Bardella rather than Le Pen for the presidential election? Activists are already thinking about it

Marine Le Pen intends to be the candidate of the National Rally for the 2027 presidential election, but some party activists could prefer her colt, Jordan Bardella.

Bardella rather than Le Pen for the presidential election? Activists are already thinking about it

Marine Le Pen intends to be the candidate of the National Rally for the 2027 presidential election, but some party activists could prefer her colt, Jordan Bardella.

Marine Le Pen seems to have decided to restart the race for the 2027 presidential election. "I am the natural candidate for my camp" assured the leader of the National Rally (RN) on the set of TF1's 20 Hours last September. But this may no longer be true for some of the activists of the flame party. Some would prefer the young Jordan Bardella, president of the RN since 2021, to the daughter of the Le Pen dynasty.

The boss of the far-right party has the experience of three presidential campaigns, but this asset could also become a disadvantage because the three attempts ended in failure, despite constant progress until reaching 41, 45% of the votes during the duel with Emmanuel Macron in 2022. This rise of the National Rally confirmed during the legislative elections the same year allows Marine Le Pen to hope to do even better and to perhaps win in the next election. Loyal to his chin, Jordan Bardella should not voluntarily steal the spotlight from the Le Pen girl, but if he is pushed by the activists what will be the best decision to make?

If the RN weighs so much in the last elections and in the voting intentions of the upcoming European elections or those already evaluated for the presidential election, this is not unrelated to the work of demonization carried out by Marine Le Pen and the activists know it. But this work may not be enough to combat the effects of a surname that carries too much meaning. “We will be in power one day, but never with a Le Pen” estimates a retiree who has voted for the RN since 1981 in Le Monde. According to him, having a candidate with a name other than that of founder Jean-Marie Le Pen is a good thing to convince "the cautious", understand those who are still afraid of taking a radical vote.

The Lepenist's analysis is confirmed among certain young people tempted by the extreme right vote. “I adhere to the ideas of Marine Le Pen but there is always this fear regarding her family, while Jordan Bardella has no political past,” explains a student from Montpellier in the evening newspaper. It is clear that the name Le Pen “sticks to the skin” of the member of Parliament for Pas-de-Calais and the majority are playing along with it. In 2022, Emmanuel Macron had, wisely, called the flame party by its old name – the National Front – throughout the campaign.

It is also the smoother image of the president of the RN which wins the support of activists. The 29-year-old young man convinces during his television appearances with his speech considered more "reassuring" than that of Marine Le Pen. A speech which several elected officials criticize for hiding the ideology of the far-right party under hard-hitting replies that hit the mark with voters. Criticisms which do not hold up according to a fifty-year-old activist interviewed by Le Monde: "A politician does not have to repeat what he thinks: we know very well what Jordan defends since he represents the party and its history." For her, the president of the party is reminiscent of the head of state who took advantage of this fresh effect in political life during his first presidential campaign: "He is young, speaks well and has a good mouth: exactly like Macron in 2017. At the time, many voted for him without really knowing what he thought."

Jordan Bardella's ease is also what Marine Le Pen lacks according to RN voters. If the three-time presidential candidate has a habit of coming out on top in the first round, “in every debate between the two rounds, she is bad”. “We would have better chances with Bardella. Marine Le Pen is more angry and aggressive, she doesn’t have the same composure,” judges a party supporter still in Le Monde. As for criticism of lack of experience, youth no longer seems to be a disadvantage in politics, on the contrary since the appointment of Gabriel Attal to Matignon. The Attal - Bardella opposition is often presented as the future Macron - Le Pen duel.

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