Pierre Maudet acquitted on appeal: political reactions

The Geneva Criminal Appeals and Revision Chamber finally acquitted Pierre Maudet for his trip to Abu Dhabi. First reactions.

Also read: Pierre Maudet is acquitted on the whole line on appeal

■ Bertrand Reich, president of the Geneva PLR: “His exclusion was fully justified”

“Politically, the court decision will strengthen the people who voted for him in their feeling that he has been wrongly prosecuted,” declares Bertrand Reich, president of the Geneva PLR. But for me, that doesn’t change the fact that his exclusion was fully justified, given the accumulation of reasons. Because the problem is not criminal, but ethics and loyalty to his party, which he sorely lacked, with repeated lies and stratagems aimed at distracting attention, in particular by throwing away as food for the press of facts detrimental to the PLR. Now, it is clear that being acquitted is good for his image and that he would not have created a foundation if he no longer wanted to play a political role. It is too early to say whether this risk will be likely to fracture the PLR ​​again. “

■ The acquittal of Pierre Maudet does not weaken the legitimacy of Fabienne Fischer, defend the Greens

For Delphine Klopfenstein-Broggini, president of the Geneva Greens, this judgment does not change much. “We take note of this decision, which is probably only a judicial step, but on the political level the ethical question which has always preoccupied us remains relevant: Pierre Maudet has lied to the population on numerous occasions.”

To the point, according to her, of losing the confidence of some of the voters. As for the political strength of Pierre Maudet, Delphine Klopfenstein-Broggini recalls that the former State Councilor “did not hesitate to campaign while being under criminal investigation”. In his eyes, the acquittal should therefore not fundamentally change his behavior but risks, on the other hand, worrying the PLR. In retrospect, could this judgment have changed the situation at the time of the complementary election to the Council of State in spring 2021? “Absolutely not,” replies the president. Our candidate Fabienne Fischer won hands down, she was legitimate yesterday, she still is today. ”

■ “It doesn’t change anything, he lied to Parliament”, reacts Bertrand Buchs, PDC

Bertrand Buchs, PDC deputy reacts to the acquittal of Pierre Maudet: “For me, that does not change anything, he lied to Parliament, he recognized it and even said it at the end of his trial. The fault of Pierre Maudet does not change, even if it is not condemnable at the criminal level. Confidence is not restored. But it is true that currently, he has a highway in front of him if he wants to represent himself. If he comes with a party, it’s gonna be a mess. But he even has the potential, given his personality, to come back without a party. It is a risk for the PDC, just like the Vert’liberals, which I am convinced will reach a quorum. The problem is not whether the PDC will have good candidates in 2023, but to achieve quorum. Because there will inevitably be a fragmentation of voices on the right. “

■ Thomas Bläsi, UDC: “a royal road to Pierre Maudet’s return to politics”

For the UDC deputy Thomas Bläsi, the judgment “is an immense disavowal for the Attorney General, who traces a royal road for a return to politics of Pierre Maudet”. “I am shocked that justice considers that a State Councilor can accept a gift of 50,000 francs without falling within the scope of the law. It will be necessary that enough people disregard their personal interest to block it during the cantonal elections of 2023 ”, he continues.

“As the author of the report of the management committee on the Cantonal Office for Population and Migration, I was able to observe that Pierre Maudet personally intervened to accelerate the naturalization of at least one person close to the one of the organizers of the trip to Abu Dhabi. This case was the subject of a criminal denunciation. ”

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