France: A Middle Way for Socialism

After a year, Mitterrand's government puts water in its wine

It was the sort of political brawl that leaves the opposition smiling. In one corner was liberal Justice Minister Robert Badinter, who had successfully promoted repeal of the death penalty in France last year. In the other was his fellow Socialist, longtime Marseille Mayor Gaston Defferre, who as Interior Minister is the country's top cop. Badinter was urging the National Assembly to abolish a much-hated law, inherited from the government of President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, that increased the police's power to detain, search...

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