France: Game changing poll from BVA?

BVA’s weekly poll, released last night and published in the French regional press today, may well mark a turning point in the 2017 Presidential campaign. For the first time in any poll Jean-Luc Mélenchon has drawn level with Francois Fillon, on 19 per cent, while the two leading contenders, Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, have slipped back, now holding off their pursuers by just four points. Meanwhile Benoit Hamon has sunk to his lowest score yet at just 8.5 per cent of first round voting intentions.


Chart by Visualizer


In its commentary on the results, BVA notes that Mélenchon is doing particularly well with electors who voted for Francois Hollande in 2012, damaging Hamon’s support base in particular, but also impacting that of Macron.

There are also some important changes in the secondary questions asked by BVA. The Front National’s Le Pen advances by 8 points in a week on the question of certainty to vote among her supporters, to reach a campaign high of 89 per cent. On the same question Emmanuel Macron has stalled at 63 per cent commitment, after rising solidly since early February. And overall, the number of respondents saying they are certain to participate on 23 April hits 77 per cent, the highest yet in BVA’s weekly surveys.


Chart by Visualizer


Among the ‘minor’ candidates, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan (Debout La France) has failed to achieve the lift-off he desired from last Tuesday’s television debate: he rises just half a point to 3.5 per cent.

Second round voting intentions are practically unchanged compared to a week ago, with a very high proportion of those declaring for both Macron and Le Pen being sure of their choices, at 88 and 83 per cent respectively. However 21 per cent of the total sample have not yet decided on their second round preference, or intend to abstain. Add that to the 38 per cent who are still not completely sure of their first round choice, and it is apparent that all is still to play for in the next fortnight.

BVA 8 April
First round voting intentions, per cent
(comparison to 1 April poll in brackets)

Emmanuel Macron (En Marche!) 23.0 (-2.0)
Marine Le Pen (Front National, FN) 23.0 (-1.0)
Francois Fillon (Les Républicains, LR) 19.0 (nc)
Jean-Luc Mélenchon (France Insoumise) 19.0 (+4.0)
Benoit Hamon (Parti Socialiste, PS) 8.5 (-3.0)
Others (6 candidates combined) 7.5 (+2.0)

Second round voting intentions:
Macron 61.0 (+1.0)
Le Pen 39.0 (-1.0)

Fieldwork: 05.04-07.04.2017. Participants: 1421. Methodology: Online poll. Voting intention figures based on 1006 respondents certain to vote and having expressed a party preference.


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