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French Parties Team Up To Block Majority For Marine Le Pen’s Far Right

Newly elected Left coalition members smiled for the cameras outside the French National Assembly but their job isn’t done yet. They still have to figure out – How to keep Marine Le Pen’s National Rally from getting a majority in these elections.

The far right surge in Round 1 of the French elections has sent alarm bells ringing among the Centrists as well as politicians on the Left. Marine Le Pen‘s National Rally won 33 percent of the vote share and was the clear winner in round one. The Left alliance came in second place with 28 percent of the vote share, with Macron’s Alliance pushed to the third spot with 22 percent vote share.

National Rally President Jordan Bardella, who will become the Prime Minister in the event that the far right gets a majority after July 7 was clear in his message to voters. “I need an absolute majority (in the French National Assembly). So, either the French grant me this absolute majority or they will take the risk of seeing the New Popular Front (left-wing parties alliance) come to the head of the country. I don’t want that for France.”

In an attempt to avoid exactly what Jordan Bardella wants, politicians on the left and the Centre of the political spectrum are trying to team up to keep the far right away from getting a majority in the Assembly. It’s not uncommon for candidates who are in third position to drop out of Round 2 if it helps consolidate votes against the far right. It has worked in the past. Leaders of both the left-wing New Popular Front and Macron’s centrist alliance announced on Sunday night that they would withdraw their own candidates in districts where another candidate had a better chance of defeating the National Rally in next Sunday’s run-off.

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Olivier Faure, member of the left coalition New Popular Front Coalition said, “There are only 400,000 votes between us and the far right.” Macron’s Centrist Alliance leader Pierre Cazeneuve was more direct. “Since Sunday evening, has been at the gates of power. And I want to say it extremely clearly here, if the National Front has an absolute majority next Sunday, it will be the ruin of our economy, the capitulation of our republican values and submission to foreign powers.”

Macron told his ministers that the top priority now was to deny a majority to the National Rally

France’s Socialist Party Member, Raphael Glucksmann went so far as to say that Round 2 of this election would not just be about voting but a referendum on whether France is willing to put power in the hands of the far right.