UPDATE 1:15 PM: "People from "banlieues" promise "war" if Sarkozy is president. This is the rumor on the streets. The question is if this is the word on the street and the people of France be intimidated into capitulation thereby handing it all over to the punk jihad? Think history making.
Paul Belien has an excellent analysis of the French election and the upcoming run off. The stakes couldn't be higher. Belien believes that "if the 31.1 percent of the electorate who voted for [Sarkozy] on Sunday are joined
by another 19 percent voting for "Sarko" on May 6, the recovery from the French
disease can begin. Perhaps France -- and Europe -- are not lost yet." G-d willing.
Read it all in The Washington Times.
Though Miss Royal, 53, is not very bright, she is good-looking, flamboyant and typically French. Miss Royal has promised to implement leftist economic policies that will "frighten the capitalists." She also calls for European opposition to "the American hyperpower." Mr. Sarkozy, 52, is an atypical Frenchman. He is the son of a Hungarian father (real name: Sarkozy de Nagy-Bocsa) and a mother who was herself the daughter of a Greek immigrant.
"I like the frame of mind of those who need to build everything because nothing was given to them," he said about his upbringing. Unlike Miss Royal, Mr. Sarkozy is not an "enarque," a graduate of the prestigious Ecole nationale d'administration (ENA), where most leading French politicians, bureaucrats, diplomats and businessmen attain their degrees.
Mr. Sarkozy is an admirer of the United States. Pro-American Frenchmen are rare, although one of the greatest admirers of America of all times, Alexis de Tocqueville, was a Frenchman. Tocqueville noted a truth that has largely been lost in Europe but is still understood by many Americans: the fact that man's morality is strengthened when the government is minimal. "One of the happiest consequences of the absence of government is the development of individual strength that inevitably follows from it," he wrote.
It is exactly the loss of individual strength that has been the disease of France ever since it inflicted upon itself the totalitarian revolution of 1789. The latter turned this once great nation -- which produced warriors such as Charles Martel, Saint Louis and Joan of Arc -- into what Tocqueville called "a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd." In France the Marxist left and the Bonapartist/Gaullist Right alike favor strong centralist, patronizing authority.
Michel, frequent Atlas visitor and our Frenchman on the street gives Atlasites the blow by blow the elections;
The real surprise on these elections was the collapse of the Front National , the Jean Marie Le Pen party. He was in 2002 on the second turn with 17% of votes, but now he makes only 10.4 %, a loss of 1 millions of votes.
We return to a classic duel UMP / PS, with a big score for Nicolas Sarkozy , the UMP candidate : 31, 18 %, which makes him the favourite.
Segolene Royal the left candidate cleaned up the 2002 humiliation, when the socialists were not in second round, with a comfortable score of 25.87 %.
Looks like Sarkozy took most of the electors of Jean Marie Le Pen, with a pure right wing speech (france’s identity, immigration..) , this strategy paid.
Chirac was more a leftist, and he loset his traditional right voters, but Nicolas Sarkozy came back on the basics.
The extreme left collapsed too, except Olivier Besancenot, (Communist revolutionary league) a trotskist, who spoke for the right to vote for the strangers, for giving French nationality for all the illegals immigrants and against capitalism.
We had unfortunately 5 extreme left political formations in the run, an unique case on the free world, and a ecologist party (the greens) who talked more about the illegal immigrants than ecology. French communist party is falling at his worst score of his history 1.93%, Arlette Laguiller (Lutte Ouvriere) 1.33%, José Bové the “anti liberal” candidate who destroyed a Mc Donalds : 1.32%, Gerard Schivardi (Workers Party) : 0.34%. Diminique Voynet from the Greens : 1.57%.
These little formations suffered to the “utile vote” for Segolene Royal, the leftist voters didn’t want replay 2002 and they voted for the socialists on the first round.
The extreme left is very influent on the mainstreams medias, but almost invisible on the elections, that’s the French exception.
The other winner, on the third place is François Bayrou, a centrist , who collected voters from left and right, he tripled his votes since 2002 with 18.57%.
The participation was very high, only 16.23% of abstention, this election passionate the French public. We never had so much polls during a electoral campaign, many polls institutes gave everyday their “tendencies”, that makes an real influence on the votes. Phillipe De Villiers, (Mouvement Pour la France) complained about that, arguing his bad polls results discouraged to vote for him, he makes only 2.23%. He axed his campaign on the reject of the islamisation and was constantly discredited by the mainstreams medias, like Jean Marie Le Pen.
The medias are hold by the left wing in France, except the television who is much for Sarkozy. French people wanted a change, but they voted for the mainstreams political formations. But both Sarkozy and Royal were considered as new comers by French. After 12 years of chirac’s reign, the desire of a strong change was deep.
Sarkozy symbolize a right without complex, and Royal is very popular in the “banlieues”, the arabs may have massively voted for her, but by now , we cant talk about an muslim or arab vote.
For the second round, all the eyes are pointed on Bayrou, are his voters going to vote for Royal or Sarkozy, that should be determinate the result. The president of UDF said he ll not call to vote for anyone. Jean Marie Le Pen probably will do the same, but his right wing voters may prefer Sarkozy instead Royal who represent an obsolete and demagogic socialism, but its not sure because on some points (affirmative action, public financement of mosques, creation of CFCM a CAIR like) he s considered as worse by the Front National voters.
Next round the 6 may, with before a TV debate between the two candidates, that’s will be the first one since the beginning of this campaign. What is a shame, no direct debates, but too much polls, candidates were constantly interviewed about the polls results, that was really boring.
Not so much changes finally, terrorism question wasn’t discussed (despite the close attacks of al quaida on the maghreb : Algeria, Tunisia and Maroc) , and a threat of an attack before the second round of the French elections. The debate was strictly franco French, concerning internal subjects.
From another country, we French, are certainly considered as weird, its looks like we’re on a bubble, like the world stopped at our gates. But that’s we are: just bloody frogs.