Voters punish Sarkozy, Le Maire stays on

It’s been a turbulent few weeks for French President Nicolas Sarkozy and voters expressed their dissatisfaction with his centre-right UMP party in regional elections yesterday. A resurgent Socialist-led opposition alliance took 52% of the vote and the UMP just 35%, squeezed in sevearl contests by the far-right National Front, which scored 9.4% of the national vote but took more than 22% in its two core regions in the north and south. Opposition candidates won in 21 of France’s 22 mainland regions.

Among the losers was French Agriculture Minister Bruno Le Maire (pictured, right), who was rejected by voters of Normandy, where he was standing for election as Regional President. Had he been succesful he would have stepped down as national farms minister. It now means he’s likely to stay on in the post and continue as France’s main man in the negotiations on the reform of the CAP.

Photo credit: Bruno Le Maire / / creative commons

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