Smelly socks – final story (we hope)

[(Alduy, c’est Perpignan, et Perpignan, c’est Alduy. Bravo Monsieur le Maire !
(blogger Huascar: 21/06/2009 à 22h08))]

Basil Howitt closes Perpignan’s saga of the smelly socks. Fortunately last Sunday’s affair of the unsavoury armpits (see below) came to nothing, thanks to the punctilious voting procedures set up by The Seven Wise Men.

3 A selection of blogs: 3

[(The conclusion is self-evident: the citizens of Perpignan haven’t believed for one single second in this story of general and organised fraud, and the ballyhoo surrounding it, far from unsettling them, has irritated them and united them behind their slandered mayor.
(blogger aragorn 21/06/2009 à 21h48))]

[(Aggression, offhandedness, arrogance, the campaign of Jacqueline Amiel-Donat has rebounded against her.
(blogger RORO, 23/06/2009 à 09h13))]

[(Amiel-Donat must open her eyes. Whatever her intellectual qualities, she doesn’t have a profile popular enough to become mayor. She is assuring the continuation of the Right in Perpignan.
(Blogger caton l’ancien 28/06/2009 à 21h05))]

It is easy to identify with the sense of triumph this morning of 67-year-old Jean-Paul Alduy (UMP), re-elected yesterday for the fifth time as Perpignan’s only mayor in 16 years. As he preens himself (let us imagine) in front of his mirror, checking the roots of his hair, his quiff, and the tints of his eyebrows, he may even be feeling a trifle smug – and why not? Yesterday his nearest rival, Jacqueline Amiel-Donat, head of the liste Nouvelle Union de la Gauche (Socialist Party, French Communist Party, Radical Party of the Left, Citizen and Republican Movement, Democratic Convergence of Catalonia), trailed way behind him with a 33.08% share of the vote to his 53.54% – his highest ever count in any election. In third place came Jean Codognes and his liste Union pour Perpignan (divers gauche, Modem, Verts) with a 13.38% share.

3 Schadenfreude? 3

After what he himself has described as “une année éprouvante” (a trying year), Alduy may also be revelling in a little schadenfreude at Amiel-Donat’s expense. She has, after all, been nursing a burning ambition to oust Alduy and become mayor of Perpignan ever since the smelly socks affair exploded fifteen months ago. The hullabaloo was triggered off, you may remember, by those voting slips so notoriously secreted into the socks and pockets of Georges Garcia, Presiding Officer of Ward 4 and brother of one of Alduy’s fellow candidates. (See smelly socks pieces passim, listed below).

3 “Massive and generalised fraud” 3

Jacqueline Amiel-Donat and her supporters immediately screamed blue murder, accusing Alduy of masterminding a campaign of “massive and generalised fraud”. After submitting a 166-page dossier to the Tribunal Administratif, Amiel-Donat finally succeeded in getting that election annulled in April this year. Alduy’s appeal had not been upheld, hence the re-elections on 21st and 28th June.

3 Defamation 3

Meanwhile no criminal charges of any kind of fraud have ever been brought against Alduy, whereas Amiel-Donat is to be tried in the Criminal Court on 15th July for defamation (of Alduy and his liste).

The reason for Alduy’s easy triumph this time is that there was no united opposition against him – whereas fifteen months ago most parties combined under Amiel-Donat to try to overthrow him in the second round. Indeed they almost managed it, with Alduy’s majority down to a mere 574 votes in a poll of 41,983 voters.
This time, however, Jean Codognes and his liste (Divers Gauche, Modem, Verts) refused after the first round on 21st June to join forces with Amiel-Donat – ostensibly out of loyalty to his core 5,000 or so supporters in the first round.

3 Crumbs of comfort for Amiel-Donat – but none for Codognes. 3

At least Amiel-Donat can console herself with the extra 8% of the vote share (2,167 votes) she gained in yesterday’s second round – clearly in part from Codognes who lost 627 votes and a 1% share.

3 The Armpits Scare 3

The smelly socks saga threatened to spawn a sequel when, on the afternoon of the first round, Mme Marie-Clare Mas, a fellow candidate of Alduy, was discovered with a bundle of voting slips under her arm. This incident inevitably hit the headlines and threatened to become The Affair of the Unsavoury Armpits. Fortunately most people saw the funny side: Mme Mas is an avid collector of voting memorabilia and the eventual destination of the slips would otherwise have been the dustbin!

3 Results: First Round 21st June 2009: 3

– Turnout 53.76%
– 40,3% share for Jean-Paul Alduy (UMP) – 14,492 votes
– 24,8% for Jacqueline Amiel-Donat (PS etc) – 8,897 votes
– 14,2% for Jean Codognès (divers gauche, modem, verts) – 5,097 votes
– 9,4% for Louis Aliot (FN) – 3,382 votes
– 7,8% for François Rivière (Droite) – 2,799 votes
– 2,5 for Michaël Cufi (NPA New Anti Capitalists) – 882 votes
– 1% for Raymond Faura (Centriste “no label”) 375 votes

3 Results Second Round: 3
– 3 Contestants
– Turnout: 51,12%.
– Jean-Paul Alduy : 53,54% (17,891 votes)
– Jacqueline Amiel-Donat : 33,08% (11,054 votes)
– Jean Codognès : 13,38% (4,470 votes).
NB turnout second round 2008: 62,33 %

[(© 2009 Basil Howitt)]

Basil Howitt has also written
[Life in a Penguin Suit->Life in a Penguin Suit] (Camerata Productions 1993)
[Love Lives of the Great Composers->Love Lives of the Great Composers] (Sound and Vision 1995)
[Grand Passions and Broken Hearts: Lives and Lusts of the Great Composers->Grand Passions and Broken Hearts: Loves and Lusts of the Great Composers] (Robson Books 1998)
[More Love Lives of the Great Composers->More Love Lives of the Great Composers] (Sound And Vision 2002)
Walter and His Daughters: The Story of the Carroll Family of Manchester (Forsyth Brothers Ltd 2005)

[(You can contact Basil by email: [>])]

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