Macron's party to react 'with humility' to European election polls putting Le Pen in lead

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Macron's party to react 'with humility' to European election polls putting Le Pen in lead
French prime minister Edouard Philippe. Photo: AFP

French prime minister Edouard Philippe has promised that the government will react 'with humility' to European election polls that put the far right in the lead.


He was reacting to preliminary that results that show the far right Marine Le Pen topping the polls with 24 percent, ahead of president Emmanuel Macron's party on 22.5 percent.

The preliminary results will give the far right Rassemblement National (RN) the greatest number of seats at the European Parliament, ahead of Macron's Le Republique En Marche (LREM) party.

READ ALSO Le Pen's party beats Macron's to top spot in France, polls show

The preliminary results made good showing for the greens, who emerged in third place with 12.5 percent of the vote, but further underlined the struggles of the Republican and Socialist parties, which between them had dominated French politics until the rise of Macron. They were polling around eight percent and seven percent respectively.

Prime Minister and LREM member Philippe said the party could not afford to trivialise the result.

He told reporters: "Tonight's results confirm the dynamics of the first round of the last presidential election.

"The two political forces that the French have led more or less reproduce the 2017 scores.

"The two parties that governed France for 50 years, total less than 10 percent. The old divisions are no longer there, new ones have appeared, that is what we must now move forward on: Europe, ecology, social justice.

"The French have put the far right in the lead, it's not the first time, but I'll never be indifferent and I don't want to trivialise this result."

He said he welcomed the results with "humility".

"For my part, I welcome these results with humility. When you finish second you can't say you won.

"With humility and a lot of determination. As of tomorrow, I will be on the job to pursue the project of the  President and the majority. "

Before the results came in, sources close to the party had suggested that Philippe's job could be on the line if LREM polled badly.



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