Thursday, April 19, 2007

Other peoples' elections

Okay, here's a quiz for readers with at least rudimentary French reading skills (like mine.) Find out which candidate you'd probably support in next Sunday's first round of the French Presidential election. This is the "free for all" vote: twelve candidates representing left to right and various curlicues in between. The top two get to run off on May 6. Traditionally, people vote in the first round to express what policies they really want. Then, in the second round, they knuckle under and pick the less bad choice.

Perhaps as testament to my ignorance of French politics, this woman was my choice based on a battery of twenty-five questions.

She's the Green.

In real life, the two run-off contenders will probably come from among Segolene Royal (loosely socialist left), Francois Bayrou (characterized as "center") and Nicolas Sarkozy (the former hard line interior minister from the right.) But then again, last time the rabid racist Jean Marie Le Pen snuck into the second round and even the left had to vote for the rightist Chirac. More about all these candidates, in English, here or here.

H/t to nosemonkey for pointing me to the quiz.


Jane R said...

The link to the quiz didn't work for some reason.

I'd love to take it -- grew up over there. (Let me know if you ever need help w/French things, I'm fluent.) Haven't had much time to read up on the election but am watching it from afar. I'm wondering what my French friends are thinking from up close and haven't had a chance to write them and ask.

Whatever happens, it's always refreshing to read about a country that has more than two parties. (Note: Gramsci, of all people, has an interesting passage I just read in Selections from the Prison Notebooks, I think in his section on intellectuals, about how and why the French have a whole bunch of parties and the U.S. Americans only two. He was writing 80 or 90 years ago before recent developments, but some of his insights hold up.)

janinsanfran said...

Link fixed. Clicking on the picture also takes you there.

Gramsci was one of the most interesting political thinkers ever!

Jane R said...

Thank you. Took it. Same result as you. :-)

Left a note about this earlier but I think it didn't take.

P.S. Interesting piece on Chirac, the outgoing president, on the BBC website.

Nell said...

Immediate pre-election polls make it seem likely to come down to Segolene Royal vs. Sarkozy. There's always a runoff.

Would be an easier choice if Royal's brother weren't the one who sank the Rainbow Warrior (Greenpeace ship).