France-Austerity vs Stimulus
The French elections are approaching fast. While the main focus has been on Greece, Italy and SPain, let’s review some facts on France. From Scott Barber of Reuters.
The results of this past weekend’s first round of voting in the French presidential elections may have delivered a warning that the close alliance between France and Germany on strategies for tackling and containing the eurozone crisis may be approaching an end. For the last few years, the team of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been so much in sync that they have become known to all as “Merkozy”. But in first-round voting, Sarkozy became the first French president in half a century to fail to emerge as leader, ceding pride of place to Socialist rival Francois Hollande.
Now the two men will square off in a runoff election scheduled to take place May 6, and it is the one-third of French voters who cast ballots in favor of other parties – including the National Front candidate on the extreme right, Martine Le Pen – who hold the balance of power. To understand the impact of these voters on the outcome, see the interactive graphic, below, which enables you to calculate how many voters who supported candidates that didn’t make it through to the run-off now need to switch their allegiance to Sarkozy in order for him to cling on to his job.
Full article and charts click here.