Santonian News Central

Discussion in 'National RolePlay' started by Kyle, Aug 23, 2018.

  1. Kyle

    Kyle is trash - -

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    OOC: Welcome to Santonian News Central! In this thread I will post newsbits from Saintonge. This will primarily be a linking thread.

    News Organisations:
    National
    l'Independant: National broadsheet newspaper, independent, centrist
    l'Étoile: tabloid, left-leaning

    Regional:
    la Voix de Champagne: regional newspaper for the Champagne region [with 13 local editions covering Langres (Chalaronne), Sens + Villefranche-en-Champagne, Senlis (Dropt), Corbeil (Epte), Nogent/Lisle (Lisle), Provins, Lagny/Saine, Montereau-fault-Yèvre (Puy-d'Or), Beauséjour (Rhue), Bicêtre, Surgères (Saine-et-Loine), Trappes, and Sainte-Menehould (Sambre)]
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
  2. Kyle

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    [​IMG]

    Santonians Abroad will have a Parliamentary Seat

    by Mélanie Bacrot in Saintes
    16 May 2018 - 1325h

    SAINTES – King Thibault II yesterday issued Royal Assent to Act 2018-0345, which introduced representation for Santonians living abroad by giving them a seat in the Santonian National Assembly, the lower house of Parliament.

    The Proposal
    The tripartisan proposal was introduced in the National Assembly by deputies Marcelline Tréhet (N, 2nd Côtes-du-Nord), Paul-Lenthéric Baumann (L, 2nd Lauter), and Jean-Jacques Fargeau (R, 1st Simbruins). The proposal introduces adds an additional seat to the next National Assembly, to be voted upon by Santonians living abroad. Previously, Santonians abroad who managed to vote did so in their most recent electoral circumscription of residence; which is difficult to prove if the Santonian citizen was born abroad or had no longer maintained residency in the country. With the new law, they will no longer have to vote within their previous electoral district; the rest of the world (Santonians abroad) is considered as one electoral circumscription.

    It also makes voting easier. Previously, Santonians living abroad had to apply for an absentee ballot from their electoral circumscription, which will be mailed to them one month before the election day. The voter then has to send back the marked ballots, and it has to be received within two days after election day. Given the slowness of some of the world’s postal systems, many Santonians’ votes do not reach the electoral board on time, or sometimes, they don’t even receive their ballots.

    The proposal also sped up the voting process; the absentee voter will have to cast his/her ballot at Santonian embassies and consulates around the world, which now serves as voting precincts. Counting will be held there and the results sent to the Royal Elections Institute for tallying.

    Another difference is that the deputy for the Electoral Circumscription for Santonians Abroad will be elected via the first-past-the-post system, instead of the two-round system in Saintonge proper. According to the proponents, this is to make the elections more accessible and efficient to run, since most countries are covered by only one or two foreign stations – thus, a voter having to travel twice in the event of a two-round election may depress turnout.

    Passage
    The proposal was passed unanimously by the National Assembly 398-0 last May 7 and by the House of Lords 196-0 last May 12. It will enter into force after publication in the official government publication le Journal Royal de Saintonge. The new seat will be contested in the next Parliamentary elections.

    translation by Kyle MacTaggart-de Flesselles
    16 May 2018 - 1644h

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    Last edited: Oct 29, 2018
  3. Kyle

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    la Voix de [​IMG] Champagne

    Sylvain Audrain passes away


    19 May 2018 J-L. de T.
    BICÊTRE – Sylvain Audrain, Liberal deputy for the 21st electoral circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine, had passed away at Bicêtre Hospital from complications of pancreatic cancer. He was 54. He is survived by his wife Marine, children Sébastien, Thomas, Laurence, and Pauline, and three grandchildren.

    Mr. Audrain had served as deputy of the 21st circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine since 2015. Previously the mayor of Bezonvaux (Saine-et-Loine), a councillor in the General Council of the Saine-et-Loine, and eventually President of the General Council of the Saine-et-Loine, Mr. Audrain was elected in 2015 as deputy to the National Assembly.

    Necrological services will be held on 21 May at his hometown of Bezonvaux. The family requests that instead of sending flowers, donations to the Sylvain Audrain Foundation could be sent instead.
     
  4. Kyle

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    [​IMG]

    JLHC: “We’re not pushing for secularism”
    Prime Minister contradicts deputy

    21 May 2018 D.A.
    SAINTES – in an interview with the broadcaster Saintonge Télévisions (ST1) yesterday, Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux of the Liberals directly contradicted the statements made by Deputy Prime Minister Georges Conté de Caunes of the Radicals.

    “This government is not going to introduce laïcité any time soon,” Mr. Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux told journalist Élodie-Anne Placé. “That’s not in the works.”

    Ms. Placé, surprised, brought up Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Church Affairs Georges Conté de Caunes’ statements last week that the government will be pushing for more secularism and laïcité. The remarks elicited responses from the acting Leader of the Opposition, Marc Gaucelin of the National Party, and from the Archbishops of Embrun and Tiffauges.

    A visibly annoyed Prime Minister told Ms. Placé, “No laïcité. We're not pushing for it. We have a lot more issues to tackle in government.” The Prime Minister refrained from further commenting on the issue and went on to other topics.

    Also yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Laurent Junot of the Greens replied to a similar question from a journalist in an ambush interview. “No, I haven’t yet seen such a proposal brought up in the Cabinet. Perhaps it’s just one of Mr. Conté de Caunes’ crazy ideas.”
     
  5. Kyle

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    la Voix de [​IMG] Champagne

    Special election a test for the government, opposition

    22 May 2018 R-C. G.
    SAINTES - Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux had just seen his majority in the National Assembly dwindle to 3. With the death of deputy Sylvain Audrain, the balance at the National Assembly stands at 213-216.

    A special election for the 21st electoral circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine was called by the Royal Elections Institute and was set for 6 August. While the Liberal-Radical-Green Coalition government is not in danger of losing its majority if the Nationals win the seat, it now being widely touted as a barometer for the fractious Coalition government, now in the middle of its term. It is also seen as a test for the divided National Party, which, after the recriminations from the 2015 defeat, is still struggling to act as a credible opposition to the Coalition government.

    The four parties will be having their nomination conventions at the end of the month, in time for the start of the campaign period on 11 June.
     
  6. Kyle

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    la Voix de [​IMG] Champagne

    Courseaux wins the National Party nomination

    30 May 2018 R-C. G.
    SURGÈRES (SAINE-ET-LOINE) – former Miss Saintonge Ms. Anne-Douceline Courseaux won the nomination for the special election in the 21st electoral circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine. She will be facing the Liberals’ Daniel Guyonvarc, the Radicals’ Alain Bellefontaine, and the Greens’ Laurence-Dianne Juneau-Lamoreaux in an election on 6 August.

    Ms. Courseaux was selected by an overwhelming margin of voters in the local National Party convention, winning 83% of the ballots cast, avoiding a runoff. Her selection is not unexpected: Ms. Courseaux also serves as the leader of the National Party in the Departmental Council of the Saine-et-Loine and is one of the more prominent departmental party leaders of the National Party. The win by Ms. Courseaux, a leader of the Rénovateur wing of the National Party, signifies that the faction is gaining ascendancy within the National Party. Her young age (she is 37) is also a signal that the youth faction is increasingly participating in the party’s direction.

    Ms. Courseaux was also undoubtedly helped by her name recognition and connections in the area. She is familiar to most voters and to the nation: she was a winner of the Miss Saintonge beauty pageant in the year 2000, and has a moderately popular Viedéo channel. She still co-hosts a weekly talk show, Mères sait mieux, aired by Canal+, Saintonge’s biggest private TV channel. Ms. Courseaux’s husband, the farmer Mathieu-Brice Sabatier, is from the village of Sully-sur-Loine, located within the district. The couple own a home and a farm in nearby Beaugency, where they raise their four children.

    With Ms. Courseaux’s selection, the National Party had come to the forefront in the special election. Given the tilt of the 21st circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine, a National win is likely for this district.
     
  7. Kyle

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    la Voix de [​IMG] Champagne

    Nationals win special election

    7 August 2018 R-C. G.
    CHARNY-SUR-LOINE (SAINE-ET-LOINE) – The Coalition government suffered a setback yesterday as the National Party won the special elections to fill the seat of the 21st electoral circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine, which was previously held by the late Mr. Sylvain Audrain.

    Ms. Anne-Douceline Courseaux of the National Party did not even need a runoff as she won the first round outright with 69% of the vote, in a 73% voter turnout. The Liberals’ Guyonvarc took the second place with 20%, with the Radicals’ Bellefontaine and Greens’ Juneau-Lamoreaux splitting the remainder with 9% and 2% respectively.

    Though the results did not surprise most observers who widely predicted a National win in the district, it nevertheless reduces the Coalition’s majority in the National Assembly; with 216 seats for the Liberal-Radical-Green coalition and 214 seats for the National Party.
     
  8. Kyle

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    [​IMG]

    Know a Deputy

    Editor's Note: "Know a Deputy" is a special feature of L'Indépendant that aims to profile all 430 members of the Santonian National Assembly in preparation for elections in 2020. We have sent invites to all deputies for an interview and will be featuring the deputies in order of their response to our invitation. Our first interviewee is Saintonge's newest deputy and the first to respond to our invitation.

