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A Frenchie travelling the world...

08 May 2007

Results of the French Elections

Dear readers,

Now that the emotions of the first hours have passed, I'll have a comment on the results of the French elections. There was very little suspense of course, so I won't say that I was not expecting it. Nicolas Sarkozy, right wing (UMP) contender and the son of Hungarian immigrants in France, has won the Presidency. He will officially become French Vth Republic 6th President on 16th May. Legislative elections will follow where he will likely catch another absolute majority for his party, ensuring that all powers depends on him.

Wait, rewind... Not so sure after all. The Socialists, a bit stun by the defeat but encouraged by an historically high level of votes are going to put up a bitter fight. More importantly for me and for millions of voters (18% of them actually), there will be a third choice. Again, like for the first round of the Presidential elections, there will be more choice than between right wing conservatism and unchecked free market or left wing conservatism and all around state intervention. Ségolène Royale (the Socialist) just like Nicolas Sarkozy are trying to sell us the idea that the legislative is not a third round ("la belle" in French card games). But it actually is. There is eventually a chance for all people that are not happy with the choice they had in the second round to put enough Representative to the Parliament to make their voice heard.

The alternative choice to the UMP conservatists will of course be to give more legislative (and potentially Ministerial) power to the Socialists, to one of the extreme right or left parties (National Front, Workers Party, Revolutionary Communist League, Communist Party, etc.) to the Greens or of course to François Bayrou new MD party. MD stands for "Mouvement Démocratique" (French for democratic movement, obviously) and is a centrist party, fishing in the Christian democrat style as well as the socio-democrat ideas. The MD will replace the old UDF, a notability party whose politicians totally discredited themselves by betraying their leader to support the obvious winner Sarkozy.

Unfortunately, as a French citizen residing abroad, I won't have any voice in this third round. French abroad are not represented in the National Assembly and can't vote to elect its Representants (called "Députés" in French). There is no good reason for this, nor any explanation. It is just like that. It's likely to be because of the lack of funding of the French Foreign Ministry... And it is unlikely to change any time soon. Parties only interest themselves in French citizens abroad when it's Presidential election. Because they represent a large body of voters, they are interesting. But making them happy the rest of the time is not worth it. French people abroad have more open minds and broader views. They could bring challenges and innovation to France politics and of course our politicians don't want anything to trouble their good sleep and peace of mind... sorry, their hard work in service of the citizens. ;-)

7 comments:

le new fifi said...

Dear brother,
I will try to reply you with my poor english. You know I voted for Nicolas Sarkozy of course! You're right when you write that François Bayrou is a third way in the legislative election. But you have forgiven that in France, this ballot is local, because of the local election on majority basis, with two rounds, of every deputy. I think you know the results in France of proportional representation. So François Bayrou will have a lot of difficulties to introduice his Mouvement Démocrate into the circonscriptions. So the vote map in june will be probably the same of the secound round of presidential elections one (see www.mappy.fr for it). And the socialists are probably killing themselves with this absence of reactions (except Dominique Strauss-Kahn) faced with their very bad score!

PS : if you don't have any deputy, you have a senator (sénateur des français de l'étranger), haven't you?

Alphast said...

You are correct about the Senator, of course as well as about the basis of electoral system per circonscription. But where I disagree is about the proportional system. I have always been in favor of it, to force the main parties to form coalitions with smaller ones. And yes, I know that it also means more representation to extreme parties. But that's the only disadvantage of democracy...

le new fifi said...

The matter with the coalitions between main parties and smaller, is the instability of the government. But I think you know that, you learned it at "science po grenoble"... :D

Mohamed El Kortbi said...

Sarkozy joue la belle comme tu dis parfaitement.
Soit il aura les mains libres pour mettre en oeuvre les réformes pour lesquelles les frnaçais l'ont élu ou bien il aura les mains liées, et la cohabitation sera très rude pour lui.

le new fifi said...

I think François Bayrou will be very alone at the MD Congress! 20 UDF deputies have join the presidential majority, who formed the UDF group in the parlement. One is staying with François Bayrou, saying that UMP threat the UDF deputies and will oblige them to vote for Sarkozy's projects! I think I don't have to remind you the 27th article of the french constitution : "Tout mandat impératif est nul. - le droit de vote des membres du parlement est personnel." (I can't translate this with all the nuances, so "en français dans le texte"). Do you really believe in that? I think it's only a political movement of François Bayrou to show he's a vitcim, which is very fashion! But it's only my opinion... So good night, i work tomorrow in Thiers, and the day will not be very cool!

Alphast said...

Salut frérot,

Je ne suis pas certain que Bayrou se sente si seul. Il ne compte bien sur pas sur les vieux notables de l'UDF pour le soutenir. Il n'est pas fou et avec 18% de voix, il peut espérer un peu plus de 20 députés pour son MD. Les ex-UDF (puisque l'UDF se saborde) seront simplement intégrés à l'UMP, "d'une façon ou d'une autre". Je cite là le lacheur en chef, seul Ministre UDF... Le problème des ex-UDF, c'est qu'il leur a été présenté un deal clair: vous restez dans la majorité présidentielle et on ne présente pas d'UMP contre vous dans vos circonscriptions. Mais vous votez nos projets. Bien sur, ils peuvent toujours ne pas voter après. Mais alors, ils peuvent aussi dire adieu à des tas de subventions, facilités diverses, etc. La plupart ont chosi le deal UMP. Je comprends ça: ils n'ont guère d'assise populaire (sauf peut-être Santini) et ont donc besoin de ne pas avoir de batons dans les roues.

Quant au MD, il doit faire ses preuves, mais avec de nouveaux élus. Des jeunes de préférence. Et ils feront des deals similaires avec le Parti Socialiste, de toute évidence...

A part ça, bon service à Thiers et surtout habille toi chaudement...!
Affecteusement.

le new fifi said...

J'ai voulu m'habiller chaudement dear brother, mais par 25°C à l'ombre, le kevlar, c'est un peu trop! pas trop de problèmes là bas vu qu'on s'est surtout focalisé sur les jumelles laser (15 points de permis retirés en une demi journée...)
Sinon François Bayrou risque de perdre son attache électorale en mettant la barre à gauche...