France’s Front National now has enough Members of the European Parliament on board to form a European Parliamentary group — allowing access to more speaking time, taxpayer subsidy, and even a front bench seat for the party’s leader Marine Le Pen.
It is expected that the news will be announced later today, with MEPs from Jobbik, and even a former UKIP MEP, Janice Atkinson, joining Ms. Le Pen’s new group, called the Europe of Nations and Freedoms.
Breitbart London understands that there has been long-standing fear within UKIP over a Le Pen/Front National-led group, not only because it would place the French, right wing leader on the front benches next to UKIP’s Nigel Farage, but also because the eurosceptic movement in Brussels and Strasbourg would now extend to the FN, perhaps “toxifying” the movement.
But supporters of Le Pen are quick to point out that she is different from her father, Jean Marie, who led the Front National at the height of its own controversy. Since then, they suggest, the party has altered its image, from being considered “far right” to now being more of a right wing populist movement.
The Front National’s group is also rumoured to include MEPs from Hungarian nationalist party Jobbik, Netherland’s PVV (Party for Freedom), led by Geert Wilders, and Italy’s anti-globalisation party Lega Nord (Northern League).
Le Pen has been negotiating to form her parliamentary group for over a year now since the European Elections, which the Front National won in France. It is widely understood that she always had the numbers, but not the seven differing nationalities required under the rules of the parliament, to form the group.
If ex-UKIPer Janice Atkinson is indeed joining Ms. Le Pen, it may be her being from Britain – a nationality that Le Pen was otherwise unable to recruit – that pushed the group over the top in numbers.
UKIP’s own group, the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy Group (EFDD) have released a statement on Janice Atkinson joining the new Le Pen organisation: “Former Tory, Janice Atkinson has been expelled from UKIP in March and suspended from the EFDD Group in the European Parliament. Whatever she does is beyond our control.”