“I will put France in order within five years,” she told supporters, urging “all those who did not vote for Emmanuel Macron” in the first round to back her in the second.
Le Pen was set to score over 24 percent of the first round vote, according to projections, an improvement on the 21.3 percent she achieved in the first round of the 2017 presidential election.
However with a projected 28 percent of the vote Emmanuel Macron also improved on his 2017 first round score of 24 percent.
But whilst Le Pen was up against it in 2017, the far right candidate is clearly more confident this time around, believing she can unite voters who don’t want to see another five years of Macron.
Macron 28.5% on partial results, Le Pen 24.2%, through to the second round. Here’s the scene at Le Pen’s election night party right now. Her supporters are absolutely jubilant pic.twitter.com/bFxN2ung1C
— Katy Lee (@kjalee) April 10, 2022
In a speech to supporters, she said that the country faced a choice: “Either division, injustice and disorder, or rallying around social justice”.
Le Pen touched on key themes she has addressed throughout the campaign: immigration, security and purchasing power.
“The French people have given me the honour of qualifying me for the second round. The French people obviously want to now decide between two opposing visions of the future”, said the National Rally candidate.
Her cheering supporters chanted “we’re going to win.”
Le Pen’s second round percentage, when combined with those of Éric Zemmour and Nicolas Dupont-Aignan marks a historic moment in French politics. It is the first time that the far-right have secured more than a third of the first-round vote under the Fifth Republic.
The final-round duel between Macron and Le Pen is expected to be tighter than the run-off between them in 2017, when the current president thrashed Le Pen with 66 percent of the vote.
Le Pen, bidding to be France’s first ever woman president, looked on course for a higher first-round score than in 2017 when she won 21.3 percent, and she will be able to pick up most of Zemmour’s votes in the second round.
An IFOP survey, conducted immediately after provisional results were published, projects Le Pen obtaining 49 percent of the vote in the second round, narrowly missing out on power.