Hollande's victory paves way for the left at polls

New political map promises easy win for Socialists and allies in parliamentary elections

Paris

François Hollande's presidential triumph tore up the French electoral map and promises a relatively easy victory for the left in parliamentary elections next month.

Mr Hollande topped the poll in 333 of 577 parliamentary constituencies, including many which have traditionally leaned to the right. A three-way split in the opposition between centre, right and far-right suggests his Socialists and their Green and hard-left allies will win by a wide margin when voters go to the polls once again in parliamentary elections on 10 and 17 June.

In the outgoing National Assembly, Nicolas Sarkozy's centre-right party, the UMP, and its allies held 329 out of the 577 seats. The new electoral topography suggests the left will win a majority at least as large on 17 June. In any case, for the past half century French voters have always given a healthy parliamentary majority to a newly elected president.

The regional and sociological breakdown of last Sunday's vote points to a France deeply divided between east and west, young and old, rich and poor. Looked at another way, it gives Mr Hollande an overwhelming majority among all age categories except the over-65s and all social categories except farmers, the retired and the wealthy.

An opinion poll by Viavoice for the newspaper Libération suggests Mr Sarkozy owed the closeness of his defeat almost entirely to the "wrinkly" vote. Overall, Mr Hollande won by 51.7 per cent to 48.3 per cent. Among the over 65s, Mr Sarkozy won by a landslide – 60 per cent to 40 per cent. Among, 18- to 24-year-olds, Mr Hollande won by the same landslide score. In all other age categories, the Socialist President-elect topped the poll comfortably with between 53 and 56 per cent.

There were also significant sociological shifts. The blue-collar and salaried workers who have voted for centre-right candidates in recent elections came back to the left in huge numbers. In 2007, Mr Sarkozy had a majority among ouvriers or blue-collar workers. On Sunday, Mr Hollande took 68 per cent of the vote in this category (including many who voted for the far right in the first round).

Geographically, Mr Hollande swept the board in Brittany, the north, the centre and the south-west. He won in every large city.

Mr Sarkozy polled strongly in the east, especially Alsace and Lorraine and the Rhone valley and Mediterranean coast from Marseilles to the Italian frontier. He also did well in a band of rural or semi-suburban départements from Normandy to Champagne.

The result is that the electoral geography looks promising for the Socialists in the parliamentary polls. Any candidate who scores 12.5 per cent of the registered vote in round one can go forward to a "British- style" first-past-the-post election in round two.

The Socialists have agreements with the Greens, Communists and others that the weaker of two left-wing qualifiers will stand down. To the fury of some on the right, no such deals are allowed by the centre-right UMP with the newly powerful, far-right National Front. As a result, the left is likely to top the poll in scores of extra seats.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
i100 In this video, the late actor Leonard Nimoy explains how he decided to use the gesture for his character
Arts and Entertainment
Secrets of JK Rowling's Harry Potter workings have been revealed in a new bibliography
arts + ents
News
Down-to-earth: Winstone isn't one for considering his 'legacy'
people
News
news
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Sauce Recruitment: Retail Planning Manager - Home Entertainment UK

salary equal to £40K pro-rata: Sauce Recruitment: Are you available to start a...

Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - London - up to £40,000

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Creative Front-End Developer - Claph...

Recruitment Genius: Product Quality Assurance Technologist - Hardline & Electric

£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The role in this successful eco...

Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000

£28000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000 QA Tes...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower