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Segolene Royal in bid to lead French left

France could be about to take a major step towards electing its first woman president. If Segolene Royal wins the Socialist nomination in Thursday's ballot, it will also deal a significant blow to the party's traditional left wing. The campaign has drawn comparisons to US politics. The three televised debates may have been dull, but the off-screen mud-slinging would have been worthy of the American presidential election itself. Internet users have devoured websites, such as one called the "dustbin of the primaries", to read the latest blogs rubbishing opposing candidates.

Segolene Royal drew whoops of laughter at her final rally in Paris this week by attacking the "male chauvinism" of her competitors. Laurent Fabius had reacted to her presidential bid by asking: "Who's going to look after the children?" Dominique Strauss-Kahn had commented on one of her TV performances with the words: "She would have done better to stay at home rather than read from her kitchen recipes".

For good measure, she recalled the same candidate's mockery of her brief when she was environment minister in the early 1990s. "Those are girl's topics", she was told.

Source: BBC
Tag: Segolene Royal
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