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Archive for February 19th, 2009

Europe 2009!

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

The hunter’s party, CPNT has decided that it will not run independent lists, instead it will run common lists with the MPF. These MPF-CPNT lists are under the banner of the new European political party, Libertas. Not really a surprise, because CPNT is similar to the MPF when it comes to Europe. The idea of MPF-CPNT lists had already floated around a bit in, until Saint-Josse rejected the deal. In 2004, both parties combined won 8.4% (6.67% for the MPF, 1.73% for CPNT).  Frédéric Nihous will lead the MPF-CPNT in the North-West, and Jean Saint-Josse in the South-West.

IFOP has just released a new poll, which is their second poll since November 2008, not counting that poll the PG commissioned for their wet dream. The change is compared to November 2008, but the UMP change is compared to the total UMP+NC polled separately, and the MPF-CPNT change is compared to the the total MPF+CPNT polled separately.

UMP 26% (+2)
PS 23% (+1)
MoDem 14.5% (+2.5)
Greens 7% (-4)
NPA 9% (+1)
FN 6% (-1)
PCF-PG 4% (n/c)
LO 3% (-1)
Libertas (MPF-CPNT) 5% (-2)
DLR 2% (+1)
FNd 0.5% (+0.5) (only polled in NW and SW)

Demographic and political breakdowns are interesting.

  • Left-wingers and Trots break 46 PS, 17 NPA, 14 Greenie, 9 PCF, 6 LO. The LO breakdown is interesting, but to take with a grain of salt: Half would vote for an LO list, 21 PS, 13 Greens, a surprising 8% for Libertas, and only 5% for their fellow Trots at the NPA. Shows how the LO and NPA hate each other. Not a lot of other interesting stuff there, except that 12% of Greenies vote MoDem.
  • Right-wingers (IFOP isn’t clear if this includes far-right or not, though their “no partisan preference” sample seems heavily far-right to me) are less divided: 63% UMP, 14% FN, 12% Libertas.
  • Royal voters in April 2007 break 69 PS, 10 NPA, 9 Greenies.
  • Sarkozy voters in April 2007 break 62 UMP, 8 Libertas, 8 MoDem, 6 FN.
  • Bayrou voters in April 2007 break 61 MoDem, 18 UMP, 12 PS, 6 Greenies.
  • OUI voters in 2005 break heavily UMP: 41 UMP, 23 MoDem, 21 PS. NON voters in 2005 are more divided: 24 PS, 16 UMP, 14 NPA, 11 MoDem, 11 Libertas, 8 PCF.
  • The PS keeps 70% of its 2004 EU voters, with 10% voting NPA, 6% PCF, and 6% MoDem. The Greens keep only 59% of its 2004 voters, bleeding equally to the PS and the MoDem. The UMP keeps a full 84% of its 2004 voters, with 10% of those voting MoDem. Interestingly, only 54% of the UDF voters in 2004 plan on voting MoDem, with 34% going UMP.
  • Manual Workers (Ouvriers) go 23% PS, 19% NPA, 17% UMP, 16% FN.

On a funny side note, the FN lists will be named Listes d’Entente Populaire Et Nationale, abbreviated LEPEN…Yes, the FN isn’t much of a personalist party.

A look at Alsatian local politics

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

The above is a map of the current composition of the Bas-Rhin and Haut-Rhin general councils, as of 2009. Since 1992, the changes to the Alsatian local political landscape hasn’t seen major reversals, unlike Bretagne. Both departments were strongholds of the various Christiandem parties at a local level, and the MRP-UDF controlled an overall majority of seats on its own for quite a long time in Bas-Rhin. The creation of a common party of the right, the UMP, has destroyed the remnants of the UDF in Alsace, even though there is still a sizeable non-UMP centrist voting bloc. The MoDem finished a (very) distant second in a large number of rural Alsatian constituencies in 2007.

The UMP has an overall majority in the Bas-Rhin general council, with 30 seats. The PS has 7 seats, and there are 3 DVD councillors. 3 of the 4 MoDem councillors sit with the UMP majority, and one (a former independent ecologist) sits with the opposition. All 7 Socialists are elected in the city of Strasbourg, where they hold a majority of the seats. Since 1994, where they held only Strasbourg-9, a poor canton including a large number of Strasbourg’s ZUS (Zone urbaine sensible: inner city area with high unemployment and so forth), they have made important gains in richer downtown Strasbourg, a trend also seen nationally. The PS is becoming more and more popular in downtown wealthy areas. Ironically, the PS does not hold Strasbourg-10, the large canton in the southeast of the city, which includes industrial areas along the Rhine as well as a ZUS. The current Modem councillor was elected in 2004 defeating the FN (Strasbourg-10 is an ideal setting for the FN). If the PS had made the runoff, they could have won. There is some left-wing strength in some suburbs of Strasbourg, such as Schiltigheim and Illkirch-Graffenstaden. Alfred Muller, PS then MDA (a local centre-left GM-like personalist party) Mayor of Schiltigheim held the canton of Schiltigheim until he was defeated by an independent ecologist in 2004. The UMP has huge majorities in the wealthy western suburban cantons. In rural areas, the UMP wins most elections by the first round.

The Haut-Rhin, more industrialized and slightly poorer than the Bas-Rhin, is more left-wing in its general orientation, even though it is still heavily left-leaning. In addition, contrarily to the Bas-Rhin, the Christian democrats’ decline in the department is not a recent event. More industrial, it was an early base of Gaullism. In fact, the UNR held the general council from 1958 to 1973, when the centrist Jean-Jacques Weber took over and held it until 1998. Lastly, the FN is strong in urban and industrial areas in the Haut-Rhin, while it is stronger in rural areas in the Bas-Rhin. Currently, there are 10 UMP councillors, 9 DVD, 6 PS, 4 DVG, 2 Greenies, and 1 far-right regionalist (Alsace d’Abord). The Socialists are strong in Mulhouse, which is much poorer than Strasbourg and has an important number of quartiers populaires (poorer and disadvantaged inner city areas). The PS holds the Nord and Ouest cantons. The FN often comes second in Mulhouse-Nord, and they won it in a by-election in 1995. The right holds the two other cantons, Est and Sud. IIRC, Mulhouse-Est includes wealthier downtown areas, and Mulhouse-Sud includes very wealthy suburbs. The fomer potash minining areas northwest of Mulhouse and the working-class city of Cernay are quite left-wing. The PS also holds Neuf-Brisach, which I know little about except that it’s major city, Neuf-Brisach, was built by Vauban and includes the harbour of Colmar. The Greenies hold two marginal cantons: Colmar-Sud, quite wealthy, which they narrowly won from Colmar’s quasi-perpetual election loser, Roland Wagner in 2008. The Greenies can thank the right’s divisions for their lucky win in Kayersberg, Alsatian wine country, in 2004. They won with only 31% in a four-way runoff which pitted the eventual Greenie winner with a UDF candidate, an Indie, and a DVD. The far-right regionalist Alsace d’Abord hold Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines, which they won with 34% in a three-way in 2004. Amusingly, the vote there split 34-33-32.