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French Locals 2008: Basse-Normandie, Haute-Normandie

Basse-Normandie (PS +2)

Calvados: After the defeat of the two incumbent UMP/NC deputies last June in Caen, the right was in a comfortable position to take Caen from the hands of Brigitte Le Brethon, the UMP incumbent. The right and before that the centrists had ruled Caen since 1959. However, the pink wave of 2008 benefited the left, which won 56.3% in the runoff, largely defeating the incumbent. In the more conservatives cities of Vire, Bayeux, and Lisieux, right-wing incumbents were easily defeated, despite the fact that Vire and Bayeux were starting to trend towards the left. Total PS +1

Manche: The Manche confirmed its friendliness to incumbents again in 2008, giving the right another term in St-Lo, despite many saying that the right was about to lose it. In the working-class region of Cherbourg-Octeville, the PS incumbent was, of course, easily re-elected. The constituency of Cherbourg-Octeville, the 5th constituency, is in fact the only constituency in the right-wing department to have elected Socialist deputies.

Orne: Despite still being largely dominated by the right in the general council, the Orne’s 2 largest municipalities are now Socialist. The PS successfully held Argentan, with over 60% and the PS gained Alencon by the first round, largely defeating the UMP incumbent. In Flers, the race was not stressful for the DVG incumbent, who won no less than 100%. Total PS +1

Haute-Normandie (PS-PCF-DVG +3)

Eure: The left-wing wave in Seine-Maritime (see below) also spilled into Eure and its prefecture of Evreux. Evreux, formerly held by the UMP Jean-Louis Debre (now president of the Constitutional Council), decided to dump his UMP successor, Jean-Pierre Nicolas in favour of a new DVG mayor, Michel Champredon. Elsewhere, however, no notable change took place, with the right holding onto Bernay and Vernon and the left holding onto Louviers and Val-de-Reuil. Total DVG +1

Seine-Maritime: The left wave really stands out in Seine-Maritime. The largest result for the left was in Rouen, where the PS candidate defeated, by the first round, the centrist-UDF incumbent Pierre Albertini. Rouen, had elected centrist mayors since 1945 (except for one PS between 1995 and 2001), the most notable of whom was Jean Lecanuet. In Dieppe, despite the fact that the CNIP incumbent was not standing again, the left, led by a young Communist, won by the first round. In Le Havre, however, the PCF failed to win this other communist area from the hands of the UMP Antoine Rufenacht. After merging lists with the PS, the PCF candidate and deputy Daniel Paul lost, with the UMP taking about 54.7%. In two other cities held by the left, such as Elbeuf and Fecamp, the left largely won. Total PS +1 PCF +1

Next: Limousin, Auvergne

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