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Jean-Luc Mélenchon (fr. Jean-Luc Mélenchon, IPA (fr.):; B., Tanger) – French left-wing statesman and politician, journalist. Minister Delegate for Vocational Education in the government of Lionel Jospin from 2000 to 2002. Member of the French Senate of the Eson department (1986-2000; 2004-2010). Member of the European Parliament from 2009 to 2017 (European United Left Faction / Left-North Green). One of the founders and presidents of the "Left Party". Since 2017 – Member of the French National Assembly from the “La France invainque” party.

Biography of Jean-Luc Melenchon

Born in Tangier (International Zone of Tangier, now Morocco). The parents are civil servants. In 1962, he moved to France with his mother. A philosopher by training, he studied at the University of Franche-Comté. He taught in secondary schools. He was very early involved in the radical left youth movement, was a member of the National Union of French Students and took part in the Red May demonstrations of 1968. Within the French Trotskyist movement, Mélanchon joined the Lambertists, followers by Pierre Lambert of the International Communist Organization. Participation in union work in Besançon.

However, in 1977, he joined the Socialist Party of France, breaking with the Trotskyists. He actively supported French President François Mitterrand. Since 1988, Jean-Luc Melanchon has been elected to the National Council and to the National Office of the Socialist Party. Together with like-minded people, he organized the “Socialist Left” (anti-capitalist movement within the ranks of the Socialist Party). From 2000 to 2002, he was Minister Delegate for Vocational Education in the government of socialist Lionel Jospin. He was a senator for the department of Eson (1986-2000 and 2004-2010). He has also worked at the municipal level in the department of Eson.

In the framework of the referendum on the adoption of the Constitution of the European Union, together with the internal left currents of the Socialist Party and other leftists, the organization opposed its ratification, while the leadership of the party advocated its ratification. Taking part in the campaign against what left-wing politicians saw as the neoliberal EU Constitution brought Melanchon closer to the French Communist Party and Trotskyists.

In 2008 he left the Socialist Party due to contradictions with its leadership (including Ségolène Royal), whom he criticized for the social-liberal course and departure from leftist ideas. Initiated the creation of the “Left Party” (on the model of the German “lefts” with a reference to the ideas of Jean Jaurès); became its first president. His colleague Mark Dole also participated in the work of its creation. In 2010, the party was co-chaired by the leader of the internal faction of the Green Party, who left the party himself – Martin Billard. In 2009, he was elected MEP on the list of the European United Left/Gauche-Verts Nord group. The Left Party participates in the Left Front coalition; Melanchon is one of its co-chairs.

Participation in the 2012 presidential elections of Jean-Luc Mélenchon

As the 2012 presidential elections approached, the French Communist Party intended to present its own candidate (Alain Boquet was most likely). However, during his congress, which was held from June 16 to 18, 2011, Jean-Luc Melanchon collected 59.12 % of the votes of the members of the congress and was nominated as a candidate (members of other parties belonging to the Left Front participated Thus, he became a single candidate of this alliance) According to the results of polls conducted in 2012, before the elections, Melanchon's rating was 6-15 %. Throughout the presidential campaign, according to some polls, he managed to move from fifth to third position among voters ready to vote for Melanchon, thus overtaking Marine Le Pen and François Bayrou.

The main feature of his program was the proclamation of the "Sixth French Republic" by modifying the French constitution. In his speeches, he repeatedly referred to the history of the French Revolution and the Paris Commune. He called on his supporters for a peaceful “civilian” revolution – a coup, which is not led by the working class, but by all citizens who root for their country.

According to the results of the first round, Melanchon obtained 3,985,089 votes (11.1 % of the total number of voters), thus taking fourth place. This is significantly more than the candidate of the Communist Party in 2007 – Marie-Georges Buffet (her result was 1.93% votes).

In the second round, Melanchon supported the candidacy of François Hollande, despite the fact that due to contradictions with him he left the Socialist Party in 2008. On May 6, 2012, Hollande was elected President of France.

