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French Elections 2017

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    French Elections 2017

    So much at stake.

    We are in the Era of Brexit, Trump and highly rapid move towards right extremism.

    Its happening today. Far right Trump version of France, Le Pen is contending with the relatively moderate pro-EU candidate Macron who came from nowhere and occupied the top list. Thats wut happens in the time of uncertainty.

    PARIS — After a bitter presidential campaign, a vicious second-round debate and a hacking attack against one candidate, voting is underway on Sunday in mainland France in the final round of the national elections.
    ■ Voters face two starkly different choices for president: the independent centrist Emmanuel Macron and the far-right Marine Le Pen.
    ■ At 5 p.m. French time, the voter turnout stood at 65.30 percent, according to the Interior Ministry, lower than in the past three presidential elections. Higher turnout is expected to benefit Mr. Macron, and a lower figure will probably help Ms. Le Pen.
    ■ Most polls close at 7 p.m. except in larger cities like Paris, Marseille and Bordeaux, where the polls close at 8.
    Continue reading the main story
    Who are the candidates?

    ■ Mr. Macron, 39, is a former investment banker and economy minister who has never held elected office. He is a pro-business candidate who wants to overhaul France’s labor market, favors free trade and backs a stronger European Union. His campaign was hit late Friday by a large dump of leaked documents on a file-sharing website. Although there is an official French media blackout on sharing the information, it’s hard to determine how the breach will affect his chances.
    ■ Ms. Le Pen, 48, is the leader of the far-right National Front party, although she temporarily stepped down from that position to campaign against Mr. Macron. She opposes globalization, backs protectionist economic policies, wants to drastically limit immigration and wants to leave the euro currency zone and organize a referendum on leaving the European Union.
    Here’s what to look for. (You can read more about where the two candidates stand here.)
    What’s at Stake in the Election?

    Quite a bit — for France, for Europe and for the world. The country has a population of 67 million, is the world’s sixth-largest economy and is one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and a nuclear power. It is one of the oldest allies of the United States and is the world’s most-visited country. Since the French Revolution, the nation has often been viewed as a beacon of democratic ideals.
    Crucially, France is a founding member of the European Union. If Ms. Le Pen is elected and is able to lead France out of the euro currency zone or even the bloc itself, some fear that could bring about the downfall of the European Union.
    A victory by Mr. Macron, by contrast, would be another setback for far-right populists in Europe, bringing sighs of relief in Berlin and Brussels. It would also be a blow to President Trump, who, without directly endorsing Ms. Le Pen, has suggested he favors her candidacy. Former President Barack Obama has expressed support for Mr. Macron.
    Why Is Turnout Important?

    In the first round of the elections, which featured 11 candidates, the abstention rate was lower than expected, and turnout has historically been higher in the second round. But now many in France are being asked to choose between two candidates they did not support. The latest polls show that about a quarter of France’s electorate are thinking of abstaining.
    The turnout at 5 p.m. was 65.30 percent, according to the Interior Ministry. Turnout at the same point was 71.96 percent in 2012, 75.11 percent in 2007 and 67.62 percent in 2002. The figure on Sunday was even lower than turnout at the same stage in the first round, two weeks ago, which stood at 69.42 percent.
    Low turnout and a high number of blank ballots (a form of protest vote) are likely to benefit Ms. Le Pen, whose voter base is shown by polls to be more committed than Mr. Macron’s.

    Many on the left or right will vote for Mr. Macron in the runoff, if only to bar Ms. Le Pen from reaching the presidency — a French political tradition known as the “Republican Front,” in which mainstream parties ally against the far right.
    But there have been signs of cracks in that front. On the right, conservatives who backed former Prime Minister François Fillon in the first round view Mr. Macron as too socially liberal and as an heir to François Hollande, France’s Socialist president, whose popularity has plummeted since his election.
    More significantly, voters who supported the far-left candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon in the first round have struggled with the idea of supporting Mr. Macron and his pro-business policies.

    Attitude is more important than facts.
    "Life is 10% what happens to us..and 90% of how we react to it"

    Re: French Elections 2017

    Results are in.

    The far-right French presidential candidate, Marine Le Pen, conceded defeat after projections predicted that her opponent, Emmanuel Macron, would be France's next president.
    Attitude is more important than facts.
    "Life is 10% what happens to us..and 90% of how we react to it"