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France’s Far Right Leads in First Round of Elections, Exit Polls Show

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In a stunning turn of events, France‘s far-right party has taken the lead in the first round of the national elections, according to exit polls released on Sunday evening. The National Rally (Rassemblement National), led by Marine Le Pen, secured a significant percentage of the vote, signaling a potential shift in the country’s political landscape. 

Exit polls indicate that the National Rally (RN) has garnered approximately 34% of the vote, outpacing other major parties. This marks a significant gain from their previous performance in the 2019 elections, reflecting growing support among the French electorate. 

Under the leadership of Marine Le Pen, the RN has campaigned on a platform of national sovereignty, immigration control, and economic reform. Le Pen’s appeal to working-class voters and her emphasis on “putting France first” have resonated strongly in many regions. 

The results how that the left-wing New Popular Front (NFP) coalition about 29 percent, and President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist Ensemble Alliance in third spot with about 20.3 percent. 

Voter turnout was reported to be moderate, with higher engagement in urban areas. The RN’s success was particularly notable in rural and economically depressed regions, where voters expressed dissatisfaction with current government policies. 

The rise of the RN is likely to cause ripples across Europe. European leaders have expressed concern over the potential implications for EU policies and the rise of nationalist sentiment in one of the EU’s core member states. 

As France braces for the second round of voting, the political landscape is poised for intense competition. Marine Le Pen’s lead sets the stage for a high-stakes runoff, where alliances and voter turnout will be crucial. Analysts predict that traditional parties may need to form strategic coalitions to counter the RN’s momentum. 

With France at a crossroads, the coming weeks will be pivotal in determining the country’s future direction and its place within the European Union. 

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