As the losing mainstream candidates lick their wounds after the first-round of the French presidential race, their shocked parties have had to agree on what to do next.
Stopping the far-right is the immediate priority for the Socialist and Republican parties, but going so far as to call for a vote in favour of Emmanuel Macron has not been easy.
Jean-Francois Cope, a senior figure in the right-wing Republicans party, said: “I’m very happy that our political family has been able to agree on the idea that the goal is to defeat Marine Le Pen.
“And to do that there is no other option for us than to make sure that we decide to call to vote for Emmanuel Macron, but without saying his name in order to respect all sensibilities.”
Losing Republican candidate Francois Fillon had already called for his supporters to back Macron.
The head of the Socialist Party says he will vote for Macron without hesitation and says his party will mobilise behind Macron’s campaign.
Jean-Christophe Cambadelis said: “Four million copies of a leaflet and several hundred thousand posters will be printed and stuck up everywhere in France.
“Thousands of door-knocking operations and hundreds of meetings will be organised by our politicians and activists over the coming weeks because it is out of the question that we let France lose its soul.”
The outgoing French President Francois Hollande also urged the public to vote for Emmanuel Macron, warning that Marine Le Pen is a risk for the country.