President Georges Pompidou of France turned out with the rest of the nation's electorate in the second round of the general election on Sunday (March 11).
SVs Election posters (5 shots)
GV & CU Flags fly outside polling station
SV INT. Pompidou & wife arrive to vote
SV Pompidou comes cut of booth & puts vote in box, shakes hands with officials
GV Another polling centre
GV & SCU INT. People voting (4 shots)
SCU Marchais talking to officials & puts vote in box, shakes hands with officials
Initials ESP/0319 ESP/0329
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: President Georges Pompidou of France turned out with the rest of the nation's electorate in the second round of the general election on Sunday (March 11).
Later that night, computer predictions and most of the results showed a victory for the Gaullists and their allies, enabling them to continue their 15-year-old rule of France -- contrasting with a much stronger vote for the communist-socialist alliance in the first round of the election the previous Sunday (March 4).
Under the French constitution, the two rounds are held so that voters have a chance to assess the situation after the first poll and change their minds if they so wish. On this occasion, they did change their minds, with a decreased majority for the ruling Gaullists.
SYNOPSIS: Sunday was the second round of the French general elections -- and the electorate, who are given this constitutional opportunity to change their minds, did so. The previous Sunday, they heavily backed the communist-socialist alliance -- but the second time round, they gave final victory to the Gaullists and their allies. President Georges Pompidou turned out to vote with the rest of the electorate. Earlier, he had addressed the nation on television, warning them of a communist-socialists majority in the National Assembly. He said it was better to have a free government with its imperfections than one which restricted personal and political freedom.
So the fifteen-year-old Gaullist rule is to continue -- although with a reduced majority. But the left-wing alliance is believed to draw some comfort from the fact that in many constituencies it had polled as many actual votes as the Government party. They were only kept from winning more seats in the National Assembly by the constitutional voting system which means, in effect, that more votes are required to elect a left-wing member than a Government member.