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Regional elections promise major changes in French political landscape

December 06, 2015, 2:35 UTC+3 PARIS
The voting in the regions will become a "dress rehearsal" before the presidential and parliamentary election campaigns in 2017
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© AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau

PARIS, December 6. /TASS/. The first round of the regional elections held in France on Sunday may become an equation with multiple variables. The voting in the regions will become a "dress rehearsal" before the presidential and parliamentary election campaigns in 2017.

More than 21,000 candidates will compete for seats in the regional councils. According to local media, among them are at least 8 ministers, 15 regional leaders, 103 members of the French National Assembly, 52 senators and 23 members of the European Parliament.

According to French media, the biggest threat to French democracy is the voters’ failure to attend the polling stations on the election day.

During the last such elections held in 2010 only 46,3% of voters came to the polling stations - a record low voter turnout throughout the entire history of the regional self-government.

"Even if they support the security measures taken in the wake of the November terrorist attacks in Paris and give their due to the actions of Socialist President Francois Hollande during these difficult for France days, many voters may, nevertheless, refuse to take part in the elections," the Liberation daily writes.

Moreover, the Paris newspaper suggests that a group comprising those who are tired of unfulfilled promises, the protracted economic crisis and steady growth of unemployment has good chances of becoming the most numerous.

According to Professor Romain Pasquier, an expert on local self-government, "in the eyes of many of our fellow countrymen, the state, which will anyway treat them better, is the main guarantor of equality." That’s why most Frenchmen today, according to sociologists’ estimates, do not have excessive trust in the slogan "All Power to Regional Councils," preferring to rely on central institutions.

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