While some of France’s political and media elite are outraged over the treatment Dominique Strauss-Kahn by American legal and police authorities (amidst suspicions that he may have been set up), at least one prominent French official has expressed his admonition of the IMF chief.
Francois Fillon, the French prime minister, has warned that if the sexual assault charges against Strauss-Kahn are true, there can be no excuse for his actions and that he cannot be pardoned.
If the deeds of which Dominique Strauss-Kahn is accused are verified, we would be faced with a very serious act for which there is no excuse, Fillon told lawmakers, according to a report in The Daily Telegraph newspaper of Britain,
Fillon reportedly made the comments of lawmakers who belong to the ruling center-right UMP party of Nicolas Sarkozy. (Strauss-Kahn is a Socialist).
However, Fillon added: This is a matter of common law, not an affair of state, adding that Strauss-Kahn has the right to be presumed innocent and the alleged victim has the right to respect and compassion. We must show moderation and responsibility. No one must exploit this affair.”
Strauss-Kahn’s arrest has thrown France’s political circles into an upheaval, one year ahead of the next presidential election. Polls had earlier indicated that Strauss-Kahn could easily beat the incumbent Sarkozy.
Obviously, Strauss-Kahn’s political future has been permanently ruptures and the Socialists will have to scramble to find another candidate.
The far right is also elated by Strauss-Kahn’s misfortune. Marine Le Pen of the anti-immigrant National Front party has attacked Strauss-Kahn. She could also benefit from Strauss-Kahn’s absence in French elections next year.