I’ve just returned from Paris and was fascinated to see the city in election mode - posters everywhere, the virtually constant political chat on all the news channels and in the city’s bars and cafes.
The first round is but a few days away, so here’s a brief insight into what the French Right are all about.
Nicolas Sarkozy’s Union pour un Mouvement Populaire emerged from an amalgamation of other centre-right parties in 2002 under President Jacques Chirac. One poll says he’s currently tied at the top spot with Francois Hollande.
In the far right corner we have Marine Le Pen of the Front National who’s had much to-ing and fro-ing with her far left counterpart. This economist article looks at how she’s garnered support amongst workers in the north of France.
Dominique de Villepin (République solidaire) and Sarkozy are both centre-right candidates. But this BBC article from 2010 amusingly suggests there is no love lost between them. However, in last month’s interview with France 2 TV de Villepin admitted that he may not even be able to stand for election after failing to secure the correct number of signatures.http://www.english.rfi.fr/france/20120316-villepin-needs-miracle-qualify-presidential-election
Nicolas Dupont-Aignan of the right wing Debout la République talks to Le Monde about his election policies on the EU.
The Right in France: From Revolution to Le Pen by Nicholas Atkin and Frank Tallett is a good survey of the French right and is available as a partial preview on google books.
First Round of the Election: Sunday 22nd April 2012
Second Round: Sunday 6th May 2012
What are your predictions for the 2012 elections? Send in your forecasts in the comments section and we’ll see who is proved right in a week's time!