French hard-left poised to make big gains in first-round parliamentary vote – POLITICO

PARIS – French President Emmanuel Macron’s coalition is neck and neck with a new left-wing group in the first round of Sunday’s parliamentary election, early forecasts show.

According to the Ipsos polling station, the left-wing NUPES alliance is backed by firebrand Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Macron’s Ensemble! coalition each won 25.2 percent of the vote to elect representatives in the National Assembly, the lower house of parliament.

But polls leading up to the vote suggested a strong turnout from the left in the first round would not necessarily result in seats, as Macron and his allies appear to benefit from the second vote next Sunday under the two-round system. which is generally favorable to more centrist candidates.

A candidate can win the first round if he gets at least half of the votes cast, as well as the votes of at least a quarter of the registered voters in his constituency. If not, the candidate who gets the most votes in the second round of the second round becomes a Member of Parliament.

According to Ipsos, Macron’s coalition would gain between 255 to 295 seats after the second round, compared to just 150 to 190 for NUPES. That would still mean a major rebalancing of power in the National Assembly, as Macron’s allies currently hold 345 seats in the outgoing chamber. A majority would be 289 seats; any figure lower than that for the ruling coalition would mean Macron would struggle to pass legislation and major reforms, such as for the pension system.

Although far-right leader Marine Le Pen won 39 percent of the vote in the second round of the presidential election in April, her party only got 18.9 percent of the vote in the parliamentary election, according to forecasts.

Turnout also appears to have bottomed out for the parliamentary elections, with just 39 percent participating as of 5pm local time. according to figures from the Ministry of the Interior. Low turnout means fewer candidates qualify for the runoff, as candidates must receive votes from at least 12.5 percent of registered voters to advance.

The final results of the first round are expected later on Sunday.

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