Sarkozy’s Cabinet Reshuffle and French Exceptionalism

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French President Nicolas Sarkozy reshuffled his cabinet over the weekend, and in line with recent precedent under the Fifth Republic, the new government marks a shift back to Sarkozy’s political base in anticipation of the upcoming presidential election in 2012. So centrist Defense Minister Hervé Morin and Socialist Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner are out, replaced by UMP heavyweights Alain Juppé and Michèle Alliot-Marie, respectively. The fact that Juppé and Alliot-Marie are both dyed-in-the-wool Chirac loyalists also serves to heighten Dominique de Villepin’s isolation from the Sarkozy court, and could be an indicator of where on the right Sarkozy feels the […]

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