2017 French Presidential Election

The French people are choosing today between Centrist, Emmanuel Macron and the Front National’s, Marine Le Pen.

Both candidates went through to the second round two weeks ago.

Some key things to look out for this evening

Results will be in at 7pm our time.

An exit poll will be published by the main networks projecting a winner, these polls are normally very accurate and over the past number of elections they have got the result to within 1% of the final outcome.

Turnout is typically very high in France, averaging around 80% and with voters backing Far Left candidates opting to not vote for either Macron or Le Pen, the abstention rate should be a bit higher than previous elections.

Macron has led Len Pen with a margin of 18-22% since the first round. It is a general consensus amongst French pundits that Le Pen squandered an opportunity during Wednesdays debate and this has halted the momentum that her campaign was garnering.

Will Le Pen get over 40%? Her father achieved just 18% of the vote in 2002, so if he more than doubles her fathers support, it will be less of a disappointment for the Front National as they look towards 2022. If she gets less than 40%, expect tensions to emerge within the FN as rivals to Marine begin looking for their chance to run for President.

If you want to watch the election results in English, France 24 is the best network and the live stream is below

 

,

  • Jag

    Looks like Macron will win 60-40.

    A photo in the Sunday Times seems to sum up this election – two posters side by side, one of each candidate, both defaced, Macron’s with a “$” sign, Le Pen’s with a swaztika.

    Can’t believe the best two candidates for the job were these two, but then again, The Donald and Crooked Hillary, and closer to home Jeremy and Theresa, and even closer still to home, Michelle and Arlene.

  • Zorin001

    As much as Macron isnt to my tastes politically the alternative is simply that much worse.

    MLP can try and rebrand the FN as much as she wants but its still a party of Holocaust denial, any who votes for them has no excuse for dismissing that.

  • Superfluous
  • Robin Keogh

    You have pretty much nailed the problem which is facing Europe going forward, and that is the choice between extreme right or so-called ‘centre’.
    The people in their wisdom have concluded correctly that our ‘centre’ is in fact the old ‘right’ with a ribbon in its hair. So, can Macron help shift Europe away from the worst excesses of neo liberal capitalism or will he continue the charade thus driving more people into the arms of the extremes? Hollande failed spectacularly, Macron could be our last hope.

  • Zorin001

    Lets hope so

  • Marcus Orr

    I think Macron will win approx. 60 – 40, maybe even by a bit more.
    The real question is why 40% of French people would consider voting for the far right. 4 out of 10 French are not ugly xenophobic racists and we cannot paint them as such.
    The reason is the shift in the EU power structure the last 10 years and the fact that the “decisions” coming from Germany are becoming more and more like directives. Germany, with its command over the monetary and fiscal Policy in the EU zone – to the advantage of its own economy and the disadvantage to the southern EU countries and also to France, has been busy attracting all the unemployed Spanish, Italians, and Greeks into its own labour market, sucking up the youth of those nations to compensate for its own chronic lack of children (very low fertility levels). France is now also at 10% unemployment and 25% youth unemployment. The French are starting to understand that the real decisions are not taken by their own president.
    Macron will get in but he’s too close to Merkel and too EU-centric to be successful. He’ll have to change his tune during his presidency or the Front National are getting elected next time for sure.

  • Superfluous

    “Germany, with its command over the monetary and fiscal Policy in the EU zone”

    Germany was and has been consistently against QE https://www.stratfor.com/analysis/germany-and-european-central-bank-face

  • Zorin001

    I agree somewhat with your last paragraph. While i’ll be glad to see Le Pen get beat i do fear that a lack of real reform will simply lead to a further charge by the FN.

  • notimetoshine

    You seem to imply that the economic problems of the French, Spanish, Italians and others are the fault of German led monetary policy.

    A bit of a cop out isn’t it? I mean it wouldn’t be anything to do with the structural economic problems in countries like France and Italy.

    After all Italy for instance would be a shining example of economic growth and security if only it weren’t for those dastardly Germans…

  • notimetoshine

    The problem is the ideological nuts of the left and right flaunt their simple solutions to complex problems without any nuance or flexibility. Everything is sacrificed at the altar of ideological purity.

