Sarkozy's support plummets
Public support for French President Nicolas Sarkozy has fallen by a further four points, a poll revealed.
PARIS, March 3, 2008 - Public support for French President Nicolas
Sarkozy has fallen by a further four points, a poll revealed Sunday, ahead of
local elections expected to deal a blow to his ruling right-wing party.
The LH2-Liberation poll found 59 percent of French people had a negative
view of their head of state, an increase of four points on last month.
Just 37 percent of people viewed Sarkozy positively, compared to 41 percent
last month, while the percentage of respondents with no view stayed at four.
Sarkozy has been in power just 10 months, during which time his support has
plummeted. Analysts blame his turbulent private life and a faltering economy,
and his party is braced for painful losses in local elections on March 9-16.
By contrast, Prime Minister Francois Fillon's ratings went up six points in
the latest poll, with 53 percent of people expressing a good opinion of him.
Some 54 percent said they did not think Sarkozy's personality corresponded
to what was required of a president; 74 percent said he "does not control
himself enough" and 73 percent thought his private life was too public.
The president divorced from his second wife Cecilia in October, and after a
whirlwind romance married ex-supermodel Carla Bruni early last month.
Efforts to seize back the initiative were overshadowed last week when he
was filmed swearing at a man who refused to shake his hand at a farm show.
Pollsters questioned 1,004 adults by telephone on February 29 and March 1.