From the storming of the Bastille to a history of public executions by guillotine, French politics has a fascinating and long history. With the war between Ukraine and Russia, the ongoing pandemic, climate change issues and more, it’s important to dive into what is going on in the 2022 presidential election in France.
In 2017, current president Emmanuel Macron beat Marie Le Pen in the second round of elections. Like in America, France has two rounds of elections: the first to decide the two primary candidates and the second between two candidates to decide the president.
After the first round of the presidential election this year, the same match-up from 2017 is on display again for the second round.
The Two Candidates
Macron, the current president of France, has held office for five years and is now up for re-election. He is a part of the La Republique en Marche! party, which is a progressive party but Macron refers to the party as the center. La Republique en Marche!, is often referred to as being socially and economically liberal.
On the opposition, Le Pen is a part of the far-right political party, the National Front (FN). Le Pen runs after her father, Jean-Luc Le Pen, who has run for president five times from 1974 to 2007, losing each time. Only in 2002 did Jean-Luc make it to the second round of elections, but lost to Jacques Chirac.
Topics of Discussion
Being on two sides of the political spectrum, the two candidates differ greatly in their stances on certain issues France faces.
Due to COVID-19, Macron has to implement policies like showing proof of vaccination. While unpopular, the policy did increase the number of vaccinated French citizens. As for Le Pen’s stance on the pandemic, she is against travel bans and other
A huge issue the world has also seen is the war between Russia and Ukraine. Previously, Le Pen has shown outward support for Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin and has since been forced to reverse her relationship with him. Whereas Macron has put some campaigning on the back burner to support Ukraine and find a way to peacefully resolve the war.
Relating to the war, immigration and the refugee crises are also being voted on. Le Pen is outwardly against immigration and proposed a ban against wearing hijabs in public, claiming they are “Islamist.”
According to media outlets, both candidates seem to want two extremely different futures for France.
The Second and Last Election Round
The second round of elections in France will take place on April 24, 2022. It is hard to say between the two candidates as the polls put them in a tight race.
While France is a far plane ride away from State College, it is important to keep up with international politics to keep up with the latest news. Let us know what you think about the current France presential elections on Twitter @VALLEYmag.