Today Segolene Royal's spokesman Arnaud Montebourg was summoned by the US ambassador in Paris to hear her views vis-a-vis the United States. Here's Montebourg's comments after the meeting:
"I told him we are admirers of the US. We don't forget the past and we celebrate every year the anniversary of our liberation from Nazism. But today we consider that the decisions taken by the Bush administration have aggravated the international system. This is why Ségolène Royal has expressed her friendship for the US while taking her distance from the Bush administration and moving closer to the Democratic party....these decisions led the American people themselves to react in the voting booth."
These comments were echoed today by Royal herself during a 4000 strong campaign rally in Metz:
"To be friendly does not want to say all to accept of his/her friend. To belong to the same democratic family implies, as in all the families, which one knows when it is necessary it to criticize, thunder and to be even annoyed, and it is true for the war in Iraq, this tragic error.
I say it very clearly: France will keep its autonomy of judgement and action with respect to the United States of America, and I will not be that which will tighten the hand of George Bush as if nothing were not, without a word for our tactical and strategic dissensions. France will act with independence and without arrogance, it will hold its course and it will affirm by my voice its principles."
A Democrat in the White House would certainly help the situation, although considering that Royal's US trip was cancelled because Hillary Clinton refused to meet with her, there is likely still a rocky road ahead.
Technorati tags: Ségolène Royal, Segolene Royal, Nicolas Sarkozy, Le Pen, Bayrou, UMP, PS, politics, politique, présidentielle, actualité, news, France