Macron and Le Pen to review their strategies after poor election results

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The traditional left and right parties are expected to retain control of most regions of mainland France after a historically low turnout in Sunday’s first round and disappointing scores for Emmanuel Macron’s centrist party and the Rassemblement national d ‘. extreme right of Marine Le Pen (National Rally).

Majority-right candidate lists topped the vote in six of metropolitan France’s 13 regions, leaving Nicolas Sarkozy’s former party, Les Républicains, as the dominant force, while left-wing lists, where Socialists dominate , finished first of five.

But after decades of growing abstention and disillusionment with the political process, only around 33% of the electorate turned out for regional and local elections. departmental elections. The abstention rate among 18-24 year olds was over 80%. This is the worst voter turnout since 1958 – with the exception of a referendum in 2000 on the duration of the presidential term – leaving Macron’s entourage shaken.

Interior Minister Gérard Darmanin said: “Abstention is a message. The French tell politicians that they don’t trust them.

The low turnout has made it difficult to draw general conclusions from local votes on France’s presidential race next year, analysts have warned. Polls are currently calling for a second round between centrist Macron and the far-right Le Pen in the spring.

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Leading first-round list by region

Source: French interior ministry. Note: parties put forward candidates in multi-party lists; in general the ‘left’ list includes the Socialist party, and the ‘right’ list includes the Republicans. But the same party may appear in different lists in different regions.

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