Hollande to Be Ousted in First Round of 2017 Vote, Poll Shows

(Bloomberg) -- French President Francois Hollande won’t be able to make it past the first round in next year’s election regardless of the competitors he faces, a poll showed.

Both former President Nicolas Sarkozy and former Prime Minister Alain Juppe would make it to the run-off vote against National Front leader Marine Le Pen if they win the nomination for France’s Republican party, according to the Elabe poll for Les Echos and Radio Classique.

The findings show that Hollande is failing to gain traction with voters as Sarkozy and Juppe battle each other for their own camp’s nomination. With seven months to go until the first round of voting, the Socialist president wouldn’t even beat his former Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron, the survey showed.

“Marine Le Pen will qualify for the second round no matter who runs,” Elabe pollster Yves-Marie Cann said in a note accompanying the poll. Macron “is showing himself a serious contender at this early stage of the campaign at a time when the electoral line up is very uncertain,” he added.

The survey also showed Left Front candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon as making “significant” gains, Cann said. Melenchon would tie Hollande with a score of 15 percent in the first round if Juppe is the candidate on the right, according to the poll.

The survey also shows that French voters see Le Pen as the candidate most able to reform France and ensure that it preserves its social security system. About 20 percent see her as the best-qualified on that issue, compared with 16 percent for Juppe and 13 percent for Sarkozy. Hollande scored 7 percent on that question.

Elabe surveyed 922 voters on Sept. 20 and 21.