Conservative Ciotti surprises in first vote for centre-right’s French presidential ticket

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  • Conservative Ciotti surprises in first vote for centre-right’s French presidential ticket


FILE PHOTO: Paris? Ile-de-France administrative region president Valerie Pecresse arrives for a ceremony as part of commemorations marking the 103rd anniversary of the November 11, 1918 Armistice, ending World War I, at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France, November 11, 2021. Ludovic Marin / Pool via Reuters

December 2, 2021

PARIS (Reuters) – France’s centre-right Les Republicains said on Wednesday that Eric Ciotti and Valerie Pecresse would go through to a runoff for the party’s presidential nomination as it bids to return to power for the first time in a decade.

Eric Ciotti, a staunch right-winger among the party ranks, came first among the five challengers with 25.6% of votes cast by registered members, a surprise result. Pecresse, who heads the greater Paris region, took 25%.

The results were announced by party leader Christian Jacob. Voting in the second round begins on Friday and the winner will be declared on Saturday afternoon.

The eventual candidate’s challenge will be to carve out a space in a crowded field on the political right.

Opinion polls before the party’s first round vote showed Ciotti would perform weakest of the five in the April presidential election, with 6% voter support nationally.

(Reporting by Richard Lough; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta/Tassilo Hummel)

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