    The problem the centre has is combating the simplistic narratives that those on the left and right peddle to a naive and easily led electorate whether they are momentum, UKIP, Syriza or the front Nacional.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Et c’est annoncé : Macron a éte élu avec 65,5 des votes (albeit with a high rate of abstention).

  • Katyusha

    The answer is clearly reform of the EU to ensure its monetary and fiscal policy benefits the union as a whole and isn’t geared towards German economic interests and policy. A Macron-Schulz Franco-German axis may be a powerful force to achieve this. Being EU-centric is not a disadvantage in a Europe where EU decisions and policy have a massive impact on development throughout the continent. The real struggle is not to fight with the EU, a cheap battle that Cameron proved you can win even by accident, and which May is busy proving is a popular fight even when there is chaos on the bridge. The real struggle for European leaders is effecting positive reform at the European level, for the good of its member states and the stability of the union.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    A lot will depend on the législatives which elect deputies to the Parliament. He’ll be required to appoint a Prime Minister from the largest party or bloc – perhaps the new order in France.
    Without the support or co-operation from the Assemblée Nationale and the ensuing cabinet he’ll have no power. This is still ahead and until then nothing is certain.

  • Jag

    So Marine Le Pen got 35%.

    In 1932, Hitler got 37%, Hindenburg 53% and Thalmann 10%.

    Le Pen has the momentum. She didn’t feck up in the campaign. She is the main contender next time, which in France’s case, mightn’t be too long.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Scarily she got 11 million votes in the 2nd ballot. There’s a lot of fear out there.
    No doubt her voters are dismissing the holocaust rewriting: “Je pense que la France n’est pas responsable du Vel d’Hiv” but France’s historic traumas are many and varied so the French put the round ups of Jews into a more complex formula. Many French were rounded up too for obligatory work service where many died and then there’s what happened to resisters and their supporters.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    34.5% to be precise.
    Or there’s also voter apathy. In the 2002 Présidentielle there was much higher voter turnout resulting in a 17.8% for her more extremist da. This was largely due to the shock that he had got through to 2nd ballot motivating many to vote against their tastes for Chirac.
    Remember Marine LePen’s main objective has been that of dédiabolisation of her party. Here she has been somewhat successful. But discontent among the French goes back many decades and it’s this that has the greater momentum.
    Btw she did kind of mess up in the presidential head to head last Wednesday: flirtatiously playing with her hair (you like us cougars dont ya?), trying to goad an unflappable opponent, and then the absolutely bizzare “Regardez, ils sont là, ils sont dans les campagnes, dans les
    villes, ils sont sur les réseaux sociaux… haha… les envahisseurs !”

    Here it is: http://www.programme-tv.net/news/evenement/election-presidentielle-2017/115721-marine-le-pen-craque-en-plein-debat-et-enflamme-les-reseaux-sociaux-video/
    Huh? As tweeters pointed out: she’s farted lead.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    You have a point there. It’s also worth pointing out that the French will take to the streets for large scale protest from 2006 onwards any time any radical restructuring of work benefits is being legislated forcing successive Gov’ts to back down. The French economy is in a hamster’s wheel of its own people’s making … perhaps.

  • Marcus Orr

    “You seem to imply that the economic problems of the French, Spanish, Italians and others are the fault of German led monetary Policy.”
    No, but they are the fault of the Euro. There is no possibility of having different monetary and fiscal policies once you are in monetary union. Nothing to do with “dastardly” Germans either – nice try to make me into an anti-German too, won’t work though, I’ve lived there for 13 years and love the country. When the Euro was drawn up 5 convergence criteria were set in place, drawn up by the German banks (I should know, I lived in Germany at the time). It was a pre-condition for Germany entering the Euro.
    Nothing strange or wrong about Germany protecting their own interests. But their interests aren’t necessarily France’s interests, nor Spain’s, Portugal’s or Greece’s.

  • Marcus Orr

    You are right about the presidential head-to-head, Le Pen was very weak and clearly lost against Macron who kept his cool.

