Media Talk: French elections; a change in store?

Talk Friday 16th March, 2007


Join us as we discuss the implications of the upcoming French presidential election. The result may not only give France its first woman president, but also affect the future of Europe and the EU.

Socialist Segolene Royal and the centre-right candidate and current interior minister Nicolas Sarkozy are the firm favourites. But with the rise in popularity of Francois Bayrou, the elections’ dark horse, it is anyone’s guess who will succeed Jacques Chirac.

Sarkozy, who could become the youngest French president ever, has called for lower taxes, a longer working week and tougher immigration laws.

Royal, on the other hand, supports a higher minimum wage, a 35-hour week and better unemployment benefits.

Both have strong views on international politics too. Sarkozy opposes Turkey’s membership of the EU, while Royal stands for an expanded European government and a new EU-led Middle East peace process.

Almost a dozen other candidates are also in the running including the leader of the far-right National Front, Jean-Marie Le Pen.

Our panel will look at the possible outcomes.

Caroline Wyatt – BBC Correspondent in Paris.

Jean-Pierre Langellier – London correspondent for Le Monde.

Jon HenleyThe Guardian‘s Paris correspondent from 1997 to 2006 and currently the paper’s Diarist.

Others – TBC.

Moderated by Allan Little – the BBC’s Foreign Affairs Correspondent and former BBC correspondent in Paris. He has also served as the BBC’s former Yugoslavia, Moscow, South Africa and Africa correspondent.