Europe 1 with AFP 4:40 p.m., March 9, 2022

Xavier Bertrand (LR) proposed Wednesday to outgoing President Emmanuel Macron to hold four debates between now and the first round of the presidential election, with each of the four other candidates best placed in the polls.

Valérie Pécresse's adviser added that a debate at 12 could be complex for the outgoing president.

"Four weeks, four debates": Xavier Bertrand (LR) proposed Wednesday to outgoing President Emmanuel Macron to hold four debates between now and the first round of the presidential election, with each of the four other candidates best placed in the polls.

"I want to understand that a debate at 12 is certainly not easy", agreed on RTL Valérie Pécresse's adviser on work and territories, while the Head of State evacuated the idea of such a debate, which would be reduced to "a rat race", according to government spokesman Gabriel Attal.

>> READ ALSO

- Presidential: "The five-year term which opens must be that of the middle classes", assures Xavier Bertrand

A debate with Pécresse, Zemmour, Mélenchon and Le Pen

"But today there are three or four candidates who can be in the second round and who stand. Four weeks ago, why not accept a debate with each of the candidates: Macron against Valérie Pécresse, Macron against Zemmour, facing Mélenchon, facing Le Pen?”, proposed the unsuccessful candidate for the right-wing primary, for whom “our country needs confrontation”.

"We cannot have an election that would be a form of extension, the awakening would be terrible," he said.

According to the president of the Hauts-de-France region, "the circumstances today are absolutely not the same" as in 2012, when Nicolas Sarkozy had not debated with his opponents in the first round.

"We have been a country in turmoil for years and years, and the current situation, the concerns - the war in Ukraine, purchasing power, security - all of this means that the French people today need clarity and debate," he pleaded.

The second argument, according to Xavier Bertrand, "it is also Emmanuel Macron (...) who said 'get out of the codes, break the codes, take risks, innovate'".

Keywords: