A 16.2 million-euro ($21.6 million) bonus awarded to Publicis SA Chief Executive Officer Maurice Levy has become the latest battleground for French presidential candidates in a campaign that has yet to galvanize many voters.
President Francois Hollande’s effort to ask the French to tighten their belts was dealt a blow this week after the minister he’d charged with fighting tax evasion admitted to a secret overseas bank account.
Since announcing his candidacy on Feb. 15, President Nicolas Sarkozy has accused his main opponent of lying and of not loving France; announced new proposals on company taxes, immigration and labor, and threatened to withdraw from some European accords.
The opposition Socialist Party’s victory in French Senate elections yesterday dealt another blow to President Nicolas Sarkozy ahead of next year’s general elections, even if it won’t affect his ability to govern.
An attempted-rape charge against Dominique Strauss-Kahn may put an end to his prospects of running in the French presidential election even as his party called for calm and unity until the allegations are verified.