French Primary: Early Results

Ségoléne Royal is coming in with a wet sail in the French Socialists’ primary election tonight, according to early results. Final data should be out around 0300GMT, but the signs are all there – Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s man of business, Jean-Christophe Cambadélis, has conceded defeat and wished her all good luck, Laurent Fabius’s campaign manager has called on his followers to rally behind the candidate, and the figures look decisive. Royal has 60 or so per cent, DSK 20 and Fabius 16 per cent. Including Paris, where DSK did markedly better, it’s more like 58 per cent Royal and 22 per cent Strauss-Kahn. Crucially, even the Rhone Valley federation, thought to be a banker for DSK, went strongly for Royal. The biggest Socialist group in France, up north in the Pas-de-Calais, went her way by 80 per cent, as did the DSK-leaning group in Maine et Loire – even though the controversial YouTube vid of her being rude about teachers was taken there.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Michéle Alliot-Marie engages Sarkozy-related targets..