Macron Vs. Le Pen: French presidential election ballot explained

France’s presidential election will be a rematch of the 2017 contest, as far-right Marine Le Pen confronts political newcomer Emmanuel Macron.

Macron won the match by a margin of two votes to one.

But when the candidates are intact, the 2022 competition becomes a very different matter.

Everything you need to know is here.

How does the election work?

To elect their new president, French voters go to the polls twice.

Twelve candidates ran in the first round of voting on Sunday. They qualified for the race with the approval of 500 mayors and / or local councilors from across the country.

Macron and Le Pen received the most votes, but since they did not win more than 50%, they will advance to the second round on Sunday, April 24.

This is not the only national vote facing France this year – parliamentary elections are set for June.

What are the dates I need to know?

Macron and Le Pen will have a discussion on the evening of April 20, which will be broadcast by French broadcasters France 2 and TF1.

The second round of elections will be held on Sunday, April 24.

Candidates will not be allowed to campaign on or before election day, and the media will be subject to strict reporting restrictions from the day before the election until 8 pm on Sunday in France.

What do the polls show?

A much closer match than the 2017 election.

Both Macron and Le Pen increased their total vote share in the first round of this year compared to 2017, but pre-pre-poll opinion polls on April 10 increased Le Pen support late in March.

A poll by Ifop-Fiducial, released on April 10, shows that Macron will win just 51% to 49% in the second round against Le Pen. Macron’s advantage has increased in the days since the first round results came out, but two weeks long in politics – a lot can change between now and election day.

Political analysts often say that the French vote with their heart in one round and then with their head in the second round – that is, they choose their best candidate first, and then choose the lesser two evils in the second round.

Macron watched this game in 2017. He and Le Pen received 24% and 21.3% of the vote in the first round and 66.1% and 33.9% respectively in the second round.

To be re-elected, Macron must persuade supporters of the far-left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon to support him. Mலlenchon came in third with 22% of the vote. On Sunday, Mலlenchon told his supporters not to “give even a single vote to Ms Le Pen”, but did not openly support Macron.

Most of the defeated candidates urged their supporters to support Macron to prevent the far-right from winning the presidency.

Eric Zemmor, a right-wing former television pundit, known for his annoying rhetoric, urged his supporters to support Le Pen.

What do the French people expect?


The election marked the beginning of 2022, a crucial referendum on the popularity of the French far-right. It has been 20 years since a French president was re-elected, so voting has emerged as one of the most watched political races in the country for decades.

Russia then occupied Ukraine.

With Europe’s eyes fixed on the bloody war of Russian President Vladimir Putin, priorities have changed rapidly: the accumulation of ammunition, high-level diplomacy and even the threat of a nuclear attack have entered the national debate.

Macron accepted the role of European politician, removing him from the campaign trail, while forcing him to withdraw his previous support for Le Pen.
Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Marine Le Pen on March 24, 2017 in the Kremlin in Moscow.

What else has changed in the last five years?

The political landscape of France, one.

Macron’s election effectively shattered the traditional center of French politics. In recent years, many of his constituents have flocked to the traditional center-left and center-right parties, the Socialists and the Republicans.

But the Socialist candidate, Paris Mayor Ann Hidalgo, and the Republican candidate, Valerie Begresse, have failed to persuade voters to drop the already incumbent centrist candidate. Both voted below 5% in the first round.

What else do I need to know about Macron and Le Pen?

Emmanuel Macron He is a former investment banker and alumnus of some high schools in France. He was a political newcomer before becoming president, and this is only the second political election he will run for.

But he is no longer superior and will have to run on a mixed record.

His ambitious plan to elevate the EU’s autonomy and geopolitical rise, his efforts to defeat Donald Trump or prevent the AUKUS submarine deal, and his failed diplomatic efforts to prevent war in Ukraine have earned him respect abroad and at home. Failures.

Macron’s domestic policies are more divisive and less popular. His handling of the yellow dress movement, one of France’s longest protests in decades, was widely banned, and his record of the Covid-19 epidemic is endless.

Macron’s signature policy during the crisis – to get people to show evidence of vaccination to get their lives back on track – helped increase vaccination rates but also provoked minorities against his presidency.

Before the first round of this election, Macron refused to discuss his opponents, and he himself did not campaign. While his polar position in the race has never really been threatened, experts believe his strategy is to focus on his image as the highest-ranking president among all candidates and avoid political mud as much as possible.

Marine Le Pen The most recognizable person of the French far right. She is the daughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen, the founder of the National Front, the forerunner of Le Pen’s current political party.

The younger Le Pen sought to rename the party because it had long been viewed as racist and anti-Semitic.

This is his third shot at the presidency. He performed better than his father in the first round of the poll this year and 2017.

In 2017, Le Pen campaigned for France’s response to Trump: a right – wing arson that vowed to protect France’s forgotten working class from immigration, globalization and the technology that expires their jobs.

Since then, he has abandoned some controversial policy plans, such as leaving the EU.

But overall, her economic nationalist stance, immigration, skepticism about Europe and her stance on Islam in France – which wants to make it illegal for women to wear the hijab in public – have not changed. “Stopping unrestricted immigration” and “Eliminating Islamic ideologies” are two priorities of his statement.

However, Le Pen sought to soften his tone, especially in the wake of Islam and the EU Brexit.

Instead, he campaigned hard on pocketbook issues, promising to put between 150 euros and 200 euros ($ 162 to $ 216) into each family’s treasury, including a pledge to remove sales tax from 100 household items.

The strategy seems to have worked.

Le Pen’s performance in the first round of the 2022 presidential election was his best result in three contests.

What are the biggest problems for French voters?

The main issue of the French electorate this year is the cost of living. Faced with epidemics, high energy prices and the economic downturn caused by the war in Ukraine, voters are feeling the recession, despite generous government support.

While financial pressures may not be enough to whitewash the extremism of some candidates in the minds of voters, they may find some unusual answers to their problems.

The fighting in Ukraine is far from French bistros and cafes, but the conflict is certainly on the minds of voters. 90% of French people are ashamed and worried about the war in the last week of March, according to Ipoh. Given the overall record of his challengers in standing up against Putin, this may have been in Macron’s favor so far.

What is not mentioned in the first round of discussion is the environmental crisis. While the importance of climate protection is being dragged down globally, it is of less concern in France, which by 2020 will receive 75% of its electricity demand from nuclear power, according to the French Ministry of Environment. In the first round most of the candidates supported the nuclear development already announced by Macron, so there is little difference on this issue.

However, Macron and Le Pen have been at loggerheads over wind and solar power. Le Pen argues that both are expensive and inefficient – he says wind turbines have ruined the landscape of traditional French countryside – so he wants to cancel subsidies for both. Macron wants to invest more in both technologies.

The Macron and Le Pen campaigns promise two different perspectives on the future of France.

As the leader of a powerful European Union, Macron promises to continue to move forward with France, which is centered on a globalized, free market. Le Pen wants to completely elevate the situation by restructuring Paris’ relations with protectionist economic policies and its allies and enemies.

But in the end, the election may simply come to a candidate whom France does not like: the widely popular challenge to support the widely regarded president as elite and irrelevant, or to his annoying rhetoric and dictatorship on Islam.

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