Sarkozy wins in France

With a victory that could build momentum for upcoming parliamentary elections, Nicolas Sarkozy, the center-right candidate of the Union for a Popular Movement (the current governing party) defeated socialist Segolene Royal for the Presidency of France. Sarkozy is known as more pro-American, anti-terrorist, and reformist than either his predecessors or his opponent. Francois de Beaupuy and Helene Fouquet report for Bloomberg:

Nicolas Sarkozy was elected president of France as Socialist Segolene Royal conceded defeat.

Sarkozy, candidate of the governing Union for a Popular Movement, took between 53 percent and 53.2 percent of the vote against between 46.8 percent and 47 percent for Royal, a Socialist, according to exit polls by Ipsos SA, Ifop, CSA, and TNS-Sofres.

The president-elect, 52, overcame criticism that he was too divisive and too sympathetic to the U.S., persuading voters that he was best-suited to spur economic growth. Sarkozy, interior minister and finance minister for four years under President Jacques Chirac, promised to cut taxes, reduce the number of civil servants, curb immigration and toughen sentencing.

“This very large victory will allow Sarkozy to rally the largest possible union for change,” said Patrick Ollier, a UMP lawmaker and president of the National Assembly. “Nicolas Sarkozy is accountable to the people, not to parties.”

The whole article is at the link above. Sarkozy is also expected to make noise in the EU, which can hardly be a bad thing.

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