I Can Imagine Giuliani-Clinton Going Something Like This

From this fantastic New York Times account of a recent debate between the combatants for the French Presidency, Nicolas Sarkozy and Segolene Royal:

“Calm down,” he told her.

“No, I will not calm down,” she replied.

“Do not point at me with this finger, with this——” he said.

“No. Yes,” she said.

“With this index finger pointed, because frankly——”

“No, I will not calm down,” she said. “No, I will not calm down. I will not calm down.”

“To be president of the republic, you have to be calm,” he said.

She responded: “Not when there are injustices. There are angers that are perfectly healthy because they correspond to people’s suffering. There are angers I will have even when I am president of the republic.”

In the middle of her sentence, Mr. Sarkozy tried to stop her, asking, “Madame Royal, would you allow me to say one word?” But she ignored him.

His voice took on a patronizing tone. “I don’t know why the usually calm Madame Royal has lost her nerve,” he said.

Mr. Sarkozy repeatedly tried to paint Ms. Royal as uninformed. She tried to paint him as overbearing. There was equal-time interruption.


The Times' article goes on:

During an argument about nuclear power, for example, Ms. Royal played schoolteacher, asking Mr. Sarkozy, “Do you know how much of electricity consumption in France comes from nuclear power?”

When Mr. Sarkozy said it was 50 percent, Ms. Royal corrected him, saying it was 17 percent. To that, Mr. Sarkozy replied, “No, Madame, that is not correct.”

She lectured him “Go do your homework.”

He argued back, “I may not be very informed about the issue, but I’m consistent.”

Indeed, both were wrong: the answer is close to 80 percent.

More Cosmodrome coverage of the French election here.

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