When Will We See a Female U.S. President?

Even though the 2012 presidential election was only last month, speculations concerning the next election in 2016 are brewing. According to an interesting article from ABC News, a majority of voters (57 percent) have stated that they would back Hillary Clinton in the next election. As noted, the article does mention that Clinton’s popularity and approval would depend to a great deal on the candidate running against her, but in terms of voting patterns, we notice that there’s quite the divide based on gender, age, and ethnicity when it comes to supporting Clinton.

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The 2012 French Presidential Election: Independence and Women’s Rights Threatened by Marine Le Pen

Image courtesy of wikipedia.org

2012 is a crucial year for the future of the United States, but also for France. And France has its share of obscurantists, too. The country’s presidential elections are conducted differently from the U.S.: candidates are elected by members of their parties, and then multiple rounds of public voting determine the winner. The first round of voting will be held on April 22, 2012, and among the candidates is Marine Le Pen, the daughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen, the now-retired politician who founded the far-right “Front National” (National Front) party.

“Women have to be generous”

France is among countries that offer financial assistance to encourage pro-natalist policy; as of 201o, it had the second-highest fertility rate of all European Union countries.

In her interview, Le Pen spoke about many issues relevant to women’s lives. About abortion, she said that “if the financial situation requires it [...] it will be considered to not refund abortion, except in cases of rape [...] women have to be generous by thinking about all the elderly and precarious who today, in France, refuse to be treated by lack of means.” By “not refund,” Le Pen is referring to changing the current system, by which individuals are allowed to receive a refund for health fees. This system is based upon solidarity, with individuals contributing to healthcare costs through payroll taxes. Thus, abortion detractors argue that abortion is not a medical issue, just a consequence of a choice and that the rest of the population shouldn’t have to pay for that.

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