France goes to polls to pick new president, turnout solid | world | Hindustan Times
Today in New Delhi, India
May 01, 2017-Monday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

France goes to polls to pick new president, turnout solid

Centre-right French President Nicolas Sarkozy's career was on the line today as voters turned out in solid numbers for the first round of France's presidential election, a contest that could shake-up Europe’s political landscape and approach to myriad economic troubles. French vote in India

world Updated: Apr 22, 2012 23:56 IST
French presidential elections

Centre-right French President Nicolas Sarkozy's career was on the line today as voters turned out in solid numbers for the first round of France's presidential election, a contest that could shake-up Europe’s political landscape and approach to myriad economic troubles.

The first-round balloting will trim down a list of 10 candidates from across the political spectrum to two finalists for a May 6 runoff. Polls have shown that many voters are turned off by Sarkozy’s flashy style as they worry about jobs and the economy.

The Interior Ministry said early turnout figures showed 28 percent of France’s 44-million-plus voters cast ballots before noon, less than the 31 per cent in 2007 at the same time, but more than in the four previous races. Sarkozy and his main expected challenger, Socialist nominee Francois Hollande, have pushed for a strong turnout on the idea that it would help the political mainstream and dilute the impact of more ideological voters.

Polls for months have shown that Sarkozy and Hollande are likely to make the cut and suggest Hollande would win the campaign finale.

“This is an election that will weigh on the future of Europe. That’s why many people are watching us,” said Hollande after voting in Tulle, a town in central France. “They're wondering not so much what the winner's name will be, but especially what policies will follow.”

Sarkozy waved to supporters and apologised to polling station attendants "for the big fuss" as he voted at a high school in posh western Paris along with his wife, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, and a throng of journalists in tow. Behind barriers, a small crowd chanted “Bravo! Bravo!” as they left.

Is Your Couch Making You Cough?
Promotional Feature