The anger of Le Pen voters must be addressed

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Emmanuel Macron celebrates after his victory in the French presidential election, at the Champ de Mars in Paris.

Bertrand Guay | AFP | Getty Images

Frenchman Emmanuel Macron used his victory speech on Sunday to express disaffection with his leadership and the anger of those who opted for his far-right rival Marine Le Pen.

“I am no longer the candidate of one camp but the president of everyone,” Macron said, addressing his supporters against the backdrop of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Centrist Macron is expected to win around 58% in the second and final round of the French presidential election, according to a flurry of exit polls and projections, with nationalist leader Marine Le Pen at 42%. Estimates in France are generally accurate but may be refined as official results come in.

Despite the announced victory of Macron, 44, the gap represents a smaller gap between the two candidates compared to the 2017 election, when Macron won with 66.1% of the vote.

Macron said on Sunday that the concerns of those who abstained, voted for him just to block his far-right rival, or simply chose Le Pen should be taken into account.

He said his next five-year term would be different, promising that “no one will be left behind”.

“Because each of us matters more than ourselves… That’s what makes the French people such a unique force that I love so intensely and am so proud to serve again,” he said. he said, according to a Reuters statement. Translation.

Speaking to CNBC’s Karen Tso, the re-elected president said he was very happy with the result, but was “now committed to delivering for France and Europe”.

Macron has been accused of having a lack of empathy with voters. French politics professor at the University of Warwick, Jim Shields, told CNBC earlier this week that Macron had the difficult task of defending his five years in power, but also presenting a new vision for the future.

“What he needs to do is show some empathy, get off his high horse, try to show that he cares about people’s day-to-day concerns, that he’s not the president of the wealthy that many accuse him of being,” he said.

The 2022 campaign unfolded against the backdrop of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, a cost-of-living crisis in France, growing support for the far left among younger generations and suggestions of widespread voter apathy.

Riot police reportedly loaded and sprayed tear gas at demonstrators in central Paris on Sunday evening who were protesting Macron’s victory.

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