Keyword: analysis

French local elections: no regions for Front National but vote grows

France returned to the polling stations on Sunday for the second and final round of voting to decide the make-up of the councils that will govern the country’s 13 new ‘super’ regions. Though in the first-round voting the far-right Front National drew massive support, arriving in first position in six regions, it failed to win control of a single region in the second round. Thus in many ways the outcome was a setback for Marine Le Pen's party, as many conservative and left-wing voters voted tactically to keep the far-right out of power. Yet the Front National showed that it is now firmly implanted in all of France apart from the Greater Paris region, and with more than 6.6 million French people voting for it the party beat its previous record set at the 2012 presidential elections. Meanwhile the ruling Socialist Party did better than many predicted, picking up five of the regions, though it lost control of Greater Paris. On the other hand Nicolas Sarkozy's conservative Les Républicains picked up only seven regions - some thanks to tactical voting from the Left - a mediocre performance for the leading mainstream opposition party that will raise question marks over the former president's leadership. Here is Mediapart's live coverage of the results, reaction and analysis in English.

French regional elections: first round as it happened plus final results

France went to the urns on Sunday in the first of two-round elections to decide the makeup of the councils of France’s 13 newly-formed ‘super’ regions. The poll, held December 6th and 13th, is an important test of the French political map, 18 months away from presidential and parliamentary elections. The final results show a massive victory for the far-right Front National, which garnered the biggest share of the vote nationwide and goes into the second round next Sunday with its candidates in the lead in six regions. This is Mediapart’s coverage in English of results and reaction after the first-round vote on Sunday, with an update of final scores on Monday.

The disgraced French budget minister, the connivance, the secrets that remain

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While Jérôme Cahuzac has admitted to holding secret foreign bank accounts, after four months of vehement denials, there remain many unanswered questions. Just how many foreign accounts did he hold and where? How many other people, and who, were helped in tax avoidance by Cahuzac's personal financial advisors? Why did the tax authorities refuse to investigate Cahuzac? Fabrice Arfi reports.