“Are you the Green candidate?” Me, I’m from Nîmes, for bullfighting, and the anti-bullfighting activists who demonstrate outside the Arena, I can’t stand it! I will not vote for you. “Not always easy for the EELV-Nupes candidate Nicolas Cadène to wear the colors of the coalition of parties, this Friday morning, on the Jean-Jaurès alleys market in Nîmes. A paradoxical reproach for the former general rapporteur of the Observatory of Secularism, suppressed in the spring of 2021 by the Castex government, who has long presented himself as an aficionado. As soon as known, at the beginning of May, his investiture by EELV in the 6th district of Gard made the anti-bullfighting associations scream. The candidate hastened to clarify his position: “I will not deny my past and the local culture in which I grew up, he tells us today. After, obviously, being invested by EELV, I will apply the decision which will be taken by the parliamentary group. »

A banderilla among others behind the back of this 40-year-old media lawyer, who defines himself as “a great pragmatist”, and whom his local rivals qualify, it depends, as “upstart” or “opportunist” . Its surprise designation by the national authorities of EELV first caused a bronca here. The departmental PS, of which Cadène was once the number two, immediately voted a motion to signify that he did not want a socialist to be his deputy.

“We made the choice of clarity after his participation, in 2020, in a list opposed to that of the PS”, explains Pierre Garcia, secretary of the Nîmes section. Cadène wanted to form, for the municipal elections, a list supported by the left and LREM. Then he presented himself on that of the business manager David Tebib. The hardest blows today come from EELV, whose Nîmes official, Sibylle Jannekeyn, had been chosen as a candidate for the constituency by the regional authorities. “Nicolas Cadène is not at EELV, and has never worked on ecology with the associations and activists of Nîmes”, denounces Laurent Dupont, regional secretary of EELV. “Local activists experienced this as the parachuting of a Secularist. »

“I have been asked twice by elected officials from the national executive office of EELV”, says the candidate, who swears “not to be a childhood friend of Julien Bayou”, the national secretary of EELV. If he is “not a member of EELV”, he says “having taken public positions on the environment for a long time”, and highlights his membership of Greenpeace. According to him, local tensions around his appointment have subsided. His campaign manager is a socialist, his replacement comes from La France insoumise, whose activists tow with him. “And I am supported by the two elected EELV in the department in the constituency. But several EELV and PS activists preferred to “stand back”. The candidate crisscrosses his vast constituency, between working-class neighborhoods of Nîmes and villages, driving his “nupette”, an electric car flanked by portraits of the candidates and Jean-Luc Mélenchon.

Jospin’s program was more radical.

Without qualms for this former socialist, who defines himself as “deeply European” and defends the program – the whole program – of Nupes. “That of the plural left, behind Jospin, in 1997, was more radical. If elected, he will be “the deputy of secularism”, and that of the “right to die with dignity”. A subject that is dear to him, after the suicide of his grandfather. The seat of deputy, currently held by an elected MoDem, Philippe Berta, is not yet acquired: in the first round of the presidential election, Marine Le Pen came first in the constituency. Two small environmental candidates and another from the Republican and Socialist Left will compete with him for votes on the left, and he will compete with a young LR wolf deputy to the mayor of Nîmes, François Courdil. What if he succeeds? His rivals expect to see him lead a list in the next municipal elections. “My priority is the legislative elections”, eludes Mr. Laïcité.