Macron and Le Pen suffered a setback in the regional election marred by low turnout – .

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Macron and Le Pen suffered a setback in the regional election marred by low turnout – .


Macron’s Republic on the Move won 10.9% of the vote and the far-right National Rally, led by Le Pen, won 19.1% – less than expected, according to exit polls. The right-wing Les Républicains party is doing better and won 29.3% of the vote.

An unprecedented rate – 68% – of the population did not vote. This is the highest abstention rate under the Fifth Republic.

A second round of regional elections will take place on June 27.

Regional elections are closely watched for voter preferences ahead of next year’s presidential election. However, given the low voter turnout, political experts say it is difficult to draw conclusions at this point.

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin on Monday called the results a form of failure, although he added that it was too early to draw conclusions for the 2022 presidential vote, Reuters reported.
“Democracy sometimes means losing elections. The presidential majority faces a major obstacle (…) let’s not draw quick conclusions about the presidential elections, ”he told France 2 television, Reuters reported.

Darmanin also said Sunday’s low turnout was “a defeat for all of us” because “abstention is a message. The French tell politicians that they don’t trust them ”.

“No one can be happy when there is a 70% abstention rate, reaching over 80% among young people,” he added.

Reuters additional reports.

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