Nicolas Sarkozy

A blessing in disguise for the left?

Renaud Thillaye  |  28 November 2016

In a year not short of unexpected political developments, François Fillon has, against all odds, stormed the French centre-right primary. While has was stagnating between 5 and 10 per cent in the polls until September 2016, Fillon scored an impressive 44 per cent in the first round on 21 November, clearly defeating former president Nicolas Sarkozy …

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Harsh truths for French Socialists

Renaud Thillaye  |  15 December 2015

It has been a good week for François Hollande. On the weekend, a ‘historic’ deal was reached at the Paris climate summit, which earned French diplomacy a lot of praise. On Sunday evening, the final outcome of the French regional elections were much better than expected, with five wins out of 13 new ‘big’ regions, …

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French lessons

James Bloodworth  |  6 July 2015

What we can learn from France’s foreign policy —Just over a decade ago French Fries were renamed ‘Freedom Fries’ in cafeterias on Capitol Hill. French president Jacques Chirac had led United Nations opposition to the 2003 American-led war in Iraq and the Bush administration responded in the way it knew best: with childish belligerence. It …

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Monsieur Extraordinaire

Renaud Thillaye and Roger Liddle  |  11 March 2014

Portrayed as a directionless muddler in the British press, François Hollande has achieved more in two years than he is given credit for, say Roger Liddle and Renaud Thillaye François Hollande has aroused all kinds of feelings within Labour’s ranks over the last two years. From early indifference, the French president managed to spark curiosity …

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Waiting in the wings

Michael McTernan  |  27 November 2012

Across Europe, far-right actors and their anti-politics cousins are regrouping, writes Michael McTernan The eurozone crisis has prompted many dark predictions about the impending danger of populist far-right parties gaining significant footholds on Europe’s political map. At the same time, others have maintained that majorities of voters will opt for stability in straitened times, recognising …

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The power of incumbency

Douglas Alexander MP  |  3 October 2012

The US elections offer opportunities and a warning By Douglas Alexander —The race for the White House is far from over and the result far from certain, but what I witnessed at this year’s convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, convinced me that the Democrats know what it takes to win the trust and support of …

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Prepare for the punches

Hopi Sen  |  31 August 2012

How might the Tories lift themselves from their current doldrums? Hopi Sen previews the coming assault on Labour The Conservative party is in the grip of a summer of discontent. Backbenchers mutter. Tory commentators say David Cameron’s leadership is at risk. Ben Brogan writes in the Telegraph that ‘defeat looks certain’. Gulp. Yet just last …

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Scoring Cameron’s foreign policy

David Chaplin  |  2 July 2012

The agreement over the weekend in Geneva signals the first steps to a coherent policy from the international community towards the Assad regime. Syria is one example of the new challenges facing the UK foreign policy following two years of rapid economic and political change. The scale of those changes has been unprecedented, from the …

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Squaring up to round two

Felicity Slater  |  12 June 2012

With all the hype over François Hollande’s presidential race, you might be forgiven for suffering a dose of French election fatigue. But on Sunday the first round of parliamentary elections put the new president and his project to a crucial test. Their outcome will determine whether Hollande has the parliamentary majority required to get his …

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Now for Hollande’s real challenge

Denis MacShane MP  |  8 May 2012

Bienvenue et bonne chance à Francois Hollande. Like Aesop’s tortoise he watched for three decades as the smarter, smoother, more eloquent hares of French politics raced past him. But now he has become the most politician with the most power in the west as the president of France exercises more authority than a US president …

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