Le Pen calls for rebranding of France’s National Front

CHRISTOPHE PETIT TESSON

An election campaign poster for French far-right National Front reads 'Choose Your Suburb - Vote Front' and features a Muslim woman, wearing an Islamic veil and with the French national colours painted on her face in Paris, December 6, 2015.

Le Pen calls for rebranding of France’s National Front


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In a speech delivered on March 11, the leader of France’ far-right National Front Marine Le Pen proposed that her far-right party re-brand as the “National Rally” to rid itself of the overtly anti-Semitic and racist history that has dogged the political faction since it was founded by her father in 1972.

Le Pen made clear that the objective of the party should be to become a mainstream political force that will eventually gain power in France’s National Assembly and Senate while casting aside its legacy as a protest movement.

“There should be no doubt now that we can be a ruling party,” Le Pen said, adding that the party’s objective can only be power.

Party delegates approved Le Pen’s suggestion by a narrow vote of 52% on March 10, suggesting that the rebranding of the National Front could fragment the party into competing wings with one led by Marine’s 89-year-old father Jean-Marie Le Pen, a Member of the European Parliament, who told Reuters that his daughter’s proposal is “nothing less than political suicide”.

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