Sarkosy, who is famous for wanting to make racemixing compulsory, subject to penalties, in France has been consigned to history where he will forever be known for his controversial genocidal statements.
According to partial results and exit polls, former Prime Ministers Alain Juppe and Francois Fillon will contest the second round of the French Republican primaries following a well-attended national vote, while ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy has been eliminated.
Provisional results from 7,365 polling stations out of 10,228 showed Fillon with 43.7 percent of the votes, Juppe on 27.8, and Sarkozy on 21.7. None of the other four candidates scored in double digits.
An exit poll by Odoxa, a leading pollster, showed Fillon on 30 percent, Juppe on 28, and Sarkozy behind on 24. A candidate needs a simple majority for selection, so a second round of the primary contest will now likely take place on November 27.
Exit polls from Harris Interactive and Belgian channel RTBF also confirmed the lineup for next week’s runoff, with Sarkozy, who has been embroiled in legal troubles, running a distant third
AFP estimated a stunning 4.3 million turnout for the vote, compared to 2.7 million who turned up to vote for Francois Hollande in the Socialist primaries four years ago, before he went on to defeat Sarkozy.
To participate this Sunday, electors simply had to pay €2 and sign a document saying that they agree with the values of Les Republicains, leading to suggestions that left-wing voters may have infiltrated the primaries, to keep Sarkozy out of next year’s presidential election.
Whoever is chosen next Sunday will face National Front (FN) leader Marie Le Pen and a Socialist candidate. Polls in the build-up to the primaries showed Le Pen ahead in the first round of next year’s vote, with any Republican candidate also making it to the run-off. As Socialists usually vote against FN in the second round of presidential elections, Juppe or Fillon may now become the frontrunner to occupy the Elysee Palace for the next five-year term.