Patrimony and French Presidential Vote Choice: Evidence from the 2012 Election
GB : Palgrave Macmillan
59 - 68 p.
France, voting behavior, patrimony, 2012 presidential election
Studies of French voting behavior have pioneered the inclusion of patrimony in explanations of vote choice in presidential elections. Patrimony, as measured by the number of assets that an individual owns, has been found to matter to vote choice in recent French presidential elections. Can we say that its influence has continued with the latest 2012 presidential election, which took place in the context of the European economic crisis? We explore this question using TNS Sofres survey data. We find that patrimony continued to matter in 2012, that it clearly distinguished supporters of Nicolas Sarkozy from those of François Hollande, and that its effect on second-round vote choice was distinct from that of other socioeconomic determinants. These findings provide further support for the idea that capital income needs to be taken into account when assessing the relationship between individual wealth and voting behavior.