    Beauty queen reigns in the Saine-et-Loine
    [​IMG]
    Ms. Anne-Douceline Courseaux (N, 21st Saine-et-Loine)

    Name of Deputy: Anne-Douceline Courseaux
    Also known as: Miss Saintonge 2000
    District: 21st electoral circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine
    Party: National Party

    Born: 22 December 1980, Meung-sur-Loine (Scyotte)
    Residence: Beaugency (Saine-et-Loine)

    BEAUGENCY (SAINE-ET-LOINE) – a beauty queen reigns over the 21st electoral circumscription of the Saine-et-Loine. Ms. Anne-Douceline Courseaux won 6 August special election in the district after the death of its former deputy Mr. Sylvain Audrain of the Liberals, in the process narrowing the Coalition’s majority in the National Assembly.

    Ms. Courseaux was born in Meung-sur-Loine, as the 4th of 5 children of a farming family. “Manual labour is no stranger to me,” she said once in her talk show, “I grew up castrating hogs in our farm.” She was a regular in local beauty pageants as well, and was spotted by an agent when she won the 1999 Miss Scyotte title while studying Agribusiness in community college. With the win in the departmental beauty pageant, the Tyrossian farm girl earned a ticket to the 2000 Miss Saintonge beauty pageant. Ms. Courseaux impressed the judges and the country with her beauty, quick wit, and her down-to-earth attitude. Ms. Courseaux became Miss Saintonge 2000, after which she became a model and TV personality. She starred in various movies and TV shows, including the celebrity edition of the reality TV show L’amour est dans le pré, which is the Santonian version of “Farmer Wants a Wife”. Ms. Courseaux also won that one, marrying the farmer Mathieu-Brice Sabatier in 2006. They now have two sets of twins, for a total of four children.

    Even though her rural roots helped her win in the TV show, Mr. Sabatier apparently didn’t really need a farmer wife who will help him ride the tractor or castrate the hogs. Ms. Courseaux continued to appear on television, and currently hosts a Saturday talk show Mères sait mieux (“Mothers know best”) aimed primarily at mothers. Ms. Courseaux said it was actually her husband that prodded her to continue in show business.
    [​IMG]
    Madame Courseaux as Miss Saintonge 2000.

    It was also with her husband’s encouragement that she entered politics. When the Liberal-led departmental council of the Saine-et-Loine wanted to make it easier to convert more farmland into residential suburbia, Ms. Courseaux mobilised voters and councillors against the proposal. “My husband was egging me on,” she said, “He told me, ‘if you don’t like it, campaign against it.’” She then ran in the 2008 departmental elections, on the list for the intendancy of Charny-sur-Loine. In the departmental council of the Saine-et-Loine, she is viewed as a defender of rural and farming interests. The President of the General Council at the time, Mr. Audrain, was rumoured to have said, “Never insult Coulommiers cheese. The farm girl beauty queen from Charny might get angry.”

    Ms. Courseaux is also an important and prominent local leader in the Rénovateur (“Renovator”) wing of the National Party, a faction within the party that aims to “reconstruct and rebuild” the party after its electoral defeat in the 2015 parliamentary elections. It is with the support of this faction that she was nominated as the National candidate in the special election, which she won. Now a deputy in the National Assembly, a TV host, a farmer’s wife, and a mother-of-four young children, Ms. Courseaux said that “I want to be an inspiration for everybody, especially for mothers. Despite the challenges family life will offer, you can still do whatever you like.” ●

    Interview and Article by Marie-Claire Suaudeau
    Translated by Jérôme-Caden Barceloux Colcolough
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  9. Kyle

    Kyle is trash - -

    Messages:
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    [​IMG]

    Know a Deputy

    Editor's Note: "Know a Deputy" is a special feature of L'Indépendant that aims to profile all 430 members of the Santonian National Assembly in preparation for elections in 2020. We have sent invites to all deputies for an interview and will be featuring the deputies in order of their response to our invitation.

    DJ MP
    [​IMG]
    DJ Kyle Freako (N, 1st Dropt)

    Name of Deputy: Kylian Fricoteaux
    Also known as: DJ Kyle Freako
    District: 1st electoral circumscription of the Dropt
    Party: National Party

    Born: 17 January 1984, Lomenie-de-Brienne (Dropt)
    Residence: Lomenie-de-Brienne (Dropt)

    BRIENNE (DROPT) - Widely popular DJ Kyle Freako has another job after retiring from making wildly popular electronic dance music in 2014. Another celebrity-turned-deputy, Kylian Fricoteaux (his real name) is now the deputy for the 1st electoral circumscription of the Dropt.

    Mr. Fricoteaux was born in the small village of Lomenie-de-Brienne within the district to a family of cheesemakers. The youngest of five children, he was sent to the city of Sens to live with a childless aunt. But as DJ Kyle Freako admits, “I was a bad, misguided kid. Thank goodness my Aunt Delphine had the patience of Job and a disposition of a saint. She had to put up with a lot.”

    Mr. Fricoteaux attended his first rave party (without Aunt Delphine’s permission) at the age of 11. He was hooked. He ran away several times to attend parties, as far away as Saintes. He also learned how to DJ when he was 15. “I wasn’t just interested in attending. I want to make music.” Mustering up enough courage, he apprenticed himself with various DJs to learn their trade. At 18, he left Sens for Saintes, which has a larger and more lively party scene.

    Now going by the name DJ Kyle Freako (a word play on his real name), he was at first hired as a freelance DJ in various dance clubs in Saintes, which meant that he didn’t have regular employment. “I am familiar with the food bank at Saint-Brice,” he said in an interview with Pierre Roulante music magazine back in 2009, “and now, I donate to the food bank.”

    His work slowly became popular through the online video-sharing website Viedéo and the music streaming service Stopify. His work Transe de Dieu became viral, and he was picked up in 2005 by the recording company Multiversal Music. During his short time in the industry, he was very popular and prolific: his subsequent albums Kyle Freako (2006), Saint-Onge (2008), Les aveux d’un homme mort (2011), and Les morceaux cachées (2013) were all certified platinum. However, while seemingly at the peak of his career, DJ Kyle Freako decided to call it quits, retiring from making music in 2014 after finishing his Morceaux tour.

    DJ Kyle Freako, now back to being Kylian Fricoteaux, returned to his hometown and his family. He had rescued their financially struggling cheesemaking family business and invited back Aunt Delphine to live in his big new house. “I have my future financially secure, but I felt the aimlessness,” Mr. Fricoteaux said in a 2016 interview with the local newspaper La Voix de Champagne. “I wanted to do something, to try something.”

    When the former deputy for the 1st electoral circumscription of the Dropt retired in 2015, Mr. Fricoteaux threw his hat into the ring. “Just to see what it looks like,” he said. The unpopularity of the National Party in 2015 meant that Mr. Fricoteaux had few challengers to the National Party nomination. He won the nomination on the second ballot, defeating more experienced politicians in the district. Capitalising on his popularity and influence on the youth, Mr. Fricoteaux won in the second round of the 2015 parliamentary elections. Despite running as the National Party candidate, being a fresh face in an anti-incumbent environment (his second-round opponent was the Liberal mayor of Brienne) helped a lot in his victory as well.

    Now swapping his headphones and outlandish costumes with a suit, Mr. Fricoteaux admits he is enjoying his stint as deputy. “I like it. I might stay on for a while here.” ●

    Interview and Article by Marc-Tobias Guilbault
    Translated by Jérôme-Caden Barceloux Colcolough
     
  10. Kyle

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    [​IMG]

    Les Perspectives by Marie-Danielle Ponceau
    Rocking the Boat

    18 August 2018
    Observers are surprised that the Liberal-Radical-Green government had survived this far. United by their opposition to the National Party, yet far apart in their ideology, most analysts predicted that this government won’t last long.

    And yet it is now on the third of its five-year term. That is not to say that it has been a smooth ride. In fact, it is a rocky one, as evidenced by repeated dissensions within government. The government has been saved only by the weakness of the opposition. For instance, with the 2016 Primeau Law in that instituted civil unions for same-sex couples, the government would’ve been defeated as some socially conservative Liberal deputies voted against; they were only saved by National Party deputies who voted for the law. With the 2017 Caruhel Law liberalising the labour market, the Greens opposed it. The government was saved when National Assembly President Jean-Claude Arrivé scheduled the vote at a time when several National Party deputies were absent and the law squeaked through the National Assembly despite the Greens voting against the government. The anger of the Greens was such that GCC was forced to publicly declare that no other liberalising labour laws will be passed during this government’s term.

    The leaders of the three parties, Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux (JLHC) of the Liberals, and Deputy Prime Ministers Georges Conté de Caunes (GCC) of the Radicals and Laurent Junot of the Greens are not afraid to spar publicly. JLHC and GCC, both of aristocratic descent, treat Junot as a pissant commoner; yet they need Junot’s 4 parliamentary deputies in the closely-divided National Assembly.

    It had been a turbulent three years. Now the boat is being rocked again, by proposals to “secularise” the country; or, in GCC’s words, the need for “laïcité”. The Radicals, being economically conservative and socially progressive, is the direct polar opposite of the (mostly) economically progressive and socially conservative Santonian National Church. Thus calls for laïcité are strongest from the Radical camp. To a lesser extent, the Greens also share fondness for laïcité, since their leftmost wing contain communistic factions. Junot, though, being from the right wing of the Green Party, is less likely to support such proposals.

    But the Liberals, even though they disagree with the Church on economic issues, are very resistant to laïcité. Last May, Prime Minister JLHC publicly brushed off proposals for introducing complete separation of church and state in Saintonge, contradicting GCC’s public pronouncements.

