Ideological splits and strategic dilemmas – the real reason why the right-wing UMP is in crisis

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The main French right-wing opposition party the UMP has been in turmoil following a disastrous leadership election last month that saw both candidates claiming victory and which led to a formal split among its Members of Parliament. There are signs that the two sides may be close to finding a way out of the immediate crisis amid talk of a new contest next year. But, as Marine Turchi reports, the party has not even begun to address its fundamental problems of ideology and strategy faced with the Far Right.

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After weeks of divisions in the wake of a disastrous leadership election, the right-wing UMP appears to be edging slowly towards resolving its internal conflict. On the surface the party's main problem has been the fallout from a bitterly-contested battle for the opposition party's presidency between former prime minister François Fillon and Jean-François Copé, the man who eventually took over the UMP's disputed presidency.