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Saturday, April 22, 2017

The French Election

With the terror attack in Paris still fresh in the minds of the French, tomorrow's first round presidential election should be extremely interesting.  The race has been close with Macron and LePen leading most polls.  The common view of pundits is that the terror attack will help shift votes to LePen, however.  We will have to wait and see.

One thing is certain, though, French politics has shifted in a major way.  It used to be that the race was always between the conservative and the socialist.  LePen is neither.  Similarly, Melanchon who is close behind the two leaders does not fit the usual pattern either.  It would not be totally unusual for there to be a runoff between LePen and Melanchon.  That would pit a right wing nationalist against a far left extremist.  It would also be a disaster for France.

The French nation is changing.  There are huge immigrant communities across that country, and they are not assimilating.  The question now is whether the Paris of the future will more resemble London or Teheran.  Such a choice creates major turmoil, something that will continue to be present in the current election and also in the future.

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