Guillaume Liegey on Populism


So it may seem surprising but I think political
parties can play a major role
in addressing voters’ discontent. I think that today most voters
feel they are excluded from politics and political parties can address that. But if they wanna do so they have to be more present in the field. If you can– I mean, I’m talking about France beause that’s the country I know the most. If you look at France,
many voters never met a political activist or an elected official. Most voters do feel disconnected with politics, they feel politics is a very distant and foreign
word. And they’re right, because it’s a fact especially in disadvantaged neighborhoods. You never see a political volunteer. That actually changed during last year presidential
campaign. But before that it would never happen. Politics is something you see on TV. It’s very distant and nobody will ever come
and engage with you to discuss issues raised by politician during
campaign, for example. And I think political parties can change that. And the first way they can change it is just
sending volunteers out in the field, especially in poor and disadvantaged neighborhoods. Do that during campaigns but also outside
of campaign periods. That’s what we did with the François Hollande
campaign last year. We sent out 80,000 volunteers, out in the
field, mostly in the French banlieues, low-income
neighborhoods– with a great success. Voters were real welcoming. They were surprised to see us, and they were
welcoming. And I think it should– we should build upon
that and continue to be so “in” and have campaigns
like those.

Maurice Vega

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