Imagine that: Sunday’s election in France marked by voter ID, hand-counted paper ballots cast ‘in person’

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Although France is often the target of jokes and ridicule, it appears to have one major institutional advantage over countries like the U.S. and others: purportedly tried-and-true, secure elections.

In Sunday’s first-round of voting in the presidential election, “French voters…will use the same system that’s been used for generations: paper ballots that are cast in person and counted by hand,” the Associated Press reported.

There are no mail-in ballots. Photo ID and a signature are required at the voting booth.

Absentee voting, the rough equivalent for which is called proxy voting in France, is permitted only in limited circumstances. There is no early voting or voting with electronic machines either.

Nor is there any ballot harvesting.

“Mail-in voting was banned in 1975 amid fears of potential fraud,” AP added.

In the U.S., the corporate media takes the position that no “widespread” fraud occurred in Trump-Biden contest, an election that involved massive numbers of mail-in ballots, contrary to assertions by former President Donald Trump. Media outlets frown upon any further substantive coverage of it.

France’s controversial COVID-19 restrictions have mostly been lifted, and “People who test positive for the virus can go to the polls. They are strongly advised to wear a mask and follow other health guidelines.”

No candidate is expected to break the 50 percent threshold in the multi-candidate race on Suday; a runoff between the top-finishers is scheduled for April 24.

Polls close on Sunday at 8 p.m. Paris time.

Incumbent Emmanuel Macron and rival Marine Le Pen are expected to make the second-round showdown in a rematch of the 2017 election which Macron won in a landslide.

Things could be different this time.

Only a few weeks ago, globalist Macron was regarded as a shoo-in for a second term. If polling is accurate, however, he and Le Pen are supposedly nearly tied as Macron’s lead has supposedly dwindled. Many voters are said to be still undecided.

The corporate media has branded the populist Le Pen far right because of her immigration views, but some of her economic policies (such as lowering the retirement age to 60 for certain workers) are perhaps closer to those of U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders.

As such, she could pick up votes across ideological boundaries.

Perhaps this scenario is a callback to a famous quote by Bill Clinton operative James Carville who said in 1992 that “it’s the economy, stupid.”

“Le Pen stuck to her focus on retail politics, traveling up and down the country talking to voters about the impact of the [Ukraine] conflict on their wallets…If Le Pen were to topple Macron, an ardent defender of the European project, it would be a shock for the European Union possibly on a par with Donald Trump’s U.S. election victory and the Brexit vote in 2016,” Bloomberg claimed.

While Macron seldom hit the campaign trail while he was focused on engaging in international diplomacy especially as it relates to the invasion of Ukraine, “Ms. Le Pen, meanwhile, crisscrossed the country, holding rallies in small rural towns. Her highly disciplined campaign focused on the economic sting of rising inflation…If the focus on pocketbook issues softened Ms. Le Pen’s image, so has the competition she faced from Mr. Zemmour,” the Wall Street Journal similarly asserted.

The aforementioned Eric Zemmour, a firebrand right-wing TV pundit, is a presidential candidate who has apparently faded in the polls after a strong start.

According to Politico, the Biden administration is “freaked out” over the possibility of a win by Le Pen, who is accused of being a Putin sympathizer and someone who could supposedly weaken the West’s opposition to Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Le Pen, in her third attempt at the presidency, has surged over the past couple of weeks, as she has toned down some of her notoriously incendiary rhetoric to focus on cost-of-living issues. Millions in France are struggling to make ends meet after a 35 percent surge in gas prices over the past year,” Politico noted.


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