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French voters go to the polls in legislative elections

Published 10/06/2007

The polls have opened on the French mainland in the country's legislative elections.

Voters in France's overseas territories went to the polls yesterday.

It's expected that the ruling UMP party, whose candidate Nicolas Sarkozy won the Presidential election two weeks ago - will increase its majority in the 577-seat National Assembly.

The Socialist Party of S€gol€ne Royal, who was defeated in the second round, was expected to lose seats, while the newly-formed Democratic Movement party weren't thought likely to make significant breakthrough.

Today's elections are seen as crucial to the reform programme promised by Sarkozy, who will need a significant majority to pass some of his more controversial proposals.

The balloting today is the first round, and only candidates who win a majority of votes today land a seat immediately.

In races with no majority winner, any hopeful who gets more than 12.5 per cent will qualify for the decisive second round on June 17th.

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