Saturday, February 3, 2007
The French papers have been swarming with articles about Frenchman José Bové during the past week, who just announced that he will be running for the presidency. Considering that the news deluge continues, we might as well pay some attention to him.
Bove is an fringe politician by any definition; he is a member of the alter-globalization movement, an activist against genetically modified crops, war, and apparently fast food. His rise to fame came after he helped lead the destruction of a McDonald's in Millau, France in 1999, which resulted in a 44 day prison sentence. This was neither his for nor last arrest. According to Wikipedia, Bove is has also announced that he will join the People's Congress of Kurdistan. This group is a designated terrorist group by the EU and US, so by some logic he might be a terrorist too : )
Regardless of his past, Bove's candidacy will face challenges. He first must collect the 500 signatures necessary to run, which should be no easy task in itself, especially since his equal on the right, Jean-Marie Le Pen, is still working to fill that requirement. The French also don't want Bove to run. A poll taken on January 24 said that a full 71% of the French didn't want him as a candidate, compared with a support of only 29%. Just like Sarkozy has had to deal with Le Pen, now Segolene Royal will have to deal with her own ultra-left-wing challenger. Bove's candidacy is still unlikely to change the race dramatically in terms of the next president, but he will certainly add a bit new drama.
Technorati tags: Bove, politics, politique, présidentielle, actualité, France