Sarkozy Preps for Landslide in Parliament

Projected majority for UMP could signal mandate for new Prez
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 11, 2007 8:33 AM CDT
A Parisian voter, top, casts his vote in the first round of the French parliamentary election, Sunday, June 10, 2007 in the city hall of the 18th district in Paris. President Nicolas Sarkozy's conservatives...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – More Paris news: Nicolas Sarkozy's UMP party is making a beeline towards a landslide in the French parliamentary election, according to first round polls. UMP could win at least 383 of 577 seats, meaning a serious mandate for Sarko to push through rightish economic reforms. But the election is anyone's game until next week's second round.

The Socialist party continues a losing streak, and may give up half of its 149 seats. Turnout in the first round came in a exceptionally low by French standards—about 61%, over 20 points below last month's presidential contest. "Many people seem less interested in the parliamentary elections because they think Sarkozy will win a large majority anyway," says a Parisian voter.