Member of Parliament of the French Socialist Party (PS) and newly-reelected First Secretary of the party Olivier Faure delivers a speech during the congress of socialist party group in Marseille, Southern France, 29 January 2023. EPA-EFE/GUILLAUME HORCAJUELO


French Socialists bury left-wing unity list for European Parliament elections


The head of the French Socialist Party, Olivier Faure, said he does not want to be part of a united left-wing list ahead of the European Parliament elections in June 2024.

Faure made his choice known following a meeting organised for the party leaders of the Socialist Party (PS), the Greens, (EELV), the populist France Unbowed (LFI) and the Communist Party (PCF) to revive discussions about a common list of nominees, French daily Liberation reports.

“We do not want to prolong the soap opera of the common list, whose only result is to be discouraged by our public quarrels,” Faure wrote in a letter to other leaders of the Left Alliance.

He said he had opted for a separate list in the European elections, like the PCF and EELV.

The letter was sent as the leaders of the left-wing electoral alliance Nupes were invited by the executives of the youth branches to discuss the common European programme developed by that group.

In September, the Nupes youth chapter initiated a series of events aimed at reaching an agreement on European elections.  Neither Marine Tondelier (of the Greens) nor Fabien Roussel (of the Communists) attended. Faure only turned up to clarify the fact the Socialists would not be part of Nupes either.

The choice to go to the elections in a divided order irks the populist LFI party, which has been campaigning for a broad Left front so the Nupes leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon could test the popularity of French President Emmanuel Macron.

Nupes was formed under the leadership of Mélenchon to help him in the 2022 French presidential elections. It consists of several parties including his La France Insoumise, the Socialist Party and the Communist Party, together with some other leftist politicians.

Without a common list for the European elections, LFI is threatening to scupper the alliance before 2027, the end of the coalition’s official term.

In June, Mélenchon said: “Nupes is in danger if it is no longer even an electoral agreement. If there is no union in the European elections, there will be none in the municipal elections either. Why would there be one in the presidential election?”