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So predictable!

The French presidential election is taking a predictable course. In a recent Harris poll Sarkozy was sitting on 24% with Marine Le Pen (Front National) not far behind on 20% for the first round. Needless to say, Sarko's first priority is to not do a Jospin and get beaten in the first round, so he is cosying up to right-wing voters by, for example, coming out (if I can say that) against gay marriage, gay adoption and votes for foreigners in local elections. If he makes it to round 2, his language may soften a bit and in any case we are bound to see him play the experience card. He has been a man for a crisis, serious, out there with Merkel on the European stage, protecting France's long term interests.

Photo by Robin King from yahoo.fr
Meanwhile, François Hollande (on 28% in that Harris poll), whilst promising the Earth to left-leaning voters, is playing the man in the street card, which he has to given that he has remarkably little experience for a presidential candidate. Will he seem presidential enough? The eminently sensible, centrist François Bayrou will no doubt get squeezed in the middle and fail to make it to the second round.

So it will come down to Sarkozy's unenviable record, the force of the "time for a change" rhetoric (le changement is already to be seen on Hollande's posters - yawn), Sarkozy's experience, Hollande's lack of it and, when it comes down to it, are the French willing to turn a blind eye to their dislike for Sarko and take a risk with the genial but untested Hollande.

The polls don't look good for Sarkozy at the moment, but these contests between left and right are historically tight.

By the way, the photo refers to Karcher because you may recall that Sarko once suggested cleaning up the racaille ("scum") of the suburbs with a jet washer. Not his proudest moment.

Version française

 L'élection présidentielle française suit son cours prévisible. Dans un récent sondage Harris, Sarkozy était à 24%, Marine Le Pen (Front national) pas très loin derrière à 20% pour le premier tour. Il va sans dire que la première priorité de Sarko c'est de ne pas "faire un Jospin" en étant battu au premier tour, alors il fait de son mieux pour plaire aux électeurs de droite, par exemple, en se prononçant contre le mariage gay, l'adoption homosexuelle et le vote des étrangers aux élections locales. S'il arrive sain et sauf au deuxième tour, son langage pourait s'adoucir un peu et en tout cas nous le verrons jouer la carte de l'expérience. Il sera l'homme à la hauteur de la crise, sérieux, bien visible côte à côte avec Merkel sur la scène européenne, prêt à défendre la France contre le tourbillon économique.
 
Pendant ce temps, François Hollande (le 28% dans ce sondage Harris), promettant la lune aux électeurs de gauche, joue la carte de l'homme ordinaire. Il le faut bien  étant donné qu'il possède remarquablement peu d'expérience pour un candidat à la présidentielle. Semble-t-il assez présidentiel? Le très raisonnable centriste François Bayrou sera sans aucun doute coincé dans le milieu et ne passera pas au deuxième tour.

Alors ce sera le bilan peu enviable de Sarkozy, la force du langage du changement" (Le Changement se lit déjà sur les affiches Hollande - quelle barbe!), l'expérience de Sarkozy, l'inexpérience de Hollande et, bref, la volonté des Français de s'aveugler de leur aversion pour Sarko et prendre un risque avec un Hollande génial, mais non-testé.

Les sondages ne sont pas actuellement favorables pour Sarkozy, mais ces concours entre gauche et droite sont historiquement serrés.

En passant, la photo se réfère à Kärcher parce que vous vous rappellerez peut-être que Sarko avait déjà proposé le lavage au Karcher de la racaille de la banlieue. Ce n'était pas son plus beau moment.

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