Jean Leonetti pleads for an open primary from the right and the center

An open primary from the right and the center: this is the track that the mayor Les Républicains (LR) of Antibes, Jean Leonetti, will present to the Republicans on Tuesday to decide between the presidential candidates. Party cadres asked him to work on “A process of selecting the candidate from our political families of the right and the center”.

“We have to find a system” for “Decide” potential candidates and this selection “Can only be opened”, said Mr Leonetti in an interview with Sunday Newspaper (JDD) of July 4.

Car “If we decided to question our only LR activists, how could we ask Valérie Pécresse, Xavier Bertrand or our centrist friends to participate? “, he added, while the direction of LR is reluctant to any primary, synonymous with divisions, and hopes for the emergence of a natural candidate.

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For Mr. Leonetti, “The tie-breaker must not give rise to a negative competition” : the winner must “Do not exclude others and that all ultimately form a team” to wear « ensemble » the presidential project.

To the question of a possible participation of Eric Zemmour, which raises the rumor of participation in the presidential election, Mr. Leonetti assured that “Can be candidates only the personalities of our family of thought of the right and the center validated by a system of sponsorships”. Furthermore “The number of candidates must remain reasonable”.

A candidate who could be nominated before November

According to an Ifop poll published by the JDD, 46% of respondents believe that Xavier Bertrand “Would make a good candidate” from the right for 2022, followed by Valérie Pécresse (42%), François Baroin (38%), Laurent Wauquiez (35%) and Michel Barnier (32%). Bruno Retailleau is at 18%.

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“In politics, it is not because we leave a little early that we cannot be caught up”, warned Mr. Leonetti, noting a “Friendly and constructive dialogue” with Xavier Bertrand, who refuses to submit to a tiebreaker.

“Do not fall into the trap of competing for ambitions”, for his part affirmed to JDD Michel Barnier, saying he is convinced of “To be able to bring together the talents of the right and the center”.

LR boss Christian Jacob announced on June 9 the launch of two large polls that will see if a “Natural candidate” stands out, before considering a designation process. While some are urging management to speed up its timetable, which calls for a nomination of the candidate in November, Leonetti said that “If from next Tuesday, we act on the principles of a selection process”, so “We will be within a reasonable and efficient schedule”.

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As for the survey of 15,000 people to be launched by LR at the start of the school year, Mr. Leonetti explained that it would be used to “To shed light on the debate” but could not “To replace the selection procedure”.

The World with AFP