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PRESS RELEASE


French State Wants To Silence 2007 Presidential Candidate Jacques Cheminade

Aug. 7, 2006 (EIRNS)—The following statement was released on Aug. 5 by Jacques Cheminade, the head of the LaRouche Movement in France, and a candidate in the French presidential election of 2007 (http://www.cheminade2007.org), running in support of a new, global Bretton Woods agreement, and in defense of the tradition of the French nation-state, which fought for and inspired the American Revolution.

Paris, August 5, 2006

Through an injunction dated July 31, 2006, M. Balgo Bin Harish, a bailiff of justice, ordered the seizure of Jacques Cheminade's bank account N° 410701774736 at the Crédit Coopératif de Paris. That is the account M. Cheminade intended to use to channel funds into his campaign account for the 2007 French Presidential elections. Thus, while his presidential account itself was not seized—they couldn't do so since it is under the name of his financial association—the account which was to feed money into the Presidential campaign account, was shut down.

The Public Treasury is indeed demanding from M. Cheminade payment of 171,525.46 euros, which corresponds to the reimbursement of money extended to him in advance by the State (1 million francs, plus previous costs) during the 1995 presidential elections.[1]

During that election, where M. Cheminade was the candidate having spent the least (4.7 million francs, against FF91 million for M. Balladur FF89 million for M. Jospin, and FF120 million for M. Chirac, according to official figures...), the Constitutional Council, headed by Roland Dumas, rejected his campaign accounts in a decision dating from Oct. 11, 1995.

Following that decision, the State had demanded restitution of the million francs advanced and taken a mortgage on Cheminade's two-room home apartment as payment. In several occasions, from Aug. 6, 1996 to Nov. 10, 1998, seizures were carried out on the bank accounts of M. Cheminade.

Since 1998 until now, however, no initiative had been taken by the French State. The present initiative of the Public Treasury, renewing with the harassment strategy, merits two observations:

  1. It occurs at a time when M. Cheminade is the only candidate to denounce the takeover of French economic life by several oligarchic financial groups : Euronext by the New York Stock Exchange, Arcelor by Mittal Steel, GDF by Suez, and several other "guided" privatizations. Especially, M. Cheminade attacks the role played by M. Felix Rohatyn, former U.S. Ambassador in Paris, by the Lazard Frères group and other multinational investment banks (Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, JP Morgan, etc.) in the dismantling of French interests. M. Cheminade also attacked the way in which Ms. Clara Gaymard[2] and Anne Lauvergeon[3] manage their respective careers, and in particular, the way in which Ms Lauvergeon named M. Spencer Abraham, former U.S. Energy Secretary and avowed neo-conservative member of the Federalist Society to head the AREVA subsidiary in the United States.

  2. The decision made by the Constitutional Council in 1995, upon which the present legal proceedings are based, was not grounded and was politically motivated. M. Cheminade was accused of having obtained too many loans from physical persons, too long after the date of the election. Those loans having been extended without interest—something the Constitutional Council interpreted as a hidden intention to make a campaign contribution—were re-qualified from loans into contributions going beyond the authorized limits per physical person. This curious juridical construction, made up to fit a particular aim, led M. Cheminade to a situation of de facto personal ruin because of a "simple error". In fact, the National Commission of Campaign Accounts and Political Financing (CNCCFP), to which the verification of Presidential campaign accounts has since been attributed, judged, on the contrary, that the loans of physical persons to political parties must be made without interest. Understand it as one may, or rather, one understands all too well.

M. Cheminade is clearly considered to be a troublemaker. This is no reason for the French State to hound him, as it is notorious that at least two other candidates in the presidential election benefitted from the indulgence of M. Dumas, then president of the Constitutional Council, and of his colleagues.

To attempt, twelve years later (1995-2006), to block the presidential account of man having little financial means, it is to act like a small-time Fouché. That is not worthy of the Republic.

It is worth noting that for the 1995 presidential election, the Conseil Supérieur de l'Audiovisuel (Higher Audiovisual Council) acknowledged, in a communiqué of April 24, 1995, that M. Cheminade had been treated inequitably in terms of air time (45 minutes for him against 1 hour and 25 minutes for each of the other candidates) and that the National Commission of Control of the Campaign noted (letter of April 20th 1998) that the "balanced treatment of the presentation of candidates, of their comments and their declarations" had not been respected in certain programs insofar as M. Cheminade was concerned.

It is therefore clear that he is being subjected to a new harassment campaign because of his declarations and unambiguous denunciation of initiatives aimed at dismantling the means of the French Nation-State. Therefore, to show interest in his case is not only to defend a just cause, but also public liberties and the concrete means to gain access to freedom of speech in a State of Law.

At any rate, it should be noted that the bailiffs are always sent during the summer: the previous bailiff came to M. Cheminade's home on July 26, 1996, and the second one, today, declared his injunction on July 31, 2006. Ten years have passed, but the methods to silence a "troublemaker," remain.

Notes

[1] In the French presidential elections, as soon as the candidacy is accepted, the State advances the equivalent of formerly 1 million francs to each candidate, in order to start his campaign. This million is considered part of the overall campaign expenses to be refunded by the State, if the campaign accounts are certified by the State.

[2] Clara Gaymard-Lejeune was until recently, when she accepted the presidency of General Electric France, the president of the French Agency for International Investments (AFII). M Cheminade attacked here the conflict of interest and treasonous nature of such swaps.

[3] Anne Lauvergeon is the President of AREVA, France's state-owned nuclear reactor production company. Lauvergeon was Mitterrand's "sherpa" for many years, and then, before joining AREVA, spent a few years at Lazard Frères Paris.