They are at the forefront of marriage for all. And for good reason: it is they, the mayors – and their deputies – who have celebrated them since the promulgation, on May 17, 2013, of the law opening up marriage to people of the same sex. Ten years ago, during the fiery debates that preceded the adoption of the text, some elected officials had said loud and clear that they would not celebrate such unions. The exit of François Hollande, invoking, in November 2012, the ” freedom of conscience “ city councilors before the congress of mayors of France, and recalling the possibility of delegating the task to their deputies, had traced this possibility.
An IFOP poll in February 2013 showed that 52% of mayors were opposed to this reform. Ten years later, what about? “We are seeing a definite improvement. We have fewer reports of mayors who refuse, fewer ceremonies that go wrong”, rejoices Nicolas Faget, spokesperson for the ociation of gay and lesbian parents and future parents. And this, recognizes the activist, “despite the presence of some phobic acts or unsuitable forms”. Mr. Faget mentions municipal agents giving ” Dear “ to couples, or elected officials carrying out in person all the marriages planned on the same day, with the exception of that which concerns two people of the same sex, reserved for an istant.
In ten years, the mayors have evolved – especially on the right, since the reform was carried by the left. Marriage for all found its place on the banns published in town hall, including among the opponents of the time. What the ociation of Mayors of France confirms: “We have no more feedback, the subject is no longer discussed at all in meetings. »
Among the city councilors, however, there is still resistance. “I always meet some who don’t agree with the law, and others who are for it. There are all scenarios », says Franck Meyer, centrist mayor of Sotteville-sous-le-Val (Seine-Maritime) and former spokesperson for La Manif pour tous. He himself acknowledges that his movement, Mayors for Children, created ten years ago and then claiming more than 20,000 civil registrars (including 12,000 mayors), is dormant, a sign of a gradual normalization of reform. The collective was not reactivated after the 2020 elections. “It’s not the topic of the momentsweeps Mr. Meyer. We have faced major crises. »
“I changed my outlook”
Like the ministers of the interior, Gérald Darmanin, and of the ecological transition, Christophe Béchu, who recently admitted having changed their minds on marriage for all, many mayors have taken this path, even experienced themselves. Not only does Gil Avérous, elected Les Républicains (LR) from Châteauroux, carry out same-sex marriages, but he will marry his companion in a few weeks. “I was for the civil union contract that Nicolas Sarkozy had proposed. I was convinced that marriage would create tensions in French society. Now things are done, and done well. No question of questioning it”, he recalled a few years ago in The New Republic.
You have 47.16% of this article left to read. The following is for subscribers only.