The First Month of the Rest of Your Term

hollande vallsAfter disastrous Local and European elections, both of which marked historic lows in the share of the popular vote, how can President Hollande, and the Socialist party, survive the next three years? Continue reading

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Yalta

400px-France_fond_de_carte_27_régionsIn two steps, Francois Hollande and Manuel Valls have shaken up the different levels of regional government more than anyone else since the Second World War.  First, the President announced a possible reduction of the number of regions in France, later confirmed to be a desire to halve the current number of 22 in mainland France.  Then Valls announced in his general policy speech that the timeline for this reduction would be short, and that the elected councils in place for the 101 departments would be dissolved.  In addition to the current reform of the groups of towns and villages (the communautes de communes) and the new metropolitan areas encompassing the largest cities, the way France governs itself is set to change radically over the next 5 years as a result of this administrative Yalta.  But how, and will it work? Continue reading