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Macron calls snap election for France

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It comes after the far-right party led by his main rival Marine Le Pen delivered a stronger-than-expected result in the European Parliament elections.
macron snap election

French President Emmanuel Macron has dissolved the lower house of Parliament and called for a snap election, to be held on 30 June.

It comes after the far-right party led by his main rival Marine Le Pen delivered a stronger-than-expected result in the European Parliament elections.

Appearing in a televised address, Macron announced the dissolution of parliament and told voters: “I cannot act as if nothing had happened.”

EU elections

The European Parliament is the world’s only democratically elected transnational organisation. It’s made up of representatives from all 27 EU states and passes laws that affect the whole continent.

Over the past week, about 370 million voters in 27 European Union countries have cast ballots to decide the composition of the continent’s parliament, which has 720 members.

Results

Votes are still being counted, but early signs show the European People’s Party, a centre-right party, will be the largest in parliament with 184 elected representatives.

The main takeaway from the night is an historic surge for smaller far-right parties across Europe.

According to Politico, if the far-right parties were to form a single group, it would be the second largest party in Europe behind the EPP.

France votes

In the EU parliament vote, 31.5% of French voters supported the ‘National Rally’ – a far-right party led by Marine Le Pen. Emmanuel Macron’s Renaissance Party won about half the number of votes as his opponent.

While votes in the EU do not have a direct result on the composition of the French parliament, it is seen as an accurate representation of Macron’s support domestically. In his announcement of a snap election, Macron told France he “heard [their] message, and will not let it go without a response”.

France’s snap election

French parliamentary elections take place in two rounds – the first will be on 30 June and the second on 7 July.

French voters will be electing 577 members of the lower house.

These elections will not affect Macron’s role as president, as the parliamentary elections are seperate to the presidential election. This means Macron will still be France’s leader for another three years.

However, depending on the results, Macron could need to appoint a prime minister from the opposition.

Le Pen reaction

Speaking after Macron’s announcement, Le Pen said her party was “ready to take power if the French people have confidence in [them]”.

Le Pen said: “We are ready to put an end to mass immigration. We are ready to make the purchasing power of the French people a priority, we are ready to start re-industrialising the country.”

Le Pen ran unsuccessfully against Macron in both the 2017 and 2022 presidential elections.

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