Uncertainty mounts as French presidential runoff election approaches

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By Lisa Hladik World News Editor French presidential elections took an unexpected turn this past week. Voters endorsed candidates Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen. Both of these candidates represent opposite ends of the political spectrum. Macron is new to the political game, and Le Pen is a supporter of the far right. Thus, the endorsement of these outsider candidates represents a rejection of France’s traditional political parties by the nation’s voting public. This shift in political affiliation could result in sweeping changes in policy in the future. This shift is especially notable because it comes at a time when the fate of the European Union could be in jeopardy. With two such vastly difference candidates, France’s future remains uncertain. Mr. Macron is a former investment banker who recently abandoned the ideals of France’s traditional political parties in order to create his own movement, which represents an amalgamation of various beliefs from left-leaning and right-leaning political views. Mr. Macron’s platform support the European Union as well as ideas that would overhaul the rules governing the French economy. In contrast, Ms. Le Pen is an opponent of the European Union. He is an advocate for policies that would put France first as well as restrict outward signs of faith from being worn publicly. These two candidates will have to face off again in a run-off election. Ms. Le Pen is widely regarding her inclusion in the run-off as a major victory. She had run back in 2012 to no avail, so this year’s results show distinct improvement in the polls. Despite her success up to this point, many political analysts do not believe Ms. Le Pen will win the election. The political establishment that is already in place and is opposing Ms. Le Pen’s election. This establishment is backing Mr. Macron. According to France’s socialist prime minister, Barnard Cazeneuve, has vocalized his opinion that Ms. Le Pen’s platform would be divisive to the nation, believing her election would lead to the end of the euro and Europe as it is now. Mr. Macron is marginally ahead in the polls, indicating that French voters are more supportive of his views supporting France protecting itself from immigration and globalization. For now, the prospects for France are uncertain with candidates with such vastly differing views dividing the support of French voters. Only the runoff elections in the near future will determine France’s future.

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