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New PM, first female Paris mayor on agenda in French vote

Published on Mar 30, 2014 12:42 PM
 
A combination of pictures made on March 28, 2014 in Paris shows French right-wing UMP party candidate for the Paris 2014 mayoral elections Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet (left) posing on February 17, 2014 in Paris and Socialist Party (PS) candidate for the March 2014 Mayoral elections in Paris Anne Hidalgo posing on February 20, 2014 in Paris. French voters go to the polls on Sunday, March 30, 2014 for a second round of local elections that will result in Paris having a female mayor for the first time and, possibly, the country having a new prime minister. -- FILE PHOTO: AFP

PARIS (AFP) - French voters go to the polls on Sunday for a second round of local elections that will result in Paris having a female mayor for the first time and, possibly, the country having a new prime minister.

With the ruling Socialists facing a drubbing, President Francois Hollande is expected to react by ordering major changes at the top of his beleaguered government. Popular Interior Minister Manuel Valls is widely tipped to replace current premier Jean-Marc Ayrault.

The vote, in which the first ballots were cast in the French Pacific territory of New Caledonia, is also predicted to result in the far-right National Front establishing an unprecedented footprint in France's local government by winning control of as many as a dozen mid-sized towns.

In Paris, Socialist candidate Anne Hidalgo will be hoping to resist the national swing against her party and keep the French capital under the control of the left.

 
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