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France's Legislative Election

Voter Turnout Surges in France’s Legislative Election, Midday Figures Show

Paris, July 07, 2024, The Europe Today: Voter turnout in France’s legislative election reached 26.63% by midday, according to the French Interior Ministry. This figure marks a significant increase from 2022, when only 18.99% of eligible voters had cast their ballots by the same time.

Polling stations are scheduled to close at 6 p.m. (1600 UTC), with the increased participation expected to influence the election’s outcome significantly.

French daily Le Monde reported that the record turnout in the first round of voting has primarily benefitted President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist Renaissance party and the far-right National Rally (RN). The RN is projected to secure first place in Sunday’s vote but is anticipated to fall short of achieving an absolute majority in parliament.

The current legislative elections follow a turbulent political period. President Macron dissolved the lower house of parliament on June 9, following a defeat of his centrist coalition by the far-right National Rally in the European Union parliamentary elections. This dissolution triggered financial instability, with declines in France’s stock market and rising interest rates.

In the first round of the legislative elections, the National Rally led with the most votes, while the left-wing New Popular Front (NFP) secured second place. The results of today’s runoff vote will determine whether President Macron will need to share power with a government led by opposing political factions.

Prime Minister Gabriel Attal, from Macron’s centrist Renaissance party, currently leads France’s government. Macron’s call for a snap vote came after the RN’s success in June’s EU parliamentary election, compounded by his centrist bloc losing its parliamentary majority in 2022, leading to the formation of a minority coalition government.

In-depth analysis by DW has highlighted potential economic instability stemming from the election results and scrutinized the economic policies proposed by Macron, the RN, and the NFP.

As France awaits the final election results, the nation stands at a critical juncture, with the potential for significant political and economic shifts on the horizon.