Gérard César, former senator and deputy for Gironde, is dead

Gérard César, former senator and deputy for Gironde, is dead
Gérard César, former senator and deputy for Gironde, is dead

A few months after the disappearance of Marcel Berthomé, the eternal mayor of Saint-Seurin-sur-l’Isle, another great figure in Libourne politics passed away. Gérard César died on the night of May 7 to 8, at the age of 89. The wine grower, who resigned from his last mandates two years ago, following a tractor accident in March 2022, demonstrates exceptional longevity in politics.

Although he occupied the benches of the National Assembly three times (including twice as a substitute), he was above all a senator without interruption for almost thirty years (1990-2017). General councilor for thirty-seven years (1973-2011), Gérard César will remain at the local level as the emblematic mayor of Rauzan (1974-2022), founder of the Community of communes of Castillon-Pujols, of which he was the president between 2002 and 2022.

A time president of the Chamber of Agriculture, he notably stood out by bringing a cow to the 23e floor of the Administrative City in Bordeaux. He was not necessarily destined to fall into the political pothole. He took over from Rauzan in 1974: “I became mayor when my predecessor died. All this time, my constituents have supported me, and vice versa. I don’t even know the exact number of my mandates. When you love, you don’t count,” he confided to us four years ago, while tending his vines. His greatest pride? “Having succeeded in creating a medical center with four doctors,” he declared. When I see the difficulties encountered by fellow mayors in maintaining just one…”

With Robert Boulin

“He had an extraordinary career,” notes one of his close collaborators. Gérard César had nevertheless determined this mandate to be the last, planning to hand over calmly mid-term, his daughter Pascale told us. His accident, which left him very weakened, decided otherwise.

He discovered the Palais Bourbon in 1976. “Robert Boulin asked me to be his deputy. At first, I said no…” And then, yes, finally. When the mayor of Libourne was appointed Minister of Labor, the forty-year-old went to Paris. He then took on another dimension, always remaining faithful to the Republican right, in the ranks of the RPR, the UMP then the Republicans, as a deputy or on the benches of the Palais du Luxembourg where he was a senator for twenty-seven years .

While leading this brilliant national political career, Gérard César, clinging to his land, never abandoned his local roots. For around fifteen years, before passing the torch to his neighbor, the mayor of Saint-Émilion Bernard Lauret, he was also president of the Association of Mayors of Gironde, a key position if ever there was one.

Reactions

In a press release sent this Wednesday, May 8, the mayor of Castillon-la-Bataille Jacques Breillat, his successor at the Castillon-Pujols community of communes, particularly welcomes “the exemplary nature of a journey of almost fifty years of public commitment” . “Gérard César left no one indifferent,” emphasizes Jacques Breillat. The man’s style was sometimes rough in verbal jousts and often resolute in decision-making, but I do not forget […] his famous little black notebook, this address book that he knew how to open for each and every one of us, the notebook of solutions on a phone call, when we needed to make our voice heard by the services of the State, public service delegates, the Department or the Region. »

Philippe Buisson, mayor of Libourne and president of the Libourne agglomeration community, welcomed this Wednesday morning “an important player in the evolution of the Libourne territory, his republican constancy and his longevity in his commitments to the service of his citizens. In particular, he was able to overcome traditional political divisions to create peaceful governance in this territory, in singular complicity with Gilbert Mitterrand. »

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