Après Trump

The approaching French elections show a deepening American influence.

My American friends often ask if Donald Trump’s election has any repercussions for the French presidential election, the first round of which takes place on April 24. I’d normally be inclined to say no, because presidential elections remain mainly domestic matters, but the American model is gradually influencing French politics.

Thus, the main right-wing party, originally Gaullist and Christian Democrat, took the name “Republican” two years ago—a direct reference to the Republican Party of the United States. Its candidate, François Fillon, appeals at once to social conservatism and to a market economy, which is exactly the American synthesis that the French Republican Party intends to represent.