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In France, a legally recognized alliance between parties. Before the 1951 legislative elections the governing centre parties introduced changes in the electoral system which aimed to neutralize pressure from the two political extremes, Gaullists and Communists, both opposed to the regime and expected to benefit from a proportional system that favoured the strongest parties in the distribution of seats. By changing the law to provide (among other things) for alliance or apparentement the centre parties were able to pool their votes, maximize their share of seats, and achieve a workable majority in the legislature. When he came to power at the outset of the Fifth Republic, General de Gaulle was able to discriminate even more effectively against the political extremes by replacing proportional representation with a double‐ballot system.


Subjects: Politics.

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