Thursday, February 1, 2007

Popularity contest ties Royal and Sarkozy

Polls done from the 24-26 of January by TNS-Sofres show that 51% of the French now want UMP candidate Nicolas Sarkozy and Socialist candidate Segolene Royal "to play an important part during month and of the years to come." While this might not appear surprising, considering their general election numbers are almost even, this is a whopping 7% drop for Royal, and a 5% gain for Sarkozy.

However, the first allegations of Interior Ministry misconduct did not begin to be reported until the first day of polling, too little time to really affect the numbers. Other interesting results include President Jacques Chirac's confidence numbers, which have actually risen to 25%; Prime Minister Villepin is doing just 3 points better.

Once again, unemployment is the major issue of this election season, with 47% of the people polled saying that the government should be working to improve it. Interestingly, while parts of the world (ie Middle East) are facing an amazing amount of instability, foreign policy and the French stake in global affairs do not seem to be top priorities, and are dwarfed by domestic concerns such as crime and inflation.

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