In the absence of a few hours for the polling stations to open in France, Emmanuel Macron maintains a 13-point lead in the second round of the presidential elections over his rival, the far-right Marine Le Pen, according to the latest Ipsos poll. The current president would thus revalidate his mandate, although with 10% less support than he obtained in 2017.
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The survey, whose field work was carried out this Friday, April 22, gives Macron 56.5% of the support and leaves the candidate for National Regrouping (RN) at 43.5%. Both would thus obtain a variation of 10 points with respect to the results obtained in the previous elections, which both also reached in the second round. At that time, Macron, with more than 20.2 million votes, had the support of more than 66% of the electorate; while Le Pen stayed at 33.9%, with 10.6 million votes.
Ipsos, which has interviewed 12,129 people for this latest poll prior to Sunday’s contest, with a margin of error of +/-1.1%, thus deepens Macron’s advantage over Le Pen by one point compared to the latest poll, with data collected between April 15 and 18. The French president, however, does not recover the advantage he obtained over the far-right leader at the start of the campaign, between March 21 and 24, when, according to the pollster, Macron retained 57% of the support compared to 43. % of LePen.
The electoral campaign for the first round served the RN leader to recover in the polls and transform that trend into real support in that first electoral stretch, when she obtained 23.25% of the support and managed to sneak into the ballotage this Sunday, above the leftist Jean-Luc Mélenchon, who received 21.95% of the vote.
The far-right leader had never obtained such a high percentage of votes in a first round – in 2017, she achieved 21.3% and in 2012, 17.9%. This is a new record just 20 years after her father Jean-Marie Le Pen’s surprising qualification for the final round. The National Grouping candidate has received more than 8.13 million votes, more than in the first rounds of 2017 and 2012.
In this second stage of the electoral campaign, in addition to the respective acts of the candidates and a moderation in the tone of both to try to capture the Mélenchon voter, the face-to-face debate this week and the positions that They have been showing the candidates who did not go to the second round.
The first to show her support for Macron was the candidate of the Socialist Party, the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo. “I solemnly ask you to vote against the extreme right of Marine Le Pen using Emmanuel Macron’s ballot,” she said after hearing the results. So did the candidate of the moderate right, Valérie Pécresse, albeit in a personal capacity: “I am deeply concerned about the future of our country, with an extreme right that has never been so close to winning. I will conscientiously vote for Emmanuel Macron to prevent Marine Le Pen from coming to power and causing chaos.”
However, the key to these elections lies with the 7.7 million people who supported Mélenchon in the first round. The leftist leader exhorted his voters to “not give a single vote” to the extreme right, although he did not directly call the leader of La República En Marcha to vote either. In this sense, Brice Teinturier, director of the Ipsos polling institute, explained a few days ago to Agence France Presse that, today, “34% of the electorate for Mélenchon intend to vote for Macron, 30% for Le Pen –more than in 2017– and 36% of staying at home”. In an internal survey among registered voters of France Insumisa published this Sunday, the majority assures that they will not go to vote in the second round between Macron and Le Pen or will vote blank.
Le Pen will surely have the ballots of those who supported the far-right Eric Zemmour in the first round, who encouraged his nearly two and a half million voters to vote for the RN candidate, despite, he said, “disagreements” he has had with her during the campaign. “In front of Le Pen there is a man who has brought two million immigrants: I am not going to make the wrong opponent,” he said.
Another of the keys to this second electoral round will be participation. The Ipsos survey calculates that this figure will move between 71.5 and 75.5%, a range that includes the participation that was in the last second round, held on May 7, 2017, with 74 .56%.
After the decaffeinated campaign of the first round, the polls suggested that abstention would break a historical record. Finally, although turnout was one of the lowest in a presidential election, it was higher than in 2002. In this first round, abstention stood at around 26.3%, four points more than in 2017 (22.23 %), but without reaching the figures of 2002 (28.4%), maximum in some presidential elections.