Campaigning for the first round of the French presidential election ended yesterday (Friday, 3 may).?
GV Giscard d'Estaing up steps into building with officials
SV Audience applauding
SV ZOOM IN Giscard d'Estaing speaks:
SV Audience applauding
"A certain number of important problems appear in this sector. I think of the social problem, the housing problem, the problem of transport. The social viewpoint at the heart of this campaign -- and the presidential campaign ins not useless, because it allows the French people to reflect on conditions and what they want -- shows that there is a profound desire for social progress and equality on a greater level for the conditions of life in out society.
"The question facing the future President of the Republic is not to know if he has social objectives in his programme, because in practice all programmes have the same social objectives. The question to be asked is whether he has the means, the capacity, the know-how to achieve these social objectives."
If the opinion polls are proved correct, and either M. Mitterrand or M. Giscard d"Esteing win the election, the long-term Gaullist hold over france -- as fostered by General de Caulle and President Pompidou -- will be finally broken. During his campaign, M. Giscard d'Estaing has spoken of broadening the existing parliamentary majority to take in a wider spectrum of political opinion.
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Background: Campaigning for the first round of the French presidential election ended yesterday (Friday, 3 may). The conservative Finance Minister Valery Giscard d'Estaing ventured into the opposition heartland -- the largely socialist dormitory towns outside Paris -- in an effort to help along his prediction that he will win left-wing votes in Sunday's poll.
Every vote could count, because an opinion poll published hours before the campaign deadline showed socialist candidate Francois Mitterrand just ahead of Giscard d"Estaing in popularity.
The Finance Minister continued to campaign on the precept that he, alone, offered a government capable of tackling France's difficult economic and political future. This was how he summed it up at a rally in Pontoise, a town just outside Paris, yesterday.
SYNOPSIS: One of the boasts of French Finance Minister Giscard d'Estaing, the conservative candidate in the French presidential elections, is that he'll be able to win left-wing votes. On Friday, the last day of campaigning before Sunday's first round voting, he tested his theory by venturing into the opposition strongholds on the outskirts of Paris -- the expanding dormitory towns. Here he as in Pontoise, telling local people that he was the man to solve housing, transport and social problems.
M. Giscard d'Estaing has controlled the French economy for nine of the last twelve years. And he's based his election platform on the claim that he, alone of the twelve candidates, can head a government capable of tackling the difficult economic and political future faced by France.
M. Giscard d Estaing's foray into the socialist heartland was well-timed. According to a last-minute opinion poll, socialist candidate Francois Mitterrand was just ahead of the Finance Minister in public favour. Every vote could count on Sunday in what is reckoned to be the closest and most exciting Presidential election ever fought in France.