Laurent Goater, President of the French Consular Council in Portugal and Chairman of the Electoral Commission, offers some advice in this article to French residents of Portugal who are preparing to vote in the upcoming presidential and legislative elections this spring. To this end, it regulates a Online meeting on Friday, February 25th at 6:00 PM. To explain how the Service-public.fr platform works and help, among other things, those who want to check their registration, register or re-register.
The French abroad
There are approximately 3.5 million French people residing abroad, and they make up a very important electoral base. According to a study conducted by the Expatriate Observatory (in partnership with UFE), 84% of French people living abroad said they would like to participate In this election, more than the national average. Difficulties in accessing polling stations constitute 23% of the barriers to going to vote. French expats regret that their concerns were not taken into account in the debate: 86% believe their condition has not been adequately addressed beforeYears of Candidate Programs announced today. Among their themes, French living abroad overwhelmingly want candidates to mention pension rights (52%) and health coverage (40%). 36% consider it essential to support France during the economic and health crises.
Voters are not registered automatically.
To vote, you still need to register. Barely a quarter of the 60,000 French living in Portugal. Registration must be done by 2 March. The Lisbon Consulate has updated the procedure that prioritizes online registration. Just create an account service-public.fr si vous n’en disposez pas encore, puis de remplir en ligne votre dossier d’inscription, en y joignant des copies de votre carte d’identité ou passeport français (même périmé depuis moins de 2 ans), et uncent only deificatif side to Portugal.
It is not very complicated, and the presence of a Service-public.fr account is practically necessary for all administrative procedures with France.
For a long time, the French living abroad had difficulty accessing this site, which did not offer a solution, you either had to have a tax number (tax.gouv.fr), or a French social security number (ameli.fr). It is now resolved with digital identity. Since June 16, 2021, the La Poste digital identity has allowed remote registration of French citizens living abroad who do not have a mobile phone number starting with “+33 XXXXXXXXX”. They can simply create a digital identity, especially using the non-physical path offered by La Poste. A request from French officials elected abroad took several years to see the light of day.
I am the President of the Electoral Commission and of course vigil that none of our compatriots residing in Portugal are excluded without verification. However, when you receive a renewal application from the embassy, by e-mail and then by mail, do not neglect this procedure.
I organize this Friday February 25 at 6:00 pm Zoom To explain how the Service-public.fr platform works and to help those who want to check their registration, registration or re-registration.
To join a Zoom meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85847616286 Meeting ID: 858 4761 6286
For those who cannot do everything the current administration requires of them on the computer, On 03 and 04/03/2022it would be possible Submission of files to the Consular Section in Lisbon Only, during exceptional business hours: 8:30 AM – 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM / 6:00 PM.
I won’t turn up on April 10th or 24th to vote, what should I do?
On April 10 and 24, polling stations will open in Lisbon (at the embassy), Porto (at the Lycée) and Faro (at the Avenida Centre). All voters will receive a notification. If you change the region in Portugal, remember to update your address (again, you have to do this at Service-Public.fr) because if the embassy address is in Faro and you now live in Porto, you will be registered in Faro to vote).
If you cannot attend on voting days, you can obtain a power of attorney. The administration thanks you for setting it up on the site: www.maprocuration.gouv.fr But you must then get approval at the consulate.
– in the Algarvesince the new honorary consul of Portimão has not yet been named, Consular tour It is scheduled to take place at the Alliance Française in Faro on March 9, 10 and 11, therefore it will be possible to send your agents at the following times: 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM; 2:30-5:00 p.m.
– in LisbonYou can introduce yourself Without an appointment between 2 PM and 4 PM on Wednesday 23 February, 9 March, 23 March and 6 April, with an identity document. All Honorary Consuls will receive your agents, but it is wise to make an appointment with them directly (the list is available on the Embassy website).
You will need to provide contact details (full name, address and date of birth) for proxy voting in the same office. Ask your candidate’s local representatives for these contact details.
For legislative elections, electronic voting.
Most of our citizens voted in the last consular elections by electronic voting, which proved their advantage. This same text is for the legislative elections held on 5 and 19 June. As you will notice, the first round is expected to be with us one week, compared to the capital, France.
This solution is not proposed for the presidential elections to prevent the taste of interference from some countries where our citizens live from destabilizing these elections. However, it is a facility that we demand, given our fellow citizens who live far from the current polling stations, such as our friends from Madeira, the Azores or central Portugal in particular. Two large-scale tests have already been carried out with the participation of elected officials and volunteers, which makes the system more reliable.
The French abroad must make their voices heard by voting heavily.
My compatriots abroad often tell me that if they leave France, they will not continue to listen to French “politicians.” Abstention is already, to a large extent, the first party in France. Taking the empty vote into account is a claim of many French. Yes, but as long as we live in a democracy, it is the votes cast that make it possible to choose the elected officials to whom we give a mandate to govern. These elected officials have the power to write our laws, set our taxes, allow or not allow a business to develop and invest, and more or less support a struggling family, an unemployed person, an immigrant, or a promising student. This power is exercised by the voter by way of voting.
French people living abroad have very specific interests, which voters in mainland France are not aware of. Today we have 12 senators and 11 deputies, which is absolutely not enough to represent 3.5 million French people abroad. We have 446 French advisors abroad, and they are volunteers, lacking in any way, sometimes elected with a turnout of less than 10%. If the participation of French abroad is strong in the presidential election, their vote is strong. If it is weak, then their voice is very weak. Vote for whoever you want, but vote big!