Maxence, another young voter standing nearby, said he would cast a ballot for far-right leader Marine Le Pen if Sarkozy failed to claim Les Républicain’s nomination.
Anne, a 44-year-old finance director from Paris, said she was leaning toward Fillon and had come to his rally to “confirm” her decision. “I think Fillon has presidential character, but we should not repeat history, so a new face is important too,” she said, in what could be interpreted as a dig at Sarkozy, France’s president from 2007 to 2012.
The other four primary candidates in the primary contest also tried to woo voters as the election clock ticked down.
Earlier in the day MP Jean-François Copé answered questions on conservative Radio Classique. MP Bruno Le Maire spoke to supporters at a town hall-style meeting in the central city of Brives. Kosciusko-Morizet met with tech executives in the south-west city of Castres, while MP Jean-Frédéric Poisson addressed voters at an auditorium in Marseille.
All the candidates are members of the Les Républicains party, except Poisson, who is the president of the ultra-conservative Christian Democratic Party.
The seven candidates held their third and last debate on Thursday night, all pledging to increase security and France’s military might, but clashing on how to fix Europe and how to deal with Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.
With the candidates largely agreeing on the main issues, the vote is likely to come down to nuances in their programmes and their political record.
The winner of the right-wing primary is likely to become president next year, according to opinion polls.