Sarko promo video uses USA families

Red faces at UMP party as it is caught using stock pictures of happy American families in video to promote France

3 December 2009

AN ECO-friendly house with solar panels on the roof, smiling schoolchildren and a mother hugging her girl in a beautiful garden.

France's governing UMP party thought they were perfect images to illustrate its latest promotional campaign for modern France – except that they were all filmed in America.

Canal+ has discovered that the latest party video, which trumpets some of Nicolas Sarkozy's reforms since becoming president in 2007, contains stock footage bought from US agency Getty Images.

The environmentally friendly house has a car with an American number-plate outside and a child playing American football. That's because it is in Escondido, California.
The smiling class of schoolchildren from a broad range of ethnic backgrounds do not study in France, but in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

And the mother with her joyful child in the garden is breathing the fresh air of Cambria, California, and not the French countryside.

This is not the first time the UMP has been caught out with its choice of footage. In 2007, the party produced a similar campaign video which included images from New York and California.

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