May 26, 2005
DIRELAND ON KPFA SUNDAY
Yours truly can be heard this coming Sunday on KFPA, the San Francisco-Bay Area Pacifica radio station, where I'll be analyzing Sunday's referendum in France on the proposed new European Constitution. The interview is scheduled for 6:00 PM PST (9:00 PM EST) -- by which time defintive election returns from the referendum should be available -- and can also be heard on the 'net by clicking on the KPFA website. I'm happy to report that the "No" vote has been progressing steadily in 7 successive opinion polls over the past ten days, as the undecided third of the electorate appears to be breaking against the European Constitution. The latest poll yesterday by IFOP, one of the more reliable French polling institutes, shows the "No" leading by eight points. (For background, see my earlier lengthy post, "The New European Constitution: Should Americans Care?") One thing appears certain: after the vote, France will have a new prime minister. The unpopular incumbent, Jean-Pierre Raffarin, is at his lowest point ever in the polls -- only 21% approval in the latest -- and Jacques Chirac has been under much pressure from his own conservative coalition to dump him. Today's conservative daily Le Figaro reports Chirac's choice for the new p.m. probably will be either Interior Minister (and ex-Foreign Minister) Dominique de Villepin, or Defense Minister Michele Alliot-Marie (a former chair of Chirac's party).
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