Polling dates confirmed for France’s hotly-contested 2022 presidential election

Polling dates confirmed for France's hotly-contested 2022 presidential election
Will the 2020 runoff be a repeat of the Macron v Le Pen contest of 2017? Photo: Ludovic Marin/AFP
The dates that voters in France head to the polls to pick their new president have been officially confirmed by the French government.

Government spokesman Gabriel Attal on Tuesday confirmed that polling days will be April 10th, 2022, for the first round and April 24th for the second round. As is usual in French elections, both days are Sundays.

The dates had been announced earlier by French TV, but have now been formally confirmed.

French presidents hold a five-year mandate and elections are on fixed dates – as in the USA – rather than called by the Prime Minister as is the case in the UK.

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French voters head to the polls in the first round to vote for any of the officially declared candidates, and then vote again two weeks later for one of the two highest-scoring candidates from the first round.

Current polling suggests that incumbent president Emmanuel Macron and far-right leader Marine Le Pen will be the two second round candidates, in a re-run of the 2017 election.

However French elections are predictably only in their unpredictability and many of the largest parties have not yet decided on a candidate, while Macron himself is yet to confirm that he will run.

The regional elections held in June – the las time the French go to the polls before the presidential vote – were remarkable for record voter abstention, while Le Pen’s party did significantly worse than predicted and Macron’s failed to progress to the second round in several areas.

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