Michele Alliot Marie
- Category : Political
- Type : GP
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Split - Large
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Rulership 3
Michèle Jeanne Honorine Alliot-Marie; born 10 September 1946 and nicknamed MAM, is a French politician of the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP). A member of all but one right-wing governments of the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s, she was the first woman in France to hold the portfolios of Defense (2002–2007), the Interior (2007–2009) and Foreign Affairs (2010–2011). She has also been in charge of Youth and Sports (1993–1995) and Justice (2009–2010), and was granted the honorary rank of Minister of State in her last two offices.
She resigned in 2011 after nine years in government due to her position during the Tunisian revolution, and is currently Deputy (MP) for Pyrénées-Atlantiques and Deputy Mayor of Saint-Jean-de-Luz, as well as Vice President of the UMP.
Alliot-Marie was the last President of the Rally for the Republic (1999–2002), the last incarnation of the Gaullist party, and was the first woman to chair a major French political party. She has remained a leading Gaullist after the RPR merged into the UMP and was seen as a rival to Nicolas Sarkozy before and after his election as President in 2007, although direct confrontation was always avoided.
Alliot-Marie is a law and political science scholar. Her companion is Patrick Ollier, Minister in charge of Relations with Parliament in the Fillon II government; both were ministers simultaneously for a few months in 2010-2011, the first time a couple ever sat in a French government.
Michèle Marie was born on 10 September 1946 in Villeneuve-le-Roi, Val-de-Marne, to Bernard Marie, the Mayor of Biarritz and a famous international rugby referee.
She studied law at Pantheon-Assas University where she obtained her PhD. Before her career in politics, she was a senior lecturer at the Paris-I University (Panthéon-Sorbonne), and also spent some time practicing law. She holds a doctorate of law, a doctorate in political science and a Master’s degree in ethnology.
Before entering national politics, Alliot-Marie was a Municipal Councillor of Ciboure between 1983 and 1988 and of Biarritz, of which her father was the Mayor until 1991, between 1989 and 1995.
She then served as Mayor of Saint-Jean-de-Luz until 2002, and as First Deputy Mayor since then. She was also a member and a Vice President of the General Council of Pyrénées-Atlantiques between 1994 and 2001.
Alliot-Marie was elected to the National Assembly to represent Pyrénées-Atlantiques in 1986 as a member of the Gaullist Rally for the Republic (RPR). She has been seating in the Assembly ever since, except when she sat in the government.
She served as Secretary of State (junior minister) for Schools under the Minister of National Education in Jacques Chirac's second government from 1986 to 1988 and as Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports in Édouard Balladur's government from 1993 to 1995.
From 1989 to 1994, she was a Member of the European Parliament.
President of the RPR
In 1999, “MAM” entered the challenge for the presidency of the RPR against Chirac's candidate and, to most insiders' surprise, won by a landslide, becoming the first woman to lead a major French political party. She remained President of the party until 2002 when it merged with the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP), a merger she opposed at first.
Alliot-Marie was Minister of Defense during Jacques Chirac’s second presidential term, France's first woman in this position. Between May and June 2002, she was also in charge of Veterans’ Affairs. Forbes magazine declared her the 57th most powerful woman in the world in 2006 and the 11th in 2007. She kept the Defense portfolio in Jean-Pierre Raffarin’s three governments and in Dominique de Villepin’s government.
She remained a leading Gaullist after the RPR merger into the UMP, and created her own movement within the party, Le Chêne (The Oak). Although she publicly considered competing with Nicolas Sarkozy for the UMP nomination in the 2007 presidential election, she ruled herself out of the running in January 2007 and endorsed Sarkozy. Sarkozy and Alliot-Marie had a history of disagreements in the party’s National Council.
Interior and Justice ministerships
After Sarkozy’s election as President, Alliot-Marie was appointed Minister of the Interior, the Overseas and Local Communities in François Fillon's government, being the first woman to hold the position.
Two years later, after the 2009 European Parliament election, she was appointed Minister of Justice and Liberties and Keeper of the Seals and was bestowed the title of Minister of State, which gave her the most senior rank in the government after the Prime Minister. She was made a Vice President of the UMP the same year.
Foreign Affairs ministership
In November 2010, Alliot-Marie was appointed Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, remaining Minister of State and being again the first female holder of the office.
When civil unrest began in Tunisia in early 2011, Alliot-Marie came under scrutiny for going on vacation there during the events, as she had frequently done in the past. She further caused controversy when she told the National Assembly that French riot police could be offered to help restore order ; she was specifically criticised for allegedly sending teargas to Tunisia as late as January 2011.
Her situation embarrassing the government, she resigned as Foreign Minister on 27 February 2011 after only a few months in office. She was succeeded by outgoing Defense Minister and former Prime Minister Alain Juppé.
Secretary of State for Education: 1986–1988.
Minister of Youth and Sports: 1993–1995.
Minister of Defense: 2002–2007.
Minister of the Interior, Overseas Territories and Territorial Communities : 2007–2009.
Keeper of the Seals, Minister of State, Minister of Justice and Freedoms: 2009–2010.
Minister of State, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs: 2010–2011 (resignation).
Member of the European Parliament : 1989-1992 (Resignation). Elected in 1989.
Member of the National Assembly for Pyrénées-Atlantiques (6th constituency): elected in March 1986 (became minister in March 1986) / 1988–1993 (became minister in 1993) / 1995–2002 (became minister in 2002) / reelected in 2007 but she remained minister / 2011-2012 (She losts his reelection). Elected in 1986, reelected in 1988, 1993, 1995, 1997, 2002, 2007.
Vice President of the General Council of Pyrénées-Atlantiques: 1994–2001.
General Councillor of Pyrénées-Atlantiques: 1994–2001.
Mayor of Saint-Jean-de-Luz: 1995-2002 (Resignation). Reelected in 2001.
Deputy-mayor of Saint-Jean-de-Luz : Since 2002. Reelected in 2008.
Municipal Councillor of Saint-Jean-de-Luz: since 1995, reelected in 2001 and 2008.
Municipal Councillor of Biarritz: 1989–1991.
Municipal Councillor of Ciboure: 1983–1988.
Party political offices
President of the Rally for the Republic: 1999–2002 (party dissolved). Elected in 1999.
Vice President of the Union for a Popular Movement: since 2009.
Michèle Marie married anthropologist Michel Alliot in 1971, taking the name Michèle Alliot-Marie. They divorced in 1984.
In the French media, she is nicknamed "MAM".
Since 1988, her life partner has been Patrick Ollier, who briefly served as President of the National Assembly in 2007 and subsequently chaired the Assembly’s Economy Committee. In November 2010, he was appointed Minister in charge of Relations with Parliament in the Fillon II government. Both were ministers simultaneously for a few months in 2010-2011, the first time a couple ever sat in a French government. Due to her higher public profile, he has been nicknamed “Patrick Ollier-Marie” or “POM”.