The deputy of the Alpes-Maritimes is a candidate for the presidency of the Republicans, the first round of which will take place on December 3 and 4. He will notably be opposed to Aurélien Pradié, who declared himself on Monday.
Candidate for the presidency of LR, you gathered 4,000 people on your land this Sunday. For a show of force?
When we speak publicly, it is important that it finds strength in territorial roots and values. Today, I am committed to this candidacy at the national level because on my territory, there are men and women who trust me and have allowed me to carry this voice. And in the Alpes-Maritimes, where the Republicans have nevertheless kept five deputies out of nine, we have succeeded, on a clear line, without taboos, by federating forces, to keep our positions and even to develop them.
You mentioned “shock therapy” for LR. Does it go through an assumed straight line?
Absolutely. Our political family is in danger of disappearing. When the party of General de Gaulle, Georges Pompidou, Jacques Chirac, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, Nicolas Sarkozy, obtains less than 5% in the presidential election, it is that this danger is in front of us if we do not adopt measures of rupture to guarantee the recovery. This calls for very strong answers. They are in an assumed right-wing discourse. I carry a slogan: “The right to the heart”.
I’m on the right and I make no apologies for it. Even less, opinion polls confirm, that right-wing values are now very much in the majority in the country. I have been involved since the age of 16 in a political family that I will never leave.
What project are you carrying out?
The French demand more authority, freedom, that we preserve their identity, that we reward and remunerate work better. We have a country in decline, increasingly fractured, which is stalling in international competition. Faced with this, the power is content with communication slogans, meetings of pseudo-councils without any democratic legitimacy.
This situation calls for shock therapy with right-wing solutions, a powerful, courageous, audacious project of rupture. I want to make the Republicans a party of ideas again, which will also be, tomorrow, the party of lower taxes. We must reduce the compulsory levies below 40%, a tax reduction of at least 125 billion euros over the five-year term.
This very right line is also contested within LR. Do you dread “Everything but Ciotti”?
Compared to the 2007 presidential election, which saw the victory of Nicolas Sarkozy, we lost 90% of our voters. A large part of them went to Marine Le Pen because the right was not itself. When the right is on the right, there is no room for the extreme right. I want to rebuild a discourse of truth to bring these voters back to us.
But I am also addressing our voters who went to Emmanuel Macron. The challenge, and perhaps the difficulty of the exercise, will be to speak to these two electorates. My election will stem this haemorrhage.
“The party line cannot be summed up either on the PACA right or on the Vendée right,” said Rachida Dati this Sunday…
I speak a lot with Rachida Dati, she is a friend, she embodies a hope of victory in Paris, for our political family. I am convinced that we will find with Rachida Dati the way to the rally, and that she will be part of my team tomorrow.
If you are elected, will you be Laurent Wauquiez’s candidacy for the 2027 presidential election?
This is undoubtedly the strongest breaking point that I want to carry in this candidacy. Since 2007, we have not won an election, presidential or legislative. In my opinion because we have not found since Nicolas Sarkozy the leader who embodies the face of the right. And each time we succumbed to deleterious procedures, too late, and a source of division. So if I am elected president, there will be no more primary. And I want us to decide on the choice of support for our presidential candidate from the start of 2023.
The LRs must have a face in front of Le Pen, Mélenchon or Macron. And I believe that the one who today has the greatest qualities to lead us to success in 2027 is Laurent Wauquiez.