PARIS – President Emmanuel Macron triumphed over his far-right rival Marine Le Pen by a comfortable margin in France’s election on Sunday, winning a second term and heading off what would have been a political earthquake.
Even so, the far right scored its highest ever score in a presidential election.
Here are some reactions:
“Many of our compatriots voted for me not out of support for my ideas but to block those of the extreme right. I want to thank them and I know that I have a duty towards them in the years to come.”
“We will have to be benevolent and respectful because our country is riddled with so many doubts, so many divisions.”
“No one will be left by the wayside. It will be up to us to work together to achieve this unity which will enable us to live happier lives in France. The years to come will certainly not be quiet, but they will be historic.”
MARINE LE PEN, DEFEATEDFAR-RIGHTCHALLENGER:“Tonight’s result is in itself a remarkable victory (for us).”
“Emmanuel Macron will do nothing to repair the fractures that divide our country and make our compatriots suffer.”
“I fear that the five-year term that is about to begin will not break with the brutal methods of the previous one. In order to avoid the monopolisation of power by a few, more than ever I will pursue my commitment to France and the French people with the energy, perseverance and affection that you know me for.
ERICZEMMOUR, HARD-RIGHTCANDIDATEDEFEATED IN ROUND 1:
“We must forget our quarrels and unite our forces. It is possible, it is essential, it is our duty. The first coalition of the right and patriots, so that the elected representatives of the National Rally of France Upstanding and those of the (conservative) Republicans who do not want to rally behind Emmanuel Macron is a chance to do so.”
“It is the eighth time that the Le Pen name has been hit by defeat.”
JEAN-LUCMELENCHON, HARD-LEFTCANDIDATEDEFEATED IN ROUND 1:
“The ballot boxes have decided. Mme Le Pen is defeated. France has clearly refused to entrust her with its future. Mr Macron survives in a sea of abstentions, blank and invalid ballots.”
FOREIGNMINISTERJEAN-YVES LE DRIAN:
“The French did not want a France that turns in on itself.”
“We will not spoil the victory …but the (far-right) has its higher score ever. There will be continuity in government policy because the president has been re-elected. But we have also heard the French people’s message. There will be a change of method, the French people will be consulted.
ADRIENCALIGIURI, LE PENSUPPORTER:
“I’m shocked to see that a majority of French people want to reelect a president that looked down on them for 5 years – he said he wanted to ‘piss off’ the unvaccinated.”
“Our ideas are progressing. I never thought we would wage such a good campaign. We brought themes to center of the debate that hadn’t been defended by other candidates, like the cost of living.”
“I am very relieved – it looked very close and populism was at our door.”
“But it is not won – almost half the votes went to the extremes.”