.
.
.
.

Not just Trump, but pollsters miscalculate French elections too

In a surprising last-minute surge, François Fillon, took a crushing lead in the primary for the French Centre-right Republican party

Published: Updated:

Polls have long showed US Democratic candidate as a clear winner all along, while ultimately it was Republican Donald Trump, who is the America’s president-elect.

In France, early polls showed former conservative prime minister Alain Juppé, seen as a “safe pair of hands,” as being ahead.

On Thursday, France24 reported that a Harris Interactive poll gave Juppé 39 percent support in the first round of the primary, while a Kontar Sofres poll showed a six-point drop from 43 percent to 36 percent in a month.

But in a surprising last-minute surge, François Fillon, a former prime minister, took a crushing lead in the primary for the French Centre-right Republican party on Nov. 20.

Fillon is now a favorite to become the French centre-right’s presidential candidate after a voting upset that puts him in pole position for a showdown with far right leader Marine Le Pen in next year’s election.

Fillon, who has said he will cut public sector jobs and rein in government spending, won 44 percent of votes in Sunday's first-round of voting for the centre-right's nomination. He faces a second-round vote against another former prime minister, Alain Juppe, who trailed him by 15 percentage points.

Former President Nicolas Sarkozy came third and, after being eliminated, endorsed Fillon for the second-round vote coming up on Sunday.

(With Reuters)