National Rally candidate for French legislative elections Roger Chudeau faced backlash for proposing a ban on binational French citizens from holding certain positions in ministries. (Photo by Chesnot/Getty Images)


Controversy over RN ‘binational ban’ proposal ahead of vote


Roger Chudeau, a National Rally candidate in France, has faced a backlash for proposing a ban on binational French citizens holding key positions inside the government.

To justify his proposal he said that appointing Najat Vallaud-Belkacem as Minister of Education was “a mistake and not a good thing for the Republic.” Najal Vallaud-Belkacem is Franco-Morrocan and was minister from 2012 to 2017.

Amid the ensuing controversy, Chudeau attempted to clarify his stance.

He said on X that “The position that I expressed regarding Vallaud-Belkacem … is a strictly personal opinion and in no way commits the National Rally.”

Marine Le Pen tried to distance herself from the candidate.

Invited on media CNews on Friday, June 28 the de facto leader of the Rassemblement National group in the French National Assembly said she was “flabbergasted” by the comments.

She stressed that Chudeau’s statement was a “personal opinion” and contradicted the Rassemblement National’s project.

The opposition quickly seized on the incident. French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal denounced “the violence” of the comments.

“The message that is sent is you are binational, you are not French,” he said.

Najat Vallaud-Belkacem “thanked” Chudeau for “this beautiful glimpse of what the RN would look like in power: incompetence, racism and lies”.

The controversy comes just days before the French vote and after a similar proposal by Jordan Bardella, the President of National Rally. He said on June 24 that binational citizens would be excluded from “key government jobs” if the party were to win the upcoming snap general election.

Bardella did not specify what key positions he was referring to, but rather of broad areas such as defence.

On June 27, during the last debate of the campaign, Bardella emphasised that his proposal was aimed at strengthening France’s security.

Since Bardella’s statement the hard-right party has been under criticism for “wanting to differentiate among French citizens”.

The “dual allegiance” of binational French citizens has been a regular theme in the party under Jean-Marie Le Pen.