Spotlight on the French government reshuffle


The French ministerial reshuffle in November appeared to announce the start of the 2012 presidential election campaign and an attempt to kickstart a government engulfed by scandals and social unrest. The new ministerial line-up saw a strengthening of ministers loyal to President Nicolas Sarkozy, a return of old-school Gaullists and the re-appointment of François Fillon as prime minister. It also saw the exit of the Centrists and figures from the renegade Left. Click here for Mediapart's reports and commentary, and the complete list of the new government team.

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Click on the headlines to read Mediapart's reports and analysis of the French government reshuffle in November.


1- The ins and outs of the French government reshuffle

A sketch of who's who and who's no more, and the complete list of new government members.

2- Reshuffle: centre gone and no-one Left

The new French government lost almost all of its centre-right ministers, notably the leaders of the two centrist movements. Marine Turchi reports on how the president turned his back on building a broad ruling majority.

3- Weakened? Sarkozy has other plans

Many observers interpreted the recent French government reshuffle as a sign of weakness on the part of French President Nicolas Sarkozy. On the contrary, argues Mediapart editor François Bonnet, the president has prepared a savvy tactic for re-election.

4-Just who is Monsieur Borloo?

François Fillon was re-appointed as prime minister, leaving outgoing environment and energy minister Jean-Louis Borloo, hotly tipped for the job, out of government and a bitterly disappointed man who now appears ready to mount a centre-Right claim for the presidency in 2012. Martine Orange investigates the surprising networks and friendships of Borloo, and how he once made a small fortune out of busted businesses.

5-The farce of Sarkozy's reshuffle and the crisis it cannot hide

The president hoped the reshuffle would turn a political page on a volatile social crisis and the scandals rocking his presidency. But, argues Mediapart's Laurent Mauduit, the stage-managed media rumours and an abscence of political debate speak volumes about the president's attachment to democracy and a crisis within his own political camp. .

6-Bernard Kouchner, a minister stuck between a rock and a hard place

Bernard Kouchner was French foreign affairs minister until the reshuffle. It was an undignified departure for the former Socialist Party bigwig and humanitarian aid pioneer.With help of ministry insiders, Thomas Cantaloube charts the demise of a man who ended his career as an ineffectual minister serving his former political adversaries.


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