Elections of the Collectivité 2017: the lessons to learn from the 1st round

The first round is a setback for local politicians: they have failed to mobilize half of the voters. The abstention rate peaks at more than 57%. Only one voter in four came on Sunday. Yet, the number of registered voters increased by 13% with 2,378 extra persons. However, this strong abstention was to be feared in view of the slowness of the election campaign. If heads of list had long nourished a desire to run, they have been slow to state it officially. They have struggled to build their list. As a direct result, they have fallen behind in the development of their program and campaign. Some candidates have relied more on names than on ideas. But people expect concrete measures. In addition, the strike at the beginning of last week of the postal employees at the mail center did not help. Still, some voters had not received the professions of faith from candidates on Sunday, the day of the vote. Others, their voting cards. Although it is not mandatory to vote, citizens considered that this non distribution as a lack of respect and, in return, have not made the effort to come. Much criticized for his omnipresence in the media and on the ground, Daniel Gibbs seems to have seen its strategy paying off this Sunday, March 19. “Our team worked for five years”, he said in the evening. He quickly organized himself and was able to structure his teams. He was the first one to present his list and his program late January after having already outlined his policies in October. Daniel Gibbs is the only candidate to win votes compared to March 2012. He collected 1,191 additional votes to achieve a score of 4,077 votes or + 41% compared to 2012, and + 32% compared to that of Alain Richardson who came in first place in the first round five years ago. Alain Richardson has lost a third of his voters. He only obtained 1,026 votes, or 12.3% of votes. Such as Louis-Constant Fleming in 2012, he lost popularity within five years after having been a plebiscite in an election. Louis Mussington has obtained 70% of new vote, or 1,141 votes against 670 in 2012. But do not be mistaken, he realized this score because of some men and women who joined him, precisely Frantz Gumbs, Pierre Aliotti or Bernadette Davis who had failed in 2012 with Louis-Constant Fleming (Union for Progress). By not going vote, the people of Saint-Martin wanted to express their disinterest in the men and women who run and run again at each period. And especially their lack of interest in their territory.

Estelle Gasnet