Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
How Sarkozy controls most of the media is a question I may touch on if I get time today to finish a piece about Libération. Mainly, though, the answer is twofold: Sarko is N° 2 in the government and the government has influence over public TV and radio, especially TV; the privately-owned media are mostly privately-owned by businessmen who are sympathetic to -- and even persoanl friends of -- Sarkozy.

Le Pen is definitely running, has announced the fact. He may be expected to get at least the 16%-17% he got last time, and quite possibly more. In the first round, that will be votes Sarko will not get. Polls indicate that Sarko will all the same clear 30% in the first round, and therefore get into the second. (Though at this stage, this is not sure -- polls always show a low estimate for the Le Pen vote, possibly because some voters don't want to admit to voting Front National).

Sarko's "work" on law 'n' order 'n' immigration themes was designed to chip away at Le Pen's base. And get that base behind him in the second round. He may succeed in getting more Le Pen voters behind him in Round Two than have previous "centre-right" candidates in presidentials, but his problem now is that he's positioned way off to the right and has left open an avenue, un boulevard, in the cantre. Which Royal and François Bayrou are benefitting from, and Villepin and Alliot-Marie are ogling with appetite.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Nov 17th, 2006 at 02:45:58 AM EST
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