France’s Macron dissolves parliament after Le Pen’s massive election win

Marine Le Pen’s populist-nationalist party, National Rally (RN), secured double the votes compared to Emmanuel Macron’s governing centrist party in Sunday’s European Parliament election. This result prompted President Macron to dissolve the national parliament and call for fresh elections in a bid to regain authority for the remainder of his term.

Following Macron’s announcement, Marine Le Pen addressed her supporters at an election night party in Paris, expressing readiness to contest the snap election. Le Pen hailed the success of right-wing parties across Europe, describing it as “the dawn of a new day” for European nations. She expressed hope that this result would mark the end of what she termed the “painful globalist interlude.”

Le Pen addressed the rally, saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, dear compatriots. The French have expressed themselves, and this historic election shows when people vote, the people win… The President has just announced the dissolution of the National Assembly, to return the people to the polls in a few weeks’ time. I can only welcome this; we are ready for it… we are ready to exercise power if the French put their trust in us in these new national elections. We are ready to restore the country to defend the interests of the French people. We are ready to put an end to mass immigration. Ready to [build the strength of the economy] as a priority. And ready to begin the reindustrialization of the country. To be clear, we are ready to straighten out the country, and we are ready to relive France.”

According to Le Monde, RN garnered 31.5% of the votes, marking the best result for any French political party in European elections in 40 years. This achievement is significant despite the right-populist vote being split by a rival party co-led by Le Pen’s niece, Marion Marechal Le Pen, which received an additional 5.5%.

Marine Le Pen’s RN is set to become the largest single party in the European Parliament, with exit polls predicting RN will secure 30 seats compared to Macron’s Renaissance party’s 14 seats. This substantial gain for RN signifies a considerable blow to Macron’s authority.

President Macron responded swiftly, announcing the dissolution of the national parliament and calling for snap elections later this month. Macron hopes to secure a strong national mandate to govern for the rest of his term. However, this move is a significant gamble, relying on the French electorate to differentiate between European and national elections.

With just 21 days until the first round of the snap election, the momentum is currently with Le Pen’s RN. Macron faces a challenging task in altering the narrative and regaining political ground before the national vote.

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