Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

France: Nearly a Million Votes for the Far-Right.

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Right 8,656,826

Left 6,736,810

Diverse local group, individuals, ‘notables’  1,983,191

Extreme Right. 983,191

Centre 690,140

Gauche radicale (that is the Front de gauche, though see below on this) 247,471

EELV  247,47 (Greens).

Extreme Left (small groups like the NPA and LO)  127,674

These totals are complicated by local alliances, which are extremely intricate (sometimes Communist Party with the Socialists, sometimes Parti de gauche with the Greens – as in Grenoble).

Are there simple conclusions.

The situation, as Libération points out today, may be not at all clear cut.

The Front National won  in the  2014 Presidential elections, 15,7%
This time they got  14,4% in towns and cities of more than 100,000 inhabitants where they stood.

Their break-through in Hénin-Beaumont – town that has become a symbol – was not encouraging.

In  Brignoles and  Perpignan left candidates have stood down, to allow the Republican forces to stand against the far-right.

In  Seine-Saint-Denis  (the ‘red belt’) the Communists managed to maintain their vote.

L’Humanité carries an important editorial today on whether the Front National has achieved a real “breakthrough”.

It asks  if France is today in the same situation as 2002, when Lionel Jospin was beaten in the first round of the Presidential election by Le Pen.

Should there be a wider “front républicain” uniting left and centre-right to fend off the Front National – as happened in 2002 when some  on the left backed Chriac against Le Pen?

They suggest a large part of the responsibility for the present rise of far-right lies with  President François Hollande and his ministers.

The second round (where needed) is on the 30th of March.

Update (Hat-Tip JM): on the problems between the French Communists (PCF) and the other parts on the Front de gauche over the second round. Fusions, quand le PCF dézingue le Front de gauche

Written by Andrew Coates

March 26, 2014 at 11:38 am

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