Sunday’s presidential elections in France demonstrate, in stark terms, the fall from grace of the country’s two traditional parties and the rise of new phenomena on the right and the left. Much has already has been written about the far-right candidate Marine Le Pen. Here, we examine the candidacy of Jean-Luc Mélanchon, the “leftist” ex-Socialist leader who is now third in the polls. However, despite the panic that his popularity has caused among the French establishment, what Mélanchon seeks is a partnership with capital, not a challenge to it. In contrast stands Philippe Poutou of the NPA, a worker and anti-capitalist activist, who proposes a radically different France.