    Now there seems to be another trouble brewing. Aside from the laïcité issue, which seems to pit Radicals against the Liberals and the Greens, the Radicals are now reneging on GCC’s promise not to touch labour laws once again.

    Labour Minister Jean-Charles Caruhel and his deputy, the Liberal Jean-Édouard Vuilletet, are proposing further loosening of Saintonge’s labour laws. These reforms, dubbed Caruhel II, will make it easier for employers to fire employees, cap overtime pay rates that can be negotiated by unions, and, in what will surely infuriate the labour sector, institute a “right to work” law in Saintonge. The previous reform, Caruhel I, was responsible for allowing workers to declare themselves as non-members of union, but the union will still be able to collect dues. Under the proposed Caruhel II, non-union workers in a unionised company will no longer have to pay dues. Aside from that, Caruhel II will also empower employers to prohibit the formation of unions in their companies.

    The proposed laws was introduced in Parliament last Monday and was met with vociferous opposition from Junot. “That is unacceptable. We have been promised that they will no longer destroy worker’s protections. The Green Party cannot remain part of a government that sides against our workers.”

    The threat, issued two days ago, was met with derision from JLHC and GCC. “I don’t think Junot will stoop to that low,” said GCC. “Is he serious?” JLHC reportedly said, “No, he’s probably not.”

    The proposed Caruhel II reforms is most likely to pit the economically rightist Liberals and Radicals against the economically leftist Greens. JLHC and GCC will need to tread carefully, lest the Greens break the government coalition. But with the opposition Nationals still in disarray, the two aristocrats think they can still get away with ignoring the Greens. ●

    Translated by Kyle MacTaggart-de Flesselles
    19 Aug 2018 ~ 0927 h
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
  11. Kyle

    Kyle is trash - -

    Messages:
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    [​IMG]

    Know a Deputy

    Editor's Note: "Know a Deputy" is a special feature of L'Indépendant that aims to profile all 430 members of the Santonian National Assembly in preparation for elections in 2020. We have sent invites to all deputies for an interview and will be featuring the deputies in order of their response to our invitation.

    Always a winner
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    Brice-Cédric Charbonneau (N, 6th Cenise)

    Name of Deputy: Brice-Cédric Charbonneau
    Also known as: Cédric
    District: 6th electoral circumscription of the Cenise
    Party: National Party

    Born: 23 September 1981, Aulnay-sous-Saintes (Cenise)
    Residence: Aulnay-sous-Saintes (Cenise)

    AULNAY-SOUS-SAINTES (CENISE) - He was always a winner. Having been instrumental in the “three-peat” championship titles of his old club Saintes-Saints-Brice Football Club (which, contrary to the widespread adulatory joke, is not named after him), the former star striker is now winning elections as deputy in his hometown.

    Cédric was born in the city of Aulnay-sous-Saintes, a Cenise city just across the capital’s northeastern city limits. The reputation of Aulnay-sous-Saintes, was (and still is) that of an impoverished city, with crime-ridden neighbourhoods, grimy factories, and poor working-class people. The rich people across the border from Saintes call the city the “AsS”, a swipe at its unsavoury reputation and its initials. “The stereotype of Aulnay is to some extent truthful,” said Cédric. “Aulnay used to have daily robberies. I knew how to swear like a dockworker when I was five.”

    Cédric was born as the eldest of seven children of a dockworker and a seamstress. The size of the family and the labour unrest of the 1980s meant that Cédric’s family was impoverished. His father died in a work accident in 1994 while his mother was pregnant with his youngest brother. His mother struggled to earn money and take care for the large family. “I remember my mother not being able to pay the bills on time. We almost got kicked out of our house – only when our parliamentary deputy interceded did we keep our house.”

    As the eldest, Cédric also helped around by earning extra as a day labourer in the docks as well. “My build – I got that from lifting heavy things.” In his free time, he played football, and was the star of his school’s football team. Leading the Aulnay team over better-funded school teams from Sancoins and Saint-Océan, Cédric was the key to their school winning the departmental football championship. The sizable prize monies from the championship saved his struggling school’s sports and athletic programs. “That was my frustration back then. Children in poor communities aren’t being given opportunities available in other well-off communities, because of lack of funding. That’s why some of the youth turn to crime or drugs. But for me, crime and drugs were not an option. My mother and my younger siblings needed me.”

    Unlike his teammates in Saintes-Saints-Brice, Cédric was not a product of any football academy. He largely taught himself, aided by his school coach, and played on the streets and parks of Aulnay. He was scouted at the departmental football championship game by the Saintes-Saints-Brice Football Club (SSBFC). He was invited to the youth training camp, after which he was immediately put on the reserve team. “Cédric may not have been taught the theories, but his instincts are on the spot,” said the then-coach on the Saintes-Saints-Brice reserve team, Charles-Paul Lamy. Cédric’s stellar performance led SSBFC to put him on the first team for their 2000 season, after narrowly escaping relegation in their previous season.

    If Aulnay-sous-Saintes had the stereotype of being full of impoverished people, the SSBFC had a completely opposite reputation. SSBFC is a Right-Bank Saintes football club whose supporters are typically upper middle class people and the wealthy. (Less well-off Santais usually support the Left-Bank clubs Stade de Saintes and En Avant de Saintes.) Cédric’s inclusion in the main team of a top-tier club with such a reputation aroused come criticism. A frequent comment in some SSBFC fan clubs were “What’s a boor doing in Saintes-Saints-Brice?” “Go back to En Avant de Saintes” and “SSBFC is now becoming a second-rate football club.”

    “To be honest, those comments did hurt, but I didn’t really take them in much,” said Cédric. “SSBFC was my ticket out of poverty, and I have my mum and my brothers and sisters to feed and take care of.”

    Cédric eventually proved his detractors wrong and helped lead Saintes-Saints-Brice to the middle of the league board for the next three seasons. His in-game heroics made him a crowd favourite, but the higher-ups were still not impressed. His performance were still not enough to win a title; most sports analysts blamed SSBFC’s recruitment practices that favoured well-off players and academy-trained youths that resulted in mediocre teammates. Indeed, veteran football analyst Marc-Aurèle Sorbon wrote in 2003 that “SSBFC’s signing of Charbonneau seems to be an experiment and a gamble that is actually paying off. I’m not sure if SSBFC has realised that. It is shameful that of the SSBFC’s players, its best player is the least paid player.”

    Cédric largely spent the 2004 season on the bench after SSBFC’s failed attempts to sell him. In 2005, he was loaned to second-tier club AS Beaucaire. The 2005 season was disastrous for Saintes-Saints-Brice – it narrowly won its relegation match on overtime. Meanwhile, AS Beaucaire, with Cédric on the team, won promotion to the top tier.

    The 2005 disaster caused reorganisation within SSBFC. The leadership was replaced and Lamy placed at the helm. Lamy insisted on having more freedom, control on player selection, and the introduction of newer players. Notably, he ignored the background of the players in selecting his team. With a new, younger, (and less aristocratic) team, Saintes-Saints-Brice had a good run, reaching the 2006 league championship match, only to lose to Olympique Nyonnais in overtime. It was just the beginning of Saintes-Saints-Brice’s renaissance.

    With Lamy as coach, Cédric as the captain, and new blood such as Franck Giresse, Kévin Caillard, and Éric Sommereaux, Saintes-Saints-Brice won the 2007 and 2008 championships. Cédric also won the most valuable player award in 2007 and 2008. Now even the most dedicated detractors of the poor kid in the posh team were convinced. Saintes-Saints-Brice, aside from winning the 2009 championship, also never lost in any game in the season. It made Cédric and the team popular, making inroads in the Left-Bank. “His rags-to-riches story served as an inspiration for many,” wrote Sorbon in 2009, “Saintes-Saints-Brice, formerly a citadel of the genteel, is now a club for everyone.”

    Cédric was also tapped for the Santonian National team while continuing to lead Saintes-Saints-Brice. SSBFC narrowly missed the 2010 title, losing the championship to Côme FC. But Saintes-Saint-Brice won again in 2011 and 2012 seasons, establishing dominance in the top tier of Santonian football.

    After suffering an injury in 2014, Cédric retired from professional football and instead started coaching children from his hometown and working as a football commentator. He still lives in Aulnay-sous-Saintes, albeit in a better and larger house he bought for his family. He had invested his money in various businesses “to keep myself financially secure,” while dedicating much of his time to his charity. When Barthélemy Delcambre, the longtime MP for the 6th electoral circumscription of the Cenise, retired in 2015, Cédric decided to run. “I remember Mr. Delcambre’s assistance to our family in keeping our home, I’d like to be able to do that and help the people as well.”

    In a political environment adverse to the National Party, Cédric won the nomination and the 2015 general election convincingly – garnering two-thirds of the vote. Nationals winning in the district was not in doubt, as Aulnay-sous-Saintes, being a working-class city, is a stronghold of the National Party. But Cédric’s presence on the ballot meant that Cenise-6 was one of the few districts to swing towards the Nationals that year, when much of the country swung away from the Nationals.

