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European Elections

France Election 2017: Macron A Strong Favorite

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France presidential election 2017

France election 2017 wraps up today, at least on the presidential side. If the opinion polls are to be believed, Emmanuel Macron will be the successor to François Hollande.

Macron and his runoff rival, Marine Le Pen, upset the political balance in France. Neither of the main political parties advanced to the second round, making history in the French Fifth Republic. Both Macron’s and Le Pen’s movements have already achieved a great deal.

Much like the election of Barack Obama in 2008 and Donald Trump in 2016 in the United States, the French presidential election of 2017 features a newcomer riding in on a wave. Here, it’s Macron, never previously elected to office. His En Marche! Movement swept over the nation and led him to first place in the opening round.

Macron faces Le Pen of the National Front, the right-wing, anti-immigration party. Her party has been here before, but with unfavorable results in 2002. Tonight could be a repeat, though Marine is expected to do better in the runoff than her father, Jean-Marie. The elder Le Pen pulled 18 percent in his runoff; opinion polls show Marine could get up to 40.

France Election 2017: Macron’s To Lose

While that 40 percent might be a big improvement for the FN, it’s still not going to win them the election. Anything other than a Macron victory would be a political earthquake. In reality, Macron’s victory will also be a political earthquake unto itself.

Opinion polling has been extremely consistent throughout this process. In a recent Ipsos poll conducted for Le Monde, Macron drew 63 percent. This includes almost half of center-right candidate François Fillon’s supporters switching to Macron. Almost three-quarters of Socialist candidate Benoît Hamon’s supporters went to Macron as well.

The only good news for Le Pen is that she draws a plurality of supporters from Nicolas Dupont-Aignan. The Debout la France candidate endorsed Le Pen in April and worked out a prime ministership deal with her. Unfortunately for him, it doesn’t look like he’ll be prime minister.

France Election 2017: The Update

For those discovering this article after the fact, yes, Emmanuel Macron won the election in a landslide. You can see more about this in our Macron victory article.

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