France’s far right in trouble after expected victory of left-wing alliance


The news

A left-wing coalition is on course to win France’s national elections, according to exit polls, a major surprise to far-right factions that were forecast to win.

The New Popular Front party is expected to win the most seats in parliament, but will not achieve an absolute majority. This could lead to a parliamentary stalemate.

President Emmanuel MacronThe centrist alliance is expected to finish in second place, while the far-right group will finish in third place.

Official results will be announced later in the evening and a left-wing victory would be a “plot twist”, according to AFP. Marine Le Pen’s far-right party surged in European elections in June – prompting President Emmanuel Macron to call early elections – and was seen as the favourite for the parliamentary elections.

Knowing more

Prime Minister Gabriel Attal, a member of Macron’s party, said he would resign after the election forecasts. With no party on track to secure a parliamentary majority, the country is heading for political uncertainty just before Paris hosts the Olympic Games.

Exit polls showed the far-right Rassemblement National party dominating the first round of the country’s parliamentary elections. More than 200 left and center candidates dropped out in three- and four-party elections, seeking to consolidate their support and keep the far right out of power.

In the final week of the elections, the National Rally came under fire again because racist, homophobic or xenophobic statements which were done by dozens of candidates, Le Monde reported.

The left-wing coalition, which quickly united after the European parliamentary elections, profiled itself as “the only alternative” to the far right. The group includes both moderate left-wing factions and more radical, far-left parties, and wants to lower the retirement age and increase government spending on welfare, health care and the environment.

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