Faultlines in French politics
Sadly I do not yet have the full FT article nor the report it is based on but still the article by John Thornhill looks interesting even through the abstract only.
"The French right, which has always been exotically odd by European standards, is becoming more conventional. On the other hand, the French left, which for so long defined the European socialist mainstream, is now veering towards national exceptionalism.
That, at least, is a crude summary of the views held by parliamentary deputies – from the ruling UMP party and the opposition Socialist party – reflected in a report published today.* The study, conducted by Telos, an online think-tank, and Sciences Po university in Paris, suggests that in next year's presidential and parliamentary elections French voters are likely to be presented with a stark ideological choice."
The important point to take away is the implicit line-up between the left and right as it is narrated towards the presidential elections in 2007; "the stark ideological choice".