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An original and comprehensive study of the sociological and psychological forces driving individual choices in French Presidential elections. Based on a unique comparative analysis of four French presidential contests over the last two decades, this book presents a rigorous examination of long-term and short-term voter motivations.
​Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the 2017 presidential elections represents one of the most important disruptions to French political life since the establishment of the Fifth Republic. This book analyses the political opportunities enabling a neophyte to conquer the Elysée, and the conditions leading to the unprecedented presidential runoff between this centrist EU enthusiast and pro-globalization candidate and the nationalistic/populist alternative embodied by Marine Le Pen. The book begins by considering trends in party competition and presidentialism in modern France, notably presidential primaries and their impact on party competition. It then moves to considering the role traditional explanatory factors in elections, namely policies and voter profiles, played in the result. Finally, it examines the dynamics of President Macron’s success in the legislatives, and how he dominated the traditional party blocs. This book will appeal to students of French politics as well as those interested in electoral behaviour and European political systems.
Was the victory of François Hollande, the Socialist challenger to Nicolas Sarkozy, inevitable in the 2012 French Presidential elections? This book argues that a combination of economic downturn, policy choices and personal unpopularity meant that the Right-wing incumbent faced an almost impossible task in holding onto power for another five years.
The French elections of 2002 provided an opportunity to assess the political development of the regime, and in particular developments within the complex phenomenon of French presidentialism within a party system. In this thorough analysis, John Gaffney looks at the institutional, political and electoral 'moments' of 2002, which saw both presidential and legislative elections and a major upheaval in the political life of France. Bringing together a range of scholars, the volume includes contributions from historians, political scientists, economists, cultural studies experts and media experts to offer a thorough and textured analysis of French politics.
The rise of radical right parties is a Europe-wide phenomenon. While many studies describe the individual or regional characteristics associated with high propensity to vote for the far-right, we know little about the causal impact of economic shocks on electoral support for the far-right. Over the period 1995-2012, we examine the impact of trade-shocks, measured as exposure to low-wage country import competition, on the local vote share of the National Front, the French main far-right party, during presidential elections. We use small communities (cantons) as units of observations and include province (département) fixed effects, so that the identifying variation comes from within-province change in imports exposure over time. We find evidence of a small but significantly positive impact of import competition exposure on votes for the far-right: a one standard-deviation increase in imports-per-worker causes the change in the far-right share to increase by 7 percent of a standard deviation. Further results suggest that this effect has been increasing over the time period considered. We conduct a simple sensitivity test supporting the notion that (i) omitting local share of immigrants is likely to bias our estimate downward, and that (ii) this bias is likely to negligible.
This study of the 1995 French presidential election explains why Jacques Chirac was elected the fifth President of the Fifth French Republic; it also places Chirac's election in the context of some of the more longstanding issues and debates in contemporary French politics, examining the Fifth Republic's institutional structures, the behaviour of its political parties, the attitudes of its citizens and the nature of its governance.

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