Tags: tea | party | france | elections

Tea Party Appears in France

By    |   Tuesday, 01 Apr 2014 07:54 AM

Working-class voters in France are moving to the right with those who are social and religious conservatives finding reasons to identify with the American tea party movement, The  Washington Post reported.

The left took a pummeling in the country's local elections on Sunday. Some 40 percent of voters— high by French standards— skipped the balloting altogether,  The New York Times reported.

The BBC called the results a "debacle"  for Socialist President Francois Hollande. While the left held on to Paris, it lost over 150 cities to conservative parties; the populist far-right National Front captured 11 cities, the Times reported.

With momentum shifting rightward, social conservatives have been mobilizing.

They cannot abide Hollande especially after rumors— denied by Elysee Palace— that he has renounced his Christianity.

Galvanized by the same-sex marriage law passed in 2013, France's nascent tea party is at the forefront of the country's culture wars.

Many feel that existing conservative political parties are not socially conservative enough on such issues as euthanasia, abortion, and same-sex marriage. In fact, some far-right parties have embraced same-sex partnerships, the Post reported.

Social conservatives boycotted schools for a day in January to protest against a curriculum that was promoted as doing away with gender stereotypes. Opponents said boys were being encouraged to dress as girls, and books like "Daddy Wears a Dress" had been distributed to their children.

Elsewhere in Europe, too, social conservatives have been mobilizing. In Spain, the conservative government is seeking to limit abortion. Poland has pulled back from legalizing same-sex civil partnerships. And German Chancellor Angela Merkel has admitted that she is uncomfortable with same-sex couples adopting.

The French tea party movement remains leaderless, fragmented, and constrained by the fact that there are no party primaries that could empower social conservatives. Meanwhile, mainstream conservatives, including those aligned with former president Nicolas Sarkozy, are reaching out to the social conservatives.

Unlike its American counterpart, France's budding tea party is not an anti-tax movement, according to the Post.

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Working-class voters in France are moving to the right with those who are social and religious conservatives finding reasons to identify with the American tea party movement, The Washington Post reported. The left took a pummeling in the country's local elections on...
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Tuesday, 01 Apr 2014 07:54 AM
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