The polls could be closer, Segolene Royal on 22%, Nicolas Sarkozy on 30.5%, but with a quarter being undecided such gaps are trivial. The battle then is between the centre-right Sarkozy and the socialist Royal. Both are also fighting on a similar front, yes they have their politics, but they also have a far more important weapon; the perception of them as authentic, real people with a celebrity status.
Royal features often in glamour mags, even in a bikini. Sarkozy comments on football and is a darling of the chat show. Their shifting of politics to primetime TV has created a buzz around the election. But it has also bred uncertainty. Ideology is second place to personality as they market themselves as the product, not their political leanings. This new aspect of the post-modern or professional campaign appears to be both successful in gaining significant support but has also succeeded in confusing the French electorate. A nation where ideology means something needs politics of substance, but where is the substance here? It seems this is the question being asked: will they find an answer before the first round of voting on April 22nd?