Emmanuel Macron Defeats Marine Le Pen for French Presidency

Marine Le Pen has conceded defeat to Emmanuel Macron who has become France's youngest president with a projected 60 percent of the vote.

by Mack Lamoureux
07 May 2017, 6:40pm

AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti

The eyes of the world were on France this weekend as the country set about electing a new president.

The choice was, as is seemingly becoming the norm, between a centrist candidate and a far-right disruptor—in the establishment corner sat Emmanuel Macron and in the far-right corner sat Marine Le Pen.

According to accurate polling it appears that the 39-year-old Macron has strongly won the election with around 60 percent of the vote making him France's youngest ever president—Marine Le Pen has conceded defeat.

Prior to running for president with his own party En Marche!, Macron was finance minister to outgoing president Francois Hollande. Meanwhile Le Pen was the leader of the divisive National Front party (founded by her father) until co-winning the run off and stepping down. While Macron ran on a pro-EU and free trade platform his rival ran primarily on protectionism and nationalism. Neither of the mainstream centre left or centre right parties that have ruled France for decades made it past the run off vote.

Le Pen was the recipient of support from both the American and Russian leaders Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. Meanwhile Barack Obama and Hollande threw their weight behind Macron.

Most of the focus from the outside world came from the fact that Le Pen who trades in anti-immigrant and anti-islam rhetoric won 7.6 million votes in the run off—beating her father's record for the most ever for a far right candidate in France. Many commentators saw this election as a choice similar to the American election and Brexit.

Much like the other two much much viewed decisions, the French election has been steeped with drama—the most recent of which concerned an alleged hacking of Macron's emails which were released shortly before a media blackout was called in France, and an intense, personal televised debate that resulted in shouting and finger pointing by both candidates.

The result is consistent with polling leading up to the election.

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