France: A Perfectly Normal Couple | European Journal | DW | 14.05.2012
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European Journal

France: A Perfectly Normal Couple

Francois Hollande and Valérie Trierweiler want to remain just another couple after moving into the Elysée Palace. There is growing pressure on them from the public, however.

They are France’s first presidential couple not to be married. In addition, the electorate

Segolene Royal, one of the two candidates who is campaigning to become head of France's Socialist Party addresses reporters during a press conference held in Poitiers, central France, Friday Nov. 21, 2008. French Socialists were to vote Friday on a new leader for their divided party with two women heading a tight race. Former presidential candidate Segolene Royal is battling with Martine Aubry, the author of France's 35-hour workweek law, to determine the party's direction. Poster reads: Hope is at the Left, proud to be socialist. (AP Photo/Remy de la Mauviniere)

Former presidential candidate Ségolène Royal

has been further annoyed by the low-profile stance taken by the country’s new Première Dame. During the election campaign Valérie Trierweiler had helped give her boyfriend a bit more character and charisma in the public eye. Now, however, she has no plans to stay in the limelight and instead intends to return to her career as a journalist. It’s a different story with the new president’s previous partner Ségolène Royal, who will again have a big voice in French politics after helping him on the campaign trail.