The New York Times > International > Europe > Europeans Punish Governments in Vote
In France, the center-right party of President Jacques Chirac appeared to be in for another drubbing, after its humiliating defeat in regional elections in March, as turnout was projected to reach the all-time low in the Parliament’s history….Partly because the European polls coincided with national campaigns, voters used the ballot to express dissatisfaction with their countries’ governments on issues ranging from the economy to the deeply unpopular involvement of some, notably Britain and Italy, in the war in Iraq.
Now I realize that I’m not a fully pedigreed purebred policy wonk and pollwatcher, but doesn’t this seem a little odd. The last i looked the “center-right party of President Jacques Chirac”was the most vocal non-Arab government opposing the war in Iraq. Perhaps. just perhaps, could it be that the Europeans are sick of seeing unemployment at 11% and up brought on by socialism. American voters are supposedly on the verge of throwing out George Bush over unemployment roughly half what they have in Europe. Granted, the European love affair with the welfare state is such that they don’t actually realize they just held a referendum on socialism and socialism lost, but that is exactly what it was.
Side note: Jacques Chirac is center-right? Why, because of his racist rhetoric and policies like banning little Muslim girls from covering their hair in schools? FYI, Fuller and Bennhold, religious persecution is the mark of left wing socialism not a “center-right” policy, whether it’s socialism of the nationalist or internationalist variety is irrelevant.