Driven by the dynamics of the RN and the “dégagisme”, José Beaurain, piano tuner in the Aisne, has just become, at the age of 50, the first blind deputy of the Fifth Republic, with the desire to “open the people’s eyes” on disability.
He arrives with his hand on the shoulder of his assistant, in a black suit, a blue-white-red National Assembly pin in his buttonhole, on the town hall square of Chauny, the town of 12,000 inhabitants where he lives.
Visually impaired from birth, suffering from congenital glaucoma, José Beaurain lost his sight completely in 2008.
This former French disabled bodybuilding champion has never felt discriminated against. But he “suffered from ignorance of the handicap”. Today, he wants “blindness to be perceived differently by the French” thanks to his media coverage.
Son of a metalworker and a nursing assistant, the neo-deputy holds a piano tuner CAP, a profession associated with the blind in the popular imagination, which he enjoys, he who played, in another life, in piano bars in Lille.
This “patriot”, as he defines himself, was until now only municipal and community councilor of opposition to Chauny. With 57.15% of the vote, on Sunday he swept the outgoing LREM, the doctor Marc Delatte, in the fourth district of Aisne, long anchored on the left, rural and with a high rate of poverty.
This score is partly explained by a strong abstention: in the second round, nearly six out of ten voters shunned the ballot boxes in the sector.
In Aisne, Marine Le Pen had obtained 39.25%, then 59.91%, of the votes in the two rounds of the presidential election.
In addition to disability, the animal condition, the environment and safety are among Mr. Beaurain’s favorite themes. “Ex-husband of a police officer”, he worries about a society which “is falling apart more and more”, about the “rise in incivility and delinquency”.
“Political or radical Islam, I will always fight it. But here, it is not the first problem for people”, he assures, citing the cost of living and travel as priority concerns.
In 2017, Mr. Beaurain had supported in this same constituency the candidacy of Jean Messiha – who has since joined and then left Reconquête! of Eric Zemmour – a personality with very hard positions on Islam.
Himself a candidate for mayor of Chauny, in the departmental then in the legislative elections, he says he found in the RN a lot of “benevolence” about his disability.
For Aurélien Gall, the candidate of Nupes, the new deputy benefited from “the wave of degagism: the voters did not want to send back to the Assembly the Macronist deputies, who were only Playmobil deputies in our department “.
Mr. Beaurain “stayed at home and Paris did its campaign”, he says, stressing that he organized neither public meeting nor towing on the markets. As a community adviser, he is also “completely absent”, assures the one who sits in the same agglomeration.
Opinion shared by the outgoing Marc Delatte, who is annoyed: “What to expect, if not to be under the orders of Marine Le Pen?”.
For Emmanuel Liévin, unlabeled mayor of Chauny, if Mr. Beaurain does “no systematic obstruction” at the municipal council, he “never makes a counter-proposal. When he opposes, there is no d argument, these are rather dogmatic positions”.
All point to campaign documents with no proposals for the territory and a “default” election.
If he did not hold a public meeting, it is because they only serve to “preach to the convinced”, retorts Mr. Beaurain, claiming to have traveled the constituency to “limp” in the villages.
“We are not here to overthrow the Republic. We arrived through the ballot box, not through arms,” he insists.
06/23/2022 08:51:27 – Chauny (France) (AFP) – © 2022 AFP