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суббота, 17 декабря 2016 г.

Laprimaire.org: who will be the citizen candidate to challenge Fillon, Macron, Mélenchon, Le Pen and others?

Between the primary of the November right and that of the left of January is another primary, less media but unpublished, that of the citizens. More than two hundred people were on the starting line, five are still in the final. Online voting starts on Thursday 15 December and will end at the end of the month.


They are Michel Bourgeois, Roxane Revon, Charlotte Marchandise, Nicolas Bernabeu and Michael Pettini. They are between 30 and 52 years old. They live in Corse-du-Sud, Île-et-Vilaine, Lot-et-Garonne, Paris and the Alpes-Maritimes. What do they have in common? These men and women are the five finalists laprimaire.org , an open primary, democratic, beyond any political party, and online. These citizens have been campaigning at their own pace and away from the media since April. At the end of the month, one of them will win his ticket to compete in the 2017 presidential election, alongside François Fillon, Emmanuel Macron, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, Marine Le Pen and all the other "traditional" candidates ", Coming from the political formations.

Reforming the nomination process
Created by a lawyer, David Guez, and an engineer / entrepreneur, Thibauld Favre, laprimaire.org is an association that is part of the Civic Tech movement. Its objective is to instil a democratic renewal, to give citizens, through the Internet, a new way of being heard. And in the presidential election "really the only candidate from the people" , explains Thibauld Favre:

"The political parties represent 365,000 people, or 0.5% of the French population, and nominate candidates for elections that citizens reject massively and increasingly systematically because they challenge their legitimacy. We believe that the fundamental problem is the professionalization of politics, the confinement created by the traditional parties, and it is not normal for the people to The choice between candidates that he did not choose, so we have to change the way candidates are nominated. "
Certainly, but to allow citizens to choose their candidate, is not that precisely the purpose of the primaries? That of the right and center, held in November, mobilized not less than 4.2 million people in the first round, and 4.4 million in the second. " It was a healthy exercise in democracy, but again, voters do not directly choose their candidates, precise Thibauld Favre . They had to separate the stars from the right. All are there for a very long time" . Far from a Barack Obama in 2008, enjoying an express ascension within the American Democratic Party, and even Donald Trump in 2016, who was on the sidelines of the Republican Party before winning his primary and defeating Hillary Clinton, perceived as the candidate of a system out of breath.

   

500 candidates on the starting line, one at the finish
The adventure of theprimaire.org began at the end of 2015. With a creed: everyone can present themselves, all ideas are welcome. For more than three months, David and Thibauld make a tour of France to find the first candidates. "  In April 2016, at the official launch of the platform, we had 20  ," says Thibauld Favre.

Finally, from April to July, 215 citizens declare their candidacy. But to reach the first round - and eliminate wacky and other unmotivated tourists - it is necessary to gather at least 500 citizens support. On 15 July, at the close of the pre-selection phase, 16 candidates had reached this target: twelve men, four women, aged 24 to 71, thanks to an intense mobilization campaign on social networks and on the basis of A draft program.

From August to October, the sixteen qualified have formed a team and refined their program, by theme, by topic (economy, environment, taxation, Europe, institutions, agriculture, migrations, culture, society ...) Some, to Internet users' proposals. Four of them eventually gave up, three of them to stand behind a candidate for similar ideas.

   

An innovative voting method: the majority judgment
The first round was held on the internet, by electronic vote, from 26 October to 6 November. 11,304 voters participated. With a strong innovation in the method of voting. " We wanted to create a system where we do not vote more default or against a person but for a project" says Thibauld Favre.

This method is called the "majority judgment". It was invented by two mathematicians of the CNRS, Michel Balinski and Rida Laraki. Praised by many researchers in the world , it is a way of positive selection, based on membership, the results of which are intended to illustrate the will of voters.

To select the five finalists, each voter was allocated, randomly through an algorithm, a "batch" of five candidates. He then wrote them down with "insufficient", "passable", "fairly good", "good" or "very good". At the end of the vote, the five candidates with the most positive majority were qualified for the final.

"Random lots take democracy to the top, and each candidate is guaranteed to be seen a similar number of times, and in order to obtain the most positive majority, they must be distinguished by their credibility and the quality of their proposals This system avoids the vote sanction, and protects against manipulation attempts and electoral strategy, because the allocation of candidates in the lots is completely random, "says Thibauld Favre.
The blockchain in electronic voting: a world first
To ensure the security of this particular vote, the organizers chose to go through the blockchain. This emerging technology, the technical basis for secure crypto-currencies such as the bitcoin, is the only one that guarantees the anonymity of voters, the transparency of the vote and the reliability and unalterability of votes. The blockchain makes the votes non-piracy and allows to keep a record on a register impossible to falsify.

