Relief from Le Pen’s growth clouds in Vaterstetten, Ebersberg and Grafing about partner cities

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FROM: Josef Ametsbichler


Results from partner cities of the Ebersberg county in the second round of the French presidential election. © Source: Le Monde, Graphics: Münchner Merkur

France’s friends in the constituency are relieved at the victory of Emmanuel Macron in the presidential election. However, his right-wing populist rival Marine Le Pen still holds a large vote.

Ebersberg / Grafing / Vaterstetten – Punctually at 20:00 on Sunday, representatives of the partnership committee with France from the Ebersberg County sat in front of the TV and trembled at the first screenings. Then a relief: presidential candidate Marine Le Pen, considered a right-wing extremist and anti-European, is lost in the second round of the election by the incumbent Emmanuel Macron. I am really happy, says Jutta Bethmann, who has been working in the Ebersberg-Yssingeaux town partnership for 27 years. “This burden is taken from my heart.” And Edeltrud Scheckel, acting managing director of the Ebersberg partner committee, reports a short message from a friend in France: “Thank God Le Pen did not make it.” he said.

Fear of regress: “Nationalism as a precursor to war”

Udo Helmholz, a retired French history teacher at Grafing High School who has been active on the partnership committee for 30 years, puts relief to French friends from Ebersberg, Vaterstetten (Allauch collaboration) and Grafing (Saint-Marcellin) in perspective. “It would be a step backwards. Nationalism has always been a precursor to war, ”he says. Being a positive person, he “shivered a little.”

Big politics should not affect town twinning

Bethmann in Ebersberg also hopes that “we have left the past behind”. The former president of the partnership with Yssingeaux admits that she also feared French support for the partnership of cities in the face of the threat from President Le Pen – at least in terms of official meetings. “I can’t imagine this with the people we’ve met,” he says. The head of Ebersberg’s committee, Scheckel, adds: “Our partnership is so alive that nothing would happen.”

After decades of partnership: personal friendships stay “no matter who the president is”

After all, it was enough for the narrow majority of Macron in Yssingeaux. By contrast, the south of France around Marseille, plagued by economic and social problems, where Allauch is also located, is generally Le Pen-loyal – and in the partner municipality of Vaterstetten, the right-wing populist won almost as clearly as President Macron. did in France.

“Everyone we know are travelers, good hosts, friendly to Europe,” stresses Ursel Franz, chairwoman of the partnership committee in Vaterstetten. The partnership has existed this year for 40 years, she herself has been there for 26 years, friendships and even marriages have developed with Allauch. “Nothing can break it,” he says. “It doesn’t matter who the president is.” The support of the three municipalities in France for the partnerships is also considered good – as here in the county.

Parliamentary elections in June – and partner visits after the Corona summer hiatus

Nevertheless, Grafinger Helmholz cautions that Macron must also learn from many abstentions and listen better to those French who feel left behind by big politics – parliamentary elections will be held in June. More important for the three town partnerships: Visits are scheduled in June and July after a long Corona hiatus.

More current news from the district of Ebersberg can be found at

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