.
Instead of splitting the anti-Le Pen vote with Sarkozy’s party, all the votes went to the Republican candidate.
EJP noted, “The Front National founder Jean-Marie Le Pen has been several times convicted for racism and anti-Semitism. But her daughter Marine, who took over the party’s leadership, has distanced herself and the party from her father and his record.”