Published: Mon, June 26, 2017
Global | By Maureen Mccoy

Macron's party wins biggest share of legislative votes: Partial results

Macron's party wins biggest share of legislative votes: Partial results

The Socialists, previously France's ruling party, and their allies won just 9.5 per cent. Projections showed them losing up to 200 seats.

On Sunday, French voters were electing 577 lawmakers, out of more than 7,800 candidates, to the country's National Assembly, the lower house of parliament.

"For the past month, the president has shown confidence, willingness and daring in France and on the worldwide stage", Philippe said, calling the result a vindication of Macron's "winning strategy".

"France is back", Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on French TV.

He continued: "Next Sunday, the National Assembly will embody the new face of our republic: a strong republic, a unified republic, a republic that listens to everyone, the French Republic".

Marine Le Pen's anti-EU, anti-immigration National Front (FN) is predicted to win between 1 to ten seats in the National Assembly in the June 18 runoff.

Since then he has won praise for appointing a balanced cabinet that straddles the left-right divide and taking a leading role in Europe's fight-back against US President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from a global climate accord.

"It's a renewal of the political class", Reuters news agency quoted Jose Jeffrey, a health ministry administrator who voted LREM, as saying.

Macron, a former investment banker, wants a "big bang" of economic and social reforms, including an easing of stringent labour laws and reform of an unwieldy pension system.

The biggest loser of the night was the Socialist party, which saw its support plummet, prompting talk of carnage and massacre.

From five to 12 seats will be claimed by other candidates. In the presidential elections, both of the political forces that have governed France for decades were eliminated in the first round.

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Cambadelis acknowledged that the first round marked an "unprecedented" setback for the party, set to win a paltry 30-40 seats, and the broader left.

Mounir Mahjoubi, junior minister in charge of digital affairs, said on BFM television that voters have acknowledged that the first weeks of Mr Macron's presidency "have been exemplary" and "have allowed the French to see there is a path that suits them".

Macron selected Philippe from the mainstream Republican Party.

Mr Macron's success, however, was blighted by low turn-out as less than 50 per cent of the 47.5 million electors took to the polls.

"Today fewer than half of French people expressed a preference", he said. "This testifies to persistent fractures in French society".

Meanwhile, the Front National, and indeed Marine Le Pen herself, are seeing these elections as their second chance.

A first-round parliamentary election result promising President Emmanuel Macron a crushing majority in parliament lifted investor sentiment on Monday though the lowest voter turnout in modern history clouded celebration.

Macron's party was established just over a year ago and many candidates have little or no political experience.

The near-final first-round tally pointed to a legislative majority so crushing that Mr Macron's rivals fretted that the 39-year-old president will be able to govern France nearly unopposed for his full five-year term.

They include Marie Sara, a retired bullfighter, who is running neck-and-neck with FN stalwart Gilbert Collard in southern France, and star mathematician Cedric Villani running for office in the southern Paris suburb of Essonne.

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