Speaking Out

Election Upheaval Across Europe

Philippe Desmazes, AFP / Getty Images

Voters made themselves heard across Europe on Sunday as French President Nicolas Sarkozy lost his reelection bid and the majority parties in Greece failed to beat out far-left and far-right fringe options. Socialist candidate François Hollande won over Sarkozy in a victory that was seen as more of a vote against the incumbent than for the anti-austerity liberal. German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party also suffered defeat in a closely watched state election Sunday. All three winners—in France, Greece, and Germany—are known for their stances against the austerity plan largely adopted by European countries as a way out of the financial crisis.