Apr 23, 2017

Le Pen, Macron advance in French election

Philippe Wojazer, Pool photo via AP

Official vote estimates from Sunday's election indicate that Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen will advance to a runoff for the French presidency on 7 May. The latest numbers:

  • Macron: 23.7%, Le Pen: 21.9%, Fillon: 19.7%, Melanchon: 19.2%

Macron is not affiliated with any political party, and he is now the only candidate standing between Le Pen's populist anti-Europe, anti-immigration platform and the presidency. He is favored in head-to-head polls by upwards of 20 percent.

The American connection: Macron used a conversation with Barack Obama as a campaign ad, and Le Pen's campaign points to Donald Trump as evidence she can win.

Emmanuel Macron: the 39-year-old former investment banker resigned as economic minister under Socialist Francois Hollande to form his own centrist political movement, En Marche. He quickly went from long-shot to favorite, with Barack Obama showing his tacit support with a phone call earlier this week.

Marine Le Pen: Le Pen has worked to make what was a fringe party under her father Jean-Marie electable, but anti-immigration and anti-Europe policies still form the basis of the National Front platform. Steve Bannon is a fan, but Reince Priebus says Trump's tweets should not be taken as a sign he supports Le Pen.

Francois Fillon: The conservative candidate beat former president Nicolas Sarkozy in the primary and appeared on course for victory, but his campaign was hit by scandal and he slipped outside the top two.

Jean-Luc Mélenchon: The far-left candidate is skeptical of both NATO and the EU and surged in the polls late on, campaigning via hologram and coming within striking distance of the runoff.

Other updates

Le Pen called the results "historical," saying the very survival of France was at stake and adding, "I am the candidate of the people." She derided Macron as "Hollande's heir" and said "it's time to free French people from arrogant elites."

Macron congratulated all of the candidates who did not advance by name, taking the first step toward consolidating their support. He said the second round presented "an opportunity for hope" for France and Europe, in contrast with "the threat of nationalism."

Fillon called the National Front an "extremist party" that would lead France to bankruptcy and Europe into chaos, saying he would vote for Macron.

Benoit Hamon, representing President Hollande's Socialist Party, had a stunningly poor result with about 6%. He has called on Socialist voters to back Macron, calling Le Pen "an enemy of the republic."

Melanchon did not concede, saying he'd wait for the final results.

Hollande took in the results:

Go deeper

Italy reports lowest number of new coronavirus cases since February

Italy’s aerobatic team Frecce Tricolori fly over Milan in Duomo Square on May 25. Photo: Francesco Prandoni/Getty Images

The Italian government reported 300 new cases of coronavirus on Monday, the lowest daily increase since Feb. 29.

Why it matters: Italy, the first country in Europe to implement a nationwide lockdown after emerging as a hotspot in March, appears to have finally weathered its coronavirus outbreak. Italy has reported nearly 33,000 total deaths, the third-highest total behind the U.S. and U.K.

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 5,453,784 — Total deaths: 345,886 — Total recoveries — 2,191,310Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 1,651,254 — Total deaths: 97,850 — Total recoveries: 366,736 — Total tested: 14,163,915Map.
  3. World: Top Boris Johnson aide defends himself after allegations he broke U.K. lockdown — WHO suspends trial of hydroxychloroquine over safety concerns.
  4. 2020: Trump threatens to move Republican convention from North Carolina — Joe Biden makes first public appearance in two months.
  5. Public health: Officials are urging Americans to wear masks over Memorial Day.
  6. Economy: White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett says it's possible the unemployment rate could still be in double digits by November's election — Charities refocus their efforts to fill gaps left by government.
  7. What should I do? Hydroxychloroquine questions answeredTraveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Joe Biden makes first public appearance in over two months

Photo: Oliver Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden made his first in-person appearance in over two months on Monday to honor Memorial Day by laying a wreath at a Delaware veterans park, AP reports.

Why it matters: Biden, the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee, has taken the unprecedented step of campaigning from his home during the coronavirus pandemic, ever since canceling a rally in Cleveland on March 10.