Photo: Sean Gallup / Getty
The eldest son of Francois Hollande has launched a scathing attack on Valerie Trierweiler, the French president’s partner, accusing her of destroying his father’s “Mr Normal” image.Thomas Hollande, a 27-year-old lawyer, criticised the way Ms Trierweiler, 48, has conducted herself since becoming first lady in May.
Ms Trierweiler caused outrage last month by expressing her support via Twitter for a politician standing against Segolene Royal, 58, in parliamentary elections.
Ms Royal is the former partner of Mr Hollande and the mother of their children – Thomas, Clemence, 25, Julien, 22, and Flora, 20.
Since the infamous tweet, Ms Royal lost the election, seen her career all but ended, and been widely ridiculed across France.
This led to President Hollande, 57, speaking to each of his children individually about the saga, but they all told him that they never wanted to see Ms Trierweiler again.
In comments to Le Point magazine, Thomas Hollande said his father had been “devastated” by the tweet and it had “cause him a lot of pain”.
“I felt really sorry for my father,” he said. “He really hates it when people talk about his private life. It destroys the normal image he has built.”
Mr Hollande made a virtue of his “Mr Normal” persona against Nicolas Sarkozy, dubbed the “Bling bling president” during the elections earlier this year.
Saying that he was “flabbergasted” by the Tweet sent by Ms Trierweiler, the young Thomas said: “I knew that something could come from her one day, but not this huge, it’s surreal.”
Mr Hollande confirmed that neither he, nor his brothers and sister wanted to see Ms Trierweiler again, saying: “It makes sense, right? And what’s important is that we normalise relations with our father.”
Mr Hollande said that Ms Trierweiler’s duel role as a first lady and a journalist was too ambiguous.
“It’s a cause of instability,” said Mr Hollande. “Either she’s a journalist, or she has an office at the Elysee.”
The Elysee Palace had no official comment on the Le Point interview. Young Mr Hollande was also unavailable for comment.
Since the tweet, Ms Trierweiler has expressed her regret at what happened.
“I made a mistake,” Ms Trierweiler reportedly told a friend, who added: “She did not properly calculate the consequences her tweet would have on the authority of the head of state, on the Socialist Party, her children and those of Francois Hollande.”
Ms Trierweiler stayed at home in Paris when Mr Hollande travelled to Britain for meetings with both Prime Minister David Cameron and the Queen on Tuesday.
Mr Hollande meanwhile was ridiculed after allowing himself to look like a “dwarf” alongside the Coldstream Guards – the battalion that won battle honours at Waterloo and then occupied Paris.
During his visit to London, he inspected a Guard of Honour from 1st Bn the Coldstream Guards at the Foreign Office, before appearing in photographs with Maj James Coleby, who appeared about two feet taller than him.
Comments on a news agency website that carried the pictures suggested the 5ft 8in president had fallen into a “trap” designed to make him look ridiculous. One comment said: “Dwarfs rule the world”.
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