I WILL UPDATE AGAIN TOMORROW WHEN THE NEW POLLS COME OUT
After watching the entire debate, and trying to maintain some level of objectivity, these are my conclusions.
In the first half hour, maybe even hour, Hollande seemed competent. His months of debate coaching and prep helped him.
After the first hour, I think things fell apart, and Hollande was in over his head, and resorted to platitudes, attacks, and avoidance.
Sarkozy is definitely the smarter of the two, the most experienced, and a natural debater.
The weakest areas for Hollande were on immigration, refusing to deal with the issue straight on, seemingly looking to the FN voters, and on the issue of nuclear energy on which he was totally incoherent.
Sarkozy was very strong on not giving the right to vote to immigrants, and the danger that the huge influx of Muslims who refuse to integrate into French society and the rise of radical Islam present. This has changed the nature of French society.
Even though Sarkozy was extremely strong, I don't think the debate, which lasted three hours, will change much.
I hope I'm wrong. A socialist in power in France would be a catastrophe for France, which is the fifth largest economy in the world.
Thanks very much for the update and assessment. I’m sure glad Sarkosy came in strong...but my gosh three hours of debating! Wow.....does any of the public stay with it that long?
I would have liked to see Newt and Obama in that kind of debate...round one Obama would be on the floor. Course it’s not going to happen but it was great imagining it.
Am hopeful the French people will stay with Sarkosy....his alternative will indeed be disastorus for France...and actually all of Europe IMO. I don’t think many Americans understand the signifigance of France now in the International Affairs going on.
I shudder to think about that - it's bad enough what's going on here in the US with our own home-grown socialist.
Thanks so much for your updates, Cincinna... I haven't had much time to keep up with the campaigns in France. I appreciate your comments.