Thursday, December 28, 2006

Would Chirac sabotage Sarkozy

Romke at Frogsmoke posted a quick review of French President Jacques Chirac's time in office. The article he links to also holds several predictions on Chirac's future in the election.

On New Year's Eve, Jacques Chirac will almost certainly address the nation as president for the last time. Barring some national calamity or crisis before the elections in April and May, this will be the final chance for M. Chirac to speak to his "chers compatriotes" on live television and try to make some sense of the muddle of his 40 years in politics and the calamities of his nearly 12 years in the Elysée Palace.

Will he finally admit that, at 74 years old, and with absurdly low poll ratings, he has no chance of winning another term in office? Will he finally endorse the candidacy of his detested, former protégé Nicolas Sarkozy? Probably not. Not yet, anyway.

President Chirac is said to cling to a desperate belief that the French bourgeoisie might still turn to him to save France from Ségolène Royal, who is not only a socialist but (choc, horreur) a woman. In truth, if President Chirac decides to run again, it will mostly be to spite Sarkozy. A Chirac-Sarkozy civil war on the moderate right would turn the possibility of a President(e) Royal into a near certainty.

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