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Gaël Perdriau, LR mayor of Saint-Etienne, “reflects” on the presidential election

Caps and pens “Perdriau president!” »Will they be distributed on the beaches and in the streets of France in 2022 by the activists of the Les Républicains (LR) party? Since Sunday January 10, the question has arisen. At least, it is asked by the main interested party, Gaël Perdriau, 48, mayor of Saint-Etienne and vice-president of LR. In two interviews granted on January 10 to Franceinfo and the regional daily Progress, the local elected representative said ” reflect “ to stand for the presidential election – since requested by The world, he did not wish to answer our questions. He thus joins the list of potential candidates on the right: Xavier Bertrand, Valérie Pécresse, Bruno Retailleau, Laurent Wauquiez, Philippe Juvin…

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If this announcement may have surprised some LR executives, it hardly surprised the local political world. “I had mentioned his overflowing national ambition during the last municipal campaign, comments Pierrick Courbon, socialist leader of the municipal opposition. Less than eight months after his re-election, Gaël Perdriau seems more mobilized by the prospect of the presidential election than by Saint-Etienne and its inhabitants. “ For Jean-Michel Mis, deputy (La République en Marche, LRM) of the Loire, who supported him for the municipal election of 2020 and who defends his local policy, such an announcement goes badly. “Gaël Perdriau goes more often to television sets than to the streets of Saint-Etienne, he laments. And this is not to talk about his city, but to demolish the action of the government. “

A profile that stands out

Former mayor Michel Thiollière (Agir, ex-UMP), who recruited him alongside him to the municipal council for two terms (1994-2008), supported his candidacy for municipal elections in 2014 and has not seen him since. , misunderstood the approach of his former assistant. “When you are the mayor of Saint-Etienne, it is impossible to do anything else, he specifies. It is a city that has major economic and social challenges to overcome. And with the health crisis we are going through, the time is not really for presidential ambitions. “

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Gaël Perdriau’s profile stands out: unknown to the French, he has never held a national mandate or ministerial responsibility. The justification for his approach is undoubtedly to be sought elsewhere. On the side of his party, LR, which wanders in a political fog, without a natural candidate and without a clear program for 2022. It is on this last point that the mayor of Saint-Etienne, who created a microparty a few months ago , The factory of ideas, wants to make a difference, emphasizing the columns that it has published in recent months in various national media.

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