But if the creases in the UMP seemed to be smoothing, the tightly wound socialist party began to fray. Beginning with a public disagreement over taxes, the tension between Segolene Royal and the Socialist Party, namely her romantic partner and party leader Francois Hollande, has shaken what was previously a momentum filled campaign.
With the political differences between Royal and Hollande in headlines all week, speculation about infidelity, and separate apartments resurfaced. Some commentators pondered whether all that was left of the couple was a facade of a political partnership of convenience. (...) As the left-leaning Libération daily put it this week: "François Hollande and Ségolène Royal still love each other. But they are looking in dramatically different directions."
It will now be up to Royal to retake the high ground and move forward as quickly as possible. If allowed to languish, as John Kerry's swift boat story did, Royal will be handicapped for the rest of the campaign. Such political misfortune might bode well for Sarkozy's election chances, but certainly would not bode well for France.
Technorati tags: Ségolène Royal, Segolene Royal, politics, politique, présidentielle, actualité, polls, France