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29/07/2016

Second poll puts French far-right in the lead for EU elections

EU Elections 2014

Second poll puts French far-right in the lead for EU elections

Supporters paste a poster of Marine Le Pen, France's National Front leader, on a wall before a political rally for local elections. Frejus, March 2014. [Reuters]

The far-right remains in the lead to win the European elections in France, according to a recent opinion poll, the second in the past six months that puts Marine Le Pen’s party in pole position. EurActiv France reports.

If the elections had taken place on Sunday 13 April, the French National Front party would have won 24% of votes, just ahead of the centre-right UMP (23%) and the ruling Socialist Party (21%) of President François Hollande.

The centrist UDI is far behind, with 9% of votes. Coming in fifth place, the Left Front would have received 8% of votes. The Green party would have followed with 7.5%.

This is the second poll in six months that puts Marine Le Pen’s party in the lead to win the European elections in France. Last October, a survey for the Nouvel Observateur magazine predicted that 24% would back the anti-immigrant party, compared with 22% for the centre-right UMP and 19% for the Socialists.

>> Read: French far-right leads in latest EU election poll

Among the smaller political parties, the New Anticapitalist Party, led by Olivier Besancenot, would have received 2%, Debout la République (Arise the Republic) 1.5%, while Nouvelle Donne (New Deal) and Lutte Ouvrière (Worker’s Struggle) would both have got 1% of votes.

Finally, 1.5% of those surveyed would have voted for one of the many other candidates presented for the European elections.

One the most striking results of the survey is the high level of abstention, at almost 61%.

Background

The coming into force of Lisbon Treaty will lead to changes in the organisation of the European institutions, notably in the nomination of their leaders. In order to deal with the often criticised democratic void of the EU, the Council of the EU will bear in mind the results of the European elections and choose the President of the European Commission from the most popular European political group.

Other parties have promoted transparency by establishing candidate lists for the European elections. It is possible to vote for the Green party over the internet. Other parties have tried to introduce lists early in the campaign. The right is the last to present its lists for the elections, and is doing so bit by bit.

Timeline

  • 22-25 May: European elections

Further Reading

PollWatch 2014