The French head to the polls Sunday (24) for the second round of the presidential elections. The election is a repeat of the second round of 2017: centrist Emmanuel Macron is the front-runner and, according to opinion polls, should secure a second term against far-right actress Marine Le Pen.
Macron voted in the town of Le Touquet, where he greeted supporters and posed for photos before casting his vote. Earlier, Marine Le Pen had already voted in the town of Henin-Beaumont, where she also received support from her constituents.
Vote counting begins around noon, Brasilia time, and the first results should be announced at 15:00 (20:00 in France), when the last polling stations close.
Elections in France: Voting for a new president begins Sunday
Macron and Le Pen after 5 years
Five years after the first presidential race between Macron and Le Pen, France is not the same country.
The first half of Macron’s government saw social protests, a pandemic locked millions of people in their homes, and the Russian offensive in Ukraine shook the European continent hard.
The ongoing war in Eastern Europe permeated the campaign, although “purchasing power was the number one concern,” Mathieu Gallard, from Ipsos France, told France Bleu radio, who is experiencing “great disappointment” among the population, which is reflected. in the electoral race.
In 2017, Emmanuel Macron won the second round of elections in France with 66% of the vote. That year, Marine Le Pen conceded defeat shortly after the polls announced.
Official campaign posters of French presidential candidates for 2022, French President Emmanuel Macron, candidate for re-election, and Marine Le Pen, candidate for the French far-right National Rally (RN) party, are displayed on an official billboard in Henin Beaumont, France – Image: REUTERS/IF Hermann
Opinion polls point to Macron winning
Polls on Friday (22), the last day the law allows disclosure, suggested Macron should win again, but by a smaller margin. Here are some predictions:
- Emmanuel Macron (in March): 55.5%
- Marine Le Pen (national meeting): 44.5%
- Emmanuel Macron (in March): 55%
- Marine Le Pen (national meeting): 45%
- Emmanuel Macron (in March): 57%
- Marine Le Pen (national meeting): 43%
However, Macron’s victory should not be treated as a certainty: in the last elections, in 2017, opinion polls missed the results by nine percentage points.
Emmanuel Macron on his last day of campaigning, April 22, 2022 – Photo: Lionel Bonaventure / AFP
Marine Le Pen on the campaign trail, April 22, 2022 – Photo: Denis Charlet/AFP
If he wins again, Macron will rule a divided country, as only a large portion of his electorate vote for him due to lack of choice, according to a BVA poll, noting that 66% want him to lose his parliamentary majority in the legislature. Elections in June.
Macron used the argument of being a stable president in times of crisis and a reformer. Le Pen chose to present herself as an advocate for the purchasing power of the French, in the context of concern about rising energy and food prices.
Roughly 49 million French have in their hands the choice of the France they want by 2027, a decision that could imply a change in the international alliances of this nuclear and economic power, if the heir to the National Front is elected.
Le Pen proposes to include in the constitution the name “National Priority” Excluding foreigners from government social benefits, and advocates abandoning the integrated North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and reducing the powers of the European Union.
The outgoing president, on the other hand, supports “more Europe”, both in economic and social affairs, as well as in defense, and intends to restore his reformist and liberal impulse, by proposing to postpone the retirement age from 62 to 65 years.
“Gamers. Unfortunate Twitter teachers. Zombie pioneers. Internet fans. Hardcore thinkers.”