French ex-prime minister Valls offers to back Macron in June elections

Laura Christensen
May 12, 2017

Macron won 66% of the vote in Sunday's presidential run-off against the far right's Marine Le Pen, the biggest win by a French president since Jacques Chirac's victory over Le Pen's father Jean-Marie in 2002.

Macron has said he was aiming for an absolute majority in the lower chamber in June's elections.

Mr Macron's party chief Richard Ferrand told a news conference on Monday that his "En Marche!" movement will now change its name to "En Marche la République" or "Republic on the Move", so as to structure itself more like a traditional party. In order to govern properly, Macron's fledgling political movement "En Marche" must now gather a majority in June's parliamentary elections.

In a statement, a Downing Street spokesman said: "The Prime Minister warmly congratulates President-elect Macron on his election success".

This accelerated procedure, bypassing parliament, could mean a fiery start to his term as France's highly activist unions would likely bring protests out onto the streets, as they did a year ago when Socialist Prime Minister Manuel Valls used the tactic.

The 39-year old former investment banker, who has never held elected office, became the youngest President and occupant of the Élysee Palace.

The candidates will be announced by Thursday.

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Front National vice president Florian Philippot confirmed that the party's name was bound to change as part of this transformation.

Valls, a man deeply associated with the unpopular President François Hollande, supported Macron rather than the Socialist Party candidate during the presidential election.

To discuss the victory of Emmanuel Macron and the future of France following the contentious election, CGTN's Elaine Reyes spoke to Michael Kimmage, Transatlantic Academy Fellow for the German Marshall Fund. If so, he will be able to choose a prime minister.

Following defeats of candidates with similar platforms in the Netherlands and Austria, Le Pen's loss marked the third straight setback for right-wing populism after the shocking election of Donald Trump in the United States and Great Britain's vote to leave the European Union.

Marine Le Pen, a mother of three children, tweeted that "as a political leader I deeply regret Marion's decision but, alas, as a mum, I understand it".

He said the life of minorities in France would have been hard if Le Pen was elected President due to her extreme views on public display of religious symbols.

Other reports by My Hot News

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