Timofeev Pavel
«National Union» in the National Assembly of France: are disrupters capable of being creators?
Publication Type:

DOI 10.31249/ape/2023.04.09

The article deals with activities of the far-right «National Rally» party (French: Rassemblement National, RN) in the lower house of the France’s parliament – the National Assembly – in 2022–2023. The author shows the party leader M. Le Pen uses her historical success in the 2022 elections – the formation of the third largest parliamentary faction – to further normalize the RN’s image. The article analyses three aspects of the RN’s work in the National Assembly: the anchorage in the parliamentary commissions and groups, the building of a decent image of RN deputies and their participation in lawmaking. The author considers the socio-professional portrait of RN deputies and analyses the main problems preventing the recognition of the RN as «the same party as others»: its opportunistic position in relation to other groups; the lack of bright leaders and behavioral mistakes; the preservation of some ultra-right ideology provisions in the RN’s discourse; the continuing perception of the RN as a dangerous political force in French society. The article examines the degree of proximity of RN to other parties on the basis of voting on bills and on motion of censure resolutions. The author concludes that Le Pen’s party, despite its rhetoric, is not at all strictly oppositional, and its tactic has its advantages and disadvantages. Generally the RN has been providing useful votes for other groups, which, nevertheless, refuse to support the bills of the far right. Thus, the task of the party’s «respectabilisation», set by Marine Le Pen, has not yet been solved.

Keywords: France | French domestic policy | French political parties | National Assembly | National Rally | Marine Le Pen |


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