Polls predict Hollande’s loss in primary elections

Paris, Nov 15 (IANS) Fresh polls suggested on Tuesday that the incumbent French President Francois Hollande would lose the vote if he stood in the upcoming primary elections.

A survey conducted by the BVA institute suggested that Hollande would lose to his former Minister for Industrial Renewal Arnaud Montebourg, adding that the current Prime Minister Manuel Valls would win the elections if he decided to stand.

The data provided by prospective voters suggested that support for Hollande theoretically running in the December primaries had dropped since September, EFE news reported.

The survey suggested the French President would secure 40 per cent of the votes in the first round, some three per cent less than predicted in September, while Montebourg would take 34 per cent, an increase of one point since the previous poll.

However, Montebourg would obtain 52 per cent of the votes against 48 per cent for Hollande in the second round, according to the survey.

The survey indicated that if Valls ran in the election instead of Hollande, the Prime Minister would easily defeat Montebourg in the second round with 57 per cent of the votes, six points more than projected in September.

According to BVA estimates, nearly 1.8 million people will vote in the primaries for the leftist parties, in which The Greens, Left Party and French Communist Party announced they would not participate.