    Cédric entered Parliament as part of the opposition, which made it harder to pass legislation. Nevertheless, Cédric managed to shepherd two of his proposals into legislation: the first one strengthening and increasing funding for schools in depressed areas, and the second one regulates evictions from homes. “Both were influenced by my childhood experiences,” Cédric said, “I told myself, no child should ever have to go through these.” Even though the Prime Minister, the Liberal and the Radical Parties opposed the legislation, Cédric managed to bring the entire National Party and the Green Party to vote for his proposals. It seems that even in Parliament, Cédric is always a winner. ●

    Interview and Article by Marc-Tobias Guilbault
    Translated by Jérôme-Caden Barceloux Colcolough
     
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    National Party criticises proposed labour reforms

    by Mélanie Bacrot in Saintes
    21 August 2018 - 1620h

    SAINTES – the National Party and its members are taking a stand against the proposed Caruhel II reforms. Acting Leader of the Opposition Marc Gaucelin (N, 2nd Chalaronne) excoriated the proposed reforms when it was introduced in Parliament yesterday. “The National Party will not allow further erosion of worker’s rights in Saintonge. This so-called ‘reform’ will only benefit the few rich to the detriment of ordinary Santonians.”

    Prominent members of the National Party, which is in the midst of an election for their new leader, also chimed in. “I cannot stomach this further evisceration of our rights as workers and as Santonians,” shadow labour minister Jeanne-Élisabeth Vertières-Clérembault (N, 3rd Bouche-du-Rhâne). “This only shows that the Coalition government works for the wealthy few and not for the ordinary Santonians.”

    “Caruhel II will erase the hard-won gains of our workers. What took decades for them to achieve, will be erased in one swoop. I vehemently oppose this proposal,” said deputy Anne-Douceline Courseaux (N, 21st Saine-et-Loine).

    “Unions helped campaign for the eight-hour workday, paid vacation leave, overtime pay, tenure... Not only will Caruhel II curtail these benefits, it will also weaken the means by which our workers achieved these gains,” said deputy Jules-Ruben Gorges (N, 9th Cenise).

    “The National Party will stand united against the Coalition’s war against the people,” thundered deputy Jean-Quentin Hamel (N, 3rd Saintes). “There will never be a repeat of 2017, when the Coalition used devious means to achieve their ends. No more.” Hamel was referring to the acts by National Assembly President Jean-Claude Arrivé, who used the scheduled leave of absence of several National deputies to pass the first tranche of reforms by Caruhel (Caruhel I) over National and Green opposition in 2017. Hamel also added some choice words for the Greens, who remained in government even after Caruhel I passed. “Shame on them if they fool you once, shame on you if you allow yourselves to be fooled twice.”

    Protests planned
    Matthieu-Gauvain Lamblin and Anne-Julienne Langlois, outgoing and incoming presidents of the National Youth respectively, jointly announced that National Youth chapters throughout the country will be staging solidarity rallies with the workers protesting the proposed law. The country’s largest trade union centre, the Confédération saintongeais du travail (CST, Santonian Confederation of Labour) also announced that they will be holding nonstop rallies at the Ministry of Labour until the parliamentary proposal is defeated or withdrawn.

    Greens opposed
    The Green Party, while technically remaining within the coalition, declared its opposition to the proposed Caruhel II reforms. Green Party leader Laurent Junot threatened that “the Green Party is not afraid to withdraw from government if our coalition partners will not stick to their promises.” The senior parties in government, the Liberals and the Radicals, had promised in 2017 not to amend Saintonge’s labour laws for the remainder of the government’s term.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    19 August 2018 - 0844h

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    National Party congress opened today

    by Héloïse Lamontagne-Riester in Nyon
    31 August 2018 - 1115h

    NYON (BOUCHE-DU-RHÂNE) – thousands of members and delegates of Saintonge’s largest political party have converged in the southern city of Nyon for the party’s annual congress. Attendees include all National Party members of parliament, leaders of the departmental and intendential chapters, mayors of parishes, and youth leaders.

    Election for leader
    The most awaited event is the election of a new leader of the National Party. Ever since Philippe Colet stepped down as leader after the electoral defeat in 2015, the National Party had struggled to fill up the leadership position, primarily due to the old guard of the party being tainted with scandals.

    According to insiders and observers, there are five main contenders for the position as leader of the National Party: acting leader Marc Gaucelin of the Chalaronne, Jules-Ruben Gorges of the Cenise, Jean-Quentin Hamel of Saintes, Camille Courrégelongue of the Vesle, and Anne-Douceline Courseaux of the Saine-et-Loine.

    The leadership election is scheduled for tomorrow, but endorsements have already been streaming in. 71 National Assembly deputies, about one-third of the National deputies, have endorsed Mr. Gaucelin, who is deemed to represent the old guard of the party. 12 departmental chapters have also endorsed Mr. Gaucelin, mostly in the central plains, a National Party stronghold.

    Mr. Hamel, known for being the firebrand of the party, is known to be widely supported by the Confédération saintongeais du travail (CST, Santonian Confederation of Labour), the union confederation closely linked to the National Party. Mr. Hamel has the stated support of 44 National Assembly deputies. Mr. Gorges has gained the support of 30 National Assembly deputies, and 7 out of the eight departmental chapters in the Béthagne and Domnonée (Côtes-du-Nord is the exception).

    Mr. Courrégelongue, a known moderate in the party, is being supported by 22 National Assembly deputies and 6 departmental chapters. Ms. Courseaux, a leader of the vocal Rénovateur faction within the party, is being supported by 7 National Assembly deputies and the departmental chapter of the Saine-et-Loine, which she used to head.

    Early Controversies
    Just a day before election, controversies already abound. Foremost is the leaked “Cartron Recordings”, wherein Mr. Gaucelin’s main adviser Ludovic Chaumet was recorded disparaging the other contenders as Mr. Gaucelin voiced amusement or agreement. Mr. Gorges was described as a “Bethanian wannabe who knows nothing”; Mr. Hamel was described as “breathing fire but burns himself as well”; Mr. Courrégelongue as an “also-ran, perennial nuisance candidate”; and Ms. Courseaux as “just a pretty face” and she and her National Assembly supporters as “Snow White and the seven dwarves”. Mr. Chaumet did not deny the recordings, but he did not authenticate its veracity either. Mr. Chaumet said he will be launching appropriate legal actions against the author of the recording.

    Within the National Youth, the party’s youth wing, pressure is also mounting. Incoming president of the National Youth Anne-Julienne Langlois admitted that “there had been some unpleasant pressures from higher ups regarding who should our organisation support.”

    Her predecessor, Matthieu-Gauvain Lamblin, also stated, “it’s scandalous. What the leadership is trying to do on the National Youth is a reflection on the reasons why the electorate turned their back on the National Party. It’s almost bordering on corruption. If they keep on doing that, the National Party may well forget being in power for the next generation.”

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    31 August 2018 - 1452h

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    Courseaux wins as National Party leader

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    Newly-elected National Party leader Anne-Douceline Courseaux.

    by Héloïse Lamontagne-Riester in Nyon
    1 September 2018 - 1702h

    NYON (BOUCHE-DU-RHÂNE) – In a surprise to most observers, Ms. Anne-Douceline Courseaux, a leader of the vocal Rénovateur faction, won the election as leader of the National Party in the party congress yesterday in the city of Nyon. Ms. Courseaux will be the first woman to head a major party in Saintonge.

    Election
    Ms. Courseaux defeated acting leader Marc Gaucelin 2,273 votes to 1,127 in the third ballot to become the leader of the National Party. Jules-Ruben Gorges of the Cenise and Camille Courrégelongue of the Vesle were eliminated on the first ballot; and Jean-Quentin Hamel of Saintes was eliminated on the second ballot; leaving Ms. Courseaux and Mr. Gaucelin in the final round.

    “Dark Horse” Candidate
    Most observers were surprised by Ms. Courseaux’s win. “She came in with the least number of supporters and was expected to be eliminated on the first ballot,” said a representative from Saintes, who declined to be named. “People thought she’s too inexperienced – she had just been elected as deputy. Hence we didn’t see many National Assembly deputies supporting her.”

    But her seven supporters from the National Assembly - Paul-Geoffroy Barèges of the Seudre, James-Bertéric Battiston of the Basse-Bléone, Brice-Cédric Charbonneau of the Cenise, Joëlle Duhourquet of the Saine-et-Loine, Kylian Fricoteaux of the Dropt, Marie-Lheurine Roustan-Balligand of the Tech, and Marcelline Tréhet of the Côtes-du-Nord – campaigned tirelessly for their candidate, and in the end managed to sway the majority of the 40 remaining undecided National Assembly deputies.

    “Women. Ms. Courseaux appealed to women,” said Ms. Duhourquet. “Most of the 40 undecided were women. We mobilised.”

    Still, Mr. Gaucelin amassed the largest number of National Assembly deputies as supporters in the first round. Ms. Courseaux came third in the first round, aided by the support of some of the largest National Party departmental chapters: that of the Saine-et-Loine (which she used to lead), the Lisle, the Puy-d’Or, the Bouche-du-Rhâne, the Sambre, and the Scyotte. She was also buoyed by the surprise support of the National Youth, particularly its leaders Anne-Julienne Langlois and Matthieu-Gauvain Lamblin. Langlois and Lamblin had previously denounced actions by the National Party leadership and threw their weight instead for Ms. Courseaux. The National Youth is also deemed close to the Rénovateur faction, with many of its ideologues being former members of the National Youth, such as Ernestine-Guenièvre Thieriot, who currently serves as Ms. Courseaux’s spokesperson.

    “When the results of the first round came in, we knew that she was a dark horse candidate,” said the representative from Saintes. “She was the hope to demolish the old guard.”

    Swelling of support

    With Ms. Courseaux’s candidacy looking viable, other factions not favourable to Mr. Gaucelin coalesced around her. Mr. Gorges, who was surprisingly eliminated on the first ballot, urged his supporters to vote for Ms. Courseaux. Mr. Courrégelongue did likewise.

