M. Georges Pompidou, the one-time French Prime Minister and now a front-runner in the campaign?
M. Georges Pompidou, the one-time French Prime Minister and now a front-runner in the campaign for the Presidency of his country, yesterday (Friday) spoke to an enthusiastic gathering of supporters in the Paris suburb of Asnieres.
M. Pompidou who, until last week was the favourite candidate in these elections, is running closely behind M. Alain Poher -- the interim President -- according to the latest opinion poll. The 58-year-old politician and banker was, for many years, considered General de Gaulle's heir apparent -- until he was dropped by the General as his Prime Minister after the June 1968 elections. Since then, M. Pompidou had dedicated himself to banking and local politics near his country home. Then, after the wave of speculation which followed the referendum and President de Gaulle's resignation, Georges Pompidou announced his candidacy on April 29.
Since then he has been preparing his campaign, which is now launched, on a Gaullist platform of continuity. In his speech at the Centre Administratif (Administrative Centre) as Asnieres, M. Pompidou said: