Who is Clémence Guetté, opposed to Gabriel Attal and Jordan Bardella in debate on France 2 this Thursday evening?

Who is Clémence Guetté, opposed to Gabriel Attal and Jordan Bardella in debate on France 2 this Thursday evening?
Who is Clémence Guetté, opposed to Gabriel Attal and Jordan Bardella in debate on France 2 this Thursday evening?

A shadow worker thrust into the limelight. This Thursday, July 4, three days before the second round of early legislative elections, a televised debate is scheduled on France 2 between representatives of the three main political forces of the moment. An opposition that risks making many viewers feel old: three of the participants are 35 or younger.

As was the case for previous debates, Jordan Bardella (28 years old) will represent the National Rally (RN) and Gabriel Attal (35 years old) the Renaissance party and the presidential camp. David Lisnard will represent LR. Facing them, the New Popular Front will be embodied by Raphaël Glucksmann, but also by Clémence Guetté (33 years old). A choice that is anything but insignificant, given the record of service of the La France Insoumise (LFI) MP for the 2nd constituency of Val-de-Marne (re-elected in the first round) and her meteoric rise in recent years.

Originally from the Deux-Sèvres department and more precisely, according to Ouest France, from the village of Montigny, near Bressuire, Clémence Guetté grew up in an environment that helped shape her political ideas. As La Croix reports, her parents, an English teacher and a stay-at-home husband, for example, made sure to raise their two children “in a lifestyle of food self-sufficiency.”

“We had very cool parents, they gave us a certain amount of freedom, and my sister was a normal teenager (…) but she quickly needed to confront reality,” Guillaume, the MP’s brother, told Libération. “I’ve always felt a kind of revolt, of anger,” adds Clémence Guetté, quoted by Madame Figaro. I come from a modest family in financial terms, I grew up in an environment steeped in political discussions, even if my parents were not activists.”

“This gave rise to a demand for social justice in me,” continues the woman from Deux-Sévrienne. “I cannot accept that people have such difficult living conditions when others accumulate so much wealth.” Clémence Guetté’s political convictions were further strengthened during her studies in literature at the University of Poitiers (after a baccalaureate in science with honors), studies that she financed through a series of “odd jobs (car factory, food industry, dishwashing in a cafeteria, banking, etc.)”, according to La Croix.

During her degree, she became closer to the National Union of French Students (UNEF), but quickly left this movement, which she considered too close to the Socialist Party and its political line, which she considered too centrist. In 2010, she joined the Left Party, founded a few months earlier by Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

Clémence Guetté then continued her studies by leaving her native region to join Sciences Po Paris, where she obtained a master’s degree in political sociology in 2014. As Le JDD indicates, she then studied ecology at AgroParisTech and obtained a master’s degree there again. Her activist activity did not diminish however and from 2016, Clémence Guetté joined Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s campaign team within the nascent party that would become LFI.

She was quickly assigned to the presidential program, under the direction of academic Charlotte Girard. During the campaign, her ability to know “every little corner of the program” off by heart impressed everyone, according to Madame Figaro, starting with Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

Already considered internally as a rising star of LFI, Clémence Guetté continued to work on this crucial subject after the 2017 election and even became chief coordinator of the so-called “Future in Common” program after the departure of Charlotte Girard in 2019. It is under her leadership that the political project that will bring together more than 7.7 million voters in 2022 will be articulated around Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s third candidacy for the presidential election.

“She took an important place at a very young age and managed her boat well,” Clémentine Autain said of her in the columns of Libération. Behind her discreet and calm appearance, Clémence Guetté is a hard worker with a temperament.” This temperament is increasingly expressed in the media sphere, where the Deux-Sévrienne is beginning to make a place for herself during the presidential campaign.

After a first attempt ended in failure in the 2021 regional elections in Nouvelle-Aquitaine (5.7% of the vote in the first round), Clémence Guetté threw herself definitively into the electoral deep end by aligning herself in the 2022 legislative elections in the 2nd constituency of Val-de-Marne, under the colors of NUPES. She imposed herself largely in the second round (around 64%) against the outgoing Macronist deputy and thus entered the Palais Bourbon at 31 years old.

Clémence Guetté’s meteoric rise within LFI does not stop at this election. Immediately appointed vice-president of the parliamentary group, she also sits on the Sustainable Development and Regional Planning Committee of the National Assembly. At the same time, as La Dépêche points out, she also actively participates in the creation of L’Institut La Boëtie, an insurgent “think tank” created in 2023 that she co-chairs with Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

In the aftermath of the European elections and the dissolution of the National Assembly decided by Emmanuel Macron, Clémence Guetté therefore logically found herself at the forefront of negotiations on the left, particularly on the issue of the common program. Invested by the New Popular Front in her constituency, she was very offensive during the campaign to defend her camp’s proposals.

Finally re-elected in the first round on Sunday, June 30, with 55% of the vote, Clémence Guetté confirms her status as a leading political figure on the left, identified as one of the political heirs of Jean-Luc Mélenchon. A status that she will therefore defend this Thursday evening on France 2.

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