Left Party (France)

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Left Party
Parti de Gauche
Coordinators Eric Coquerel
Danielle Simonnet
Founded 1 February 2009 (2009-02-01)
Split from Socialist Party
Headquarters 20–22 rue Doudeauville, 75018 Paris
Membership (2018) Decrease 6,000[1]
Ideology Democratic socialism
Left-wing populism[2][3]
Soft Euroscepticism
Political position Left-wing
National affiliation La France Insoumise
European affiliation None
International affiliation None
European Parliament group European United Left-Nordic Green Left
Colors      Red
National Assembly
8 / 577
0 / 348
European Parliament
0 / 74
Regional Councils
7 / 1,880

The Left Party (Parti de Gauche, PG) is a French democratic socialist political party, founded on 1 February 2009. Launched by parliamentarians Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Marc Dolez on 12 November 2008, after their departure from the Socialist Party (PS) 8 Following the Congress of Reims, the PG brings together personalities and groups from different political traditions, and claims a socialist, ecologist and republican orientation.

Politically located between the Socialist Party and the French Communist Party, the Left Party intends to federate all the sensitivities of the anti-liberal left - which he also calls "the other left" - within the same alliance. In 2008, the PG joined forces with the Communist Party of the United Left and six other left-wing and far-left organizations in the coalition of the Left Front, of which Jean-Luc Mélenchon is the candidate for the presidential election.

The PG is co-chaired from the Le Mans Congress in November 2010, by Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Martine Billard. In April 2016, the Left Party has 8,000 members. At the end of August 2014, Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Martine Billard resigned, and the party leadership was then collectively ensured by the national secretariat.

His weekly newspaper, L'Heure du peuple (formerly Left) is sent to all members but also to simple subscribers. It is printed at more than 15,000 copies a week.

In 2016, in view of the presidential and legislative elections of the following year, Jean-Luc Mélenchon formed a new movement, La France Insoumise, that the Left Party helped to animate.


People march waving flags during a demonstration against expulsions of foreign students on 5 November 2013 in Toulouse.

It was founded in November 2008 by former Socialist senator Jean-Luc Mélenchon, deputy Marc Dolez, and other dissidents of the party together with the MARS movement (Mouvement pour une Alternative Républicaine et Sociale, "Movement for a Republican and Social Alternative").

They had left the PS five days earlier, in protest of the result of the Reims Congress vote on motions, where the leftist motion they supported won only 19%.

They were joined after by other members from the left of the Socialist Party, by people who hadn't been members of a political party before, and by dissidents from the Green Party following the deputy Martine Billard.

In 2010 the PG was accepted in the Party of European Left.

In November 2013, the PG joined the international Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel.[4]

Co-presidents and co-founders Mélenchon and Billard stepped down from office in 2014.[5] Since its 2015 congress, the party is led by its coordinators and spokespersons Eric Coquerel and Danielle Simonnet.[6]

On 2 July 2018 the party withdrew from the Party of European Left, not agreeing with the presence of the greek party Syriza in the alliance.

Elected officials[edit]

Around 90 local elected officials (municipal, regional and general councillors), including two members of the Council of Paris, initially joined the party. This number has dropped since then.

Popular support and electoral record[edit]

The PG has not yet run independently in an election, so its base of support is hard to pin-point.

European Parliament[edit]

European Parliament
Election year Number of votes % of overall vote # of seats won
2009 1,115,021 6.47%[7] 1[8]
2014 1,252,730 6.61% 1[9]


  1. ^ Abel Mestre (29 June 2018). "Au Parti de gauche, un congrès pour continuer d'exister". Le Monde. Retrieved 30 June 2018. 
  2. ^ Denis Tugdual (5 April 2013). "Le Pen-Mélenchon: la mode est au langage populiste". L'Express (in French). 
  3. ^ Jean-Laurent Cassely (15 April 2013). "Le populisme "vintage" de Jean-Luc Mélenchon, trop élaboré pour être efficace". Slate (in French). 
  4. ^ "Le Parti de Gauche s'engage dans les campagnes boycott, désinvestissement, sanctions, à l'égard d'Israël". Le Parti de Gauche. Archived from the original on 2013-11-21. 
  5. ^ "French far-left leader steps down, but not leaving politics". Radio France Internationale. 22 August 2014. 
  6. ^ "Le Secrétariat exécutif national". Le Parti de Gauche. Archived from the original on 2016-06-04. 
  7. ^ Results of the Left Front which includes the larger French Communist Party
  8. ^ Of the 5 Left Front MEP, 1 is a member of the PG
  9. ^ Of the 4 Left Front MEP, 1 is a member of the PG

External links[edit]