A candidate for the French presidency should not be able to win with 20% of the vote – the two round system is specifically designed to ensure that 50% plus one vote is the minimum threshold for the winner. Yet 20% is the magic number this year, for any candidate above that in the first round held this coming Sunday will almost certainly go through to the second round two weeks later. And if a candidate finds themselves against Marine Le Pen in the second round, they will probably be the next President.
For the last two weeks, four candidates have consistently polled around or above 20%, all of whom are currently within four percentage points of each other – effectively within a broad margin of error. Who gets through out of the four is anyone’s guess only four days out. How did we get here? Continue reading