Guardian, September 30, 2015
A French European MP was fighting for her political future on Wednesday after coming under attack for describing France as a country of “white race”.
Nadine Morano, of the right-wing The Republicans party, could be barred from standing in regional elections in December over her remarks, in which she also said France was a “Jewish-Christian” country.
Former president Nicolas Sarkozy, who heads the party–the main opposition to the governing Socialists–has asked the leadership to withdraw Morano from its list of candidates for the biggest electoral test of 2015.
Morano, a former minister with a reputation for gaffes and unguarded Twitter comments, said in a television interview on Saturday that: “We are a Jewish-Christian country . . . of white race, which takes in foreigners.”
Sarkozy, who once counted the 51-year-old as one of his closest allies in his government, said: “I will not accept any slip-ups.”
Morano has been condemned from all points of the political spectrum, and the head of The Republicans’ list of candidates for eastern France, Philippe Richert, said her comments had had a “devastating effect” on his campaign.
Morano insists she is the victim of a “witchhunt”.
“I said nothing terrible. In fact I don’t think I’ve done anything wrong,” she said.
Support has come from one predictable source–the former leader of the far-right National Front (FN), Jean-Marie Le Pen, who said Morano was “stating the obvious” when she described France as a country of “white race”.