The Powerful French Mayor: Myth and Reality
For many observers, the legal status and powers of the French mayor remain exceptional among the Western democracies. It is true that, seen from without, the mayor’s authority, and the way in which the French municipal council is organised, may come as a surprise: everything seems to have been designed to ensure the continuity of the mayor’s power. Over and beyond the mayor’s extensive prerogatives, however, there is another observation to be made. While voter turnout in France has generally undergone significant erosion since the 1980s, it has remained relatively firm in local elections. Moreover, the French mayor, elected by more of his fellow citizens than is the case for any other political representative, remains extremely popular.
KeywordsVoter Turnout Local Election Fellow Citizen Executive Board Western Democracy
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