FRANCE: FRENCH FAR-RIGHT LEADER JEAN-MARIE LE PEN FAILS IN HIS ATTEMPT TO WIN CONTROL OF THE REGIONAL COUNCIL IN...
- Title: FRANCE: FRENCH FAR-RIGHT LEADER JEAN-MARIE LE PEN FAILS IN HIS ATTEMPT TO WIN CONTROL OF THE REGIONAL COUNCIL IN HIS MARSEILLE
- Date: 23rd March 1998
- Summary: MARSEILLE, FRANCE (MARCH 23,1998) (RTV - ACCESS ALL) 1. SV ANTI-LE PEN DEMONSTRATORS WITH BANNERS IN FRONT OF REGIONAL COUNCIL BUILDING. 0.07 2. SLV/SV/CU OF DEMONSTRATORS/LEAFLET (3 SHOTS) 0.29 3. PAN OF THE REGIONAL MEETING ROOM 0.39 4. SV JEAN MARIE LE PEN VOTING (FN) 0.53 5. SV FRANCOIS LEOTARD VOTING (UDF-RPR) 1.04 6. SV ROOM 1.10 7. SV MICHEL VAUZELLE VOTING (PS) 1.20 8. SV/CU VOTES BEING COUNTED (2 SHOTS) 1.28 9. LV/SV WIDE SHOT OF WINNER MICHEL VAUZELLE BEING APPLAUDED (2 SHOTS) 1.44 10. MCU LE PEN SAYING:"I'M TAKING NOTE THAT THE LEFT-WING IS SUCCEEDING IN THE ELECTION WHEREAS RIGHT-WING REGIONAL COUNCILLORS WERE IN A MAJORITY BECAUSE OF MR LEOTARD'S BETRAYAL" (FRENCH) 1.58 11. SV MICHEL VAUZELLE CHEERED BY SUPPORTERS IN THE STREETS OUTSIDE THE REGIONAL COUNCIL BUILDING 2.07 PARIS, FRANCE (MARCH 23, 1998)(RTV- ACCESS ALL) 12. SV/CU EXTERIOR OF THE ILE DE FRANCE REGIONAL COUNCIL BUILDING, POLICEMAN OUTSIDE (3 SHOTS) 2.28 13. LV INTERIOR REGIONAL COUNCIL MEETING ROOM 2.21 14. MCU FORMER PRIME MINISTER EDOUARD BALLADUR 2.22 15. SV SOCIALIST SPORT MINISTER ANNE MARIE IDRAC SEATED 2.25 16. MCU OF SOCIALIST CANDIDATE JEAN PAUL HUCHON 2.29 17. SV OF FORMER REGIONAL COUNCIL PRESIDENT CHARLES PASQUA 2.31 18. TV/CU PEOPLE VOTING (8 SHOTS) 3.14 19. LV/SV ANTI-LE PEN DEMONSTRATORS NEAR THE REGIONAL COUNCIL BUILDING (4 SHOTS) 3.33 20. MCU OF DEMONSTRATORS SHOUTING: "NO NATIONAL FRONT IN OUR REGION", "THE FRONT WILL NOT GO THROUGH IN OUR UPPER COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES" (FRENCH) 3.45 21. LV/SV OF PROTESTORS, RIOT POLICE STANDING BY (8 SHOTS) 4.33 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Reuters ID: LVAAHVHN6879CR2WN5OOITOX4O92
- Location: MARSEILLE AND PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Duration: 00:04:32
- Story Text: French far-right leader Jean-Marie Le Pen has failed in his attempt to win control of the regional council in his Riviera stronghold.
Ignoring calls for support from Le Pen, conservative councillors split the right-wing vote in Marseille on Monday (March 23) to let former Socialist Justice Minister Michel Vauzelle be elected council chairman.
Le Pen, whose anti-foreigner party won 15.5 percent of the March 15 regional vote, seemed to have overplayed his hand by bluntly demanding centre-right support after his Front helped elect conservatives in five other regions on Friday.
That tactical stroke provoked a wave of criticism over the weekend, shook the mainstream right to its foundations and led to a backlash against right-wing candidates in other local elections held on Sunday.
Le Pen's defeat in his Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur (PACA) stronghold appeared to pave the way for a left-wing victory later on Monday in the biggest of France's 22 regions, the greater Paris area called Ile-de-France.
Le Pen and Bruno Megret, the Front deputy leader who masterminded the new strategy, had made their support for conservatives there contingent on a Front victory in PACA.
Two other regions, Midi-Pyrenees and Haute-Normandie, were also due to vote for their chairmen on Monday.The PACA vote meant the right now controls 13 regions and the left four.
The National Front, shunned for years because of its aggressively anti-foreigner stand, made a major breakthrough last week when five conservatives, including former Defence Minister Charles Millon, agreed to accept its help to win election in their regions.
This tactic reversed what looked like a big victory for Prime Minister Lionel Jospin's "plural left" of Socialists, Communists and Greens, whose joint slates won relative majorities in half the regions.
It also opened deep splits in the conservative camp, especially in the centrist Union for French Democracy (UDF).
All five Front-supported mavericks were UDF candidates.
UDF leader Francois Leotard suspended the renegades, but his own future as a national leader looked in doubt after he could not even keep his own troops in line in the PACA vote.
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