The French Election

On Sunday French voters will go to the polls and select a new president, choosing between Socialist Ségolène Royal and current president Jacques Chirac’s anointed successor, center-right UMP candidate Nicolas Sarkozy. The two candidates are very different in gender, style, and politics. One of them will become president of France, along with Germany one of the most influential countries in the European Union and a permanent veto-wielding member of the United Nations Security Council. Judging by the headlines in the online editions of leading U. S. newspapers it might as well not be happening at all.

Currently Sarkozy leads in the polls by something between 5 and 10 points. The campaign is offically over. The voting is on Sunday.

It hardly seems to me that France needs a re-assertion of socialist national economic policy, but, then, I’m not French.

Here’s a quick round-up on the candidates and the election.

AFOE has a commentary on the presidential debate. L’Ombre d’Olivier has thoughts of his own on the debate.

Der Spiegel has a round-up on the potential impact of the election on Europe.

‘Aqoul considers the implications of the election for French Middle Eastern and North African policy.

neo-neocon offers reflections on the election from this side of the Pond, comparing and contrasting Mme. Royal with Hillary Clinton.

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Dave Schuler
About Dave Schuler
Over the years Dave Schuler has worked as a martial arts instructor, a handyman, a musician, a cook, and a translator. He's owned his own company for the last thirty years and has a post-graduate degree in his field. He comes from a family of politicians, teachers, and vaudeville entertainers. All-in-all a pretty good preparation for blogging. He has contributed to OTB since November 2006 but mostly writes at his own blog, The Glittering Eye, which he started in March 2004.


  1. Triumph says:

    It hardly seems to me that France needs a re-assertion of socialist national economic policy, but, then, I’m not French.

    You, obviously, aren’t familiar with Royal’s platform–it is hardly a “socialist national economic policy.” In fact, on economic issues Royal and Sarkozy are quite similar.

  2. Dave Schuler says:

    I confess that I take my guidance on such matters from those more knowledgeable than I am (including those to whom I link above). However, unless French politicians are very different from their American counterparts, I think that affiliations are not completely irrelevant and I pay attention to them while taking platforms with a grain of salt.

    Most of the commentary I’ve seen has focussed on Mme. Royal’s lack of command of the details rather than on distinguishing her policies from those of M. Sarkozy.