Hue and Party Reform
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, faced with the rapid erosion of his Party, Robert Hue started a series of political transformations: openness to other political movements, discarding of several doctrines, a double-headed Party executive (with Hue as President and Marie-George Buffet as National Secretary), etc. He made his approach public through his book, Communisme : la mutation.
Robert Hue's low percentage in 1995 is explained by the competition from Workers' Struggle, but it was still more than André Lajoinie's result in 1988. In 1997, he stood by the idea of Gauche Plurielle ("Pluralist Left") which brought the leftist politics back in power with Lionel Jospin; Hue became a deputy, and the government included a number of Communists.
However, the Party was falling out of favor with the public: from over 200,000 members in 1998, it dropped to 138,000 in 2001. The Party lost a good deal of allegiancies during the 2001 municipal elections.
Hue created and assumed in 2001 the title of President of the Party. His successor as National secretary of the party was Marie-George Buffet.
The poor result in 2002 made the far-right leader Jean-Marie Le Pen cheer the death of Communist strength. In fact, the outcome was so bad that the Party did not have anything to show for the money it had invested in its campaign, and verged on financial collapse. Hue resigned the Presidency while the Party appealed to the generosity of its members. The Presidency was suppressed, the National Secretary (Buffet) remaining as the Party's sole leader.
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