Although essential actors on the political scene, French Deputies (MPs) are part of a relatively little-known elite. The weakening of Parliament by the 1958 constitution, the presidentialisation of the French system, decentralisation and European integration are all factors which have eroded the attention given to them by citizens, the media and academics alike.
This book sheds new light on them and answers the following questions: are they citizens like any other? What exactly do they do? What governs their behaviour and their political discourse? How influential are they?
Using an original typology together with previously unpublished quantitative and qualitative data, the authors describe a group of highly organised political entrepreneurs, working as a team and playing several roles both locally and nationally. They highlight the professionalisation of politics and the practice of accumulating mandates in both time and space.
Olivier Costa and Éric Kerrouche are CNRS-affiliated researchers at the Spirit (Science Politique Relations Internationales Territoire), Institute of Political Studies of Bordeaux