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Cameron Snubs Hollande

The UK and Germany are divided on many things, but on one they are agreed: both Chancellor Merkel and Prime Minister Cameron are hoping that French President Nicolas Sarkozy defeats his socialist rival Francois Hollande in the upcoming French presidential election.

Merkel has offered to make campaign appearances for her EU partner; now comes word that David Cameron is refusing a meeting with Hollande this Wednesday when the French candidate travels to London to campaign among French ex-pats living on the perfidious isle.

This is a bold move on Cameron’s part; Hollande is overwhelmingly favored to win the presidential poll, with a double digit lead when voters are asked about a head-to-head match in the run-off phase of the French election.

Via Meadia wonders if being endorsed both by les Boches and the Brits is really the best platform on which to win a presidential election in France; Hollande’s campaign managers are possibly not having anxiety attacks over the situation. But French socialists have long memories; expect some froideur on the Channel if the elections go as predicted. Hollande is running against finance capital in general; he now has another reason to take aim at London’s financial sector in particular.

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  • WigWag

    I am not so sure that Cameron’s decision is all that strange or daring.

    Would a Democratic Governor of New York State meet with a Republican gubernatorial candidate in New Jersey who was seeking to unseat a Democratic incumbent with the election less than two months away?

    I doubt it.

    While the two situations are not exactly analogous, Merkel, Sarkozy and Cameron are all ideological soul mates. They may lead nations not states and they may lead political parties in their respective nations that are not exactly aligned with political parties in other nations, but the three leaders obviously see eye to eye much more than any of them would with Hollande.


  • Tom Richards

    Tinfoil hat reading:

    Cameron knows his snubbing of Hollande helps Hollande’s electoral chances.
    Cameron thinks the best way to prevent his party and/or coalition fracturing over Europe is for the Eurozone (and perhaps the EU) to collapse.
    Cameron knows Hollande’s election is far more likely to lead to Eurozone break-up than another term for Sarkozy.
    It is in Cameron’s interests to snub Hollande.

  • Walter Sobchak

    Why is it appropriate for a sitting PM to meet with another country’s candidate for President. Shouldn’t he stay out of his neighbor’s political situation?

  • Eric

    Mr Cameron will do quite well out of Mr Hollande. After his 75% top rate of tax comes in, I think quite a few companies and their well paid French executives will find London an attractive place to domicile themselves and their companies.

  • Kris

    Walter@3: On the other hand, should high-level relationships have to re-start from zero after every electoral change? And should one refrain from meeting with any of another country’s candidates, including the incumbent? In general, the head of a country’s opposition is granted meetings as a courtesy, and in the interest of diplomatic continuity.

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