France: Obama is NOT what we call “left wing”

The Franco-American relations have always been mired with controversy. Although their histories are deeply entrenched into one another (American Revolution, WWII…), there is no denying that the past relationship is full of tense moments (disagreement on NATO under de Gaulle and the war on Iraq…) and stereotyping on either sides is sometimes out of control.

The US presidential election is seen by many in France as a chance to reassess this relationship and find a common ground. One Frenchman in China explains on link TV why this election matters so much to the rest of the world.

The Facebook group called Les socialistes avec Obama concurs. The group lists the reasons why it is important for the French left wing to support Obama:

• Redonner une vision aux Etat-Unis en étant un exemple en rétablissant le multilatéralisme car l'union fait la force.
• Être plus interventionniste (Congo, Darfour et Liberia)
• Améliorer la sécurité sanitaire mondiale
• Plan pour arrêter la guerre en Irak.
• Un système de sécurité social plus performant et protecteur
• Combattre la pauvreté en mettant en place des formations pour ceux qui sont sans emploi, assurer la liberté de syndicalisation, aide aux plus pauvres pour trouver des crédits d'investissement dans une entreprise, création d'incubateur d'entreprises”

-Give a new vision of the US by giving an example of multilateralism. There is strength in unity.
-More intervention in Congo, Darfur and Liberia.
-Improve Global Health care.
-A withdrawal plan for the Iraq war.
-A social security system that is more effective.
-Fighting poverty by training the unemployed, the freedom to unionize, aid the poorest obtaining investing credits in their companies and create business incubators.

However, Not everyone in the group thinks that Obama reflects the value of the French left-wing:

Jean-Arnaud Coste says:

” Vous êtes vraiment d'une naïveté déconcertante pour croire qu'Obama est de gauche, c'est dingue…
Il est certes peut être moins à droite que Mc Cain mais il est bien plus à droite que Sarkozy par exemple . Donc voir des socialistes soutenir Obama c'est vraiment absurde…Comme si la gauche ça existait aux Etats-Unis.”

Your naivety is really disconcerting, to think that Obama is left-wing, it’s crazy. He is certainly less to the right the McCain but he is more to the right of Sarkozy for example. So to see socialists support Obama is truly absurd…As if there was a true “left” in the US.

To which Michel Attia replied:

“il y a une très grande différence entre l'unilatéralisme de Bush et le multilatéralisme des Démocrates »

There is a major difference between the unilateralism of Bush and the multilateralism of the Democrats.

Arthur Mitteau adds:

“Que Barack répare l'édifice des relations entre les EU et le monde, ce sera déjà gigantesque »

If Barack can repair the front door of the relation between the US and the world, it would already be a gigantic achievement.


  • Eve

    I have to agree with Jean-Arnaud in saying that Obama is NOT LEFT WING. He is centrist AT BEST. But there is a left wing in the States, Ralph Nader is a good example. It’s just too bad that he doesn’t stand a chance because Americans are too scared and/or greedy to elect him.

  • Barack OBAMA le candidat Democrate américain est avant tout symbolique d’une nouvelle génération d’hommes politiques fondée sur le mérite plus que sur les privilèges…Aux USA comme en France, cela va changer la donne !!!

    Barack Obama is a symboll of a new generation in politics , based on merit rather than heritage… in USA as well as in France, its gonna change the situation!!!

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