    “Gorges and Courrégelongue are moderates, they will support a fellow moderate like her and not those on the extremes like Hamel,” said the representative from Saintes. “Also, Courseaux is more electable than Hamel.”

    With the populous departments and about a hundred National Assembly deputies supporting Ms. Courseaux, she came at the top in the second ballot. Almost all of Mr. Gorges’ and Mr. Courrégelongue’s voters transferred to Ms. Courseaux, bringing her total higher than Mr. Gaucelin’s. Mr. Gaucelin’s numbers remained steady at a thousand votes. Mr. Hamel, placing last, was eliminated.

    Mr. Hamel did not need any prodding. In his concession speech, he urged his supporters to select Ms. Courseaux and “not the dirty old guard.”

    “It was really time for a change,” said the representative from Saintes. “You can feel it in the atmosphere.”

    In the third round, Mr. Gaucelin remained at one thousand votes, with Ms. Courseaux picking up the votes from the remainder. In addition, the National Party members of parliament caucused after the vote to sign a letter asking the presider of the National Assembly to recognise Ms. Courseaux as the Leader of the Loyal Opposition.

    “Renovation”
    In her acceptance speech, Ms. Courseaux vowed to “lustrate, renovate, and innovate” the National Party such that “the National Party becomes the party that serves the Santonians the best.”

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    01 September 2018 - 1825h

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    Caruhel II clears the National Assembly in a surprise vote

    by Mélanie Bacrot in Saintes
    5 February 2019 - 1655h

    SAINTES – the raft of labour reforms known as Caruhel II passed the National Assembly yesterday in a nail-biting close vote, saving the Liberal-Radical-Green Coalition government of Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux, who had turned the issue into a vote of confidence.

    Proposal
    The draft law, introduced by Radical Labour Minister Jean-Charles Caruhel (R, 29th Saintes), contains provisions that will make it easier for employers to fire employees, cap overtime pay rates that can be negotiated by unions, add more employer representatives to departmental wage boards that set the minimum wage, and institute a “right to work” law in Saintonge. The National Party, the Green Party, and the labour sector were opposed to Caruhel II. The governing Liberal and Radical parties were for the proposal.

    Vote
    The vote for Caruhel II was tied, 212-212, prompting the Liberal President of the National Assembly Jean-Claude Arrivé to cast the tie-breaking vote in favour of the proposal. Despite the Green Party’s four deputies voting with the opposition to defeat the bill (and by extension, their own government), six National Party deputies were absent. The tied vote prompted outcries from the opponents of the bill.

    “The National Party betrayed us,” said Environment Minister Laurent Junot (V, 1st Semois), leader of the Greens. “We had the numbers to win! And yet we lost! This is a betrayal!”

    National Party leader and Leader of the Opposition Anne-Douceline Courseaux (N, 21st Saine-et-Loine) immediately convened a closed-door meeting after the vote. Her spokesperson Ernestine-Guenièvre Thieriot said afterwards that “the National Party will be instituting proceedings against the absentees if no adequate explanation is given for their unannounced absence in such a vital vote.” Ms. Thieriot then said, “we will exhaust all means to defeat this odious proposal, up to the House of Lords if necessary.”

    Firebrand deputy Jean-Quentin Hamel (N, 3rd Saintes) was even more livid. “Six people betrayed us and the people of Saintonge! If Mr. Lacassagne was able to come here to support the workers, why can’t they?” Mr. Hamel was referring to deputy Mr. Jacques-Ildephonse Lacassagne (N, Huisne), who was ill with brain cancer. Mr. Lacassagne insisted on attending the vote personally, assisted by his son Thomas-Isidore. Despite not being able to speak anymore, he still registered his opposition to the proposal.

    “They have no reason to be absent,” said deputy Joëlle Duhourquet (N, 4th Saine-et-Loine). “Ms. Courseaux called all 214 deputies yesterday to remind them of the vote and enjoin them to be present.”

    Another deputy, Théobald Trébuchon (N, 1st Ravennes), confirmed Ms. Duhourquet’s statement. “The leader of the party called up everyone personally yesterday to remind them of the vote. She told us this is going to be a party-line vote. Vote with the party in opposing the proposal.”

    Another National Party deputy, who declined to be named, also admitted that Ms. Courseaux called the deputies and “told us in no uncertain terms that we must be present at the vote and vote accordingly. Or else there’d be repercussions.”

    Absentees

    According to the records of the Clerk of the National Assembly, all of the six National Party deputies made no prior announcement of their absence. The absentees were: Olivier Defferre (N, 2nd Lignon), Nicolas Destot (N, 4th Chalaronne), Marc Gaucelin (N, 2nd Chalaronne), Jean-Benoît Savary (N, 3rd Haute-Coole), Vincent-Michel Tourtelier (N, 2nd Tamise), and Henri-François Vaillant (N, 3rd Leir). Their critics were quick to dub them “Gaucelin’s gang”, as the five other absentees were deemed close to ousted National Party leader Marc Gaucelin. All but Destot served as shadow ministers under Gaucelin.

    “Gaucelin’s gang, the old guard – clearly all they care about is themselves,” said former leader of the National Youth Matthieu-Gauvain Lamblin. “They thought they can embarrass Madame Courseaux with their antics. But all their doing is drawing the wrath of the people. They’ve put themselves before the people they purportedly serve.”

    Discontent in the National Party
    Many deputies voiced similar sentiments. “Clearly, it’s sour grapes,” said deputy Marie-Lheurine Roustan-Balligand (N, 1st Tech). “They were defeated in the leadership race, so they now want to sabotage the current leadership.”

    “This is why, folks, the National Party is in such a mess,” deputy Brice-Cédric Charbonneau (N, 6th Cenise) posted on Twitcher. “Personal interest first before the people and the party. It will take time to purge the party of such avarice.”

    “Gaucelin said a few months ago that he was opposed to Caruhel II, but now he didn’t bother showing up to vote against it?” questioned Justin-Thibault Beauvisage (N, 1st Basses-Alpes). “Were all of that just lip service?”

    “Gaucelin and co. are the reason why people say politicians are fake,” remarked Pol-Rogatien Thouvenel (N, 2nd Avaloirs).

    Some, though, were willing to cut them some slack. “Maybe they were really sick?” commented Édouard Lafargue (N, 2nd Luberon) in an ambush interview outside the session hall of the National Assembly. “Is their illness worse than that of Mr. Lacassagne’s? If not, they should be ashamed of themselves,” interjected another deputy, Sébastien Thévenet (N, 2nd Boëme). “What convenient timing to get sick!” was the sarcastic comment of Marcelline Tréhet (N, 2nd Côtes-du-Nord), “all six of them, too! The disease must be very contagious!”

    Victory for the Coalition
    In contrast to the gloomy and stormy National Party, the Liberals and Nationals were celebrating their victory. “Whatever hurdles the opposition tries to place, we just go through it,” said Mr. Caruhel. “The government believes that this proposal is for the greater good of Saintonge and Saintonge’s economy.”

    “We can all say goodbye to all of those corrupt vested interests in labour,” said deputy Michel-Fernand Roux de Bézieux (L, 8th Simbruins).

    “These measures will increase productivity and help stimulate our economy,” said Industry Minister Pantaléon Giraudeau (L, 2nd Sâne).

    Next Steps
    The proposal was sent to the House of Lords for deliberation. The discussion in the upper house is scheduled for next week.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    05 February 2019 - 0903h

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    Departmental Councils position themselves on labour reform

    by Mélanie Bacrot in Saintes
    11 February 2019 - 1933h

    SAINTES – more than half of the departmental councils had issued explicit instructions for their representatives in the House of Lords how to vote when the labour reform proposal dubbed Caruhel II reaches the floor.

    In favour
    Predictably, departmental councils controlled by a coalition of Liberals and Radicals gave instructions to vote for. The departmental councils of the Basses-Alpes, the Argens, the Baltée, the Breuse, the Capoterre, the Corb, the Dyle, the Ill, the Inde, the Lac, the Lauter, the Lys, the Haute-Saine, the Sâne, the Sarine, the Tessin, and the Trieux already instructed their representatives to vote for the proposal.

    However, departmental councils governed by a coalition of Liberals + Radicals + Greens were conspicuously silent. The City of Saintes and the departments of the Bouche-du-Rhâne, the Cenise, the Dropt, the Lisle, the Puy-d’Or, the Saine-et-Loine, and the Semois have not issued declarations. The departmental councils of the Basses-Brômes and the Scyotte attempted to pass resolutions of support, but both were defeated when the Greens joined the opposition Nationals.

    In opposition
    In contrast, 30 National-controlled departmental councils had voiced their opposition to the proposal. The first one to pass a resolution against was the departmental council of the Côtes-du-Nord, enjoining their two representatives to vote against the proposal. The most interesting declaration was from the departmental council of the Chalaronne. In its declaration issued last Friday, the Chalaronne council also rebuked its two National Party deputies, Marc Gaucelin of the second electoral circumscription and Nicolas Destot of the fourth electoral circumscription, for “being absent in the vote” and thus “depriving the people of the Chalaronne of their voice in the National Assembly.” Curiously, the council made no mention of Robert-Martin de Jeumont, the Liberal deputy for the fifth electoral circumscription who voted for Caruhel II.

    Chalaronne’s declaration was mirrored by today's statements from the departmental councils of the Haute-Coole and the Tamise, which both excoriated their absentee MPs, Jean-Benoît Savary and Vincent-Michel Tourtelier, respectively.

