Campaigning in an unprecedented election : issue competition in the French 2017 presidential election
West European Politics
GB : Routledge
1 - 23 p.
Issue competition, issue yield, party strategies, political space
The 2017 French presidential elections featured an eventful campaign, produced astonishing results, and presented important signs of party system change. This paper analyses the main lines of divide of the demand and the supply side of electoral competition. It analyses the structure of citizens’ preferences, as well as the candidates’ strategic issue opportunities, relying on issue yield theory. To that end, it combines data from an original individual-level survey with information about the candidates’ Twitter messages. It is found that the traditional model of two-dimensional political space, characterised by an economic (left–right) and socio-cultural (integration–demarcation) dimension is largely challenged. On the supply-side, the analysis offers additional evidence for the central role played by the integration–demarcation divide, while showing that the traditional left–right conflict has not fully disappeared.