I still think the biggest danger of Le Pen's showing in the French presidential election is that the European leftists will use it as a means to smear the centre-right parties that are enjoying electoral success all over Europe. But it could be that the same tactic in reverse might be used by those parties, to their considerable advantage. For example, Iain Duncan-Smith, the leader of Britain's Conservative party, was quick to distance himself from Le Pen. Could it be that this was a means to position his party as a reasonable fall-back from an extremist position? Le Pen's success is symptomatic of a desire by the French people to move away from the narrow, high-minded politics of the Enarques towards a stand that is more in line with what they actually want. The moderate centre-right parties in Europe should be angling to pick up that movement. They should be able to say, "we understand your frustration with the failed policies of the Left - we will listen to you and try to make the changes you want, without your having to vote for a thug like Le Pen." I suppose you could think of it as standing in between where the people are now, and where they seem to want to go. It's a slim chance, but it might just work.
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