On a historic Sunday, France and its people will brace for a shift in the political sphere of the nation, even as voters continue to cast their choice in the ballot box.
After a close three-way battle way in the first round, only Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen could sniff the hope of victory for the second and final round of the presidential election.
Second Chance for Le Pen
Macron, who is the incumbent president, faces a tough challenge from his far right rival Le Pen. The two had earlier clashed for the same post in 2016 when Macron had defeated her with a comfortable margin.
However, the situation appears to be closer and balanced this time, with both sides having a potential chance of winning.
According to latest opinion polls, Le Pen trails behind Macron by 10 points, a statistic that has stayed constant from the beginning. Participation was 26.1% at midday, slightly higher than at the same point in the first-round vote on April 10.
From an estimated 45 million voters, a high percentage of people are said to be either unsure about whom they will cast their vote to, or they are expected to be absent from voting at all.
The choice between the Euro centrist and far right politicians against the setback of Russia-Ukraine war is an important development, with the result deciding France’s future in European Union. Marine Le Pen had returned to the election field with a softened manifesto.
However, her conservative policies and embracement of Russia has drawn criticism. In the meanwhile, Macron has faced similar campaign issues due to rising inflation costs.
With Macron leading the polls, the result will be decided by the unsure voters, who have been wooed by both sides. If Macron wins, he will be the first president in 20 years to secure a second term in the office.
Voting stations will close at 8:00 pm local time (1800 GMT), when preliminary results will be released that usually predict the final result with a high degree of accuracy.
Published By: Sachin Sonawane