the Left takes French regional elections, PM Fillon expected to offer resignation
I will soon be writing more on this subject, but for now I just wanted to update you on the French regional elections, which just had the 2nd and final round today, with Socialists and other left parties taking the majority of the vote. Despite Prime Minister François Fillon’s popularity relative to President Nicolas Sarkozy, he is expected to offer his resignation. But Sarkozy will probably not be “d’accord” with that move. BBC states:
With over 97% of votes counted, the Socialist-led opposition alliance took 52% of the vote with the UMP on 35%. Prime Minister Francois Fillon acknowledged the defeat, admitting the the left’s “success” and is expected to offer his resignation.
The results leave the UMP in control of only one of France’s 22 regions, the Alsace region in the east.
These elections are the last major electoral test in France before the presidential election in 2012.
“I assume my share of the responsibility”, Mr Fillon added.He is expected to offer his resignation in a meeting with Mr Sarkozy Monday, the BBC’s Emma Jane Kirby in Paris says. However, Mr Sarkozy is unlikely to accept Mr Fillon’s resignation as the president’s own approval ratings are at an all-time low, our correspondent says.
One thing I’ve noticed living here is that on the local and regional levels, the tendency has often been to vote Socialist or on the left, because those decisions affect the everyday life of people (transport, education, health, social safety net….), and the Left is more generous in this regard, whereas the Right (such as UMP) is more prone to cut expenses. I personally believe in a balance between the two, since expenses certainly do need to be cut, but responsibly. But France is a country of contrasts and political wars.
For analysis in French of how Sarkozy may respond to this, check this video out.
And to be balanced, as Figaro is center-right conservative, you can find leftist Libération analysis in French here and here.