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French Parliament election: Marine Le Pen's Front National 'disappointed' after seeing vote plummet

Far-right party blames low voter turnout

Harriet Agerholm
Monday 12 June 2017 23:34 BST
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Success Marine Le Pen achieved during the French presidential race failed to transfer to support for the far-right party in the parliamentary vote
Success Marine Le Pen achieved during the French presidential race failed to transfer to support for the far-right party in the parliamentary vote (Getty)

The vice president of France's Front National (FN) has said the party was "disappointed" after it suffered a deep setback in the French elections.

The success Marine Le Pen achieved during the French presidential race failed to transfer to support for the far-right party in the parliamentary vote.

Ms Le Pen saw her share of the vote drop from 21 per cent in the presidential election, to between 13 and 14 per cent.

Meanwhile, newly-elected centrist President Emmanuel Macron won a landslide victory.

FN was on course to win between one and 10 seats in the National assembly in the 18 June run-off. It had hoped to win as many as 15 seats.

Fewer than half of all registered voters cast a ballot on Sunday, unprecedented in France's post-war Fifth Republic. Pollsters pointed to voter fatigue, disillusion with politicians and projections that Macron would secure a commanding majority for the high abstention rate.

Ms Le Pen blamed the low voter-turnout for the result. The 48-year-old said: "This catastrophic abstention rate should raise the question of the voting rules which keep millions of our compatriots away from the polling stations."

Vice president of the party, Florian Philippot. said it had "maybe been disappointed by the score and we have paid the price, I think, for a low turnout".

Mr Macron said he would "restore the trust" of the French people amid the low turnout, the government's spokesman said on Monday. His party is still poised to win comfortably in the second round.

"It is a failure of this election," spokesman Christope Castaner, who is also minister for parliamentary relations, told France 2 television. "We have to take note, we have to restore trust."

Reuters contributed to this report

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