Early projections in France's presidential elections today show that far-right candidate Marine Le Pen and centrist Emmanuel Macron will now face off in a runoff election. Macron came in first, and Le Pen second, in Sunday's first round of voting. Moscow won't be happy if Le Pen loses the next round of voting for the French presidency, now slated to take place on May 7.
In a race that was too close to call up to the last minute, Macron, a pro-European Union ex-banker and economy minister who founded his own party only a year ago, was projected to get 24 percent by the pollster Harris and 23.7 percent by Elabe.
Le Pen, leader of the anti-immigration and anti-EU National Front, was given 22 percent by both institutes. Three further pollsters all projected broadly similar results.
Though Macron, 39, is a comparative political novice who has never held elected office, opinion polls in the run-up to the ballot have consistently seen him winning the final clash against the 48-year-old Le Pen easily.
Defeated Socalist candidate Benoit Hamon urged voters to rally behind Macron in the second round, as did senior conservative lawmaker Francois Baroin from the camp of defeated right-wing candidate Francois Fillon.
Le Pen's party has received a hefty loan from a Russian bank
Macron's organization has suffered from more than 4000 hacking attacks
— Pussy Riot (@pussyrrriot) April 23, 2017
AP NEWS ALERT—BREAKING: Centrist Macron, far-right leader Le Pen advance to French presidential runoff after major opponents concede defeat.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) April 23, 2017
like everyone i'm praying for macron to take the second round but his awful non-politics virtually guarantee a national front win in 2022
— Sam ? Kriss (@sam_kriss) April 23, 2017
BREAKING: Defeated French conservative Fillon calls on supporters to support centrist Macron against the far-right leader Le Pen.
— The Associated Press (@AP) April 23, 2017
— Hayley Jones (@meetmissjoness) April 23, 2017
Fillon endorses Macron. Game over, if anyone still had a doubt. #Presidentielle2017
— Vincenzo Scarpetta (@LondonerVince) April 23, 2017
Socialist presidential candidate Benoit Hamon has conceded defeat saying the "heavy electoral defeat" is also "a moral defeat for the left"
— Sky News Newsdesk (@SkyNewsBreak) April 23, 2017
Clinton led Trump by 2-3 points
Remain led Leave by 1-2 points
Macron leads Le Pen by 26 points in runoff polls
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) April 23, 2017