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Le Pen, Macron Progress To Second Round In French Presidential Election

from Zero Hedge:

Update 4:42pm: As expected, with the city vote starting to come in, Macron has just taken the lead according to Interior Ministry data:

  • MACRON SURPASSES LE PEN IN FRENCH INTERIOR MIN PRELIM. DATA
  • MACRON AT 23.12%, LE PEN AT 23.06%: FRENCH INTERIOR MINISTRY
  • INTERIOR MIN DATA AT 10:35PM BASED ON 33.42M VOTERS (69.47%)

Update 4:10pm: Le Pen’s lead in the official votes is slipping, and according to Interior Ministry data, now been updated with 50.02% of the total eligible voters, Le Pen’s lead continues to narrow now at 1.71% points from 2.19% in the last update. This is expected given that urban areas are the last to report results, and are less likely to vote for the far-right candidate.

Update: 3:49pm ET: With 50% of Votes Counted, France’s Interior Ministry reports LE PEN AT 24.13%, MACRON AT 22.42%

The latest Interior Ministry preliminary estimates put Marine Le Pen at 24.3%, or roughly 7.5 percentage points better than the 2002 performance that got her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, into that year’s presidential run-off. This would also be the National Front’s best first-round showing to date.

Meanwhile Melenchon has refused to endorse anyone for the second round for now. According to Citi, Melenchon has more or less conceded and adds that “far-left communist-backed candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon says he will await full results, and says that he trusts his supporters to ‘know what to do in the second round’. He hasn’t quite conceded, in black and white. He refuses to endorse anyone else ‘for now’. He expressed anger that two ‘establishment’ candidates are present in the second round (he considers Le Pen to be a part of the political establishment).”
He remains in fourth place in all polls.

Additionally, France’s largest union, The CFDT, has called up in ts members to vote for Macron in the second round “to beat the National Front.”

* * *

Update 3:26 pm ET: Here is where the latest results stand 90 minutes after the results were initially released: the latest figures from Kantar figures expected Macron to win first round with 23%, Le Pen coming second at 22%. while the latest numbers from the Interior Ministry show Le Pen at 25.1%, Macron at 21.3% however the results from the big cities are expected to come in later and boost Macron. Le Pen has called the result `historic’, and has predicted she will be in the run-off. The euro has rallied following the early results, gaining as much as 1.9%, the highest since November, although 1.09 is proving to be a modest resistance level for now.

* * *

Update 3:22 pm ET:  In a statement released on Facebook, Jean-Luc Melenchon has reefuseds to concede defeat and asks for his supporters and the press to ‘show restraint’ and wait for more votes to be counted. He is currently a close fourth in all polls. Fillon, as reported earlier, wasted no time in conceding. It remains to be seen whether or not the order will change, but the polls have fluctuated in the past. He says he will speak to his supporters at 21:00 BST (his supporters reportedly ‘still believe’ according to French tv station BFM TV).

Headlines via Bloomberg:

  • MELENCHON SAYS DOESN’T VALIDATE CURRENT POLLS ESTIMATES
  • MELENCHON ON FACEBOOK CALLS FOR ‘RESTRAINT’ ON VOTE ESTIMATES

* * *

Update 3:10pm ET: Marine Le Pen is speaking, and acknowledges she will be in the second round of the election, and that she is honored her voters have sent her into the second round.

She says he result in the first round is “historic” and that her “result is an act of French pride.” She also adds that “she’s ready to take on the defense of the French republic” and that the French need to seize this historic opportunity to fight “savage globalization.”

Read More @ ZeroHedge.com

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