30 October, 2013

Candidates urge Angers inhabitants to think about municipal elections

There is at least one issue on which two of the Angers mayor office candidates agree : the participation of inhabitants to the next municipal elections. Frédéric Béatse and Christophe Béchu included each one on their own website an appeal to electors to register themselves on the electoral roll while Angers city launched a campaign to awake people to do so. But between the enrollment on the electoral registers and the effective votes, there is a margin and probably a loss of participants these candidates, and others, will attempt to fill in the months to come.

A split appears between them regarding the nature of the vote. The conservative candidate is on a rather usual mood, saying that "vote is a right, but also a civic duty" while his socialist opponent doesn't refer to that "civic duty". "By voting, I choose and I, especially do not let others choose for me. This is an act of utmost importance", says Mr. Béatse, "importance" and "duty" having not the same meaning. But, always in the same field, another difference appears. Mr. Béatse says that he is "supporter of the right to vote in municipal elections for foreign people residing [in France] for ten years" while Mr Béchu doesn't express himself about such a topic.

But, where Mr. Béchu does not comment the political consequences of a possible abstention, Mr. Béatse looks to awake people about what is politically at risk : "abstention is a danger : for democracy, for the left. In every election, high abstention rates benefit to right and even more to the extreme right". But the two candidates agree on the fact that, once the elections are over, "the final decision [about the management of the city] belongs to representatives", reminds Frédéric Béatse while for Christophe Béchu, "The sharing and the exchanges of views [between voters and representatives] do not distort authority and decision-making". According to figures published by Angers city, the abstention rate for the firstrun of the 2008 municipal elections was 41% and for the second run 36,5%.

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