Emmanuel Macron on risky hunt for blue-collar votes against Marine Le Pen

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Two weeks before the second round of French Presidential elections, the far-right veteran Jean-Marie Le Pen criticized his daughter Marine for a "laid-back" campaigning.

Macron and Le Pen face off May 7 in the French presidential runoff. "Responsibility must be taken, that's why I'm here".

The poll, conducted by Elabe, was published Monday and shows Macron with a commanding lead in the second round vote with 64 per cent of the vote while Le Pen has 36 per cent. He is to hold a rally in Arras, a city in the northern rustbelt where Le Pen topped the first round of voting.

Marine Le Pen accused the French media and elite of handing the presidency to Macron on a platter.

But after the political shocks of Britain's vote to leave the European Union and Donald Trump's unlikely ascent to the White House, analysts say a late surge by Le Pen is still possible.

On the other side, Macron, a pro-business candidate, said he belongs to the "progressive camp" with a project "to make France succeed... in a stronger Europe".

Far-right expert Nonna Mayer at Sciences Po university said a Le Pen victory was not impossible, "but it seems unlikely that she will carry the second round". Also, we believe that, during the final round of polls on May 7, the French will lean favourably on the great ideals of liberté, égalité, fraternité of the French Revolution that heralded the birth of liberal democracies around the world.

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French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron is defending his campaign platform in a heated impromptu meeting outside a factory with workers who face losing their jobs to a plant in Poland.

Oddschecker reports 68% of bets have been placed on Le Pen since her announcement she is to step aside from the National Front and fight the second round of the election as an independent candidate.

Sarkozy retired from active political life after failing to win the conservative presidential candidacy in a November primary, but is still seen as a key player.

In another sign of his influence, the National Front has borrowed about €6m from a political fundraising association he heads.

And we trust they will stand up against the PN rhetoric of Le Pen and vote for a positive and optimistic future for France.

Electre noted she and other French nationalists will vote for Ms. Le Pen, but many are fearful that Ms. Le Pen will ultimately let down nationalists by compromising with globalist, anti-French forces.

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