Sarkozy faces likely election defeat

Sarkozy faces likely election defeat

PARIS (Reuters) – Nicolas Sarkozy was headed for an election defeat on Sunday that could make him the 11th European leader to be swept from office by the economic crisis and crown Francois Hollande as France’s first Socialist president in 17 years.

Buoyed by a tide of anger over Sarkozy’s inability to rein in rampant unemployment during his five-year term, Hollande was between four and eight points ahead in final opinion polls for a vote that could mean a shift in direction for Europe.

Despite shaving a couple of points off Hollande’s lead in the last days of a frenetic campaign, the conservative’s own aides privately admitted it would require a miracle for him to turn the odds in his favour and clinch a second term.

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