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Thread: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

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    Moderately Moderating Michinokudriver's Avatar

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    Default Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    NPR | Emmanuel Macron Declared Next French President

    Emmanuel Macron an independent centrist who has never held elected office has won a resounding victory over far-right, nationalist Marine Le Pen in the most important French presidential race in decades.

    According to the French Interior Ministry and multiple news outlets, Macron won with near 66 percent of the vote over Le Pen's just over 34 percent.

    In his victory speech outside Paris' Louvre Museum, where thousands of Macron supporters gathered, the 39-year-old vowed to bring "hope and renewed confidence" to France amid widened social rifts exposed by the election campaign.

    "I know the divisions in our nation that led some to extreme votes. I respect them," he declared, solemnly. "I know the anger, the anxiety, the doubts that a large number of you also expressed. It is my responsibility to hear them."

    Sunday's results mark a big defeat for Le Pen, a right-wing populist who had hoped to repeat the surprise victories of Donald Trump and the Brexit camp, which won last summer's referendum to take the United Kingdom out of the European Union.

    Le Pen called to congratulate Macron and conceded defeat to a gathering of supporters of her National Front party in Paris. But she vowed to continue her fight.

    "We are now the second party in the country," she told supporters. "It is up to us to confront the globalist agenda of Macron."

    While Macron supporters waved the French tricolor flag in Paris, to the north in "Le Pen country," her supporters were disappointed and pessimistic.

    Noemie Willay, a day care worker, stood with her arms folded as she heard the election results while strolling through the main square in the northern French city of Lille. Willay, 20, insisted that Macron would do nothing to address big issues, including immigration and keeping France safe. She predicted terrorist attacks would continue.

    "They want to kill as many as possible," she said, as French security personnel walked around the square in body armor and carrying automatic weapons. "They could attack anywhere at any time."
    Willay said many French were unwilling to confront issues that touched on sensitive areas, such as religion and ethnicity.

    "The French are afraid to say what they think," she said. "That's why Macron wins."

    Macron, who has never held elective office, is set to become the youngest president in modern French history. His improbable path to victory has been extraordinary in that it included dispatching France's two major political parties, the Socialists and the Republicans.

    Macron does not have a lot of time to savor his victory. His movement, En Marche! (Onwards!), which he created last year, does not hold a single seat in France's lower-house of parliament. If Macron hopes to govern effectively, his party needs to win as many seats as it can in legislative elections scheduled for next month.

    Despite Macron's inexperience, Charles Lichfield, an analyst with the Eurasia Group political risk consultancy, predicts Macron will get an electoral bump based on French political tradition and the goodwill of voters.

    "The French electorate has tended to provide presidents with a majority when the legislative election has been shortly after the presidential election," Lichfield said. "There's a feeling that if you've elected a president, you might as well allow them to govern."

    But Lichfield doesn't think Macron will win a clear legislative majority, meaning he'll have to form a coalition with moderates in France's center-right Republican Party. Macron has pledged to push reforms to the country's rigid labor market that will encourage business and investors, but could provoke union strikes. As economy minister, Macron proposed reforms that triggered months of street protests.

    An Ipsos survey of nearly 5,000 people found Macron beat Le Pen across many demographic categories. He won in all age groups, all levels in the workforce and from high school dropouts to people with graduate degrees.

    Like Donald Trump in the U.S. election and the Brexit camp in last year's U.K. referendum, Le Pen was expected to perform well in rural areas. But the Ipsos poll, which was conducted online between May 4 and 6, found Macron garnered 57 percent of support in rural areas. Le Pen, who cast herself as the champion of those who felt they'd suffered from economic globalization, won nearly 70 percent of support among those people who are the least financially secure.

    Corinne Mellul, who teaches political science at Catholic University of Lille, noted that although Le Pen lost, she did far better that her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen.

    Jean-Marie Le Pen founded the National Front in 1972. For much of its existence, the party was treated as a political pariah. When Jean-Marie advanced to the run-off in the 2002 presidential race, his candidacy provoked protests and the other political parties called on their voters to reject him. As a consequence, center-right President Jacques Chirac won a second term in a landslide with Jean-Marie Le Pen receiving less than 18 percent of the vote.

    By getting a little more than a third of the vote, Le Pen shows "there is a lot of anger, there's a lot of frustration, many grievances on the part of the voters," Mellul said. "I think Macron in the next five years will ignore these grievances and this anger at his own peril."

    The French presidential race which has been closely watched around the world was to some extent the latest referendum in the West on globalization and its benefits and societal costs. The race here also focused on the deeper question of what it means to be French.

    As Sunday began, French voters faced a stark choice. Macron, 39, is an avowed internationalist who speaks fluent English and envisions a France deeply integrated with Europe and open to the world.

    The France Le Pen described to supporters in her National Front party could not be more different. Le Pen, 48, had called for a temporary ban on immigration, a referendum to leave the European Union and replacing the Euro with the Franc, the old French currency.

