For Ms. Le Pen, Mr. Macron was the candidate of globalization, whose presidency was that of “disorder, fragmentation and fracture of French society”.
“I am a candidate for the restoration of state authority,” said Ms. Le Pen, adding that she would protect France’s national interests.
It has abandoned part of its populist economic agenda, in particular its proposal to abandon the euro. She said she now believes the stability offered by the common currency outweighs the disadvantages.
Maintaining the currency would help Ms Le Pen court traditional Tories, the same group Mr Macron targeted. “It’s reassured people who were worried about a position that made them think that it could have consequences on their assets,” she said.
Her party has gained credibility, Ms. Le Pen argued, in the local governments her party controls, mainly in depressed areas of northern and southern France.
In La Trinité-sur-Mer, she introduced Mr. de Kersauson, the former Alcatel executive, as his party’s leader in the regional elections next month. Getting more center-right deserters – who are financially better off than traditional supporters of the Rassemblement national, but who also feel unsettled by the social changes sweeping through France – is one of the keys to victory next year. .