Too close to call in advance, says Sky News:
A new opinion poll shows centre-right candidate Nicolas Sarkozy still leading with 29%, ahead of the Socialist Segolene Royal on 25%.Writing in Slate, Christopher Hitchens predicts they will vote for Jean Le Pen:
The BVA poll has the centrist candidate Francois Bayrou slipping to 15%.
But at least one-third of voters are still undecided ahead of Sunday's first round.
Le Pen may still be proven wrong next weekend in his overconfident assertion that people will vote for the real thing rather than a surrogate. Sarkozy, and others, may draw his fangs by stealing his voters. But some of us can remember a time when—as someone once put it—if you heard people discussing La Revolution in a French cafe, you realized that they were talking not about the last one, but the next one. I don't think it is sufficiently appreciated that France has now become the most conservative major country in Europe, where different defenses of the status quo are at war only with different forms of nostalgia and even outright reaction.