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Be like Mitterand

Published on February 8, 2012 by: in: Politics

It is customary for Polish politicians to launch their election campaigns in a ‘truly American style’.  Surely, this would not be well received in France where a Socialist candidate for the presidential election François Hollande, related his opening speech to François Mitterand; the legendary president serving from 1981 to 1995 and the mentor for a present-day, socialist generation.

photo: Jean-Marc Ayrault

photo: Jean-Marc Ayrault

There were many similarities – similar gestures, voice and rhetoric. Similar was also the way Hollande identified the main opponent of the contemporary socialists, and it was neither Nicolas Sarkozy, nor Marine Le Pen. According to Hollande his biggest opponent: “does not have a face nor name, does not take part in the elections and does not belong to any political party, however, it still rules – it is the world’s finance”.

Hollande has planned his election strategy in a very intelligent way. Nicolas Sarkozy portrays himself as the only candidate who can face the financial crisis, and this mainly means reforms and budget cuts that will limit the deficit and maintain the French financial ratings on a stable level. Therefore, Hollande is going to label Sarkozy as somebody who represents the interests of the “world financial circles”. In this way he is making an effort to meet the strong, anti-capitalist sentiments of the French society.

Hollande won the socialist pre-election after the career of the most popular socialist, Dominick Strauss-Kahn, had found its finale in a New York hotel. His campaign looked much better prepared than the campaign of the socialist Ségolène Royal in 2007. The question is whether François Hollande can become François II?

Translation: Anna Martinsen

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About Wojciech Bialozyt

Graduate of Ecole Internationale des Sciences Politiques. He was an intern in the office of the European Parliament member Miquel Mayol and Raynal (ERC) and a consultant of the Regional Centre of European Information in Katowice. He took part in the observatory mission of the OSCE during the presidential elections in Ukraine in 2004, in 2006 he represented Poland on the UN conference ‘European youth Leadership Summit’. He works in the consulting company in Warsaw.

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