Resignation of Caroline Cayeux: her declaration of assets deemed undervalued

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Less than five months in government. Minister Caroline Cayeux announced her resignation on Monday, November 28, after exactly four months and 24 days as Minister Delegate for Local Authorities in the government of Elisabeth Borne. Despite the short time spent in her post, she went through a media storm that she failed to forget, upon her appointment in July.

In question, comments made in 2013 against same-sex marriage, which she then considered “against nature”. Then senator of Oise under the label of the Republicans, Caroline Cayeux describes as “whim” the law on marriage for all carried by Christiane Taubira. In 2012, she would have already declared, quoted by Liberation: “Marriage for all and the right to adoption is not simply a plan that goes against nature but it is more serious”. Remarks which had caused an outcry and on which she had spoken last July to the Public Senate, declaring to maintain them and adding to have “many friends, among all these people”.

A small sentence which had then triggered misunderstanding among certain ministers and aroused the anger of the LGBT community: six associations had filed a complaint against the minister for public insult. A column had also been published in the Journal du Dimanche, signed by 129 personalities and political leaders. Among the signatories, former ministers and members of the presidential majority. Caroline Cayeux had apologized a few days later, regretting her comments at the time and assuring: “I obviously no longer recognize myself in them today”.

Is his resignation a consequence of this controversy? No, according to information from Le Parisien, which cites its declaration of assets, which is compulsory for each member of the government. Here’s what we know.

Shortly after 1 p.m. on Monday, November 28, the Elysée announced the resignation of Caroline Cayeux “at her request”. According to information from the Parisian, this choice would be linked to a disagreement with the High Authority for Public Life concerning his declaration of assets. Shortly after the announcement of the presidential palace, the septuagenarian in turn published a press release on social networks, explaining: “Following my declaration of assets, the High Authority for the transparency of public life told me that she considered it undervalued, so I obviously took his comments into account and aligned myself with his assessments.

“Despite this, the High Authority for the Transparency of Public Life persists in questioning my sincerity”, she adds, specifying: “In this context, it seemed preferable to me to resign in order not to interfere with government action. Quoted by Le Parisien, a relative of Caroline Cayeux affirms that she “resigns to be able to better defend herself and not to interfere with the action of the government”. The signal sent by the executive has already been blurred by the opening of two investigations by the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office concerning the intervention of consulting firms during Emmanuel Macron’s two presidential campaigns. By whom will Caroline Cayeux be replaced in her post?

In its press release published in the middle of the day, the Elysée indicates that the attributions of Caroline Cayeux are taken over by Dominique Faure, currently in charge of rurality. As franceinfo explains, she therefore becomes “Minister Delegate to the Minister of the Interior and Overseas Territories and to the Minister for Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion, in charge of Local Authorities and to the Minister for Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion, responsible for rurality”.

For its part, the Elysée Palace did not comment on Caroline Cayeux’s explanations. Re-elected in May 2020 at the head of the town hall of Beauvais (Oise), the septuagenarian had renounced her mandate by entering the government, but should logically find her chair. Since January 2004, she has also been president of the urban community of Beauvaisis.