It is a week to go until the French presidential election (round 1) but many voters remain undecided, and the outcome is far from certain. A dominant sentiment is dissatisfaction with the status quo.
The French want “everything to change, so things can go back to being the same”.
Sound familiar? But it’s only political activists from the hard left and hard right in New Zealand who want an impossible revolution.
“Tous les scenarios sont possibles. Tous.”
These are weird political times, and France has caught the bug. More than a third of the French are still undecided on their vote for who will replace the Socialist French President Francois Hollande.
Many voters may simply stay at home. Political science is struggling to make any confident predictions about what this all means for the result.
“I’ve covered French presidential elections for 30 years and I’ve never seen one like this one,” says Philippe Marliere, professor of French politics at University College London.
“This campaign has been a roller-coaster of minor, major upsets, surprises, twists and turns. And it isn’t over yet.”
This is a country of people sick of the status quo, who feel the country has gone down a dark, depressing alley. They want everything to change, so things can go back to being the same.
They want a revolution. They want heads to roll. They’re angry, and they’re about to vote.
That sounds much like the US situation, and to an extent Brexit in the UK.
But I don’t think there is anything like a widespread heads must roll type of anger in New Zealand, yet at least.
There is anger here, but but not so much against the current Government.