Emmanuel Macron wins French presidential election in landslide

Independent centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron has won the French presidential election, beating his far-right rival Marine Le Pen. Mr Macron, who stood on a pro-EU ticket, has in the past vowed to take United Kingdom jobs in research and banking to France.

"I will fight with all my power against the divisions which undermine us and knock us back".

"I'm a student, I have to work to pay for my studies and Macron's programme is the best for young people like me who want aim higher".

Emmanuel Macron says he would formalize the job of first lady if he wins the election, and says "she has her word to say in this".

But any idea of a courageous new political dawn will be tempered by an abstention rate on Sunday of around 25 percent, the highest this century, and by a record share of blank or spoiled ballots by more than 11 percent of those who did vote.

Macron's expected margin of victory was bigger than the gap shown by pre-election polls, which had projected a Macron victory by around 20 points.

Macron has expressed pro-businesses and pro-EU views. He built a reputation with his "Macron Law", a controversial reform bill that allowed, among other things, longer retail hours on Sunday.

The latest polls indicated that his lead had increased after a tense TV debate on Wednesday between Macron and Le Pen, after which many said that Le Pen failed to explain her policies and was too aggressive towards her opponent.

"Marine Le Pen was so violent and ready to use fake news", he said just after casting his ballot.

While Le Pen has worked hard to rid her nationalistic party of its xenophobic image, she has campaigned on an anti-immigration, anti-EU platform.




He finished top in the first round on 23 April, ahead of Le Pen, and eliminating the candidates of the two main traditional parties - Francois Fillon from the centre-right Republicans and Benoit Hamon from the Socialist Party.

A name change would help Le Pen further distance herself from the party's anti-Semitic past and her hard-line father, party founder Jean-Marie Le Pen.

Macron's immediate challenge will be to secure a majority in next month's parliamentary election for En Marche!

The 39-year-old centrist's amalgam of positions holds the potential for radically reshaping the angry, polarized, stalled politics of troubled democracies like the U.S., Britain and France.

Numerous mainly youthful supporters were wearing the T-shirt of Macron's centrist movement En Marche ("On the Move"), set up just a year ago. "The Prime Minister warmly congratulates President-elect Macron on his election success".

She also wanted to swap the Euro for the French franc, expel all illegal immigrants and close "extremist" mosques. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in a tweet said, "Happy that the French chose a European future". "If that was the case, I would have kept working for them", Macron answered.

Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, also tweeted his congratulations.

Macron spoke by phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, with whom he hopes to revitalise the Franco-German axis at the heart of the European Union, saying he planned to visit Berlin shortly.

Jake Kanter contributed reporting to this story.

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