Ira? Will not you? The famous mathematician and MP for the Essonne, Cédric Villani, must speak on September 4 about his possible candidacy for mayor of Paris. While the former government spokesman, Benjamin Griveaux, was officially invested by the Republic on the march (LREM) against Cédric Villani, the entourage of it suggests that a dissenting candidacy is on track. A situation that may put Emmanuel Macron in difficulty and his movement.
By announcing, a few hours before the National Commission of investiture (CNI) of LREM, July 10, that Benjamin Griveaux had been preferred to him to lead the battle of the municipal in Paris, Cédric Villani strongly criticized the method of selection of the candidate, believing that "the LREM apparatus" had moved away from "the spirit and values of the movement imagined by Emmanuel Macron". Then, in an interview given at Paris Match on August 21, he described the selection made by the CNI as "flawed procedure".
True to our values, I will soon have the opportunity to express myself on the perspectives that we should now open. #LiveParis pic.twitter.com/c8qez7PSSNCédric Villani (@VillaniCedric) July 10, 2019
The choice of words is not neutral. By presenting the process of selecting candidates for municipal elections as undemocratic, the one that was one of the first media supports of the candidate Emmanuel Macron recalls one of the foundations of En marche! in 2016: do politics differently from the bottom up to bring civil society to electoral mandates. Moreover, as the former Minister of the Economy, who had left the government of François Hollande to embark on the presidential race by claiming his freedom and personal risk-taking, the story-telling set up by the team Fields winner in 2010 is similar.
"Cédric Villani is what makes the DNA of En marche, says a member of his entourage, contacted by France 24. It is a personality of civil society, a free man who had never made beforehand, and who answered the call of Emmanuel Macron for the 2017 legislative elections, precisely to draw a line on old practices politicians.However, there we find ourselves in Paris with a candidate whose appointment was decided at the 'advanced."
A version contested by the management of La République en marche which reminds that all the candidates were long auditioned by the CNI and that the best file won. "I can testify that there was no circle, the procedure and its rules were known in advance, and what came out of the hearings was that Benjamin Griveaux was much better prepared than the others. ", assures a member of the executive bureau of LREM, contacted by France 24.
Benjamin Griveaux's campaign skates
A dissenting candidacy from the MP for Essonne would put Benjamin Griveaux's position a little worse. Already in trouble because of misplaced remarks about his rivals released in the press in July, the former government spokesman struggles to take off his campaign, despite recent support from the former candidate and ex Secretary of State Mounir Mahjoubi and the ex-LR mayor of the 9th arrondissement Delphine Bürkli. The outcome in Paris will partly determine whether the municipal elections of March 2020 are a success or a failure for Emmanuel Macron and La République en marche.
Finally, in the field, activists oppose pro-Villani and pro-Griveaux, some accusing the official candidate of arrogance when others judge that the mathematician lacks loyalty. To extinguish the fire, Benjamin Griveaux proposed to Cédric Villani, August 23, to "co-sponsor" the campaign at his side. In vain.
>> To read: Municipal in Paris: a start of campaign in troubled waters for the candidate Griveaux
Therefore, the question of the consequences for LREM of a dissenting candidacy arises. Many believe that the presence of two candidates claiming the presidential party would offer a boulevard to the outgoing socialist mayor, Anne Hidalgo, for his re-election.
"Cedric is a mathematician, but he should be good calculator.The division is failure.The rally is the victory," warned on August 26 on Europe 1, the president of the National Assembly and "walker" of the first hour, Richard Ferrand.
Management of the Griveaux-Villani case, "an important issue" for LREM
Beyond the polls, it is the very management of the Villani file that is explosive for the President of the Republic. "The real issue that concerns us is what reaction should we have if it starts in the campaign?", Recognizes the member of the executive bureau of LREM interviewed by France 24. "This situation represents an important issue for us because if we do nothing, it would create an unfortunate precedent. "
Article 33 of the statutes of the Republic in motion states that a dissenting candidacy is worth exclusion from the movement. But can the head of state allow himself to exclude from his party an internationally recognized personality like Cédric Villani, who also benefits, according to his entourage, many support internally and among activists?
>> To read: Within LREM, the battle Griveaux-Villani for Paris rages
"We can also think that Emmanuel Macron will wait a little before making a decision, that he will look at the polls and that he will end up 'unplugging' Benjamin Griveaux", wants to believe a relative of the MP for Essonne, for whom everything is possible.
The only certainty: Emmanuel Macron and La République en marche will only have delicate choices on the table in case of Cédric Villani's candidacy. Especially since the president will be forced to be careful not to appear on the front line, in which case the opposition will not fail to fall on him by accusing him of behaving as party leader.