En tout état de cause, pour François Hollande, le rétablissement, pour tous et dans tous les cas, de l'âge légal de départ à la retraite à 60 ans n'est désormais plus d'actualité.Actually, Hollande has been saying this all along, and behind the scenes his advisors have been saying it even more clearly. Indeed, the candidate said on TV in 2010 that "Il y a un principe qui doit être posé : chaque fois que l'espérance de vie s'allonge, il n'est pas anormal que la durée de cotisation suive."
The problem, of course, is that the Socialist platform doesn't say this, and PS leaders were content to let those who protested against the most recent UMP tinkering with the retirement regulations believe that if they came to power, all the Sarkozy and Fillon "reforms" would be rolled back to the status quo ante of the halcyon days of Mitterrand. It was a convenient fiction then but an inconvenient one now, and Hollande is trying to shed it. For his sins, however, François Fillon has called him a "liar," igniting a mini-kerfuffle and some huffing and puffing in the press and on the blogs.
So let us stipulate that voters assessing the candidates had better not hope to differentiate between right and left on the basis of their positions on retirement reform, because when it comes right down to it, there is no discernible difference, and even if there were, there is no guarantee that it wouldn't succumb to expediency after the election--expediency and the need to reduce the budget deficit, to which both sides are committed.
You may not like it, but this horse has left the barn: the French will be working longer to collect their retirement benefits.