    Prospects

    The Liberals and Radicals together have 91 seats in the House of Lords, with the Nationals and Greens having 76. The Lords Temporal and Lords Spiritual usually do not vote on issues that do not directly involve them. If it is going to be a party-line vote, Caruhel II may have a big chance of passing. However, Green Party leader Laurent Junot and several departmental Green leaders had signalled that they are ready to activate clauses within departmental coalition agreements that give the coalition parties a veto on how their departmental representative/s in the House of Lords will vote, regardless of the representative’s actual party affiliation. The effect would be that the department’s representatives will abstain from the voting if the coalition parties do not agree on a stance. Currently, eight departments governed by a Liberal + Radical + Green coalition have this clause, controlling 24 seats in the House of Lords. If all of these representatives will abstain, Caruhel II may be defeated in the House of Lords.

    When the House of Lords voted on the first tranche of labour reforms (Caruhel I) in 2017, the measure passed 72-71. The Liberal representative from the department of the Queyras ignored his departmental council’s instruction to abstain and voted for Caruhel I. As the coalition agreement in the Queyras had such a clause, the Greens withdrew from the coalition, and the Queyras government fell. As a result, the Queyras now has a National-Green coalition, the only such combination in the country. Thus, if any of the representatives of the eight departments vote contrary to their departmental council’s wishes, Caruhel II may pass the House of Lords, but at the expense of control of one or more departmental councils.

    translation by Kyle MacTaggart - de Flesselles
    12 February 2019 - 0835h

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    House of Lords demurs on labour reform

    by Mélanie Bacrot in Saintes
    15 February 2019 - 1621h

    SAINTES – the closely divided House of Lords agreed to postpone debate on the controversial labour reform introduced by Labour Minister Jean-Charles Caruhel (R, 29th Saintes). Duke Timothée III of Aunis, presider of the House of Lords, removed the proposal from consideration for one month so that representatives could gather relevant instructions from their respective departmental governments.

    Agreement to postpone
    The agreement to postpone was brokered by Gérard d'Écu de Licorne (N, Côle), Anne-Leïla Lesdiguières (V, Semois), and Alexandre Dumonceau (L, Saine-et-Loine). The agreement to postpone passed 102-65, with the delegations of the Basses-Alpes, the Doire, and the Haute-Saine joining the departments opposed to Caruhel II and the crucial eight Coalition-controlled departments that may get to decide the ultimate fate of the proposal: the Hautes-Brômes, the Cenise, the Lisle, the Monce-et-Briance, the Puy-d’Or, the Haut-Rhâne, the Saine-et-Loine, and the Vauperté. Representatives of all eight departments have orders from their departmental councils to abstain from the final vote because of coalition agreements in their departments. Abstention of all 24 representatives from the eight departments will defeat the proposal.

    The other representatives from departments with no explicit instructions followed the party line: Liberals and Radicals in favour, Nationals and Greens opposed. A party-line vote will pass the bill, but the complications from the aforementioned eight departments still leave a possibility for the bill’s defeat.

    Negotiations
    According to insiders, it was Dumonceau and the Saine-et-Loine delegation that floated the idea of postponement as a reasonable compromise. The governing tripartite Liberal-Radical-Green coalition in the departmental council of the Saine-et-Loine has a clause in their coalition agreement that gives any of the coalition parties a veto on how their departmental representatives in the House of Lords will vote. If the coalition parties do not agree on a stand, their representatives will all abstain regardless of party affiliation. Such an arrangement has been dubbed the "Barenton clause", after its first introduction in a 1969 Liberal-Radical-Green coalition government in the department of the Basse-Bléone (capital: Barenton).

    A postponement will give the Saine-et-Loine (and the other seven departments) time to negotiate and await for further instructions. Intense lobbying and negotiations are underway at the national and departmental levels to “unblock” the bill at the House of Lords. Yesterday, Yves-Antoine Mittenaëre, the Liberal President of the Hautes-Brômes, lambasted the pressure allegedly from the office of Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux to “sacrifice his department for the greater good”.

    The opponents of the bill acceded to the request for postponement. “If we can postpone indefinitely, then it’s tantamount to killing the bill,” said a National Party representative, who declined to be named. “The departmental elections are coming in a few months time, who knows what’s going to happen. But it’s a calculated risk. Personally, I’d say let’s just give the people a chance to have a say on it.”

    Liberal, Radical Leadership opposed to postponement
    Predictably, the Liberal and Radical leadership were unhappy with the postponement. “It’s obstructionism, pure and simple,” said Prime Minister Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux. “It’s shameful some of the people in the party allow it to happen.”

    “What’s the use of a majority if you’re not gonna use it?” Mr. Caruhel remarked.

    Jules-César Bélisle (L, Simbruins), leader of the Liberal Party group in the House of Lords, reportedly gathered members of his caucus and berated those that voted for the postponement.

    But Dumonceau was unfazed. “They think they can break us... they can’t.”

    translation by Jérôme-Caden Barceloux Colcolough
    16 February 2019 - 1015h

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    Greens withdraw from government

    by Marie-Marthé Parmentier in Saintes
    20 February 2019 - 1503h

    SAINTES – Green party leaders Laurent Junot (V, 1st Semois) and Iseult Jaffrelot (V, Haut-Rhâne) announced in a press conference earlier today that the Green Party will be withdrawing from the government coalition, potentially engineering the government’s downfall and early elections.

    No confidence motion underway
    With the Liberals and Radicals holding only 212 seats in the 430-member National Assembly, the government of Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux (JLHC) now has a minority in the lower house of Parliament. A vote of no confidence can easily topple the government.

    Indeed, such a motion is underway. A no-confidence motion introduced by National Party leader and Leader of the Opposition Anne-Douceline Courseaux (N, 21st Saine-et-Loine) and shadow Labour Minister Jeanne-Élisabeth Vertières-Clérembault (N, 3rd Bouche-du-Rhâne) is to be voted on by the National Assembly next week. In their press conference, Junot and Jaffrelot signalled the Green Party’s intentions to vote with the opposition in the confidence motion.

    Questions remain
    According to analysts, despite the big mathematical possibility, the government may not fall. During the February 4 vote for the Caruhel II labour reforms, six National Party deputies were absent, leading to a tied vote. If the six deputies again absent themselves to spite Ms. Courseaux, the motion of no confidence will fail even if the Greens' four deputies vote with the National Party.

    Even if the no-confidence motion carries and the JLHC government is dismissed, it is still not certain that Ms. Courseaux will be the Prime Minister. Neither Junot or Jaffrelot had signalled that the Green Party will support Ms. Courseaux in any attempt to form a government. If the National Party fails to succeed in forming a government, fresh elections may be called.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    20 February 2019 - 1501h

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    Coalition government falls, National Assembly dissolves itself

    by Marie-Marthé Parmentier in Saintes
    25 February 2019 - 1725h

    SAINTES – the minority Liberal-Radical government of Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux (JLHC) lost a confidence vote in the National Assembly, leading to termination of the current government and to early elections.

    Vote of no confidence
    The no-confidence motion (motion de censure) was tabled by National Party leader and Leader of the Opposition Anne-Douceline Courseaux (N, 21st Saine-et-Loine) and shadow Labour Minister Jeanne-Élisabeth Vertières-Clérembault (N, 3rd Bouche-du-Rhâne). JLHC’s government was defeated 213-212, in a party-line vote. The Green Party’s four deputies joined the National Party’s 209 deputies to bring down the government. Five National Party deputies were absent. The five absent deputies were also the deputies who absented themselves in the vote for Caruhel II; only Henri-François Vaillant (N, 3rd Leir) returned to the National Assembly to cast a vote to bring down the JLHC government.

    Elections to be called
    In Saintonge, no-confidence motions must be accompanied by attempts to elect a new government. Ms. Courseaux unveiled a proposed government after the no-confidence motion passed. The proposed National Party government was defeated 212-208, with the four Green deputies and Mr. Vaillant abstaining from the vote. With the failure of the National Assembly to elect a new government after dismissing the current one, the National Assembly was declared dissolved and early elections will be called. The Royal Elections Institute (IRE, Institut royal des elections) will be announcing the election timetable tomorrow afternoon. According to election analysts, the IRE is most likely to schedule it together with the already-scheduled departmental and local elections on 25 May to save on costs while at the same time fulfilling the minimum twelve-week campaign period requirement between dissolution and elections. This will raise the prospect of a "Super-Election" in Saintonge when most elective positions in all levels are up for election. The last time a "Super-Election" occurred in Saintonge was in 1899.

    Last-Ditch Effort for Caruhel II
    When the Green Party left the government last week, Liberals and Radicals in the House of Lords attempted to pass the controversial labour reform proposal dubbed Caruhel II, despite a month-long suspension of debate agreed upon last 15 February. With the departmental elections looming, and possible early elections also looming, Jules-César Bélisle (L, Simbruins), Delegate of the Representatives, attempted on Monday to schedule an early vote before the one-month suspension has ended.

    Duke Timothée III of the Aunis, presider of the House of Lords, blocked the attempt, saying that “The House of Lords has an agreement that cannot be broken.” The two other Delegates, Duke Guigues IX of the Grésivaudan for the Lords Temporal and Archbishop Sébastien Étard of Sancoins for the Lords Spiritual, also insisted on sticking to the agreement.

