Nicolas Sarkozy unites the French Right – against him


The end of the regional elections in France last weekend was the starting gun for another contest – to choose the Right's candidate for the next presidential election. Already, ahead of this primary scheduled for the autumn of 2016, two clear ideological lines have emerged as have a host of competing candidates. Just one factor seems to unite them all and that is hostility towards their own leader, Nicolas Sarkozy, who is widely blamed for assisting the rise of the far-right Front National. Ellen Salvi reports.

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The strategy adopted by former president Nicolas Sarkozy is coming under increasing attack from many in own right-wing party Les Républicains and among allies on the political right after the recent regional elections in France. His espousal of hard-line right-wing policies has been blamed by many for the rise in support for the Front National, which despite failing to win control of a region last weekend recorded its biggest ever share of the popular vote. Meanwhile Sarkozy's decision to remove former minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, from her position as number two in the party in the New Year has been publicly criticized by senior figures.