    Among those cheering Macron's victory are officials in Brussels who work with the European Union. The E.U. is in the early stages of negotiating the exit of the United Kingdom, which is seen as damaging to the 28-member trading block, but not fatal. Le Pen had promised as president to call a referendum to pull France out of the E.U., which would have threatened to destroy the institution.

    The White House released a statement Sunday congratulating Macron: "We look forward to working with the new President and continuing our close cooperation with the French government."

    The final week of the race was marked by dramatic twists and turns.

    On Wednesday, the candidates faced off in a gripping televised debate that ran two and a half hours without any commercial breaks. Le Pen, who is a fiery speaker with a laser-focused message, was expected to clobber Macron, who has little political experience.

    Le Pen spent most of the evening on the attack, but provided few detailed solutions to France's myriad problems, which include a 23 percent youth unemployment rate and a spate of horrifying, terrorist attacks in recent two years. Both the news media and public opinion suggested Macron was the clear winner.

    On Friday, hackers dumped a trove of emails from Macron's campaign on the internet in an apparent attempt to damage his candidacy just ahead of Sunday's vote. But the French government warned both the media and citizens not to spread the hacked documents and abide by a traditional blackout ahead of the vote. The hacked documents did not appear to gain much traction and were not seen to have an effect on the results.

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    I was very happy to find this out yesterday. How bloody "lucky" was it that an email hack came to pass so close to the election and due to some sort of rule with how things are done in France, Macron couldn't talk about it. It just shows that right wing extremism and fear isn't always going to win an election.


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    Senior Member T-Bone's Avatar

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    Quote Originally Posted by Oncall View Post
    I was very happy to find this out yesterday. How bloody "lucky" was it that an email hack came to pass so close to the election and due to some sort of rule with how things are done in France, Macron couldn't talk about it. It just shows that right wing extremism and fear isn't always going to win an election.
    That part I did find pretty interesting.

    That two other things: Macron won by a larger margin than anticipated (22 to 31ish) and that, if you count soiled ballets (where the voter handed in an empty ballot); Le Pen finished third [Meaning that "no one" scored more votes than her].

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    #throwback mikec's Avatar

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    As has been said a dozen times in the twitterverse, the polling error in France was significantly larger than the one in the US, but since it was towards the winning side it doesn't seem to matter.

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    Moderator Raven*'s Avatar

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    Look at the wonders of voting on a Sunday and automatic voter registration.

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    Quote Originally Posted by Raven* View Post
    Look at the wonders of voting on a Sunday and automatic voter registration.
    28.23% turnout is not a wonder.

    https://www.usnews.com/news/world/ar...cent-by-midday
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    Moderator Raven*'s Avatar

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    The 28.24% was at midday not the overall for the second round. The final number for turnout is 65.4% which is just under the French average of 70%. The voter turnout for the last two French elections was higher than the 2017 percentage, but is still a higher percentage than majority of US elections. Pew Research Center shows that US voter turnout trails the rest of developed countries in which majority vote on the weekend.

    One reason as to why Le Pen did not grab the more conservative leaning voters was that Fillon and the French right didn't capitulate to Le Pen like DC Republicans did to Trump.

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/20...cCK/story.html

    http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank...ped-countries/

    https://www.thelocal.fr/20170507/fre...as-first-round

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    Senior Member T-Bone's Avatar

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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    Quote Originally Posted by mikec View Post
    As has been said a dozen times in the twitterverse, the polling error in France was significantly larger than the one in the US, but since it was towards the winning side it doesn't seem to matter.
    That's actually what I find pretty hilarious.

    The US and Brexit ones were well within the margin of error. The France one (like other EU nations) seems to be overestimating the voting strength of the Far Right. It was most reflective here.

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    Senior Member Sea Slug's Avatar
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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    Quote Originally Posted by Raven* View Post
    The 28.24% was at midday not the overall for the second round. The final number for turnout is 65.4% which is just under the French average of 70%. The voter turnout for the last two French elections was higher than the 2017 percentage, but is still a higher percentage than majority of US elections. Pew Research Center shows that US voter turnout trails the rest of developed countries in which majority vote on the weekend.

    One reason as to why Le Pen did not grab the more conservative leaning voters was that Fillon and the French right didn't capitulate to Le Pen like DC Republicans did to Trump.

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/20...cCK/story.html

    http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank...ped-countries/

    https://www.thelocal.fr/20170507/fre...as-first-round
    Fair enough, but I still don't think forcing people to register to vote will increase the turnout significantly. It's hard to get 40% turnout around here among those who took the time to register to vote of their own free will for statewide Saturday elections.
    If all of mankind minus one were of of one opinion, and only one person of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.
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    Default Re: Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen in French Presidental Race

    It's near impossible to factor in voter turn out, people re lazy and don't need much in the way of excuses to be so.

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