Today in France: The latest news from the 2022 French presidential election

Each weekday, our early morning roundup 'Today in France' takes a look at the latest news, events and gossip from the campaign trail - here's what is happening on Monday.

Today in France: The latest news from the 2022 French presidential election
Supporters of France's far-right party Reconquete! party, lead by Eric Zemmour. Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP

South west plan

Prime Minister Jean Castex is back in his home turf of south west France on Monday, signing off the Grand Projet du Sud-Ouest – an investment plan for the area. He is visiting Montauban, near Toulouse, to present the details of a new hospital.

Manifesto launch

Valérie Pécresse of the centre-right Les Républicains party will officially unveil her manifesto on Monday, in an event in Paris. Her manifesto slogan has already been revealed – le courage de faire (the courage to do).

Petrol prices

Meanwhile Marine Le Pen is holding an event at her campaign HQ in which she reveals her own proposal to deal with spiralling petrol prices. It comes after Castex announced over the weekend a 15c per litre reduction in the price of petrol or diesel for consumers.


Over the weekend Eric Zemmour became the first candidate in this election to be hit with an egg while campaigning. This type of incident is not uncommon – there’s even a word to describe getting covered in flour – and extreme right candidate Zemmour fell victim to this as he was getting out of his car on a visit to Moissac in south west France. He continued with his planned event.

Twitter telling-off

Emmanuel Macron has been reprimanded by France’s electoral commission for using his presidential Twitter account for campaign messages.

Macron had recently changed his Twitter bio to the below image – that hieroglyphic is Mes chers compatriotes in the president’s distinctive blue scrawl from his letter to the French people announcing his candidacy. He also changed the profile pic to an unmasked photo, for the first time in almost two years.

Since the reprimand, he (or his team) has changed the image to one of the Elysée lit up with the EU flag, and directed users to the campaign account @avecvous for the latest from the campaign trail.

Candidates trips

Eight of the 12 candidates will take part in a special programme on TF1 at 8.20pm on the subject of the Ukraine war. They are: Emmanuel MacronAnne HidalgoYannick JadotMarine Le PenJean-Luc MélenchonValérie PécresseFabien Roussel and Eric Zemmour.

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Prosecutors: No new rape inquiry for France’s disabilities minister

France's disabilities minister will not face a new inquiry "as things stand" over a rape allegation that surfaced just after his nomination by President Emmanuel Macron last week, prosecutors have said, citing the anonymity of the alleged victim.

Prosecutors: No new rape inquiry for France's disabilities minister

Damien Abad has faced growing pressure to resign after the news website Mediapart reported the assault claims by two women dating from over a decade ago, which he has denied.

One of the women, identified only by her first name, Margaux, filed a rape complaint in 2017 that was later dismissed by prosecutors.

The other woman, known only as Chloe, told Mediapart that in 2010 she had blacked out after accepting a glass of champagne from Abad at a bar in Paris, and woke up in her underwear in pain with him in a hotel room. She believes she may have been drugged.

She did not file an official complaint, but the Paris prosecutors’ office said it was looking into the case after being informed by the Observatory of Sexist and Sexual Violence in Politics, a group formed by members of France’s MeToo movement.

“As things stand, the Paris prosecutors’ office is not following up on the letter” from the observatory, it said, citing “the inability to identify the victim of the alleged acts and therefore the impossibility of proceeding to a hearing.”

In cases of sexual assault against adults, Paris prosecutors can open an inquiry only if an official complaint is made, meaning the victim must give their identity.

Abad has rejected the calls to resign in order to ensure the new government’s “exemplarity,” saying that he is innocent and that his own condition of arthrogryposis, which limits the movement of his joints, means sexual relations can occur only with the help of a partner.

The appointment of Abad as minister for solidarities and people with disabilities in a reshuffle last Friday was seen as a major coup for Macron, as the 42-year-old had defected from the right-wing opposition.

The new prime minister, Elisabeth Borne, said she was unaware of the allegations before Abad’s nomination, but insisted that “If there is new information, if a new complaint is filed, we will draw all the consequences.”

The claims could loom large over parliamentary elections next month, when Macron is hoping to secure a solid majority for his reformist agenda. Abad will be standing for re-election in the Ain department north of Lyon.