    Caruhel II was likely to have passed the House of Lords with the scrapping of the coalition agreement in the department of the Cenise last weekend. However, all unpromulgated and pending bills and proposals expire upon dissolution of the National Assembly that has passed it. So without the vote in the House of Lords and the National Assembly now dissolved, Caruhel II is dead.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    25 February 2019 - 1622h

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  20. Kyle

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    Saintonge heading for a Super-Election

    by Marie-Priscille Chambly de Gembloux in Saintes
    26 February 2019 - 1635h

    SAINTES – Saintonge is heading for a super-election day on the 25 May. The Royal Elections Institute (IRE, Institut royal des elections) had scheduled the parliamentary election on the same date as the already-planned departmental and local elections. This means that most elective positions in all levels are up for election on that day. The last time a "Super-Election" occurred in Saintonge was in 1899.

    Parliamentary Elections
    After the fall of the Liberal-Radical Coalition government of Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux (JLHC), and the subsequent inability of the National Assembly to form a new government, the National Assembly was dissolved yesterday. The previous JLHC government remains as caretaker government.

    On 25 May, all 430 seats in the National Assembly, plus a new one created for Santonians abroad, will be filled via a two-round system in electoral circumscriptions. Nomination conventions will be happening next week for the four major parties.

    Polls
    Preliminary polls suggest a tight race. In the latest Gallop-L'Indépendant poll held on 16-20 February (before the Greens withdrew from government), respondents were asked who are they going to vote for if an election was to be held now. The National Party was chosen by 33% of respondents, the Coalition by 32% (Liberals 22% + Radicals 10%), and the Greens by 3%. This is well within the margin of error. Of possible importance, though, is the number of undecided voters – about one-third of voters are still undecided.

    Departmental Elections
    Elections to all of the 89 Departmental Councils of Saintonge are scheduled on 25 May. Unlike the National Assembly, the 99 members of each departmental council are elected via proportional representation in multi-member constituencies corresponding to each intendancy of the department.

    Going into the elections, 45 departmental councils are controlled by the Coalition, 43 departmental councils are controlled by the National Party, and 1 departmental council is governed by a National-Green coalition.

    An extension of these departmental elections is that all 167 representatives in the House of Lords are also going to be renewed. The 167 representatives are elected by the departmental councils and the city of Saintes to represent their governments in the House of Lords. The remaining 29 members of the House of Lords are the non-elected Lords Temporal and Lords Spiritual.

    Local elections
    The parish councils of all of Saintonge’s parishes (communes/municipalities) are also up for elections. From the city of Saintes to the parish of Rochesaigne, Taur (population: 3), all parishes will be electing councillors, which vary in number depending on the parish’s population. The seats in the councils will be apportioned by proportional representation at-large. The exception is the city of Saintes, where each district (arrondissement) elects a number of councillors to the 99-member Saintes City Council. The parish/city councils will then elect the mayor (maire), the town’s executive.

    translation by Kyle MacTaggart - de Flesselles
    26 February 2019 - 2015h

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  21. Kyle

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    Radicals nominate candidates

    by Marie-Priscille Chambly de Gembloux in Saintes
    11 March 2019 - 2344h

    SAINTES – the Radical Party is the first party to announce much of its candidate slate, giving it an advance advantage in campaigning. This is also reflective of the traditions of the Radical Party, wherein the leader of the party has great control over selection of candidates to Parliament, leading to quicker nominations.

    Incumbents
    Of the 36 current Radical Party members of Parliament, 28 are running for re-election. MPs Pierre-Casimir Baronne-Ducorps (1st Saintes), Éric Bastien de Lotbinière (24th Saintes), Arnaud-Timoléon Bonneparte (5th Simbruins), Jean-Georges Comté du Granrut (19th Saintes), Victor-August Langevin-Dutoit (25th Saintes), Matthieu-James Quennedey (7th Semois), and Matthieu de Sauvin (26th Saintes) are retiring from the National Assembly. The renomination of the maverick MP Charles-Ferdinand de Pontleroy (27th Saintes) was vetoed by Radical leader Georges Conté de Caunes (GCC). Mr. de Pontleroy, popular in this right-bank Saintes constituency, is known to occasionally break with the party and holds unconventional views for a Radical. Mr. de Pontleroy had not ruled out running an independent campaign or accepting a potential offer by the National Party as a candidate.

    Nominees
    All but four of the electoral circumscriptions have now selected a candidate for the Radical Party. GCC vetoed the candidates selected by the nominating conventions for the electoral circumscriptions of Saintes-27, Basses-Brômes-9, Puy-d’Or-7, and Vercors-1. These districts will select their candidates on Thursday.

    Aside from those with incumbent Radical deputies, here are some of the other districts that had selected their Radical candidates:
    • Bouche-du-Rhâne-2: Christophe-Kilian Lautier. The vice-president of the department of the Bouche-du-Rhâne and the leader of the local departmental Radical Party is mounting a serious challenge to the Nationals in this swing district.
    • Chartreuse-5: Count Marc-Berthold of Dardagny. The younger brother of Duke Guigues IX of the Grésivaudan, the Count of Dardagny had to abdicate to his son in order to run for the National Assembly. Rules prohibit members of the nobility from running for elective offices (but the nobility can vote). While much of the Santonian nobility is known to support the Radicals and Radical politics, abdications in order to run for office are rare.
    • Côle-9: Francine Letelier-Congard. The wife of longtime Courbevoie mayor Jean-Pierre Congard is running in this Liberal-held district centred in the city of Courbevoie.
    • Huisne: Donald-Jean Atout. The real estate magnate and reality TV show personality (known for his show “Tu es viré!”) had recently bought an estate in the village of Thônex-sur-Huisne. He is now intent on winning this open seat in the west.
    • Lac-2: Loïc Pierrepont de Liebig. The young heir to the chemical empire in running for this Liberal-held southern seat.
    • Haut-Rhâne: Charles-Victor de la Balme. The leader of the Radicals in the departmental council of the Haut-Rhâne is running for this department's lone seat in the National Assembly, currently held by Iseult Jaffrelot, co-chair of the Green Party.
    • Saine-et-Loine-16: Esther-Margaux Ouzon. A former porn star with a huge social media following, Ouzon is a known supporter of Radical politics and GCC. She hopes to harness her large online following into support in the ballot box.
    • Simbruins-5: Rodéric du Tertre. A controversial character in the Simbruins, the mayor of Saint-Pierre-d’Aveau has a history of resorting to force in governance and for his irreverence towards others. He is a stark contrast to the former MP for the district, Arnaud-Timoléon Bonneparte, a soft-spoken aristocrat.
    • Taur-1: Grégoire Besancenot. Like current MP Jean-Ragnebert Roch (4th Trieux), Grégoire Besancenot is another former priest who had rejected his old faith and is now very critical of the Church. Besancenot is now running under the banner of the Radical Party, which is Saintonge’s premier anticlerical party.
    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    12 March 2019 - 0910h

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    Last edited: May 11, 2019
  22. Kyle

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    Liberals nominate candidates

    by Mélanie Bacrot in Saintes
    13 March 2019 - 2258h

    SAINTES – the Liberal Party held their nomination conventions across all 430 electoral circumscriptions earlier today, completing their list of candidates for all circumscriptions. Unlike the Radical Party (and similar to the National Party), the party leader, Prime Minister Jean-Louis Hauteclocque de Champtoceaux (JLHC) does not have veto power over the decision of the nomination convention but instead has representatives and votes in the conventions.

    Incumbents
    Twenty-two Liberal incumbents are retiring: Martin-Baudouin Amblard (1st Argens), Marc-Antoine Arcamone (6th Simbruins), François Barbaroux (5th Chartreuse), Marius-Philippe Baudroit (9th Bouche-du-Rhâne), Luc-Vincent Bouin (8th Côle), Marie-Bertile Bremond-Grall (7th Bouche-du-Rhâne), Camille Bricaud (13th Saintes), Marie-Christiane Brocard (21st Saintes), Marie-Jacqueline Flinois (12th Saintes), Denis Gascard (2nd Queyras), Réjane Glotin (13th Saine-et-Loine), Edmé Horcaux (2nd Margerides), Alphonse Jupillat (4th Scyotte), Charles-Bruce Lampin (3rd Suippe), Laëtitia Mechineau-Talagrand (4th Hautes-Brômes), Maxime Melmoux (3rd Durance), Humbert Montmayeur (9th Scyotte), Anne-Juliette Monteil (6th Besbre), Guy-Laurent Moulevrier (9th Saintes), Julienne Muraire-Dussart (1st Saine-et-Loine), Olivier Radisson (1st Ill), and Marie-Arlette Rautureau (5th Saine-et-Loine).

    All other 154 Liberal incumbents seeking re-election were renominated by their conventions. One incumbent almost failed to be renominated – in the 10th electoral circumscription of Saintes, the nomination convention was deadlocked between the incumbent, Yvonne-Odile Lamoureaux-Ombreuse, and Aline Guichelin, a city councillor for the arrondissement of Fourvière. Three ballots were subsequently held, all of which were tied. The tie was broken on the twelfth ballot, and Ms. Lamoureaux-Ombreuse was selected as candidate by a margin of two votes.

