For years France’s National Front Party has leaned far towards the right, and though there is now a female at the helm, it’s not budging much. Marine Le Pen, hoping to snag the presidency in 2017, has been a strong force in the male-dominated party and is responsible for attracting more women voters. However, Le Pen does not necessarily stand up for all women’s rights. Abortion is a hot topic now and the nationalists traditionally have been staunch opponents. Le Pen supports women through laws pertaining to mothers and exercises most power when it comes to women in the economy. Nonna Mayer, a political science professor at the IEP in Paris says that the Nationalist Front has made gains with women because Le Pen attracts a “predominantly female, supermarket cashier-type bracket, rebelling against their working conditions.”
However, don’t be fooled by her “sticking up” for this class of women. The National Front holds its old-fashioned views towards women and Le Pen, despite being a woman, is not the candidate to fight for women’s rights—she remains true to her party’s traditional philosophies. She’s a twice-divorced working mother who may seem like the ideal powerhouse of a woman, which she is, but she is not about to stand behind female rights.
Cover image courtesy of Oliver Willis.