Marine Le Pen Proposes National Referendum on Immigration

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Martin Bureau/Pool via AP

French populist leader Marine Le Pen has proposed settling France’s immigration issues by recommending referendums on a number of immigration topics.

The National Rally (RN) leader said that she and her party had been excluded from a debate on immigration set for the end of the month where she wanted to propose several referendums to allow the French public to vote on immigration policies, Le Figaro reports.

Me Le Pen claims that French President Emmanuel Macron has not made any substantial immigration policies in his two and a half years in power.

“Nicolas Sarkozy did the same thing. He had taken this debate on immigration when he was a candidate and then we saw what happened when he came to power. I think that Emmanuel Macron will do nothing,” she said.

The proposed referendums would be simplistic yes or no questions, Le Pen added, saying they would be “yes or no to [birthright citizenship], yes or no to family reunification, yes or no to control of our borders again”.

“These are questions to which the French have the right to answer, have the right to be questioned, because it’s been for the past 30 years that an immigration policy which is contrary to their will has been carried out,” she said.

Citizen Initiated Referendums (RIC) have been a major pillar of the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vest) protest movement which Le Pen has expressed sympathy and support for in the past.

Earlier this month, she claimed that the many injuries and mutilations of Yellow Vest protesters would end up being the real legacy of the five years of Macron’s presidency.

“The power and brutality of his programme has struck and worried many. By his methods, he has humiliated, brutalised,,” Le Pen said and added: “We saw tanks in Paris, police armed with machine guns, to face the French. These undemocratic drifts constitute an ethical fault, an unforgivable fault that we do not want to see again.”

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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