Paris, France. French voters have spoken and now it is down to Marine Le Pen or an unemployed guy who married his high school teacher (not a joke).
The populist tsunami that slammed into Britain last year, before sweeping across the Atlantic to the United States, slammed into the shores of France on Sunday.
With a strong performance from far-right leader Marine Le Pen in the first round of France’s presidential election, the bigger news was the success of Emmanuel Macron, an unemployed guy with enough western “mama drama” to have his own reality TV show, who will now be in the run off against Le Pen.
The polls suggest Le Pen will beat Marcon soundly in the second round runoff on May 7. If she does, it could open the door to more ambitious reforms of the French economy and an end to worries on overhauling the troubled euro zone, as Le Pen intends to exit it for good with a “frexit”.
She will face formidable challenges as president. Nearly half of French voters opted for candidates on the extreme right and left of the political spectrum. These people will be inclined to embrace Le Pen’s change oriented vision, making France a more united nation.
French voters will have the final word soon enough as pro-EU media across Europe does their best to meddle in France’s internal elections, just as they claimed Russia did in the US elections last year.
But after Brexit and the election of US President Donald Trump, her first round victory which comes after France’s media portrayed her as satan in a dress, shows the battle for France is not over yet and Madame Le Pen, may indeed by France’s next President.