Fillon, François Charles Amand

Fillon, François Charles Amand fräNswäˈ shärl ämäNˈ fēyôNˈ [key], 1954–, French political leader, b. Le Mans. A conservative, he served as an assembly deputy (1981–2002, 2007–17) and a senator (2004–7) as well as in local elected posts. He was appointed minister for higher education and research (1993–97) by Premier ÉdouardBalladur and, after the election of President Jacques Chirac, served as minister (and then junior minister) for telecommunications and postal services (1995–97) until the Socialists won control of the French parliament. When the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) won the 2002 elections, Fillon returned to the cabinet as social affairs and labor minister (2002–4) and successfully negotiated with the labor unions to win important pension and labor reforms. Subsequently minister for education and research, he allied with Nicolas Sarkozy after being removed from the cabinet in reshuffle in 2005. Fillon directed Sarkozy's successful presidential campaign in 2007 and served (2007–12) as premier after Sarkozy took office. In 2016 Fillon, running as a free-market, socially conservative candidate, won the presidential primary of the Republicans (the former UMP), but his subsequent campaign was damaged by scandals including charges that his wife was paid for a sham position in his office and he placed third. He and his wife were convicted on sham employment charges in 2020.

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