Wednesday, October 12, 2016

My Great Depression

New Prospect column here.

Another Useless Poll

Until the field is sorted out, it's difficult to do meaningful presidential polling in France, with its multiparty system, two-round voting, and primarying required of some candidates but not others. So the pollsters resort to asking people which political personalities they have a good, mediocre, or bad opinion of. Paris Match just published one. Alain Juppé, who should be called the Venerable Juppé, not only because of his age but also because of his rebirth as a quasi-saintly figure who stands, de Gaulle-like, above the political fray, tops the charts. He is followed, naturally, by three names who benefit from being literally out of the fray: Bayrou, Raffarin, and Aubry. And then come the surprises: Mélenchon followed by Fillon. Mélenchon apparently enjoys a high rating among those working-class voters who have deserted the left for Marine Le Pen. Not surprising. JLM has been working hard to bring them back. Hollande? He's well back in the peloton, behind Brice Hortefeux (!) and Stéphane Le Foll (!!). How much more bizarre can a poll get. If you don't like Hollande, what would you see in his long-time toady Le Foll? A head of hair and an impressive physique?

But fear not. Hollande is ready!