  • Marcus Orr

    “The real struggle is not to fight with the EU, a cheap battle that Cameron proved you can win even by accident”
    Dodgy Dave was in a difficult position, being a Europhile himself and firmly dedicated to the EU, but being put under pressure by losing too many votes to UKIP at home, he tried to awkwardly fight silly pretend battles with the EU to show that he was really a conservative – such as his laughable effort to block Juncker.
    He campaigned hard in the EU referendum to stay in the EU, and thought his pretend battles and staged rebellion against the EU would stand him in good stead – the only reason that Cameron called the EU referendum was to try and kill off UKIP politically once and for all. But the public saw through him and his fake animosity to the EU.

  • Marcus Orr

    QE is a recent development, nothing to do with how the Euro was set up in the first place.

  • notimetoshine

    Sorry I’m just sick of the whinging about how Germany is the cause of the economic disaster zones of southern Europe.

    Regardless of whether the Euro existed or not though, the poor performance of the southern European economies would still exist. They are uncompetitive, with ridiculous labour markets and chaotic economic policy.

    However I do agree the Euro is a problem. There should have been political union along with fiscal and monetary union. But the electorates of the various European nations were not and still aren’t advanced enough to realise the benefits.

  • Zorin001

    Are there any rivals in the FN who may want to take on La Pen after this?

  • North Down dup

    She lost against the establishment, millions of people who don’t live in France voted for Macron,
    Le pen will change the image of the party, probably change the name of the party and her party will get stronger .

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    So NDD, please tell us who are and where are all these millions of people who don’t live in France who voted for Macron?

  • Marcus Orr

    “Regardless of whether the Euro existed or not though, the poor performance of the southern European economies would still exist.”
    The poor performance would exist, and the possibility to adjust economically and regain competitiveness through currency devaluation would exist. Since the Euro has existed however, this option is dead.

    “However I do agree the Euro is a problem. There should have been political union along with fiscal and monetary union. But the electorates of the various European nations were not and still aren’t advanced enough to realise the benefits. ”

    You are absolutely right, you can’t have the fiscal and monetary union properly without political union. But political union means a United States of Europe. Germany becomes California, France becomes Texas, Spain becomes Wisconsin and Ireland becomes…oh Kentucky or something like that. That vision is a horror for the majority of people in the EU. And I don’t think it’s going to happen. EU politicians tried to sneak the political union in through the back door, by creating the fiscal and monetary union before the political union. But it isn’t going to fly.

  • Marcus Orr

    Changing the name of the party will not make people forget her father Jean Marie denying the holocaust back in 1997.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Well it won’t be this guy https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/apr/27/le-pens-replacement-as-fn-leader-questioned-existence-of-gas-chambers

    She runs too tight a ship for her to allow any rivals from within to threaten her. If there’s any attempt to oust her, her promotion of her party as ‘famille’ will look very shaky.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Marcus, why bother? “You can take a horticulture but you can’t make her think.” Parker, D.

  • ted hagan

    What about the Trente Glorieuses? Not that many decades ago.

  • ted hagan

    Dédiabolisation means demonisation, when I guess you meant the opposite?

  • Robin Keogh

    La victoire à l’homme sensible et la défaite à la core.

  • Philip Murphy

    But the point stands. German central bankers despise QE. They all come from a school that hammers into them the stories of the Weimar era and rampant inflation. That these German bankers have clearly been sidelined does not support the theory that Germany pulls the ECB’s strings.

  • North Down dup

    That was a generation ago,
    If the generation who didn’t live though the troubles have no problems voting for SF, why would a lot of French people have a problem voting for his daughter, who is trying to change the image of her party

  • Ben De Hellenbacque
  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Ending in the mid 70’s to be precise. What’s your point?

  • lizmcneill

    She was downplaying the French part in it about a week ago.

  • Madra Uisce

    And she will still be a Nazi

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Because the French aren’t Northern Irish. They think more sensibly grosso modo.

  • Zorin001

    I’d read a few commentators saying that after her debate shambles that anything under 40% could cause rumblings. I didn’t think it likely due to her family history but thought should ask the question.