    Nominees
    Aside from those with incumbent Liberal deputies, here are some of the Liberal candidates:
    • Saintes-9: Sébastien Mauconduit. The son of Saintes mayor Stéphane Mauconduit is running in this open seat previously held by Liberal MP Guy-Laurent Moulevrier.
    • Basses-Alpes-1: Jean-Thaddée Beauvisage. The election in Basses-Alpes-1 had taken a weird turn as the Liberals nominated Jude-Thaddée Beauvisage, the younger brother of the district’s National deputy, Justin-Thibault Beauvisage. Intensifying further the sibling rivalry is Justin-Thibault’s identical twin, Jérôme-Timothée Beauvisage, who declared that he would be supporting his twin over their younger brother.
    • Boëme-2: Gérald-Maxime Gavotte. Known as Saintonge’s “Cookie King”, the fourth-generation head of the eponymous biscuit and cookie company is now running in the department of his ancestral roots.
    • Basses-Brômes-2: Primerose Linné. The award-winning actress stereotyped as a villain in TV shows like Chemin des Bonnes Intentions and Marguerite Enchaînée is running in this National-held district centred around Saint-Omer.
    • Borgne-3: Marc-Ladislaus Villechaise de Condillac. Running in their ancestral department is the sixth-generation descendant of Liberal Prime Minister Louis-Casimir Villechaise de Condillac, the last Prime Minister to be censured by the Santonian National Assembly, in 1898.
    • Haut-Rhâne: Patrice Eberlé. The leader of the Liberals in the departmental council of the Haut-Rhâne is running for the lone circumscription of this department. This seat currently head by Iseult Jaffrelot, co-chair of the Green Party, is now being contested by two departmental party leaders – Eberlé of the Liberals and Charles-Victor de la Balme of the Radicals.
    • Sarine-5: Charlotte Ingrosse. The Liberal Party had recruited a star candidate in the more marginal of the two National-held seats in the Sarine. The singer, known for hits such as Femme louche and Montre moi ton amour, is running in the district covering her childhood hometown, Havey.
    • Sarine-11: Amélie Sablière-Conseillon. The Liberals are clearly gunning for a sweep in the Sarine, as they have recruited another star candidate in Amélie Sablière-Conseillon, president of the Sarine Departmental Council. She is running in the other National-held seat in the department.
    • Seudre-2: Pierre Taillée. Roanne Mayor Pierre Taillée is trying to make a jump from the city hall to the National Assembly. He is running in the district covering his city, which can give him an electoral advantage because of his pre-existing support base and organisation.
    • Tessin-4: Robert-Pierre Nolet. The Liberal president of the department of the Tessin is aiming to unseat the National incumbent in this district.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    14 March 2019 - 0833h

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  23. Kyle

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    Nationals nominate candidates

    by Brice-Joël Trejaut in Saintes
    14 March 2019 - 1238h

    SAINTES – the National Party held their nomination conventions for 430 electoral circumscriptions yesterday, completing their list of candidates for all circumscriptions. In an unprecedented scale, two dozen National Party deputies were not renominated by their district conventions. Another 47 deputies opted to retire or opted not to run again, which means that one-third of all National Party incumbents are not running for re-election.

    Gaucelin, others not renominated
    Former National Party leader Marc Gaucelin was the most prominent sitting deputy who was not renominated. The nomination convention for the 2nd electoral circumscription of the Chalaronne refused to renominate Gaucelin, preferring departmental councillor Marc-Christophe Matheron, a candidate of the Rénovateur faction. Matheron won over Gaucelin by a wide margin in the last round of voting in the convention.

    The five other members of the so-called “Gaucelin’s gang” - Olivier Defferre (2nd Lignon), Nicolas Destot (4th Chalaronne), Jean-Benoît Savary (3rd Haute-Coole), Vincent-Michel Tourtelier (2nd Tamise), and Henri-François Vaillant (3rd Leir) – were also refused nomination in their districts.

    The other deputies who were not renominated were mostly deemed close to Gaucelin – examples include Jean-Alfred Colbaud (8th Puy-d’Or), Charles-Henri Desplat (3rd Borgne), Édouard Lafargue (2nd Luberon), Jean-Marie Lespalles (2nd Loine), Denis-Marcel Proulx (1st Vercors), and Camille Tolle (2nd Saulx).

    “Santonian political parties usually renominate incumbent MPs who want to run again because of the incumbent advantage,” said election analyst Brice-Gauthier Kermadec. “In any given election cycle, only a few incumbents lose in their renomination conventions, and it’s usually the scandal-riddled incumbents or underperforming ones who lose. 24 deputies not being renominated is a lot. And this does not even account for deputies who opted to retire instead of facing hostile nomination conventions.”

    According to Kermadec, “The National Party seems to be purging itself. The most recent party congress gave the party leader and other stakeholders a larger voice in the nomination conventions – many of which are aligned with [National Party leader] Courseaux’s Rénovateur faction. The losers are the ancient ‘old boys’ club’ faction in the National Party. This led to very fractious nomination conventions, as the party leaders do not have a veto on who the conventions select, unlike the Radical Party.”

    Indeed, many of the nomination conventions that deselected their sitting incumbents lasted into the early morning. The nomination convention for the 4th electoral circumscription of the Coole ended at seven in the morning earlier today, with Malençon mayor Brice-Archambault Coutlée winning over sitting deputy Albert-Marie Laframboise. Laframboise was a former shadow agriculture minister under Gaucelin.

    New Nominations
    This means that only 143 out of 214 incumbent National Party deputies, or 67%, will be running for re-election, the lowest percentage of the three largest parties in the National Assembly. Candidates under the National banner include:
    • Saintes-13: Sacha Brouillette. Ms. Brouillette will be making history as the first transgender person to run for deputy under the National Party, a party traditionally seen as close to the Church. She will be joining incumbent National deputy Nicholas-Marie Delambre (8th Lisle) and three others as the National Party’s LGBT candidates.
    • Saintes-27: Charles-Ferdinand de Pontleroy. After Radical Party leader Georges Conté de Caunes vetoed his selection for the Radical Party candidacy in this district, Mr. de Pontleroy, the incumbent Radical deputy for the district, accepted the National Party’s standing offer to run as their candidate.
    • Besbre-7: Marie-Lynette Garnier-Bessette. The popular president of this department is aiming to unseat the Liberal incumbent of this district based around the city of Bellême.
    • Capoterre-1: Kévin-Justin Montrésor. The 21-year-old social media personality and former child prodigy Kévin-Justin “K.J.” Montrésor, one of the youngest candidates this cycle, is up against a Liberal heavyweight, longtime deputy Jean-Marie de Tilly.
    • Doire-3: Timothée Vaillant. Even though the nomination convention two departments over refused to nominate his father, the younger Vaillant easily won the nomination in the district centred in Tilly-la-Campagne, the home city of his mother.
    • Lac-2: Charles-Thibault Koeberlé. The leader of the National Party in the department is running against the Liberal incumbent.
    • Haute-Loine-1: Matthieu-Gauvain Lamblin. The immediate past president of the National Youth, traditionally seen as close to Ms. Courseaux, wins the nomination in Haute-Loine-1 after the incumbent opted not to run again.
    • Nébrodes-2: Ernestine-Guenièvre Thieriot. Ms. Courseaux’s spokesperson will be running in this open seat.
    • Rance-4: Malcolm-Alan Kergomard. The son of this district’s longtime MP Jean-Pol Kergomard, the younger Kergomard will try to unseat Liberal deputy Henriette-Anne Le Bon, who defeated his father in 2015.
    • Sarine-1: Alexandre-Stachys de Beaucroissant. The ex-footballer, journalist and model Alexandre-Stachys de Beaucroissant will be running against Liberal incumbent, Culture and Sports Minister Rachel Bordier-Nadège, who is also a celebrity in her right as a former actress, singer, and TV host.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    14 March 2019 - 1410h

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    Last edited: May 17, 2019 at 10:50 AM
  24. Kyle

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    Greens nominate candidates

    by Marie-Sabrine Roux-Préjean in Saintes
    15 March 2019 - 0942h

    SAINTES – the Green Party had released yesterday evening their candidate list for all 430 electoral circumscriptions for the upcoming elections to the National Assembly, the lower house of Parliament. Despite having wide control over the selection of candidates and not holding nomination conventions, the Green Party leadership was the last of the four major parties to finalise their list.

    Incumbents
    All of the four incumbent Green deputies are running for re-election: Green party co-chairs Laurent Junot (1st Semois) and Iseult Jaffrelot (Haut-Rhâne), and Kimo-Philippe de Sabarthès (16th Saintes) and Aglaé Delcassé (18th Saintes).

    New Nominations
    This is only the fifth time that the Green Party is able to nominate candidates in all electoral constituencies. The Greens nominated candidates even in the central plains, where the party is historically weak due to the conservative agrarian tendencies of the area. Candidates running under the Green party include:
    • Basses-Alpes-1: Colette Audigier. Anti-nuclear power activist Colette Audigier is running in the district on a platform of closure of the area’s uranium mines.
    • Corb-7: Leïla Bizet-Guyot. Environmentalist Bizet-Guyot will attempt to bring her anti-fossil fuel platform to the National Assembly by running, perhaps ironically, in a district centred in Plaisance, the centre of the Santonian oil industry.
    • Côtes-du-Nord-2: Anaïs Garnier. Actress and social activist Anaïs Garnier will be running in the district containing her summer home.
    • Simbruins-5: Eulalie-Josephine de Cinq. A fierce critic of Roderic du Tertre, the authoritarian “iron-fist” mayor of Saint-Pierre-d’Aveau, is now running against him in the open seat in Simbruins-5.
    • Sûre-2: André de Fessenheim. Social media influencer André de Fessenheim will be running in his home district in the south.

    translation by Hunter Kidlington de Collobrières
    15 March 2019 - 1112h

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