France’s top NGOs and unions have rallied against the first presidential campaign stop of Eric Zemmour, a far-right journalist whose candidacy would have been unthinkable prior to the Islamophobia wave which has gripped France since the start of the Great Financial Crisis.
Zemmour is being labelled a “Trumpian” candidate for many reasons. He is not part of any party and he has accused refugees of being “thieves, killers and rapists”. He has also been convicted for anti-Muslim speech and wants to ban the tradition of giving Muslim names like “Mohammad” to children.
Zemmour thrives on outrage, but his popularity also stems from the fact that France’s mainstream politicians have been totally discredited due to endless corruption scandals and kowtowing to the demands of Brussels and high finance.
It appears that the fight against Zemmour will serve as a safety valve, as it is being presented in the mainstream media as a fight for progressive politics. However, even if Zemmour does not make it to the second round, there seems to be essentially zero chance that an even moderately progressive candidate will take office in April.
It is essentially a three-person race, between Zemmour, the far-right’s Marine Le Pen, who lost in 2017, and the incumbent Emmanuel Macron.
Macron is on the far-right economically, and has also closed scores of mosques and forced the closure of the NGO, the Collective Against French Islamophobia. The center and left is running behind the conservatives, making France’s April election extremely right-wing, and seemingly more right-wing every day.