Christine Boutin ([kʁistin buˈtɛ̃], born 6 February 1944) is a French politician leading the small French Christian Democratic Party. She served as a member of the French National Assembly representing Yvelines, from 1986 until 2007, when she was appointed Minister of Housing and Urban Development by President Nicolas Sarkozy. She was a candidate in the 2002 French presidential election, in which she scored 1.19% on the first round of balloting.
Boutin is the leader of the Christian Democratic Party (Parti Chrétien-démocrate), a social conservative Christian-democratic party, which is associated with the greater UMP union party. She is best known for her very vocal opposition to civil unions in 1998 and same sex marriage later on.
Boutin was born in Levroux, Indre. She married her cousin Louis Boutin in 1967 with whom she had three children (the contradiction between her strong advocacy of catholic dogmas and marrying one's first cousin remaining strictly forbidden by canon law is often pointed out). She entered politics in 1977 as a city counciller for Auffargis, in 1980 she was elected mayor. Boutin was elected to the National Assembly in 1986.
In 1993, Boutin founded the anti-abortion NGO Alliance pour les droits de la vie (ADV) (English: Alliance for Human Life), considered the largest pro-life organization in France. The same year, she became a consultant for the Pontifical Council for the Family headed by Cardinal Lopez-Trujillo. In 1998, Boutin became somewhat famous because of a five hour speech in opposition to the PACS domestic partnership plan, arguing that its adoption by the government would encourage homosexuality. She held a Bible during the speech, an image which would later become associated with her.
In 2002, Boutin who had been a member of the UDF party, joined the UMP when it was founded. In a UMP rally that same year, where Boutin spoke, ACT UP Paris protested with a banner calling Boutin homophobic.
In 2006, Boutin supported the "global license" flat-fee authorization for sharing of copyrighted files over the Internet in a heated parliamentary debate on the DADVSI law. She also has been an advocate for a guaranteed minimum income, as well as expanded housing rights (Droit au logement). She has considered the situation of prisons in France to be a scandal and has argued for a drastic reduction of inmates as well as improving their life-conditions.
On 18 May 2007, after Sarkozy's victory in the presidential election, Boutin was named Minister of Housing and the City in the government of Prime Minister François Fillon. She has taken as advisors the pro-life activist Christine de Chefdebien, controversial for a 1992 anti-abortion occupation of a hospital, and the priest Jean-Marie Petitclerc.
Boutin has a liberal view on condom use in Africa to prevent AIDS, saying that contraceptives were necessary, appearing to contradict an earlier view by Pope Benedict XVI. She has however been critical of contraception outside of the AIDS context in Africa. In October 2012, Christine Boutin stated that she remained strongly opposed to same-sex marriage, claiming that it would lead to polygamy. Around the same time, it was also revealed that she received €800.000 from the UMP before deciding not to run for the forthcoming presidential election against its candidate, Nicolas Sarkozy. On a tweet of May 14, 2013, she derided Angelina Jolie's cancer prevention treatment as a sex reassignment procedure; her tweet was widely criticized, but she has not apologized.
In a November 2006 interview, published in 2007, Boutin stated that George W. Bush might have been behind the 11 September 2001 attacks. When asked if she believed that the Bush administration was behind the 9/11 attacks, Boutin replied:
"I think that it's possible... I think it is possible. I think it more especially as I know that the sites that speak of this problem are the sites that have the greatest numbers of visits.... And so, I tell myself, I who am extremely sensitive ... to the new techniques of information and communication, that this expression of the mass of the people cannot be without any truth. I'm not telling you that I adhere to that position, but let's say that, nevertheless, I'm questioning myself a bit on this question."
Minister of Housing and Urban : 2007–2009.
National Assembly of France
President of the General Council of Yvelines (interim) : May–July 2009.
Vice-president of the General Council of Yvelines : 1994–2009 (Resignation). Reelected in 2001, 2008.
General councillor of Yvelines : 1982–2009 (Resignation). Reelected in 1988, 1994, 2001, 2008.
Deputy-mayor of Rambouillet : 1983–2001. Reelected in 1989, 1995.
Municipal councillor of Rambouillet : 1983–2001. Reelected in 1989, 1995.
- Official results from the Ministry of the Interior
- Venner, Fiammetta (2006). Extrême France : Les mouvements frontistes, nationaux-radicaux, royalistes, catholiques traditionalistes et provie. Grasset & Fasquelle. ISBN 2-246-66601-5.
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- RFI – France: présidentielle 2002 – Du 26 janvier au 1er février. Rfi.fr (2002-01-26). Retrieved on 2012-12-24.
- copyright law voted amid turmoil, Libération (2006-07-01) (French)
- Bill proposal for a minimal living income. assemblee-nationale.fr (2003-03-25) (French)
- Law proposition on housing right. assemblee-nationale.fr (2005-09-28) (French)
- France 2 news (2006-12-02).
- Communiqué de la Présidence de la République concernant la composition du gouvernement de M. François FILLON, Premier ministre. , Élysée Palace, 18 May 2007.
- L'Humanité, "COMMANDO-ANTI-IVG-LE-PROCUREUR COMMANDO ANTI-IVG: LE PROCUREUR DEMANDE 4 MOIS AVEC SURSIS". humanite.fr (1992-09-04) (French)[dead link]
- Le préservatif est "nécessaire" (Boutin). AFP via Lefigaro.fr (2009-03-19). Retrieved on 2012-12-24.
- Boutin : "Un lien entre le mariage homo et la polygamie" – Europe1.fr – L'interview de Bruce Toussaint. Europe1.fr (2012-10-04). Retrieved on 2012-12-24.
- "Le dérapage de Boutin sur l'ablation des seins d'Angelina Jolie". Le Monde. 15 May 2013.
- Bush behind 9/11, says French politician, Northern Territory News (2007-07-07).
- Christine Boutin et le 11 Septembre. Video of interview by Karl Zéro (French)
- « Je pense que c'est possible... je pense que c'est possible. Je le pense d'autant plus que je sais que les sites qui parlent de ce problème sont des sites qui ont les plus gros taux de visites. Et donc je me dis, moi qui suis très sensibilisée au problème des nouvelles techniques de l'information et de la communication, que cette expression de la masse et du peuple ne peut pas être sans aucune vérité. Donc je ne te dis pas que j'adhère à cette posture, mais disons que je m'interroge quand même un petit peu sur cette question. »
""Christine Boutin rattrapée par ses propos controversés sur le 11-Septembre". Le Monde (in French). 2007-07-05. Retrieved 6 July 2007.
- Gomez, Edward M. (2007-07-06). "In France, a senior pol dares to question the 9/11 tale". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 6 July 2007.