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December 7, 2015 3:46 pm

French Jewish Parliamentarian: Le Pen Victory Does Not Reflect Rise in Antisemtism

avatar by Ruthie Blum

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Marie Le Pen, head of the National Front party in France. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Marine Le Pen, head of the National Front party in France. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The success of the far-Right National Front party in Sunday’s’s regional elections in France does not reflect a rise in racism or antisemitism, a Jewish member of the French parliament told the Israeli news site Walla on Monday.

Meir Habib said that the result of the elections, in which Marine Le Pen’s party won 28% of the vote, was to be expected, due to the public’s sense that the current government has not adequately addressed the country’s many problems.

“Unfortunately, they are supporting a populist party with no governing experience,” Habib said. “People here want the tree uprooted and think Le Pen will do it – with fewer immigrants and less unemployment.”

He also said that in spite of his own reservations about the right-wing party, he too opposes absorbing an unlimited number of immigrants, and supports combating radical Islam.

“There is no room in France for another 10 million Muslims from another culture,” he said. “I think we have to take a small number of people who are in genuine distress. The problem has to be dealt with at the source. We have to finish ISIS off. We lost 130 people in Paris [last month]. We’re at war.”

According to Habib, Jews also voted for Le Pen, “though not many.” Personally, he told Walla, “As a Jew, I could not back a party that was established and motivated by the ideas of the Third Reich. It is immoral, and I think Jews need to protect their morality.”

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