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Candidates rush to French parliamentary elections, but one convicted of spousal abuse withdraws

PARIS (AP) — Candidates rushed to register before Sunday evening’s deadline for early parliamentary elections that are reshaping France’s political landscape, with a left-wing alliance recently formed to counter the wave of far-right forces in the final hours a future lawmaker previously convicted of spousal abuse.

Adrien Quatennens announced the withdrawal of his candidacy, which had caused cracks in the young New Popular Front. The uneasy coalition of parties from the extreme left to the center left is campaign together against the prospect that the June 30 and July 7 elections in two rounds could produce France’s first far-right government since the Nazi occupation.

President Emmanuel Macron has dissolved the National Assembly, the lower house of parliament, in a shock response to the far right’s humbling defeat in the June 9 European elections.

Quatennens was previously a member of parliament for the far-left party France Unbowed. Despite being given a four-month suspended prison sentence for spousal abuse in 2022, Quatennens was among the 230 people France Unbowed first put forward as election candidates to the New Popular Front, immediately challenging the unity of the alliance the test was set.

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François Ruffin, another outgoing left-wing lawmaker who is running again, claimed Quatennens was chosen over other potential candidates because of his loyalty to French leader Jean-Luc Melenchon. In a tweet, Ruffin said angrily: “You prefer a man who beats his wife, perpetrator of domestic violence, to comrades who have the effrontery to have a disagreement with the great leader.”

The pressure prompted Quatennens to announce on Sunday that he would not stand as a candidate. He said he did not want his candidacy to harm the New Popular Front and his chances of staving off the far right.

“Within three weeks, this beautiful country could be ruled by fascists for the first time since World War II,” Quatennens said. “The threat is much greater than we think.”

The 34-year-old again expressed his regret over what he described as “this blow” directed at his now ex-wife before their divorce, saying: “I immediately regretted it.”

Candidates had until 6pm on Sunday to register and have been scrambling to get the paperwork together and launch their campaigns.

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Macron is betting that the early legislative vote will ensure that his centrist party will bounce back from its crushing defeat by the far-right National Rally in the European Parliament elections, and that voters who have drifted to the far right will hesitate to vote. prospect that these elections will take place. power in France.

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