France: MItterrand: A Socialist Victory

The challenger wins the presidency and charts a risky course

For a majority of the French, the time had come at last for a dramatic change in the nation's long-frozen political landscape. Seven years under patrician, aloof President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing were enough. Twenty-three years of government by the same center-right majority had proved too much. As if they had been dared once too often to take the risk, French voters this week chose Socialist Leader François Mitterrand, 64, an unflappable veteran politician whom many thought a perennial loser, as the fourth President...

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