It matters what France decides

French presidential elections held on April 23

March 27, 2017

With a political scandal, rising populism, distrust with French politicians and the possibility of France leaving the European Union leaves many people wondering who will become the next French President.

France’s presidential election is quite different from the U.S. Presidential election which solely depends on the electoral college.

France has a two-round presidential election, meaning unless a French candidate gets 50 percent of the popular vote in the first round, the two highest scores will then go onto a second round held 14 days later.

Currently, the French Presidential Election will take place on April 23, 2017, for the first round and May 7, 2017, for the second round.

There has currently been a political scandal with French candidate Francois Fillon of the French Republicans with allegations over his wife being paid 500,000€ ($540,000) for a job she wasn’t doing.

Fillon dismissed the first allegations saying to reporters, “The stink bomb season has started.”

New claims have suggested that Fillon’s wife was paid 900,000€ ($970,000). Despite this, Francois Fillon said, “My decision is clear: I am a candidate, and I will continue until victory,” in an interview with Le Figaro.

In rural areas of France, more people are beginning to turn to the French National Front. Mr. Bertrand in a meeting with BBC said, “You don’t see many National Front voters here. It’s a vote that appears in the ballot boxes, but it isn’t openly expressed.”

François Hollande who is the current president of France will not run for re-election after becoming one of the most unpopular presidents of the French Fifth Republic.

Hollande added that there would be “risks” to the French left if he did run for re-election.

Wasilla High School should pay attention to the French election and other European elections due to the shifting political climate of western nations toward populist candidates with strong nationalist views.

French Presidential Candidates

Marine Le Pen

National Front / Front National

Marine Le Pen is the current president and presidential nominee of the National Front in France which currently has 85,000 members. Le Pen has been a member of the National Front since 1986 and has been in politics from a young age. She wants to put native French citizens first and things such as jobs, welfare, housing, schools, and other public services should go to French nationals before they get to foreigners.

Other policies are to massively rearm French Police, restore expulsion of foreign criminals and offenders, expel foreigners with connections to Islamic extremism, as well as possibly withdrawing from the European Union.

Le Pen is a strong opponent of the euro and wants the former currency of France which is the franc to be restored.

Francois Fillon

The Republicans / Les Républicains

Francois Fillon is the presidential nominee of the The Republicans in France. His party leans center-right and currently has 213,030 members as of May 2015. He has served as the Prime Minister of France from May 17, 2007, to May 16, 2012.

He opposes abortion but would not vote to ban it, advocates for the cracking down of extreme Islamic groups, and has called for dialogue with Bashar al-Assad of Syria and President Vladimir Putin of Russia.

Currently, allegations of his wife and two children being paid for little actual work in the French government has been a serious blow to candidacy for the French president. He is currently being investigated by French prosecutors.

Emmanuel Macron

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