The ripples from this revelation led Georges to sell the family home and his clinic in 1968, when his son was 14.He retrained as an estate agent and moved to Neuilly-sur-Seine, the Parisian suburb that is Sarkozy’s fiefdom.With the help of The Rottweiler, this campaign saw the emergence of a new Hollande.He lost weight, sharpened his suits and ditched his old-fashioned horn-rimmed glasses.
’ said Laurent Fabius, a former Socialist prime minister.
In 1995, Hollande was appointed Socialist Party spokesman and, two years later, elected head of the party, a position he held for 11 years.
Grappling with the inflated egos and vicious factionalism of so-called comrades, he was viewed as someone who ducked difficult decisions and led from behind.
‘He is Mr Conciliator, Mr Compromise, Mr Consensus,’ said one old friend.
With his pudgy features and portly frame, he was mocked by television satirists as ‘Flanby’ (a brand of caramel pudding) and Marshmallow Man.