François Fillon right wing austerian Republican defeats centrist Alain Juppé in party presidential primary in France 67% to 33 %

The die is now cast in the Republican opposition party in France . François Fillon ran on a budget slashing austerity program and defeated Alain Juppé decisively for the party presidential candidature. The election will be next year and the ultra right National leader Marine Le
Pen is heavily favoured to be one of the candidates who reaches the final round. The conventional wisdom is that Fillon is a stronger opponent to Le Pen because of his Thatcherist politics. The current polls suggest he will defeat Le Pen. But I worry about that and the popularity of his slash and burn approach to government spending. . Le Pen is quite capable of running a populist platform emphasizing both anti-immigrant policies and re-employment strategies designed to focus on working class and middle class resentment a la the rust belt rebellion in the US and Brexit in the U.K. The Left at the moment is running well behind the conservative parties and as usual is not united around a single candidate. This may turn out to be a fateful error. The current polls show Prime Minister Manuel Valls defeating Le Pen. But François Hollande does not. The first round is in late April. Spring may well bring unpleasant surprises in France.

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About haroldchorneyeconomist

I am Professor of political economy at Concordia university in Montréal, Québec, Canada. I received my B.A.Hons (econ.&poli sci) from the University of Manitoba. I also completed my M.A. degree in economics there. Went on to spend two years at the London School of Economics as a Ph.D. student in economics and then completed my Ph.D. in political economy at the University of Toronto. Was named a John W.Dafoe fellow, a CMHC fellow and a Canada Council fellow. I also was named a Woodrow Wilson fellow in 1968 after completing my first class honours undergraduate degree. Worked as an economist in the area of education, labour economics and as the senior economist with the Manitoba Housing and Renewal Corporation for the Government of Manitoba from 1972 to 1978. I also have worked as an economic consultant for MDT socio-economic consultants and have been consulted on urban planning, health policy, linguistic duality and public sector finance questions by the governments of Manitoba, Saskatchewan,the cities of Regina and Saskatoon, Ontario and the Federal government of Canada. I have also been consulted by senior leaders of the British Labour party, MPs from the Progressive Conservative party, the Liberal party and the New Democrats on economic policy questions. Members of the Government of France under the Presidency of Francois Mitterand discussed my work on public sector deficits. I have also run for elected office at the municipal level. I first began to write about quantitative easing as a useful policy option during the early 1980s.
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