Edouard Philippe’s dual-tone political comeback

Published on September 8, 2023 at 7:01 am

Month after month, Edward Philippe remains in the ranking of political figures of the Elabe barometer for “Les Echos” pole position among all French people. This is again true this month with 44% positive image. This is 10 points ahead of Marine Le Pen, who progressed by 3 points, to 34%. But Alain Juppé’s former lieutenant is wary of polls like the plague.

“I am not the most popular, but the least unpopular of French politicians,” he declared to “Paris Match” this Thursday on the occasion of the return to politics and the publication next Wednesday of a book , “Places that say” (Lattès). Enough to demonstrate a certain lucidity while feigning distance.

This did not prevent many of his supporters from widely relaying on social networks last weekend an opinion survey which came at just the right time in this back-to-school season where everyone’s ambitions – starting with those of his friend , Minister of the Interior Gérald Darmanin – have set the political microcosm in turmoil.

Bringing Right and Center Together

According to this OpinionWay poll for “Le Parisien” published on Sunday, Edouard Philippe would be the politician “best able to bring together the right and the center” in the next presidential election (42% of respondents), far, very far ahead of Bruno The Mayor (27%), Gérald Darmanin (22%), Xavier Bertrand (22%), Laurent Wauquiez (17%) and François Bayrou (14%).

He also takes first place in terms of his electoral attractiveness ahead of Marine Le Pen: 33% of respondents would be tempted to vote for him in the next presidential election, compared to 30% for the far-right leader. Encouraging. Even if 64% of respondents answered no to the question of whether they would be tempted to vote for him (67% for Marine Le Pen).

In this back to school, the founding president of the Horizons party , who cultivates a rare word, will expose himself a little more, on the occasion of his party’s parliamentary days in Angers next week and especially the publication of his work. In addition to “Paris Match”, he must notably participate this Sunday in the show Sept à Huit on TF1 then in a morning show on France Inter.

This is of course the opportunity for Edouard Philippe to maintain this capital of sympathy, to try to make it bear fruit and to “weave his web”, says a close friend. This, by trying to continue to forge an image “of a statesman whose solidity we were able to measure during the Covid period, and of a man anchored in the reality of the daily life of the French as mayor of Le Havre”, continues the even close.

Force your nature

This book ? The former Prime Minister immediately warns in “Paris Match” that he “is not a program”. “I’m trying to develop a strategy for a country. […] I give directions more than measurements. What can we do at ten, twenty, thirty years old to know where we want to arrive? […]. We must have an overall strategy, before giving short-term measures and, when the time comes, proposing it to the French,” he insists.

The one whose image is also marked by 80 km/h on secondary roads, retirement at 65 or even 67 years old or even the concern for budgetary rigor, also seems with this book to force his nature and shake up his great modesty to, beyond politics, reveal yourself more.

“Politics should not dehumanize,” he says. He returns to his dual autoimmune disease and also talks for the first time about his father’s suicide attempt or, through his family experience, “the difficulty of being a teacher and how we respond to it.” A somewhat obligatory element in the panoply of a possible future candidate for the Elysée.

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