Other activites
He tried to become a member of the French National Assembly in 2012 from the 11th electoral district of the department of Pas-de-Calais on the list of the "Left Front" in order to arrest the leader of the National Front, Marine Le Pen, who was running there. However, in the first round of elections, he won 21.48 % of votes and took third place, losing to both Marine Le Pen (42.36 % of votes) and Philippe.

Kemel, the socialist candidate (23.5% of votes). Thus, Melanchon could not obtain the right to compete for the mandate of deputy.

Participation in the 2017 presidential election of Jean-Luc Mélenchon

In February 2016, Melanchon announced his intention to participate in the 2017 presidential campaign. Refusing to take part in the "primaries of the left", organized by the Socialist Party, he became a candidate for the "La France invaincue" movement created at the same time. . Its program was based on its 2012 theses with a few changes: the establishment of the Sixth Republic (i.e. the adoption of a new Constitution), the redistribution of wealth (the imposition of taxes supplements on surplus income, or the reduction of the working week to 32 hours), the lowering of the retirement age to 60, France's exit from the European Union and NATO . Melanchon formulated his views in the book "L'avenir en commun" ("Common Future"), which distributed 200,000 copies.

According to Le Figaro, Melanchon's program, which provides for an increase in budgetary expenditure of 270 billion euros and tax increases of 120 billion euros, an increase in paid annual leave to six weeks (its duration in 2017 is five weeks), as well as the confiscation of all income exceeding 400 thousand euros per year, inspired by the ideas of politicians such as former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

On April 4, 2017, a televised debate was organized with the participation of the eleven presidential candidates in France, the winner of which was sensationally Melanchon – his speech was recognized as the most convincing by 25% of those interviewed (Macron received the support of 21% , Fillon – 15%). Moreover, according to the results of a sociological study conducted after the debate, Mélanchon with 21% of support was in second place among the most likely winners of the first round of the elections – after Macron (27%) and ahead of Fillon ( 20%).

In April 2017, he made a name for himself by using the latest election campaign technologies – web radio and even his own holographic images during rallies in Nantes, Clermont-Ferrand, Montpellier, Grenoble, Nancy and Reunion.

On April 20, 2017, a number of prominent figures in American culture – Danny Glover, philosopher Noam Chomsky, playwright and feminist Eve Ensler, actor Mark Ruffalo, Nancy Fraser and Oliver Stone released a petition urging the French to "not to repeat the Clinton vs. Trump tragedy", i.e. "not to force French voters to choose between corporate establishment liberalism and xenophobic right-wing populism", but "to unite in the first round of presidential elections around the left-wing candidate with the most voter support. The authors of the petition also named this candidate – Melanchon.

On April 23, 2017, he received the support of 19.58 % of voters (7,060,885 people) in the first round of voting, taking fourth place among eleven candidates and thus not reaching the second round. The best results turned out to be Mélenchon's results in overseas regions: he won in Reunion (24.53 %), Guyana (24.7 %), Saint-Pierre et Miquelon (more than 35 % against 17.9 % for the winner of the first round on a national scale – Emmanuel Macron) and Martinique (27.3%).

Other activities (since 2017)
In the legislative elections in France, his party won 17 seats out of 577, becoming the fourth in number of deputies. He was himself elected deputy of one of the communes of Marseilles.

On October 16, 2018, the house near Mélenchon and several buildings in "undefeated France" were raided as part of the investigation into accusations of fictitious hiring of parliamentary assistants and violation of campaign finance rules, during which there were clashes between activists. and law enforcement officials. On September 20, 2019, the Bobigny court sentenced Melanchon to a three-month suspended prison sentence and a fine of 8 thousand euros for obstruction of justice and rebellion, and five other defendants were sentenced to a fine of 2 thousand to 10 thousand euros (trial held for two days – September 19-20, and Melanchon immediately called it political persecution).

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