  • eireanne3
  • Ben De Hellenbacque
  • notimetoshine

    This is the problem with politics these days, it has become far too complex and at the same time, the public has less and less understanding of the bigger pictures, in part due to declining media standards.

    European integration is a perfect example of the inability of the electorates to see beyond their own arm.

    Europe has benefited from being at the geopolitical centre of the world for centuries. One of the reasons for the outsize influence of the European nations post WW2 was the geopolitical importance of the region. That is finally being lost, as the world pivots East and China rises.

    The European nations individually have less and less pull on international relations, I’m always reminded of the Chinese ambassador saying to CJ Craig in the West Wing that “These Europeans: they’re always pretending to have a significance
    they no longer possess”.

    Yet a great European nation, federal or otherwise, would allow the European peoples to exert their influence upon the world, as a huge economy, one of the beating hearts of culture, finance, industry, science and potentially military power as well. The voice of Europe would have to be heard. The world is more fractured now than it has been in some time, and the old cold war certainties long gone. Who will the small European nations look to ensure their place in the new order of things? How will an increasingly resource scarce and belligerent world be dealt with?

    The European project is the culmination of hundreds of years of wars driven by that most hateful and unpleasant of ideologies, nationalism. Finally after the war, two nations (France and Germany) whose interactions had for better or worse defined world politics for so long had reconciled and the European wars over territory had finally abated.

    But as you say rightly that vision “is a horror for the majority of people in the EU”. Unfortunately petty nationalism still prevails for what reason I do not know, but that H.L Mencken quote seems apt in this case..

    “No one in this world, so far as I know – and I have searched the records for years, and employed agents to help me – has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people.”

  • NotNowJohnny

    Last week you claimed that France would leave the eu within 10 years. How soon do you expect Macron to announce your predicted EU referendum?

  • Robin Keogh

    A lot of votes. But the image of Macron walking to the stage with the European Anthem blasting around him will send a clear message to Europe and the world that unlike Britain, France did not fall in the face of fear. France have essentially cut off at the knees notions that the European project is dead. He has a mountain to climb to win back some of those who were tempted by the xtreme. We await his plan.

  • 1729torus

    Tensions mean that firms will start shifting to within the EU.

  • 1729torus

    It was deflation that let Hitler win though.

  • Marcus Orr

    Well, now that the Euro is there, they have to live with it, don’t they ? Alternative is to admit it’s a failure and to dismantle it in the countries where it doesn’t work, or won’t work (Greece, Portugal, Spain, and others). But that would be akin to dismantling the political project (leaving the Euro would mean leaving the EU as it was explained to Greece) so nobody’s going there – to be fair that’s more pressure from the Commission and Brussels, than Germany directly – Brussels has a life of its own.
    Actually just on the Weimar era that was hyperinflation, the opposite effect to what is happening today.
    What has happened is that Germany has weighed up the pro and cons of having economic and political supremacy and control of the EU against having to continue to sponsor the Greek situation, among others, and – for the moment – has decided that it’s still worthwhile to keep chugging on.

  • Marcus Orr

    I don’t agree, I take the view of Emmanuel Tod (the French guy who predicted the fall of the Soviet Union 14 years beforehand.

    http://en.youscribe.com/catalogue/documents/germany-s-fast-hold-on-the-european-continent-2518158

  • Jag

    If you think you’re jumping on the bandwagon and getting a French Language Act, you can think again pal!

  • Zorin001
  • Marcus Orr

    nobody’s interested in your scam

  • lizmcneill

    Oh, about a month ago. I must be getting old.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    You’re right. Ted’s wrong

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    That’s not age Liz. Significance keeps it fresher in the mind.

  • Zorin001

    Evidently

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    It’s a party that’s somewhat chaotic at grassroots level right enough with large number of defections in the municipalities. The upper echelons do appear to be something of a clique around her: les valentines de Marine.

  • North Down dup

    I still think France will leave the eu in 10 years, the establishment had no other choice but to get behind Macron, Macron is a passionate supporter of the eu he will never call for an eu referendum.
    It dosnt take much for people to go against the establishment, le Pen in my opinion is on the rise and the establishment will try anything to stop her.

  • Hugh Davison

    ‘Kentucky’?. I see what you did there.