Social conservative Francois Fillon and centrist Alain Juppe cast their ballots in a runoff vote for France's center-right presidential nomination. Rough Cut (no reporter narration)
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Former prime ministers Francois Fillon and Alain Juppe went head-to-head on Sunday in a runoff vote for France's center-right presidential nomination, with the winner likely to face a showdown against a resurgent far-right in next year's election. Opinion polls show Fillon, a social conservative with a deep attachment to his Catholic roots, going into the race as the clear favorite, after stunning his centrist challenger with a massive surge in support just before the Nov. 20 first round. Fillon voted in the seventh district of Paris. Juppe, accompanied by his wife, cast his ballot in Bordeaux, where he is mayor. Scrambling to regain momentum, Juppe, 71, a soft-mannered moderate, has attacked the "brutality" of his rival's reform program and says the Paris lawmaker lacks credibility. "I have no bitterness. I have done what needed to be done and I am very proud. We will win tonight," Juppe said. Voting opened at more than 10,000 polling stations across France at 8 a.m. (0700 GMT) and will close at 7 p.m. The first results may emerge within an hour and a half of polls closing.