Three-quarters of French say minds made up on Sarkozy

The survey by pollster Viavoice for left-leaning daily Liberation said that 74 percent of those asked said they had already made up their minds up about the conservative leader.

hidden March 06, 2012 01:58:56 IST
Three-quarters of French say minds made up on Sarkozy

Paris: Three-quarters of French voters have already made their minds up about Nicolas Sarkozy and will not be swayed by the election campaign, according to a poll released on Monday, suggesting the president may struggle to close a wide poll lag.

The survey by pollster Viavoice for left-leaning daily Liberation said that 74 percent of those asked said they had already made up their minds up about the conservative leader.

Only one-quarter of those were Sarkozy supporters.

Threequarters of French say minds made up on Sarkozy

Nicolas Sarkozy visits a public center for insertion of the Defense in Saint-Quentin. Reuters

The Viavoice survey said that those voters open to changing their minds, however, are mostly from the far right and centre-right, offering the president a glimmer of hope.

Most polls suggest Sarkozy would lose a May 6 runoff against Socialist front runner Francois Hollande by at least 12 percentage points.

"The electoral equation appears very complicated for Sarkozy candidacy," said Francois Miquet-Marty, associate director of Viavoice. "He has not so far succeeded in shifting the balance of political power and has only a weak potential for winning people over."

Some 53 percent of those questioned in the telephone poll of 1,001 people said the launch of Sarkozy's campaign in the middle of last month had fallen flat.

Most of those questioned said Hollande was the candidate more in tune with the concerns of ordinary French voters -- 56 percent to Sarkozy's 26 percent. But the incumbent president scored much more highly than his rival in terms of statesmanship and ability to shine on the international stage.

The issue of Hollande's international credentials have jumped to the front of the campaign in recent days.

While Sarkozy's camp dismissed a weekend German press report that European leaders agreed to shun Hollande because of his plan to renegotiate a fiscal pact signed by 25 EU leaders, it has used the article as evidence of Hollande's inexperience and lack of diplomatic skill.

Reuters

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