by Jane Rosenstein, VT Paris

In order to know the opinions of the people living in Paris, I interviewed both Parisians and foreigners. The people I interviewed and those from Democrats Abroad in France were glad to share their opinions. Special thanks to Anna Marie Mattson from the Democrats Abroad France Veterans and Military Families Caucus.

The Parisians told me that they did not like Trump and knew little about Biden. They hoped he would bring the USA back into the Paris Climate Agreement talks. I found only one person who liked Trump. Some said that a vote for Biden was a vote against Trump. Others said the USA is far from Paris, and they were not interested. 

One Parisian lady told me  “The whole world is relieved that a sane President will look after the U.S.A.”

I called the office of François Hollande, former President of France, whom I met at one of his book signing events.  His secretary Clarisse told me that he sent a message congratulating Biden and so did President Macron and Anne Hidalgo, the mayor of Paris. She said she hoped that the USA would go back into the Climate Agreement talks.  

Democrats Abroad has a very active organization in Paris. I called and told them I was sad that they could not have a celebration on election night as they did in previous years. I went to the election night parties in 2008, 2012, 2016 organized by Young Democrats. The ambiance was cheerful except when Trump won. This year we are having a lockdown and cannot organize or attend social gatherings in person. All is by internet including Zoom. 

Democrats Abroad kept calling US citizens living abroad to urge them to send in their absentee ballots. Their message is VOTE, VOTE, VOTE  said every vote counts. 

They are elated that Joe Biden won in the state of Georgia by 14,112 votes.  18,000 votes were absentee overseas ballots and these numbers show that overseas ballots likely made a difference in this election. 

Democrats Abroad is part of the Democratic party while Republicans Abroad is not part of the Republican Party. Since 2006 members of Democrats Abroad France have been supporting the wounded warriors and veterans. In 2017 Democrats Abroad France created the Veterans and Military Caucus for military families, veterans, and those Americans interested in military and veteran needs; They are elated to have Joe Biden as President-elect; As the father of a veteran, he knows the military’s value.   

According to Anna Marie Mattson, “Democrats Abroad France honors the members of our Armed Forces; their service deserves our deepest gratitude and respect. Government policy must reflect the interests of those who have served and the families of those who are serving and respect them.

These are the four pillars of the Caucus: GOTV & Outreach to veterans, active duty, and reserve military members and families. Advocacy: Transgender Ban Resolution, Toll-Free Suicide Hotline, Letters to Congress, Remembrance: Participation in Wreath laying Ceremonies at American Military Cemeteries Compassion: Wounded Warriors at Landstuhl Military Hospital in Germany. 

Specifically, President Biden will fight to provide veterans with better healthcare that meets their needs; he will fast track policies to eliminate veteran homelessness and bring down suicide rates, fight to improve education and job opportunities, and has bold plans to overhaul VA management and accountability.”

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