Marine Le Pen won’t have pleasant memories of the current election campaign. Less than two months before the election her ratings in polls go down and her campaign has reached an impasse.
For this situation problems are blamed with collecting written support of at least 500 persons in a position of trust (e.g. mayors, members of parliament, local officials), which is essential to register a candidacy. The candidate of National Front (NF), which is being isolated on all levels of authority (which is encouraged by majority electoral system) and has a weak representation in local governments, had to appeal to representatives of other parties and independent politicians for support.
In contrast to Jean-Marie Le Pen’s, who in each of his campaigns changed his problem with signatures into an impressive spectacle that exposed the conspiracy of the establishment (thanks to which quite often he gained ground), the campaign of his successor has slowed down. The lack of signatures indirectly resulted in banks’ refusal to grant a loan for the election campaign, due to which it came to a halt.
When the candidate of the far right was devoting her time to collect signatures Nicolas Sarkozy, like in 2007, took over brand topics of NF, calling for a renegotiation of the Schengen Agreement and gaining support of popular centrist Jean-Louis Borloo. In the last few weeks Marine’s ratings fell from record-breaking 22 percent that suggested her participating in the second round to 16 percent just before the centrist F. Bayrou.
Marine Le Pen’s chances for a good election result fall down, her campaign has lost its dynamics, and N. Sarkozy craftily employed rhetoric typically ascribed to NF (though in a “soft” version). Even if it may seem that Marine’s chances to enter the second round weren’t high from the very beginning, still she has probably already lost a chance for the support within 20 percent.
Yet 2012 failure won’t ruin her career. After all, Jean-Marie Le Pen entered the second round only the fourth time.
Translation: Alicja Bratkowska