Most French against Chirac third term

19th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 18 (AFP) - More than half of French people (56 percent) say that President Jacques Chirac should not run in 2007 for an unprecedented third term in office, according to the results of an opinion poll released Tuesday.

PARIS, Jan 18 (AFP) - More than half of French people (56 percent) say that President Jacques Chirac should not run in 2007 for an unprecedented third term in office, according to the results of an opinion poll released Tuesday.

In response to the question, "Do you want Jacques Chirac to be a candidate" in 2007, 35 percent said "not at all", 21 percent said "no, not really", 23 percent said "yes, I suppose" and nine percent said "yes, totally".

Twelve percent of those surveyed by the CSA polling institute for the weekly political newsletter "Le Bleu de profession politique", which hits news stands on Wednesday, did not respond.

Of those opposed to a third term for Chirac, 43 percent said a change was needed among the country's top political figures, 32 percent said they did not back Chirac's ideas and 27 percent said the 72-year-old was indeed too old.

Those supportive of a Chirac bid said he represents France well (62 percent), has a good record as president (22 percent) or that they believe in his policies (17 percent).

The total for the last two questions comes to more than 100 percent as the 949 respondents polled by telephone last week were allowed to give two answers.

So far, Chirac has kept the possibility of a third term open, without declaring his intent to run.

Former interior and finance minister Nicolas Sarkozy, who is now the president of Chirac's ruling Union for a Popular Movement (UMP), has made no secret of his presidential ambitions.

Sarkozy sparked controversy last week when he suggested that UMP members should choose the party's presidential candidate by vote.

"If there are several candidates, one will have to be chosen," he told Le Figaro newspaper in an interview published Monday.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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