Problem: Technology, which processes each transaction one after another, is not yet strong enough to support a large number of simultaneous actions. And the first round, which attracted more than 11,000 voters, experienced some bugs. " Last weekend, there were disturbances and had to pause several times the votes because of the crowd. It was really a crash test for blockchain, but it is successful. To the second round, we strengthened the technical solidity " , assures Thibauld Favre. It was a world first for a nationwide vote.

 

The winner will receive the support of a provisional political party
Since the end of the first round, the five finalists chained the "physical" debates, in the French metropolises, to meet other citizens. The opportunity to taste the atmosphere of an election campaign, sharpen its arguments, confront adversity. They will be separated in the urns (electronic) from Thursday 15 December at 14h. The vote is open until the end of the month. Also according to the method of mentions, but without the random lots, since there remain only five candidates. Again, whoever gets the most positive mentions will win.

For this second round, the organizers expect at least 50,000 voters. Since the first round, laprimaire.org has won numerous entries. On 29 November, the platform exceeded 100,000, which was its initial goal. " This means that we will go after the adventure until May" , confirmeThibauld Favre.

From now on, theprimary.org becomes a political party. But a provisional party, which will dissolve after the election and will reform each time the platform will bring forth a candidate for an election. Since the legislative elections will follow the presidential election and there are 577 constituencies, theprimary.org will therefore create 577 provisional citizens parties as soon as the new head of state is elected.

With a view to the presidential election, the laprimaire.org party will stand behind its champion to help him obtain the 500 sponsorships necessary to appear before the French, and then to provide him with logistical and financial support to campaign. Mayors " could help ", that is to say, mostly elected without label small towns, have already been approached. Thibauld Favre believes that getting 500 sponsorships should not pose too many problems. Then, will remain the "real" campaign. To finance it, laprimaire.org launched a crowdfunding campaign  : for now, 900 donors have fueled a prize pool of € 65,000. The objective is to raise 300,000 euros.

Finalists who look very much like the CSP + Civic Tech
So you have to choose. Chance or not, the five finalists, despite notable differences on certain themes, have similar profiles. Their proposals lie rather to the left or to the right center of the political chessboard. All are pro-Europe (even if Roxanne Revon wants a federal Europe while Nicolas Bernabeu wants to disobey the current treaties), promote the renewal of institutions, support ecology and sustainable development.

There are two doctors (the Lot-et-Garronais Michael Pettini and the Corsican Nicolas Bernabeu), a lawyer (Michel Bourgeois, Alpes-Maritimes), a professor and director (Roxane Revon, And a trainer (Charlotte Marchandise, of Île-et-Vilaine). All have at least a Bac +5, except the latter (who resumed his studies after a few years of professional life). These men and women embody a public that is often found in Civic Tech: young, graduate, connected, engaged in local life, a social environment higher than average.

The old-fashioned (and current) policy has not yet understood that she is already dead
All too, they are committed because they no longer recognize themselves in politics and in their representatives. They are tired of party divisions (ecology rather classed on the left, the relaxation of work rather ranked on the right) and believe that they, thanks to their position outside the party, better speak to their fellow citizens:

"I want to bring new debates and bring a dissonant voice. Laprimaire.org is the opportunity for a whole generation, the one who has never believed in politics, to finally be able to speak without having to take his card in a party, "explains 30-year-old Revox.

"I am convinced that we must emerge from a system of parties which today does not seem to me to serve its primary purpose (political education, popular mobilization, constructions of projects shared around common values) but which has become an instrument At the service of the power of a minority of people with all the slippages that we know them, "adds Charlotte Marchandise, 41 years.
Nicolas Bernabeu, 31, is driven by the fight against inequality and the feeling that politics no longer defends the weak:

"I come from a very modest background and I had to fight to advance. Others only had to be born to have everything ... It would be enough that people vote for someone different, not from this caste, guided by solid values ​​and animated by an unshakeable will, to That things really change. "
Idealism? Not at all, according to candidates, who think that the old-fashioned policy has not yet understood that it is already dead. The winner risks being crushed against the experienced candidates, "professionals", supported by a more powerful machinery? Not serious: the unprecedented presence of a citizen candidate in the televised debates will show that it is possible to change the system, believes Thibauld Favre.

Voting open until the end of the month
On the program side, candidates push several "priorities". Federal Europe and New Economy for Roxane Revon; Reinvention of living together and sustainable development for Michel Bourgeois; Health reform and democratic and ecological transition for Charlotte Marchandise; Sixth Republic and Major Tax Reform for Michael Pettini; Universal income and sixth republic for Nicolas Bernabeu. Among others. All have thought and written a detailed program.

Does the platform have a political agenda? Any ideas she wants to spread? Not at all, replies Thibauld Favre:

"We are committed to supporting the candidate who will win regardless of his or her program. There have been all kinds of extreme right, extreme left, unbridled liberalism ... But the system of majority judgment, probably because it pushes voters to make a positive choice, has eliminated the most extreme candidates. As for us, even if the winner was far-right, we would support him. Our goal is to push a citizen movement, not to control what it is. "
Verdict at the end of the month.

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