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Tunisie 2019 : Chronique d’une surprise électorale annoncée

Abstract : The reading of Tunisian political reality in 2019 gives the feeling that the parties are mired in “political” calculations, unable to develop an economic and social vision that can get the country out of the economic slump that has worsened year by year since 2011. The government seems to have abandoned economic and social problems to focus on power struggles. However, in view of the 2019 election results, it is clear that voters have sent a message of rejection to the government elites represented by Ennahdha, Nidaa Tounes and his offspring. This mistrust was embodied in the affirmation of a “populist moment” that resulted in the victory of Kais Saïed in the presidential election. However, this victory does not mean that we are dealing with an institutionalization of populism in Tunisia. The revolutionary and democratic refoundation desired by the President of the Republic hardly seems conceivable with regard to the parliamentary configuration. It remains to be seen what will be the capacity of a coalition government, probably undermined by the political calculations of its various components, to provide solutions to the economic and social regression. Both the political configuration and the mode of operation of Tunisian institutions seem to lead to an institutional deadlock, the outcome of which is not very clear. This situation risks undermining an already weak state which, unable to enforce the laws, has never been able to question the logic of the Tunisian economy's rentier system, a logic which contributes to fueling the informal economy and corruption. This situation leads many Tunisians to think that the political class is exclusively interested in access to political-administrative functions which are assimilated to pretences and which allow them to benefit from an immunity closely associated with impunity. Hence the development of both anti-parliamentarism and endemic protest movements calling for a state of justice, that is, a state that respects the dignity of citizens regardless of their social and regional origin. Since the fall of Ben Ali's regime, the forms of allegiance of the governed to the rulers have not fundamentally changed and remain fragile: they are exclusively linked to the capacity of the state to create the conditions for relative economic prosperity and to redistribute the material resources that contribute to the population's better living. However, the Tunisian state can no longer satisfy material demands without increasing its debt, the evolution and control of which is under the watchful eye of the IMF.
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Contributor : Eric Gobe <>
Submitted on : Friday, January 8, 2021 - 5:04:45 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, January 12, 2021 - 3:29:58 AM


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Eric Gobe. Tunisie 2019 : Chronique d’une surprise électorale annoncée. L'Année du Maghreb, CNRS Éditions, 2020, citoyennetés : pratiques et ressources, pp.327-353. ⟨halshs-03066933⟩



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