Catholics, who took part in mass demonstrations against legalization of gay marriage three years ago, are emerging as a political force in the French Election campaign. They’ve by & large voted for mainstream conservative candidates in previous presidential elections. But will they be tempted by Le Pens far right this time?
The first round of voting this Sunday is set to be a closely-fought race, with the latest polls putting the top candidates within just four points of each other.Emmanuel Macron, the centre-right pro-EU candidate, leads the poll with 23%. Marine Le Pen, who has vowed to freeze immigration & end the Schengen agreement, is just one point behind. Francois Fillon is just behind on 20%, with far-left firebrand Jean-Luc Mélenchon on 19 %, having enjoyed a huge surge in popularity in recent weeks
Lisa Mainwaring, host of World Monthly spoke to a panel of political experts to get their thoughts.
PHIL ANDERSON – Author of ‘Nation in Transit – a manifest for post-Brexit Britain’
NICK SPENCER – Research Director at Theos, a religion & society think tank.
Dr ADRIAN PABST – Senior Lecturer in Politics at the School of Politics & International Relations in the University of Kent