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Hollande, Sarkozy To Face Runoff In French Election

Michael Juliani |
April 22, 2012 | 1:25 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer


Hollande and Sarkozy (Creative Commons)
Hollande and Sarkozy (Creative Commons)
Socialist Francois Hollande and incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy will face a runoff vote on May 6 after initial balloting Sunday.  Polls showed that Hollande took 28 percent of the vote, while Sarkozy received 26 percent.

Hollande addressed a crowd of supporters after winning the first round of votes, claiming victory.  

According to CNN, if no candidate wins and absolute majority, the two top candidates faceoff.  

A far-right candidate, Marine Le Pen, having earned 20 percent of the votes, had the highest percentage her party has ever seen, and placed third in the polls. 

The L.A. Times says, Marine Le Pen knocked left-wing firebrand Jean-Luc Mélenchon into fourth place, becoming the kingmaker in the May 6 runoff between Hollande and Sarkozy. At least half of her voters are expected to support Sarkozy.

During a fiery campaign, Le Pen, a 43-year-old lawyer, relentlessly challenged the "established" candidates and in many ways defined the campaign landscape, forcing Sarkozy to veer to the right.  

Sarkozy has led France since 2007, and has consistently placed first in the primary round of voting.  His current campaign focused on new plans for economic growth and job creation.  



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