12:10 GMT +316 February 2019
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    Francois Fillon, candidate in Sunday's second round of the French center-right presidential primary elections, members of the conservative Les Republicains political party, delivers a speech during a meeting with deputies in Paris, France, November 22, 2016.

    Poll: Some 65% of French People Want Fillon to Withdraw From Presidential Race

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    A total of 65 percent of respondents want Republicans presidential candidate Francois Fillon withdraw from the race, while 70 percent of Republican voters wish that he maintains his candidacy, a poll by Ifop showed.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — According to the survey's results published by Le Journal de Dimanche newspaper on Saturday and based on 1,004 interviews with French voters, 96 percent of Republican voters consider that Fillon will continue his participation in the presidential race.

    An identical poll conducted two weeks earlier indicated that 68 percent of respondents wanted Fillon to step down as a presidential nominee.

    Fillon, who was initially one of the pollsters' favorites, saw his ratings drop after the scandal broke out in late January around his wife allegedly having been paid for jobs without exercising her duties. French media also questioned Fillon's children's employment as his parliamentary assistants between 2005 and 2007.

    On February 12, Fillon confirmed in an interview with the Le Journal du Dimanche his decision to continue the presidential campaign despite the ongoing scandal.

    The first round of the French presidential elections is scheduled for April 23, while the run-off is slated for May 7.


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